Pesto Pasta Salad

pesto pasta salad

There’s not much I love more than a delicious pasta salad and this Pesto Pasta Salad truly knocks it out of the park! I created this recipe last week and my family was quick to say that they loved it even more than my OG “Everyone’s Favorite Pasta Salad“. That’s saying A LOT! This recipe is perfect for any occasion, whether you’re looking for a quick meal or an easy entertaining dish that you can make ahead of time. I personally love to meal prep a large batch and snack on it throughout the week.

The combination of sweet corn, cherry tomatoes, crispy prosciutto and mozzarella is pretty close to perfect IMO. And of course, the pesto vinaigrette is what makes the dish truly addicting.

Key Notes

A few notes that are important to keep in mind for this pasta salad recipe:

  1. Cook your pasta al dente and make sure to rinse with cold water immediately after. I would NEVER usually recommend rinsing pasta but a cold pasta salad is the only exception! It will stop the cooking and cool the noodles.
  2. After rinsing your pasta, drizzle a generous amount of olive oil overtop to prevent sticking. Season with salt as well, always best to season in layers!
  3. For the pesto, I like to add a few ice cubes while pulsing in the food processor. This helps the pesto retain its vibrant green color.
  4. For the pesto, I highly encourage using Parmigiano Reggiano instead of “parmesan”. This is a swap that makes a huge difference in almost any recipe. True Parmigiano Reggiano provides an umami flavor bomb and elevates any dish.
  5. Lastly, I actually prefer to use raw sweet corn in this dish but you can also use cooked/grilled corn.

I hope you love it as much as I do and share it with all your loved ones. Enjoy!

Here’s a video of how I put my Pesto Pasta Salad together! For another delicious pasta salad that’s perfect for entertaining, check out my Mediterranean Pasta Salad recipe.

What You'll Need:

+ 1 lb. pasta

+ 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved

+ 8 oz. mozzarella pearls

+ 1 1/2 cups corn

+ 1/2 cup crispy prosciutto, chopped

+ 3 cups fresh basil

+ 3/4 cup parmigiano reggiano, freshly and finely grated

+ 3 cloves garlic cloves

+ 3 tbsp. pine nuts

+ 2 tbsp. Freshly squeezed lemon juice

+ Salt & pepper to taste

+ Extra Virgin Olive Oil

+ 3 ice cubes (for pesto)


1. Cook pasta Al dente. Strain, rinse with cold water, and drizzle with olive oil to prevent sticking.

2. In a food processor or blender, add basil, garlic, and pine nuts. Pulse until well combined (I like to add a few ice cubes also – this helps the pesto retain its vibrant color). Add Parmigiano reggiano, salt, pepper, lemon juice, and olive oil. Blend until it reaches desired consistency and add olive oil as needed – you want this to be a bit thinner than the consistency of a true pesto.

3. In a large mixing bowl, combine pasta, tomatoes, corn, mozzarella and pour pesto overtop. Mix to combine and taste for seasonings.

* For the crispy prosciutto preheat the oven to 375 degrees and bake on a parchment lined baking sheet for approximately 15 minutes or until golden and crispy.

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