Easy Pasta Salad

Rule #66: The easier, the better.

This Easy Pasta Salad has been a staple in my kitchen for over 10 years, y’all! I absolutely love how simple it is to whip together and what a crowd pleaser it ends up being. I bring this to pot lucks, barbecues, and all the other big gatherings. It’s the perfect, simple side dish. It’s not too creamy, not too tangy, and it’s got the perfect amount of crunch. It’s seriously the best Easy Pasta Salad there ever was!

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With just the right amount of mayo, mustard, and seasonings, this Pasta Salad is light and refreshing!

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Easy Pasta Salad Assembly

First things first: chop a red bell pepper, some celery, and some green onions. Place them in a large bowl.

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Now, add some mayonnaise, mustard, lemon pepper, Lawry’s seasoning, Kosher salt, and freshly ground black pepper. Stir to combine.

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The Pasta

Okay, folks. I’m sure you’ve heard this before, but if you haven’t, listen up! When you cook pasta, you want the pasta water to be the salinity of the sea. Ya feel me? Like SALTY, y’all! It’s the only way you can infuse flavor into your pasta. And trust me, it makes a big difference my friends. So, throw a big pinch or two of Kosher salt into some water in a medium-sized pot. Bring it to a boil. Boil your elbow macaroni for about 8 minutes, until al dente, and then drain it.

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While the pasta is still warm, add it to the mayonnaise mixture. Toss to combine. Adding it while it’s warm is a game changer I’ve found. It makes the sauce really adhere to the pasta a little more. OKAY NOW STOP! Don’t taste it yet! It will taste oddly awful at this point (trust me).

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Cover it and throw it in the fridge for at least 2 hours to chill. You can make this a day or two ahead of time, too.

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When you’re ready for chow time, just bust ‘er out and eat ‘er up!

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I love to serve our Easy Pasta Salad with:

Pork Tenderloin in Citrus Balsamic Marinade

Pork Tenderloin Kabobs

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

Jon Boy’s delicious Smoked Brisket on the Big Green Egg – he uses Franklin’s BBQ recipe

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So, in conclusion, just whip up this Easy Pasta Salad and bring it to your next big gathering! I promise you and your buddies will not be disappointed!

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Easy Pasta Salad

1 (1-lb.) bag small elbow macaroni
3 stalks celery, diced
1 red bell pepper, chopped
3 green onions, chopped (plus more for garnish)
¾ cup mayonnaise with olive oil
1 tsp. lemon pepper
1 tsp. Lawry’s seasoning
1 tsp. yellow mustard
¼ tsp. Kosher salt, plus more for pasta water
¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

Cook macaroni in heavily salted water (salt to the salinity of the sea) until al dente (about 8 minutes). Drain.

While the pasta cooks, combine all remaining ingredients in a large bowl.

Once the pasta is drained, add it to the mayonnaise mixture while it’s still warm. Toss to combine.

Place covered in the fridge for at least 2 hours. Garnish with more chopped green onion.

Best served chilled and made a day ahead of time.

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