Pizza Pasta Salad

This is kind of just like a basic Italian pasta salad, but I’m calling it “Pizza Pasta Salad” because this is how I use my leftover pizza toppings. Haha! When you buy a jar of peppers, olives, or any other pizza toppings, it’s always way too much for one pizza, so I repurpose all the […]

The post Pizza Pasta Salad appeared first on Budget Bytes.

This is kind of just like a basic Italian pasta salad, but I’m calling it “Pizza Pasta Salad” because this is how I use my leftover pizza toppings. Haha! When you buy a jar of peppers, olives, or any other pizza toppings, it’s always way too much for one pizza, so I repurpose all the pizza toppings in a pasta salad the next day. And the best part is that this Pizza Pasta Salad is another one of those great “refrigerator salads” that hold up well for days, so you can keep munching away happily throughout the week!

Repurposed Pizza Topping Pasta Salad

Overhead view of a serving bowl full of pizza pasta salad, wooden spoons on the side

What’s In Pizza Pasta Salad?

Whatever you want! Ha! That’s the beauty of this one. In my pizza pasta salad I included mozzarella, pepperoni, green bell pepper, black olives, red onion, and banana peppers. Here are some other things that would be awesome in this pasta salad:

  • Bacon
  • Grape tomatoes
  • Jalapeños
  • Spinach
  • Green Olives
  • Ham
  • Salami
  • Pesto
  • Feta
  • Fresh herbs (oregano, basil, parsley)
  • Mushrooms (marinated mushrooms would be even better)
  • Artichoke hearts

Honestly, the only thing I probably wouldn’t put in my pizza pasta salad is pineapple. While I am a pineapple-pizza fan (sorry-not-sorry), I don’t think it would be very good in this pasta salad.

What Dressing Do you Use?

In the recipe below I’ve included a homemade Italian dressing with grated Parmesan cheese. If you want to take a short cut and use a store bought dressing, I suggest some sort of Italian dressing or Caesar dressing (non-creamy style), and if it doesn’t have Parmesan already in it, I would add some. The Parmesan cheese really adds some oomph to this pizza pasta salad.

Can I Use a Different Pasta?

Absolutely! This recipe is endlessly versatile. You can use any short shaped pasta, like bowtie, penne, or even shells. While you can use a long shape pasta like spaghetti, that type tends to be difficult to stir chunky objects into (they like to fall to the sides or bottom of the bowl). This recipe should also work fine with whole wheat or gluten free pasta.

How Long Does Pizza Pasta Stay Good?

This pasta salad is very refrigerator friendly and will last about 4-5 days in your refrigerator. That means it’s great for your weekly meal prep!

Love refrigerator salads as much as I do? Check out my round up of 19 Refrigerator Salads for Eating Healthy on the Go!

Close up of a large spoonful of pizza pasta salad on a wooden spoon, bowl in the background

 
Close up of a serving bowl of pizza pasta salad, a wooden spoon in the side
Print

Italian Pizza Pasta Salad

Repurpose your leftover pizza toppings into this deliciously simple Italian style pizza pasta salad. Including a simple homemade Italian dressing!
Total Cost $7.98 recipe / $1.00 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 8 1 cup each
Calories 394.33kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

Homemade Italian Dressing

  • 1/2 cup olive oil $0.84
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar $0.40
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard $0.06
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder $0.02
  • 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning $0.30
  • 1/2 tsp salt $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp pepper $0.02
  • 2 Tbsp grated Parmesan $0.22

Pasta Salad

  • 1 lb. rotini pasta $1.00
  • 3 oz. pepperoni $1.25
  • 4 oz. mozzarella $1.15
  • 1 green bell pepper $0.89
  • 1/4 cup red onion $0.11
  • 1/2 12oz. jar banana pepper rings $1.00
  • 1/2 4oz. can sliced black olives $0.70

Instructions

  • Make the Italian dressing first so the flavors have a few minutes to blend. Add the olive oil, red wine vinegar, Dijon, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, and Parmesan to a bowl or jar. Whisk the ingredients together, or place a lid on the jar and shake until combined. Set the dressing aside.
  • Cook the rotini according to the package directions (boil for 7-10 minutes, or until tender). Drain the pasta in a colander and rinse briefly with cool water. Let the pasta drain well, shaking the colander every few minutes to remove excess water from the pasta.
  • While the pasta is cooking and draining, prepare the other pasta salad ingredients. Cut the pepperoni in half or into quarters, and chop the mozzarella into small cubes. Dice the bell pepper and red onion. Drain the banana pepper rings and black olives.
  • When the pasta is cooked, cooled, and drained well, transfer it to a large bowl. Add the rest of the prepared ingredients (pepperoni, mozzarella, bell pepper, red onion, banana peppers, and black olives). Toss the ingredients to combine.
  • Give the dressing another shake or stir before drizzling it over the pasta salad. Toss the pasta salad once again to coat everything in the dressing. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to eat.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 394.33kcal | Carbohydrates: 44.11g | Protein: 10.01g | Fat: 19.61g | Sodium: 385.08mg | Fiber: 2.18g

Scroll down to see the step by step photos!

