Delicious cold pasta salad that’s perfect for summer. So easy to make and delicious. Loaded with flavor from spaghetti noodles, green peppers, cucumber, red onion, tomatoes, black olives all tossed in Italian Dressing!
Pasta salads are one of those “everything but the kitchen sink” kind of recipes, and boy are they tasty. This spaghetti salad with Italian dressing is so easy and it goes with pretty much anything! This cold pasta salad and pesto pasta salad are currently in a duel as to which will be my favorite.
This easy recipe has just the right amount of tang from Italian dressing and parmesan cheese, balanced out by all the crunchy veggies and perfect al dente noodles.
A cold pasta salad is the perfect side dish to add to your summer cook-out! While the burgers are grilling, let this salad chill in the fridge and then dinner is ready in a snap.
Why You’ll Love this Spaghetti Salad Recipe
- This is the best simple side dish to bring to a potluck or party! Throw the ingredients together and let it chill in the fridge until you’re ready to walk out the door.
- You can make this easy pasta salad recipe ahead of time and store it in the fridge until you’re ready to serve.
- Pasta salad is a tasty way to get a good serving of vegetables into your diet!
Ingredients for Spaghetti Pasta Salad
- Spaghetti noodles – If you don’t have spaghetti noodles on hand you can use angel hair pasta instead!
- Green pepper – Dice up some green bell pepper to use in this easy pasta salad recipe. Green bell pepper has the most mild flavor, but you could also use yellow or orange bell pepper.
- Red onion – The distinct flavor of red onion is delicious in pasta salad, so I don’t recommend substituting it.
- English cucumber – Cut a cucumber into slices and then halve the circular slices.
- Cherry tomatoes – Cut cherry tomatoes into halves or quarters so that they will more evenly distribute in the
- Sliced black olives – If you’re not a fan of olives, you can leave them out. However, they mix so well with all of the other ingredients that you likely won’t even notice they’re there!
- Cheddar cheese – Buy cheddar cheese that has already been cubed or buy a block and cut it yourself. You can also use shredded cheddar cheese.
- Parmesan cheese – Freshly grated parmesan adds a nice tangy cheese flavor.
- Garlic and onion powder – Garlic powder and onion powder plus Italian dressing give this pasta salad it’s flavor.
- Salt and pepper – Add a little salt and pepper to bring out the delicious flavor of all the veggies in this recipe.
- Italian dressing – Grab a bottle of your favorite Italian dressing or make your own Italian dressing.
How to Make Spaghetti Salad with Italian Dressing
- Cook the spaghetti noodles according to instructions of the back of the package. Boil them until al dente and then drain and rinse in ice cold water.
- In an extra large bowl, combine all of the diced vegetables, olives, cheddar cheese cubes, and parmesan cheese.
- Once the spaghetti is cooked, drained, and cooled by the cold water then add it to the bowl of veggies. Season everything with garlic and onion powder, salt and pepper then toss gently using tongs or pasta servers.
- Pour the Italian dressing over the noodles and mix everything thoroughly until well combined.
- Cover the bowl tightly in plastic wrap and allow it to chill for at least two hours before serving.
What to Serve with Spaghetti Salad
If you want a really simple dinner, make some air fryer chicken breasts and this salad. But this recipe really would pair well with anything! Maybe pair it with something like air fryer shrimp or garlic butter steak and potatoes.
How to Store Leftover Spaghetti Salad
Keep leftovers tightly covered with plastic wrap, or transfer to an airtight container. Refrigerate for up to 3 days. I do not recommend freezing any leftover pasta salad. The texture could change and you’d end up with a mushy mess.
Can I add meat to this spaghetti salad with Italian dressing?
Sure! Diced ham and bacon bits would both be tasty. You could also add shredded chicken or shred a rotisserie chicken and add some to the pasta salad. Additionally, you could dice up some lunch meat as a really easy meat addition.
- Chill this pasta salad in the coldest part of your fridge so that it gets really cold. Place it towards the back away from the door.
- Make this recipe vegan by leaving out the cheese or substituting for a vegan cheese.
- Cool cooked spaghetti with cold water until it is no longer warm to the touch. Warm pasta can melt some of the cheese and make the vegetables lose their tasty crunch.
Spaghetti salad is so easy to make and is dangerously addictive! But that’s ok because you’ll be eating more and more veggies with every extra serving.
More Pasta Salad Recipes You’ll Love
- Greek Pasta Salad is another cold pasta recipe that is perfect for summer cook-outs!
- Are you a seafood fan? Then you’ll love this super tasty Crab Pasta Salad recipe.
- Make a Creamy Tuna Pasta Salad when you need a really easy recipe with some protein.
- How do you make Caesar salad better? You make it a Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad of course!
- Nothing like a classic Tuna Pasta Salad to beat the heat in the summer!
- 16 ounces spaghetti noodles
- 1 green pepper diced
- ½ red onion thinly sliced
- 1 English cucumber sliced and halved
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes sliced in half
- 2.25 ounces can sliced black olives drained
- ½ cup cheddar cheese cut into cubes
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 16 ounces Italian dressing
- Cook spaghetti according to package directions. Prepare noodles al dente. Drain and rinse in cold water.
- In a large bowl – and I do mean LARGE bowl – add in all your diced veggies, olives and cheeses while noodles are cooking.
- Then add the cooked and cooled spaghetti on top. Season salad with garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. Give it all a gentle toss.
- Pour Italian dressing over noodles. Stir mixture carefully until combined.
- Cover with plastic wrap, place in the refrigerator and allow to cool for at least two hours before serving.