I am totally smitten as a kitten with this loaded pasta salad recipe. I don’t think it could ever get any better. This recipe calls for pasta, chunked cheese, pepperoni, ham, and a plethora of other savory ingredients.
I think I could eat this salad as a meal rather than a side dish. It’s totally tasty. Plus, you don’t have to spend to much time putting it all together as it’s very easy to combine.
I think the most time-consuming part with chopping up the ham and that only took me a few minutes. If you are planning a picnic this is the salad to make as everyone enjoys it and goes for seconds.
The only thing that takes any hands-on prep time while preparing this salad is the chopping of the ham, cheese, pepperoni, and green onions. You can now purchase these items already chopped, which will cost you more, but will save some precious time. The ingredients can be cut while the pasta is cooking, however, and the whole thing can be put together in about 30 minutes.
The pasta is cooled quickly by rinsing in cold water, and to chill it even more, you can spread it on a baking sheet and put it in the freezer for 10-15 minutes. I like the fact that the salad improves after sitting for a few hours in the refrigerator and for convenience, can be made up to 2 days ahead. As a variation, you can add some chopped carrots, celery, and/or red or green bell peppers.
Recipe and image courtesy of Bella Online.
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Quick Tip: Feel free to scale this recipe down by cutting the ingredients in half as it makes 24 servings as-is.