Close up of a serving bowl of pizza pasta salad, a wooden spoon in the side

How to Make Pizza Pasta Salad – Step by Step Photos

A jar of homemade Italian dressing with a spoon lifting a bit out of the jar

Make the Italian dressing first, so the flavors have a few minutes to blend. Add ½ cup olive oil, ¼ red wine vinegar, 1 tsp Dijon mustard, ¼ tsp garlic powder, 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning, ½ tsp salt, ¼ tsp pepper, and 2 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese to a bowl or jar. Either whisk the ingredients together or close the jar and shake until combined. Set the dressing aside.

Cooked rotini pasta in a colander

Cook one pound of rotini pasta according to the package directions (boil for 7-10 minutes, or until tender). Drain the pasta in a colander and rinse briefly with cool water. Let the pasta drain well, shaking the colander every few minutes to shake off excess water.

Mozzarella and pepperoni on a cutting board

While the pasta is cooking and cooling, prepare the rest of the pasta salad ingredients. Chop 4oz. mozzarella into small cubes and cut 3oz. (half of a 6oz. package) pepperoni into half rounds or quarter rounds.

Bell pepper, red onion, black olives, and banana peppers on a cutting board

Dice one green bell pepper and about ¼ cup red onion. Drain ½ of a 12oz. jar banana pepper rings, and ½ of a 4oz. can sliced black olives. 

Pasta salad ingredients in a bowl

Once the pasta is cooked, cooled, and drained well, transfer it to a large bowl. Add the pepperoni, mozzarella, green bell pepper, red onion, banana peppers, and black olives to the bowl. Toss these ingredients together.

Shaken jar of dressing held over the bowl of pasta salad.

Give the dressing one last stir or shake…

Italian dressing being poured over pasta salad

Then pour the dressing over the pasta salad.

Tossed pizza pasta salad in a large bowl

Toss the salad again until everything is well coated in dressing. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to eat!

Overhead view of pizza pasta salad in a serving bowl with wooden salad utensils on the side

The post Pizza Pasta Salad appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Asparagus Salad with Feta

This asparagus salad is bursting with flavor and totally versatile! It highlights this healthy veggie with lemon, radishes, feta, and a Dijon dressing. Want a salad that’s as tasty as it is versatile? Enter: asparagus salad! It’s got savory sauteed asparagus, cooked up in a hot pan for a few minutes then spritzed with lemon. Add that to a bed of greens and sprinkle with with peppery radishes and salty feta cheese. A Dijon mustard dressing tops it off, perfectly balanced with tangy and savory notes. Even better: you can serve as a side dish, or add cooked quinoa and make it a main dish salad. When Alex served it to me, I exclaimed “Yum!” halfway into the first bite…which was when we knew we had to share the recipe. What’s in this asparagus salad? This asparagus salad features spring’s most popular vegetable! Asparagus is usually available most of the year, but it’s best in March through June. If you can find this veggie at a local farmers market, make sure to pick some up! The best asparagus is fresh, tender local asparagus. To complement the robust flavor of asparagus, we wanted to surround it with fresh, zingy flavors like […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

This asparagus salad is bursting with flavor and totally versatile! It highlights this healthy veggie with lemon, radishes, feta, and a Dijon dressing.

Asparagus salad

Want a salad that’s as tasty as it is versatile? Enter: asparagus salad! It’s got savory sauteed asparagus, cooked up in a hot pan for a few minutes then spritzed with lemon. Add that to a bed of greens and sprinkle with with peppery radishes and salty feta cheese. A Dijon mustard dressing tops it off, perfectly balanced with tangy and savory notes. Even better: you can serve as a side dish, or add cooked quinoa and make it a main dish salad. When Alex served it to me, I exclaimed “Yum!” halfway into the first bite…which was when we knew we had to share the recipe.

Asparagus salad

What’s in this asparagus salad?

This asparagus salad features spring’s most popular vegetable! Asparagus is usually available most of the year, but it’s best in March through June. If you can find this veggie at a local farmers market, make sure to pick some up! The best asparagus is fresh, tender local asparagus.

