Southwest Pasta Salad

By Rena |

This Southwest Pasta Salad is a delicious vegetarian pasta salad recipe that’s full of flavor, easy to make, and can easily be made vegan. A healthy pasta salad recipe that can be served as a side dish or main meal!

vegetarian pasta salad recipe in a bowl

There’s something about homemade pasta salads that makes it so comforting for the soul. Serve it as a vegetarian salad or make it vegan by using coconut or dairy-free yogurt. To add more protein to this easy pasta salad, feel free to add some chicken or shrimps. It can be enjoyed warm after it is prepared or served cold and either way it is just so delicious.

Pasta Salad Dressing ingredients

1-1/2 cups plain Greek yogurt or coconut yogurt for a vegan option
1 lime, juiced
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp kosher salt, or to taste
1/4 tsp ground pepper, or to taste
A small bunch of coriander, minced (optional)

southwest pasta salad ingredients

pasta for pasta salad on a colander

 

How to make this easy pasta salad

  1. Bring a pan of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook according to the package instructions.
  2. Once the pasta is cooked, save 1/2 cup of water, then drain immediately into a large colander standing in the sink. Run under cold water to stop the cooking process, shaking it well to remove excess water.
  3. Meanwhile prepare the dressing, to a small bowl combine all the dressing ingredients to and mix until well combined; set aside.
  4. Heat oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add frozen corn and sprinkle with cumin, paprika, coriander, salt, and pepper. Cook stirring frequently until it begins to char. Stir in the beans and pasta water, continue to cook for 3-4 minutes longer.
  5. To assemble the salad, place the cooked pasta, halved tomatoes, onion, black beans, and corn mixture to a large salad bowl.
  6. Pour the creamy dressing on top of the veggies; toss until evenly coated with dressing.
  7. Serve immediately or refrigerate until chilled.

 

pouring dressing over pasta salad

side view of pasta salad in a bowl

easy vegetarian pasta salad in a bowl

Substitutes and tips

  • Pasta- use any pasta you prefer
  • For Vegan option, use coconut yogurt
  • Feel free to add any proteins of choice like chicken or shrimp
  • Use canned or frozen corn
  • Place leftovers in a container and store in the fridge for up to 5-7 days if you didn’t add any protein. If it has any chicken or shrimp store for 3 days.
  • Reheat in the microwave when ready to eat. Or serve cold. You may freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge before serving.
  • You can store the dressing separately in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

 

top close view of vegan pasta salad in bowl

Can you freeze Pasta Salad

Place leftover pasta salad in a tightly sealed container and freeze for up to 3 months. To thaw, simply leave in the fridge overnight and serve cold. You may also thaw or defrost in the microwave if pressed for time. If you are making pasta salad ahead of time and planning to just freeze it, consider storing the dressing separately and mix together once ready.

How long can you keep pasta salad in the fridge

Wondering how long pasta salad is good for? It all depends on whether you added any chicken or seafood. Vegetarian pasta salads will last up to 5-7 days in the fridge. Any salad containing chicken or seafood should be consumed in 3-4 days.

What goes in pasta Salad

Pasta salads are one of those versatile dishes that will taste great with almost anything you add to it. Try adding different veggies like grilled zucchini, greens, crunchy veggies like broccoli, celery, tomatoes, or some olives, corn, and beans. There is also the option of adding more protein to your pasta salad like chicken or shrimp.

easy pasta salad recipe

Making this easy southwest pasta salad recipe? We want to hear all about it! Please leave us some feedback in the comment section below and let us know if you added anything different to it. Also, don’t forget to share it on social media with your friends and family.

More amazing pasta salad recipes:

close up view of southwest pasta salad in a bowl

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pasta salad

Southwest Pasta Salad

Southwest Pasta Salad

Easy creamy pasta salad recipe with a kick of bold flavors made with greek yogurt, beans, and a handful of veggies.
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Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 355kcal
Author: Rena

Ingredients

  • 16 ounces Whole-wheat or gluten-free pasta
  • 1- pint Cherry/grape Tomatoes halved lengthwise
  • 1 Small Red Onion diced
  • 15 ounce Black Beans one can, drained & rinsed
  • 2 cups Frozen Corn
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1 Tbsp Smoked Paprika
  • 1 tsp Ground Coriander Seed
  • Kosher salt & ground black pepper to taste

For the dressing:

  • 1-1/2 cups Plain Greek yogurt or coconut yogurt for a vegan option
  • 1 Lime juiced
  • 2-3 cloves Garlic minced
  • 1 tsp Kosher Salt or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Pepper or to taste
  • A small bunch of coriander minced

Instructions

  • Bring a pan of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook according to the package instructions.
  • Once the pasta is cooked, save 1/2 cup of water, then drain immediately into a large colander standing in the sink. Run under cold water to stop the cooking process, shaking it well to remove excess water.
  • Meanwhile prepare the dressing, to a small bowl combine all the dressing ingredients to and mix until well combined; set aside.
  • Heat oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add frozen corn and sprinkle with cumin, paprika, coriander, salt, and pepper. Cook stirring frequently until it begins to char. Stir in the beans and pasta water, continue to cook for 3-4 minutes longer.
  • To assemble the salad, place the cooked pasta, halved tomatoes, onion, black beans, and corn mixture to a large salad bowl.
  • Pour the creamy dressing on top of the veggies; toss until evenly coated with dressing.
  • Serve immediately or refrigerate until chilled.

Notes

Substitutes:
  • Pasta- use any pasta you prefer
  • For Vegan option, use coconut yogurt
  • Feel free to add any proteins of choice like chicken or shrimp
  • Use canned or frozen corn
  • For gluten-free use gluten-free pasta
  • For dairy-free use coconut or dairy-free yogurt
Storage:
Place leftovers in a container and store in the fridge for up to 5-7 days if you didn't add any protein. If it has any chicken or shrimp store for 3 days. Reheat in the microwave when ready to eat. Or serve cold. You may freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge before serving. You can store the dressing separately in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Nutritional facts:
Please keep in mind that the nutritional information is calculated using a nutrition facts calculator. It is a rough estimate and can vary greatly based on products used.

Nutrition

Calories: 355kcal | Carbohydrates: 71g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 311mg | Potassium: 631mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 720IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 72mg | Iron: 4mg
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