Pasta salad with pepperoni is a creamy pasta salad full of all the best Italian flavors. Bursting with tomatoes, pepperoni, olives and mozzarella balls, this tangy side dish will be a hit at every picnic and barbecue!
I love a good pasta salad.
It’s a staple for our family at any warm weather gathering.
There are so many ways to jazz it up so you never will get tired of making it or eating either.
This version pulls in delicious Italian flavors: pepperoni and mozzarella.
You can never go wrong with that combo!
And the whole thing gets tossed with a creamy Italian dressing that pulls it all together.
No wonder why my boys love this so much!
To make this you’ll need:
- Pasta– Use any small shaped pasta. Here we used radiatorre, but rotini, macaroni, penne or bow ties would all work.
- Veggies– We use green onions, halved cherry tomatoes and sliced black olives. Feel free to change this combo to suit your tastes.
- Pepperoni– I use sliced pepperoni that I’ve chopped but you could just chop up some of the unsliced pepperoni as well.
- Mozzarella– The little mozzarella pearls work really well in this. You can find them in the specialty cheese case. You can use the slightly larger mozzarella balls (the kind that come in liquid), just cut them into quarters before using in this recipe.
- Italian dressing– Use your favorite brand.
- Mayonnaise– Real, full fat mayo works much better than lower fat mayo or mayonnaise style dressing.
How to Make
Like most pasta salads, this one is very easy to make!
To do it, cook the pasta in salted water according to the package directions.
When the pasta is done, drain it in a colander and run it under cold water until the pasta is all cool to the touch. Make sure to drain all the water out.
Then transfer the pasta to a large mixing bowl.
Add the sliced green onions, halved tomatoes, drained and sliced olives, chopped pepperoni and cheese to the mixing bowl. Stir everything together to combine it.
Then, in a smaller mixing bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise and salad dressing until the mixture’s smooth.
Finish the salad by pour the dressing evenly out over the pasta and gently toss everything together until evenly coated.
Serve and enjoy!
Can I make this pasta salad ahead of time?
Yes! You sure can.
To do it, follow the directions above as written but only stir in half of the dressing.
Reserve the other half and stir it in right before serving.
Even cooked pasta in a cold pasta salad still absorbs a lot of liquid when left to sit and you want this creamy.
You can store leftovers of this dish in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
If the salad gets a little dry, mix up some extra dressing and pour it over the leftovers before serving.
Tips and Tricks
- Want more veggies in your pasta salad? Corn, roasted peppers, chopped pepperoncini, beans, peeled & chopped cucumbers or zucchini would all work in this.
- Need different meat options? Chopped rotisserie chicken, chopped salami, crabmeat, shrimp are all are tasty options.
- If you are making this ahead of time, reserve half the dressing to pour on the salad and toss with the reserved dressing just prior to serving.
Other Pasta Salad Recipes You’ll Love
This pasta salad with pepperoni is a yummy Italian style spin on the classic side. Make it for your next barbecue or picnic and enjoy!
Looking for other macaroni salads? These are a few of my favorites:
- Creamy Cajun Macaroni Salad
- Buffalo Chicken Pasta Salad
- Aunt Gert’s Sweet Macaroni Salad
- Dill Pickle Pasta Salad
- Creamy Italian Pasta Salad with Chicken & Asiago Cheese
- Ranch BLT Pasta Salad
- Southwestern Chicken Pasta Salad
If you’ve tried this PASTA SALAD WITH PEPPERONI or any other recipe on the site, let me know in the comment section how it turned out, we love hearing from our readers! You can also follow along with me on PINTEREST, FACEBOOK, and INSTAGRAM to see more amazing recipes and whatever else we’ve got going on!
Quick & Easy Italian Pasta Salad
- 1 lb small shape pasta
- 1 bunch green onions thinly sliced
- 1 1/2- 2 cups halved cherry tomatoes
- 1 cup Italian dressing
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 1 4 oz can sliced black olives optional
- 1 cup sliced pepperoni chopped
- 1 cup mozzarella pearls chopped
- Cook the pasta, in salted water, according to the package directions.
- Drain in a colander and run under cold water, gently tossing, until the pasta is all cool to the touch. Let any/all water drain out.
- Transfer the pasta to a large mixing bowl.
- Add the onions, tomatoes, olives, pepperoni, and cheese to the mixing bowl. Stir everything together until evenly combined.
- In a smaller mixing bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise & salad dressing until the mixture's smooth.
- Pour the dressing mixture evenly out over the pasta, and gently toss everything together until evenly coated.
- Serve & enjoy!