This Avocado Pasta Salad is one that'll be different than all the others on the cookout table. It's creamy, bright, packed full of (hidden) spinach, healthy pasta salad that just happens to be vegan friendly!
I love it when I'm looking for something quick and easy to make that'll also be crowd pleasing and I stumble upon a recipe like this from Natasha's Kitchen that I adapted to this Avocado Pasta Salad! It's fast to make and wonderfully different than your standard cookout side. Plus, it's packed full of nutrition without tasting like it's trying to be healthy!
- Corn - Fresh is best, but frozen or canned would work, too.
- Grape tomatoes - or cherry, or even diced romas or whatever you have would be great.
- Garlic - Fresh minced
- Spinach - Fresh is really best for this recipe. Frozen thawed doesn't mix up for the creamy sauce as well.
- Avocados - Nice big ripe avocados
- Rotini pasta - Or your other favorite pasta salad pasta. We love rotini the best because of all of it's little nooks to catch the creamy sauce!
- (Not Pictured) Fresh Parsley, Fresh Lemon Juice, Onion Powder, Oregano, Salt- For a great herbal and bright acidic touch!
Do you see all of that spinach? That's right. Spinach. Vitamin K, vitamin A, manganese, folate, magnesium, iron, copper, vitamin B2, vitamin B6, vitamin E, calcium, potassium, vitamin C packed spinach. This with the good fat of fresh avocados, garlic, and some fresh lemon juice and it's a creamy, bright, super duper healthy dressing. Move over, boring old bottled Italian dressing, this is the new healthy pasta salad in town!
Are you getting the theme of this recipe? (Hint, it's FRESH). Isn't that what summer sides (ok let's be honest, all summer food), should be? Yes. Yes it should. And since it's fresh corn season, put in the little added work and make it with some fresh off the cob corn.
Other Ways to Use Summer Corn
It's SO easy!
- Cook pasta.
- Put spinach, 2 avocados, lemon juice, garlic, onion powder, oregano, and salt.
- Add tomatoes and corn to pasta, mix in the avocado spinach mix and stir.
- Add the last avocados and fresh parsley and serve!
Not only is it easy, it's an incredibly healthy pasta salad!
Can you make ahead?
You can definitely make the pasta and prep all the veggies and portion everything out, but I would wait until the day of to assemble. The lemon juice will help keep the avocados from turning brown for about a day, but after that, they will start to oxidize and turn brown. The taste will still be there, but it just wont look as pretty.
My kids loved this Avocado Pasta Salad. And it was definitely one I was more than happy to give her a second helping of! The sweet fresh corn. The pop of acidity from the tomatoes. The creamy but bright dressing and just a kiss of fresh parsley? This healthy pasta salad is a summer!
Serve it With
- Mediterranean Grilled Chicken Breasts
- Grilled Cilantro Lime Chicken
- Grilled Boneless Pork Chops
- 10 Minute Spicy Grilled Shrimp
- Cornell Chicken
Throw any of those on the grill and fill some glasses with a dry, crisp Sauvignon Blanc or Viognier and I'll be right over! 😀
Of course! Just add it to the pasta while it cooks. See recipe notes.
Technically, yes if you have to make sure that it is thawed and very well-drained. But honestly, this recipe just isn't the same without fresh spinach.
The possibilities are endless! If it doesn't need to be vegan, then crumbled bacon or feta cheese are great options! We also love peas or chives, too.
Of course, use your favorite!
Avocado Pasta Salad
- 1 lb Rotini Pasta
- 4 cups fresh spinach
- 3 large avocaods
- 1 1/2 cup cherry, grape (or a mix!) tomatoes, halved
- 2 large ears fresh corn, boiled (or grilled) and kernels removed from cob approximately 2 cups or 12 oz
- 2 - 3 cloves fresh garlic
- 1/4 cup lemon juice approx. 2 lemons fresh squeezed
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced
- Cook pasta by boiling in approximately 4 cups of water for 7-10 minutes until done. Run pasta under cold water, drain, and then add to a large mixing bowl. Add tomatoes and corn to pasta and mix.
- Meanwhile, in a food processor, add 3 avocados, 1/2 spinach, lemon juice, garlic, onion powder, oregano, and salt. Blend and then add the rest of the spinach and continue to blend until creamy.
- Add tomatoes and corn to pasta and mix. Add creamy avocado spinach mixture, mix well. Taste and add more salt to taste. Dice the final avocado and add to pasta with parsley. Mix well and serve. Or make ahead up to 3-4 hours and cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
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