A favorite sandwich gets a pasta salad makeover! BLT Pasta Salad is a combination of bacon, tomatoes and lettuce with avocado added for one flavorful dish!
What side of the fence are you on? The love it or hate it side? Pasta salad fence that is.
For years, I was on the not fond side. But that was for a few reasons. First off, they were loaded with mayo. Something I have never really been a fan of. Second, the pasta was overcooked creating an overly mushy texture. Have I mentioned I am texture gal? And third, the mayo overpowers nearly all flavors. Technically that falls into number 1, but whatever.
There was one type of ‘salad’ I did love. My mothers Croatian Potato Salad. Yes, I know its not a pasta salad but I believe potato and pasta are in the same category here. Amiright? Back to the Croatian Potato Salad. Tender slices of potato are tossed in an olive oil and vinegar dressing with a bit of salt and pepper. Then diced green peppers and red onion. Seems simple enough but the flavors sing once combined and chilled. OMG. With summer coming, I can just taste it now.
You notice the difference in the one salad I love to the ones I don’t so much love? There is no mayo. Rather an olive oil base. My pasta/potato dilemma solved.
When I started brainstorming recipes to take to our friends BBQ to kick off KC’s warm weather, I turned to our dinner the night before for inspiration. BLT’s. Who doesn’t love BLT’s? If that is you, please don’t raise your hand. I would rather not know and keep my positive vibe of you.
Kidding! It’s not a deal breaker for our friendship. I am not that mean!
I used quinoa pasta for a nutty aspect to the salad which adds another layer. Then the usual aspects are thrown in. Chopped lettuce, diced tomatoes and crispy bacon. But I didn’t stop there. Avocado. Oh avocado how I love you. The creamy aspects helps to bind the pasta together, sort of of the role of mayo. Except mayo wasn’t invited here.
And the dressing? My ol stand by of balsamic vinaigrette was tossed together and with the pasta once it is drained. This prevents the pasta from sticking to itself.
Which is almost as bad as having overly mushy pasta…
This salad is great to make ahead, chilled then brought out upon serving. The flavors meld together. Just like a pasta salad should! And no mayo needed.
Hungry for more healthy side dishes?
If you make this recipe, make sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #HOUSEWIFEINTRAININGFILES. I’d love to see what you are cooking up in your kitchen!8