Gluten free pasta salad bursting with healthy vegetables, Italian dressing and gluten free pasta. This Italian pasta salad is the most flavorful side dish you can add to your picnic this summer! Quick and easy to make ahead in less than 15 minutes!
This is one of my favorite traditional summer recipes and it pairs perfectly with delicious spinach & feta turkey burgers!
These 12 ideas are a great way to start meal prep for lunch! If you are feeling adventurous, you could try out other tasty ideas like Mediterranean, pesto, macaroni, cobb or tuna salad. Check out even more ideas in my What to Put in Salads Guide for even more healthy & easy meal ideas!
Why You Should Make This Recipe
If you are looking for an easy summer salad that is gluten free and made without mayo, here is the best homemade recipe you could find!
- Cold pasta salad is a simple and easy, healthy lunch to make ahead for the week, just like Quinoa Detox Salad.
- The flavor variations and varieties are endless. You can choose what veggies you have based on hand - I like to make mine with broccoli, bell pepper and grape tomatoes.
- For a full meal, add in protein like chicken, tuna or pepperoni, or even experiment with different flavors like Greek, Southwest or bacon ranch!
- This recipe is a quick gluten free salad that you can take to parties or BBQs. Guests with dietary restrictions will be able to enjoy it!
- This original recipe has no meat or dairy making it vegan, vegetarian and dairy free. Another option is
- Enjoy adding in veggies based on seasonality! Check out this Summer Produce Guide by Saveur that helps you to identify your favorite summer vegetable to add.
What Ingredients Go In This Recipe
Here are the ingredients you need to make this recipe. Reference the recipe card at the bottom for exact measurements and flavor variation tips for additional flavor inspiration.
Pasta & Veggie Ingredients
- Gluten Free Pasta: Select a sturdy pasta shape such as rigatoni, shells or bowties. Banza is also a great choice for plant based.
- Everything But the Bagel Seasoning: Italian seasoning or Salad Supreme are great alternatives.
- Veggie suggestions: I chose seasonal summer veggies for this salad, but using up what you have on hand or what's in season is a great way to eat extra veggies.
- Red Wine Vinegar: You can substitute ½ of the red wine vinegar for balsamic vinegar.
- Maple Syrup: You can use honey or coconut sugar in place of maple syrup.
How To Make This Recipe
Here are the step by step directions for how to make this recipe.
- Prior to assembling the salad, make the homemade vinaigrette.
- In a small mason jar mix together olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, maple syrup and salt.
- In a large bowl, add ¼ cup of the dressing to cooked noodles. Add in washed and chopped vegetables.
- Season, toss and add in additional vinaigrette to your desired taste.
- Cooking gluten free pasta can be tricky. Always salt your water and cook according to the "al dente" instructions on the package.
- Plant based pasta tends to break down easier than gluten free pasta so be sure to pick a sturdy pasta shape such as rigatoni, shells or macaroni if you are using Banza or another plant based pasta.
- Make ahead tips: This recipe tastes even better when made ahead. Reserve a bit of the vinaigrette to drizzle on right before serving.
- Presentation tips: You can mix the entire salad up or serve it in a trifle bowl and layer the veggies.
Flavor Variations for This Recipe
If you want some ideas to jazz up the flavors of this classic recipe, here are a few:
- Greek: Make with feta, red onion, with artichokes, Kalamata or black olives, sun-dried tomatoes and lemon for a Greek or Mediterranean spin. You can also substitute orzo for a fun noodle shape.
- Southwest: Use a Southwest ranch dressing rather than Italian vinaigrette to make a creamy, taco flavored version.
- Caprese: Enjoy the taste of bruschetta from tomatoes, basil and/or basil pesto.
- Seafood: Crab, shrimp or tuna would make a delicious addition.
- Creamy: Make the vinaigrette with mayo or Greek yogurt to add a creamy twist and give it more. of a macaroni salad texture.
- Caesar: Swap vinaigrette for Caesar dressing and add in parmesan cheese, croutons and maybe even anchovies!
- Bacon Ranch: Chop up some bacon to add to the dish along with swapping the Italian dressing with ranch. Adding in some avocado is a great idea too!
- BLT: Add some chopped lettuce to the bottom and some chopped bacon for a BLT twist.
- Full of protein: Making this dish with chicken, pepperoni, or your favorite plant based protein will make it a hearty meal.
Barilla has gluten free rotini, penne and elbows that would work great in this recipe. Banza has a great plant based version; I suggest going with rotini, bowties or cavatappi. Ancient Harvest has an organic, gluten free tri color pasta that would work well also.
Some good options for gluten free Italian dressing are: Brianna's, Newman's Own and Ken's Simply Vinaigrette. Be sure to read all labels before selecting a store bought dressing or opt to make the homemade dressing recipe below.
Refrigerate in an air tight container. It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5-7 days.
Run cold water over drained, cooked pasta and drizzle with olive oil to prevent from sticking
If you've made this recipe, would you please leave a star rating and comment below on the recipe card? If you would like more simple + delicious eats please subscribe to my newsletter and follow along on Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram for the latest updates.
Gluten-Free Banza Pasta Salad (No Mayo)
- 1 cup bell pepper diced
- 1 cup broccoli cut
- 1 cup cucumbers diced
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
- 4 ounces mozzarella cheese diced
- 8 ounces Banza pasta
- 1 cup gf Italian dressing
- Cook pasta according to al dente package instructions. Rinse with cold water.8 ounces Banza pasta
- While pasta is cooking, clean and prepare all veggies and cheese and place in a large bowl. Add pasta and Italian dressing and stir to combine.1 cup bell pepper, 1 cup broccoli, 1 cup cucumbers, 1 cup cherry tomatoes, 4 ounces mozzarella cheese
- Let salad chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving. Stir salad when ready and add additional Italian dressing if needed.
This looks like a delicious pasta salad. I love all the wonderful veggie choices in the summer they are perfect for salads! Thank you for including my grilled veggie pasta!
you got it! grilled veggies are my fave, I can't wait to try it 🙂