Patriotic Pasta Salad Recipe

Patriotic Pasta Salad Recipe
Patriotic holidays are always fun, and Flag Day, which is celebrated on June 14th every year, is a good day to serve red, white, and blue food. Of course this yummy pasta salad is suitable for any patriotic holiday, including Armed Forces Day, Memorial Day, and Independence Day, since they are warm-weather days where it’s probable that there is an outdoor party. It’s easy to dye pasta for any holiday, but especially fun to dye it red and blue because the effect is stunning. Gel paste food coloring is available at restaurant supply stores, craft stores, and variety stores.
This Patriotic Pasta Salad is definitely red, white, and blue: red and blue pasta, red pepperoni, red bell pepper, red grape tomatoes, and white mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. It is not only delicious, but can be made a day ahead to make it easier on the cook. Although the dressing is a favorite and quite possibly the best Italian vinaigrette on the planet, you can use your favorite Italian dressing if you run out of time. This colorful salad will impress your guests, and since it goes well with grilled burgers, steaks, chicken, and seafood, you’ll want to serve it throughout the entire summer.

12 Servings

12 ounces spiral pasta, or your favorite
Boiling salted water

1 tablespoon blue gel paste food coloring
1 tablespoon red gel paste food coloring
2 tablespoons water, divided

4 ounces pepperoni slices, cut into quarters
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
8 ounces mozzarella cheese, cut into small dice

1 cup Restaurant Style Italian Dressing, or to taste
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, for garnish

  1. Cook the pasta in the boiling salted water until al dente; drain and rinse.
  2. Squeeze the blue food coloring into a 1-gallon zip-type bag and add 1 tablespoon of the water.
  3. Squeeze the red food coloring into a separate 1-gallon zip-type bag.
  4. Add 1/2 of the cooked pasta to each bag.
  5. Massage the bag until the pasta is evenly coated and let the pasta sit 1 hour (if you have time), massaging the bag occasionally.
  6. Rinse each color separately in a colander with cold water, and drain well.
  7. Place the pasta along with the pepperoni, onion, red pepper, tomatoes, and cheeses (except the shredded mozzarella) in a large serving bowl; toss with enough of the dressing to moisten.
  8. Sprinkle with the shredded mozzarella cheese.
  9. Cover and chill well before serving.

Amount Per Serving
Calories 368 Calories from Fat 205
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 56% Protein 16% Carb. 28%

Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 23 g
Saturated Fat 8 g
Cholesterol 36 mg
Sodium 603 mg
Total Carbohydrate 26 g
Dietary Fiber 0 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 15 g

Vitamin A 15% Vitamin C 27% Calcium 0% Iron 4%

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This content was written by Karen Hancock. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Karen Hancock for details.