To complement the robust flavor of asparagus, we wanted to surround it with fresh, zingy flavors like lemon and crunchy greens. Here’s what’s in this asparagus salad:

  • Asparagus: You’ll use our sauteed asparagus recipe, cooked in a hot pan and squeezed with lemon. It’s also great as a stand-alone side dish!
  • Radishes: Peppery radishes add a kick.
  • Red onion: Onion adds a savory note; you could also use green onion.
  • Feta cheese: Brings savory saltiness.
  • Lemon zest: Adds a nice freshness; you can use the lemon from the sauteed asparagus recipe. (Here’s how to zest a lemon.)
  • Dijon dressing: This healthy dressing just 5 minutes to make and covers the entire salad with a tangy brightness

Want a few more salad dressings? Try our How to Make Healthy Salad Dressing.

Asparagus salad

Ways to serve this asparagus salad

This salad is so versatile, you can serve it with just about anything! It’s up there in our list of our favorite salad recipes. Here are a few ways we’d recommend:

  1. As a main dish salad: Add cooked quinoa to make this asparagus salad a main dish salad for lunch or a light dinner.
  2. With salmon: It would be a great pairing for Lemon Dill Salmon or Easy Cedar Plank Salmon.
  3. Alongside pasta: Dishes that would work well: Creamy Cavatappi Pasta or Creamy Goat Cheese Pasta.
  4. With soup: Imagine it with this Vibrant Spring Soup for a springy luncheon or dinner party.
  5. With risotto: This would pair nicely with Easy Mushroom Risotto, adding a nice source of fiber.
Asparagus on baking sheet

Asparagus nutrition

Is asparagus healthy? You bet. There are lots of great things about eating this super vegetable; here are some highlights:

  • High in fiber: It’s a great source of fiber: 1 cup of cooked asparagus has 4 grams of fiber. (Source)
  • High in Vitamin K: It’s a great source of vitamin K, over 50% your daily requirement. Vitamin K is a nutrient involved in blood clotting and bone health (Source).
  • Relatively high in protein: It’s also high in protein for a green vegetable: 1 cup also has 4 grams protein. (Source) That’s a similar level to broccoli and potatoes.
Asparagus salad

Other ways to use asparagus?

Looking to add more asparagus to your life? Outside of this asparagus salad, here are some of our favorite ways to serve this veggie:

  • Easy Baked Asparagus An easy side dish that’s a hit with everyone! The green stalks are roasted until tender, spritzed with lemon & topped with Parmesan.
  • Roasted Asparagus with Lemon Or, bake it in the oven for about 10 minutes with garlic, olive oil, and lemon slices. Perfection!
  • Shaved Asparagus Salad Ever tried asparagus raw? It tastes mild and sweet! Eat it as shaved asparagus salad, which pairs the ribbons with a tangy lemon vinaigrette and Parmesan.
Dijon mustard dressing

This asparagus salad recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten free. For vegan, plant-based, and dairy-free, omit the cheese and add chopped roasted salted almonds.

Print
Asparagus salad

Asparagus Salad with Feta


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4

Description

This asparagus salad is bursting with flavor and totally versatile! It highlights this healthy veggie with lemon, radishes, feta, and a Dijon dressing.


Ingredients


Instructions

  1. Thinly slice the red onion into slivers. Place them in a bowl of water while you prepare the salad, then drain before using (this mellows the strong flavor). Thinly slice the radishes.
  2. Make the Sauteed Asparagus. Remove to a bowl until serving.
  3. Make the Dijon Mustard Dressing.
  4. To serve, clean and dry the salad greens as necessary. Place the greens on serving plates, then top with sauteed asparagus, red onion, radishes, feta cheese crumbles, and lemon zest. Drizzle with dressing and serve.

  • Category: Salad
  • Method: Raw
  • Cuisine: Vegetarian

Keywords: Asparagus Salad

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Sesame Pretzel Focaccia with Dijon Beer Cheese.

This pretzel focaccia is seriously changing my life! This bread. Oh my WORD. It’s like a soft pretzel but a million times better.  The sesame pretzelness of this focaccia reminds me so much of my favorite pretzel croissant from City Bakery (which sadly closed! wah!), which was perfectly flakey and also had a few sesame […]

The post Sesame Pretzel Focaccia with Dijon Beer Cheese. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

This pretzel focaccia is seriously changing my life!

This sesame pretzel focaccia bread is amazing! Almost like a soft pretzel with crispy edges. Serve with a delicious dijon beer cheese.

This bread. Oh my WORD. It’s like a soft pretzel but a million times better. 

pretzel focaccia dough

The sesame pretzelness of this focaccia reminds me so much of my favorite pretzel croissant from City Bakery (which sadly closed! wah!), which was perfectly flakey and also had a few sesame seeds on top. 

There is a (very!) faux version in The Pretty Dish, using puff pastry and it does the trick if you want to make one. 

But now! Now we have this.

OH MY GOSH. 

This sesame pretzel focaccia bread is amazing! Almost like a soft pretzel with crispy edges. Serve with a delicious dijon beer cheese.

This is so unbelievably delicious. You make a focaccia bread as you normally would and then do the whole baking soda + water thing by brushing it on top of the dough. It creates the pretzel-ish top and flavor that we so crave and love. 

