Skip to Content

Pasta Salad with Roasted Garlic Vinaigrette is Your Go-to Summer Pleaser

Tossing short pasta with a roasted garlic vinaigrette in a pasta salad is a winner this summer.

As cooking (and eating) often move outdoors for summer, pasta salads can be a versatile, seasonal accompaniment to meats off the grill or prepared foods taken to your fresh air destination of choice. This dish of penne in a roasted garlic vinaigrette — tossed with fresh mozzarella, chopped tomatoes, salt-cured olives, grated cheese, herbs and seasonings — is a crowd-pleasing, flavor-forward compliment to any event under the sun or stars. We especially recommend using organic penne rigate from San Francisco-based Flour + Water as their attention to texture really holds the sauce, and the clean flavor and toothiness are the perfect compliments to this bountiful salad.

Buon appetito!

[Note: Appetito may earn commissions from products featured in links to this story.]

Summer Pasta Salad with Roasted Garlic Vinaigrette

Summer Pasta Salad with Roasted Garlic Vinaigrette

Recipe by Andrew Cotto
0.0 from 0 votes


Prep time


Cooking time




  • For the pasta:

  • 1 pound 1 any short, high-quality dried pasta

  • 1 pound 1 fresh mozzarella, cubed

  • 1 cup 1 salt cured black olive, pitted

  • 4 4 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped

  • 1 cup 1 chopped parsley or torn basil

  • For the Roasted Garlic Vinaigrette:

  • 1 bulb 1 garlic with the top sliced off horizontally

  • 1 cup 1 + 1 teaspoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil

  • 1 cup 1 grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

  • 1/3 cup 1/3 Red Wine Vinegar

  • 1 tablespoon 1 dried Italian seasoning (or simply oregano)

  • Salt & Black Pepper to taste


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Brush the teaspoon of EVOO over the exposed garlic cloves.
  • Wrap the bulb in tin foil and place in the oven.
  • Roast for 40 minutes, until the bulb is fragrant and soft.
  • Remove from the oven and let cool.
  • In a large mixing bowl, add the vinegar and a pinch of salt.
  • Slowly whisk in the EVOO until an emulsion forms.
  • Unwrap the garlic bulb and squeeze the cloves into the vinaigrette.
  • Add the Italian seasonings.
  • Add salt & pepper to taste.
  • Whisk all of the ingredients together.
  • Set aside.
  • Put on a large pot of water to boil.
  • Add a palmful of salt to the water.
  • Add the pasta and stir until the water returns to a boil.
  • Cook, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is al dente.
  • Drain the pasta and shake off excess water.
  • Add pasta to the mixing bowl with the vinaigrette.
  • Toss thoroughly and allow the pasta to absorb some of the vinaigrette and cool.
  • Before serving, add the mozzarella, tomatoes, olives, Parmigiano, and parsley or basil.
  • Toss thoroughly.
  • Enjoy!

Did you make this recipe?

Tag @appetitomagazine on Instagram and hashtag it with #italianfoodanddrink

Like this recipe?

Follow @Appetitomagazine on Pinterest

Follow us on Facebook!

Follow us on Facebook

Already a user?Log in

Thanks for reading!

Register to continue

See all subscription options

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Appetito

Spent Coffee Negroni: The Perfect Sustainable Cocktail

Don’t let your coffee grounds go to waste. Infuse them in an Italian bitter aperitif to make a Negroni that’s also a nod to sustainability.

May 24, 2024

Gran Caffè Gambrinus in Naples is Indeed Grand

Our contributor endures the crowded bar at Gran Caffè Gambrinus for a specialty coffee and a slice of the chaos that defines Naples.

May 23, 2024

Pizza City Fest Nashville Announced

Chicago pizza expert Steve Dolinsky’s festival will expand to its third city in the fall of 2024, bringing regional pies to Music City.

May 21, 2024

The Bicicletta Cocktail, a Milanese Classic

In an excerpt from her book, Stuzzichini, Stef Ferrari revisits a beloved spritz from Milan made with Campari, white wine, and soda.

May 21, 2024
See all posts