Italian Chicken Pasta Salad Recipe

This classic Italian chicken pasta salad recipe can be enjoyed Spring, Summer, Fall and even Winter! My cold pasta salad recipes will make you feel all warm and cuddly. Image: Italian Chicken Pasta Salad Most people tend to think of pasta salad as a warm-weather classic exclusively. It tastes just as yummy in the winter and it is so filling that it can serve as a great, healthy dinner idea. For a larger size spread, serve it with oregano oven baked ribs or roasted Italian sausage and peppers . Add in some crusty Italian buns and you have a satisfying full course dinner.

For those who insist on keeping this Italian salad recipe a summer time recipe, then by all means take it to any and all of your barbecues, picnics or family meals. You can't go wrong!

Chicken Pasta Salad Recipe

Ingredients:
  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 3 cups rotini noodles (You can use organic or Quinoa rotini)
  • 2 cups green beans (I use fresh Romano beans in season, broccoli can also be substituted in this recipe)
  • 3/4 cup purple onion, sliced very thin
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in halves
  • 1/3 cup sliced black olives
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 2 tbsp. fresh grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
Salad Dressing
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
Preparation:
  1. Brush chicken breast generously with olive oil, cover and bake in 350 degree oven, set in fridge to cool.
  2. Meanwhile, boil pasta, drain, rinse with cold water, and place in large salad bowl.
  3. Cut ends off green beans and cut in half.
  4. Steam green beans until crisp-tender then rinse in cold water and drain, add beans to pasta.
  5. Add onions, tomatoes, olives, basil and toss all ingredients together well.
  6. Add green beans to pasta.
  7. Toss in Romano or Parmesan cheese.
  8. Cut up cooled chicken breasts into bite size pieces, toss into pasta mixture.
  9. Using a jar or measuring cup, whisk together extra virgin olive oil, wine vinegar, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
  10. Pour into pasta salad and mix very well. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve. Stir occasionally.

Prep time: 30 min.
Cook time: 15 min.
Serves: 6
Live Long and Mangia!

Health Benefits: Olives are an excellent source of oleic acid (an omega-9 monounsaturated fatty acid). They contain mixed tocopherols, and are also a good source of vitamin E. Olives and their oil contain unique phenolic and aromatic compounds, including oleuroperin and flavonoids.

Vinegars, because of their acetic acid content, help control and lower cholesterol levels, triglyceride levels and blood pressure. Taken regular, Vinegar helps minimize the possibility of heart disease and keep blood flowing smoothly. Vinegar also has potassium, which helps lower blood pressure.

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