This gluten-free, vegetarian pasta salad is a nutritious and colorful accompaniment to any potluck, BBQ, or weeknight meal. I added chopped herbs and lemon juice to keep it light and fresh, but it’s also hearty and satisfying thanks to the lentil pasta, garbanzo beans, and sun-dried tomatoes. We enjoyed liberal bowls of this pasta salad for dinner, repurposing it for leftovers during the week. It’s quick and easy, and it’s already a staple in our household.
While it’s been too hot in Denver to eat a warm, creamy bowl of pasta for dinner, this chilled, flavorful salad has recently curbed my pasta craving. I simply threw together a few ingredients I had on hand, guessed the ratios, crossed my fingers, then plated our dinner. Luckily, it received my husband’s stamp of approval and I loved it too. There are plenty of pasta salad dishes on the web, but I used lentil pasta (low-glycemic and high in protein and fiber) mixed with heart-healthy olive oil, zesty lemon juice, chopped basil, smoky sun-dried tomatoes, fresh goat cheese, and a few other nutrient-dense veggies. You can make this vegan by omitting the cheese (or using a vegan substitute)! If you don’t like sun-dried tomatoes, use something else. The beauty of this salad is that it’s very versatile. The flavors meld together perfectly, plating summertime in under 20 minutes. I hope you enjoy it!
Arugula and Artichoke Pasta Salad (gluten-free)
- 1 bag bag of Trader Joe's organic red lentil pasta (approx. 4.5 cups of lentil pasta, dry)
- 1 bag Trader Joe's organic arugula
- 1 15oz can organic, low-sodium garbanzo beans
- 1 15oz can artichoke hearts
- 2 petite organic cucumbers (skin on)
- 2 large organic carrots (skin on)
- 1/2 cup smokey, sun-dried tomatoes
- 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
- 1/4 cup goat cheese
- 1/4 cup capers
- 1 shallot
- 3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 3 tbsp dijon mustard
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tbsp minced garlic (I used pre-minced, jarred garlic)
- juice of 1 lemon
- Cook your pasta according to the package's instructions (mine took 5-6 minutes).
- Add your arugula, rinsed garbanzo beans, chopped artichokes, sliced cucumbers, julienned carrots, basil, and sun-dried tomatoes to a large mixing bowl.
- Make your dressing: in a small bowl, add your olive oil, dijon mustard, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, minced garlic, thinly sliced shallot, and capers. Whisk. Add more olive oil if you'd like.
- Add your cooled pasta to the salad base. Evenly mix all ingredients together.
- Pour your homemade dressing into the large mixing bowl and evenly coat your veggies and pasta. Sprinkle your goat cheese on top and serve.