This sesame pretzel focaccia bread is amazing! Almost like a soft pretzel with crispy edges. Serve with a delicious dijon beer cheese.

And of course! The beer cheese! Dijon beer cheese to be exact.

I’ve made tons of beer cheese things on the blog over the years. It’s no secret that I love basically ANYTHING beer cheese.

Making this dip for the focaccia is out of this world. It’s rich and creamy and a bit tangy and so decadent. The pretzel focaccia doesn’t NEED a dip, but it’s deliciousness is definitely enhanced by this one. 

When you get a soft pretzel and you have to choose between mustard and cheese dip, I can NEVER choose. I always want both.

So I made both. Into one! 

This sesame pretzel focaccia bread is amazing! Almost like a soft pretzel with crispy edges. Serve with a delicious dijon beer cheese.

Cheese and mustard and probably two of my favorite things in the whole world, so combining them into a dip is just UNREAL. The taste is fantastic. It almost reminds me of a croque monsier in a weird way since it has mustard and cheese sauce. And that’s always a good thing!

I’m not sure I can even fully report how much Eddie loves the focaccia. You know how they say there are two types of people – those who like to eat in moderation and those who prefer to splurge all in one day? Eddie is the latter and usually saves indulgent treats for the weekends. But as I tested this recipe during the week, he couldn’t stop eating the bread and was freaking out over just how GOOD it is. The temptation was strong. 

This sesame pretzel focaccia bread is amazing! Almost like a soft pretzel with crispy edges. Serve with a delicious dijon beer cheese.

Even though I’m not a serious bread person (I could take it or leave it, aside from a good piece of sourdough), serving this in the focaccia sticks is my desired way to eat. But I did see suggestions to use it to make a sandwich and that just sounds fabulous. I admit that I didn’t even try it, because it disappears like crazy every time I make it. 

I hope the same happens for you!

This sesame pretzel focaccia bread is amazing! Almost like a soft pretzel with crispy edges. Serve with a delicious dijon beer cheese.

Pretzel Focaccia with Dijon Beer Cheese

Print

Pretzel Focaccia with Dijon Beer Cheese

This sesame pretzel focaccia bread is amazing! Almost like a soft pretzel with crispy edges. Serve with a delicious dijon beer cheese.
Course bread
Cuisine American
Prep Time 3 hours
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 25 minutes
Servings 8 people
Author How Sweet Eats

Ingredients

  • 6 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 packet (2 ¼ teaspoons) active dry yeast
  • 3 cups warm water
  • 6 tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons baking soda
  • ½ cup boiling water
  • flakey sea salt, for topping
  • sesame seeds, for topping

Dijon Beer Cheese

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup beer
  • 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 12 ounces freshly grated gouda
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chives

Instructions

  • Stir the flour, salt and yeast together in a large bowl. Slowly add in the warm water while stirring constantly until a dough forms. It will be sticky! Once the lumps are gone and the dough is combined, cover it and place in a warm spot to rise for 1 to 2 hours.
  • Brush an 18x13 inch sheet pan with 2 tablespoons of the melted butter. Drizzle on the oil and brush it all over the pan too. Turn the dough out onto the pan and press it out with your hands until it covers the sheet pan.
  • Place the baking soda in a large bowl. Bring ½ cup water to a boil (I use an electric tea kettle for this) and pour it over the baking soda. It will get foamy - this is why you want to use a bigger bowl that you’d expect.
  • Brush the mixture (you won’t use all of it - reserve it to use later) on the top of the dough. Then place the sheet pan in a warm place and let it rise again for an hour. It will be a little bubbly too.
  • Preheat the oven to 475 degrees F. Brush the top of the dough again with the baking soda mixture. Bake the bread for 10 minutes. Remove the pan and brush it with the remaining melted butter. Sprinkle with the flaked salt and sesame seeds. Return the pan to the oven and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, until the top is golden brown (like a soft pretzel!) and the edges are a bit crisp.
  • Let the bread cool slightly (you can make the beer cheese while it cools!) before slicing it. Serve!

Dijon Beer Cheese

  • To make the beer cheese sauce, heat a small saucepan over medium heat and add butter. Once sizzling, whisk in flour and stir for 1 to 2 minutes until golden and fragrant and bubbly. Stir in beer, whisking well to combine.
  • Reduce heat to low and add cheese, stirring until totally melted and smooth. Whisk in the dijon. Serve immediately with a sprinkling of chives.

Notes

slightly adapted from bon appetit and real simple

This sesame pretzel focaccia bread is amazing! Almost like a soft pretzel with crispy edges. Serve with a delicious dijon beer cheese.

Puhlease make this your weekend plan.

The post Sesame Pretzel Focaccia with Dijon Beer Cheese. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.