Vegan and gluten free. Creamy pasta salad big on tomato flavor with fresh and sun dried tomatoes, plus a few more favorite Italian flavors.
- 12 oz. gluten free pasta (I used this one)
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 C vegan mayo
- Zest of half a lemon
- 1/4 C lemon juice (1 large lemon)
- 2 t maple syrup
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (or 1/2 teaspoon for extra heat)
- 1 tsp garlic salt
- Ground black pepper
- 3/4 C chopped white onion or thinly sliced scallions (1 bunch scallions)
- 1/2 C chopped oil-packed sun dried tomatoes
- 3/4 C chopped pitted black olives (about half a can)
- 1 C halved baby tomatoes or chopped seeded tomatoes
- 1 can (15 oz.) garbanzo or white beans, drained and rinsed (optional)
- About 20 sliced fresh basil leaves
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add a teaspoon or two of salt, then stir in pasta. Cook until just tender, 8 to 9 minutes for most gluten free brands and shapes. Be careful not to undercook. Drain pasta and rinse with cold water for a minute. Transfer cooked pasta to a large mixing bowl and toss with a tablespoon of oil.
- While pasta cooks, make the dressing. Whisk mayo, lemon zest and juice, maple syrup, red pepper flakes, garlic salt, and a generous pinch or several grinds of black pepper until well blended. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- To the pasta, add scallions, sun dried tomato, olives, fresh tomatoes, beans (if using), almost all the basil, and about 3/4 of the dressing. Stir gently to combine until all ingredients are coated in the dressing. If needed, add remaining dressing (you’ll likely need it if you included beans) and more salt and pepper. Garnish the whole salad or each serving with remaining basil. Chill at least an hour and serve, or refrigerate, well covered, up to 2 or 3 days. Refresh salad with a little more cold mayo and lemon juice, plus seasoning as needed, just before serving
If special diets aren’t important, you can substitute equal quantities of traditional pasta and mayonnaise.
The dressing keeps well made ahead for up to 2 days, and the salad can be prepared a day or two ahead also. Reserve a fourth of the dressing and add just before serving, to refresh the texture.
- Prep Time: 20 mins
- Cook Time: 8 mins
- Cuisine: Italian