Rule #268: Summer is all about keepin’ it easy.
For me, summer is all about easy meals that are both satisfying but light. This Creamy Pea and Bacon Pasta Salad checks all of those boxes! It’s a great side dish to serve alongside grilled steaks or chicken. Plus, you can make it ahead of time and pull it out whenever it’s time to eat!
First, we start with some cooked small shell pasta. Make sure to always salt your pasta water to the salinity of the sea! It’s the best way to add flavor to dry pasta.
Next, we’ll add in some thawed green peas. The little crunch they give makes the texture of this Creamy Pea and Bacon Pasta Salad even better!
Now, we add in the star of the show: cooked bacon. You’re going to want the whole pound in there, trust me.
Finally, we’ll toss in some shredded Parmesan cheese.
The dressing is surprisingly light! It’s just mayonnaise, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, a bit of white sugar, garlic and onion powders, and salt and pepper! Whisk it up or toss it all into a mason jar and shake until well blended.
Toss it all together and throw in some chopped parsley for extra color and flavor. Cover and chill for at least 1 hour in the fridge.
Just look at all that gorgeous color and flavor!
Main Dish Suggestions:
Creamy Pea and Bacon Pasta Salad
For the Pea and Bacon Salad
- 1 lb. small shell pasta noodles
- 2 cups frozen peas thawed
- 1 lb. bacon cooked and chopped
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese shredded or grated
- Flat-leaf Italian parsley chopped, for garnish
For the Creamy Dressing
- ¾ cup mayonnaise with olive oil
- 2 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tbs. apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp. white granulated sugar
- ½ tsp. garlic powder
- ½ tsp. onion powder
- 1 tsp. Kosher salt
- ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- In a large pot of heavily-salted water, boil the pasta noodles until al dente (about 8 minutes). Drain and rinse, allowing to cool slightly.
- Meanwhile, make the Creamy Dressing by combining all ingredients in a large bowl. Whisk to combine.
- Add the cooked pasta to the dressing, then add the thawed peas, bacon, and Parmesan.
- Toss until well combined, then cover with plastic wrap.
- Let sit at least 1 hour in the fridge (up to 8 hours ahead of time).
- Garnish with chopped parsley, if desired. Serve chilled.
Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy only and should be construed as an estimate rather than a guarantee. Ingredients can vary, and Pineapple House Rules makes no guarantees to the accuracy of this information.