This recipe for pasta salad is made with ripe and delicious summer tomatoes, basil, capers and some good olive oil. A simple recipe perfect for long summer days.
I recently had a recipe from the New York Times come through my inbox that sounded amazing. Pasta Salad with Summer Tomatoes and Basil.
It has since become one of my favorite things to make this summer. I have adapted it a bit to our style and I can’t wait to share my version with you.
Summer Pasta Salad with Tomatoes and Basil
This delicious summer recipe utilizes the fresh summer tomatoes and readily available basil, making this pasta salad fresh and easy to make. Of course you can make this any time of year, but there’s just nothing quite like summer tomatoes, right?
This easy summer dish is made with fresh tomatoes and my favorites are the heirloom variety. They are juicy, sweet and perfect for this recipe.
One of the best things about this pasta salad is that is can be made ahead of time. In fact, the tomatoes, basil, capers and olive oil do best sitting out for at least an hour before adding in the pasta.
How To Make the Best Summer Pasta Salad
Ok, so let’s get to making this yummy summer pasta salad! You can jump to the bottom of the post for the full, printable recipe.
The first step to making this summer pasta salad is to coarsely chop the tomatoes. Place them in a bowl and add in the capers, crushed garlic, olive oil and chopped basil. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Let these flavors meld together and marinate for at least an hour and up to 3 hours. Don’t refrigerate, but feel free to cover with a paper towel or plastic wrap.
Next, cook the pasta. Now, since this recipe is somewhat simple, I like to use a fancier pasta. I used campanelle, which translates to “belleflowers”. I love the curly shape. Generously salt the water, bring to a boil and add in the pasta. Salted water is the key to having a flavorful summer pasta salad.
Cook the pasta until it is al dente – about a minute or 2 less than the package directions. You don’t want to overcook the pasta because it will marinate in the tomatoes and dressing soaking up more liquid.
Once the pasta is cooked, drain and set aside. Let it cool for a few minutes then add in to the bowl of tomatoes while the pasta is still warm.
Let the pasta salad with tomatoes sit for another hour to let the pasta absorb the liquids and gorgeous summer flavors. Stir occasionally.
When you are ready to serve, top with a few fresh basil leaves and some fresh cracked pepper. This summer pasta salad tastes best at room temperature so you can really taste the tomato juices and delicate flavors.
What goes With Pasta Salad?
Now, if you’re anything like me, you are always looking for ideas of what to put with pasta salad. This dish is delicious on it’s own, but it would be great served as a side dish too. Here are a few suggestions to go with this summer pasta salad:
- Grilled Tri-Tip
- Barbecue Chicken
- Grilled Herb Shrimp
- Roast Chicken
- Grilled Vegetables With Balsamic Marinade
Recipe For Pasta Salad with Summer Tomatoes
Pasta Salad with Summer Tomatoes
- 2 pounds fresh tomatoes coarsely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic smashed
- 1/4 cup capers
- 1/2 cup fresh basil chiffonade cut
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 pound campanelle pasta
- sea salt as needed
- fresh cracked pepper as needed
- Place the chopped tomatoes, capers, garlic, olive oil and basil in a large bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Let marinate for at least an hour.
- Cook the pasta. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Generously salt the water and cook the pasta to al dente. About 1 minute less than the package directions. Drain and add to bowl of tomatoes. Let pasta salad sit at room temperature for at least another hour, if not more. Pasta will soak up the juices.
- Before serving, adjust to taste with more olive oil, salt and fresh cracked pepper. Serve at room temperature.
14 Delicious Summer Salad Recipes
Asian Noodle Salad with Toasted Sesame Dressing // Happy Happy Nester
Simple Burrata and Tomato Salad // Craftberry Bush
Strawberry Avocado and Pecan Summer Salad // Maison de Pax
Fresh Sauteed Beet & Butternut Salad // French Country Cottage
Pasta Salad With Summer Tomatoes // Modern Glam
Asian Noodle Salad // Finding Lovely
Easy Spinach and Fruit Summer Salad Recipe // Zevy Joy
Blueberry Summer Salad // My 100 Year Old Home
Pacific Northwest Cobb Salad // Lemon Grove Lane
Refreshing & Healthy Cauliflower Summer Salad // My Sweet Savannah
Easy Vegan Lentil Bolognese Salad // Shabbyfufu
Roasted Beet & Goat Cheese Salad // Twelve on Main
Summer Peach Spinach Salad // Sanctuary Home Decor
The Easiest Bow Tie Pasta Salad // Your Marketing BFF
Mexican Salad Bowl // Jennifer Maune
If You Liked This Recipe…
You may also like this other great salad. This Layered Arugula Salad is adapted from Joanna Gaines cookbook, Magnolia Table and is one of my absolute favorites!