Summer Pasta Salad

With summer winding down, my goal is to enjoy as many backyard barbecues as possible.  And nothing completes a summer meal like a freshly tossed side of pasta salad decorated with the season’s best produce.  But this dish isn’t your ordinary potluck headliner.  This summer staple is jam-packed with fiber and omega-3s, which means there is no need for guilt when you pile it onto your plate.

During this last week, I have enjoyed a variety of clean meals.  Everything from smoothies, to stir fry, to tacos, all cleaned up and made deliciously healthy.  But this dish is by far my favorite.  The homemade vinaigrette, the whole-grain pasta, the fresh summer veggies…it’s a match made in heaven.



1 16 oz pkg whole-grain penne pasta

1 yellow summer squash, quartered and sliced

1 zucchini, quartered and sliced

1 pint grape tomatoes, halved

1/8 red onion, cut into thin 1-inch-long slices

1/2 cup fresh basil, thinly sliced


2 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

2 tbsp flaxseed oil

1 tsp Dijon mustard

1 tsp pure maple syrup

1/4 tsp ground black pepper

1/8 tsp kosher salt


1.  Cook pasta according to package directions.  Drain and rinse under cool water.

2.  Meanwhile, in a blander, blend vinaigrette ingredients and 2 tbsp water.  (Alternatively, which ingredients until blended).

3.  Transfer pasta to a large bowl and add squash, zucchini, tomatoes, onion, basil and vinaigrette and toss to combine.  Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until chilled, up to 1 day.

Recipe from Clean Eating

Being able to enjoy satisfying summertime foods without excess calories or processed junk, makes me a clean eating believer.  Making simple, small changes to your favorite meals can make a huge difference in your life.  Remember, a journey of a thousand miles starts with one step.  Or in my case, 2 cups of pasta salad :)

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13 thoughts on “Summer Pasta Salad

  1. That looks great, I love the different sized and coloured tomatoes :D. Very pretty.

  2. jolieme says:

    Looks great and it looks like something my picky 4 year old will eat.

  3. foodyrach says:

    Pasta salad was my family’s barbecue go-to, as well. My mom would just use a bottle of Italian dressing, though. lol Your vinaigrette sounds MUCH better.

  4. novagirl says:

    This looks so good!

  5. […] good looking Summer Pasta Salad that I want to make this week.  You can find the recipe here on InHerChuck’s blog.  Doesn’t it look good? In Her Chuck’s Summer Pasta […]

  6. […] didn’t help much either.  I did manage to make one clean recipe this week.  I made the Summer Pasta Salad, and it was delicious.  I did modify it just a bit since I didn’t have any flaxseed oil, so […]

  7. I’m loving the ‘menu’ of recipes you linked up but I can’t decide which I like best! I’m thinking this pasta salad would be my favorite! I love cool pasta salads in the summer time!! Thanks so much for sharing so many great recipes this week at Mom’s Test Meal Mondays! Can’t wait to see what you bring next week!!

    • inherchucks says:

      This is a great salad to add to any bbq or potluck! Full of fresh seasonal veggies with a hint of sweetness from a homemade dressing. I am LOVING your link party (if you can’t tell). Looking forward to next week’s theme :) Have a great week!

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