Healthier Pasta Salad | Back to School Recipe

Healthier Pasta Salad |

As I promised last week, here’s my first of four back to school lunch recipes! Since school is about to begin, I decided to come up with some easy, healthy and delicious lunch recipes you can prep on Sunday and eat throughout the week. My goal is for them to include protein, veggies and healthy carbs to keep you full and happy all afternoon.  

Healthier Pasta Salad

If you read my post about our trip to Romania, you saw that some of the Romanians’ favorite foods include lots of tomatoes, cheese, cucumber, bread and meats like salami, pork and chicken. When I was coming up with this week’s recipe, I thought it would be fun to make a healthier pasta salad with a little Romanian twist. I decided to add some fresh tomatoes, salami and swiss cheese, reminiscent of our meals in Romania. It’s nothing fancy, but it’s delicious, and so easy to throw together! 

Healthier Pasta Salad |

Lately I’ve been on a huge homemade dressing kick. I love that I can use ingredients I already have to make delicious dressings that are a fraction of the cost of what you could buy at the store, and I can make as little or as much as I need. For this recipe, I wanted to make a homemade Italian dressing, and decided on this one from Add a Pinch. It was super easy to throw together, and it tasted just like what I would have bought at the store. And bonus, it cost about 10 times less than I would have paid. If you haven’t tried making your own dressing, you should! There are so many recipes you can try, and most are not hard at all to make. 

Healthier Pasta Salad |

What is your favorite go-to meal to prep for lunches? Let me know in the comments! 

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Healthier Pasta Salad

  • Author: Rebecca Hicks


A healthier version of one of your favorite summer meals! This recipe is full of veggies, protein and healthy carbs that your body will love.


  • 2 boxes quinoa pasta
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 4 oz salami, sliced
  • 1 cup shredded swiss cheese
  • 1/4 cup Italian dressing
  • 1 Tbsp basil, finely chopped


  1. Cook pasta according to package instructions. Set aside in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Add the cherry tomatoes, salami, cheese and dressing to the bowl. Mix until incorporated.
  3. Top with the basil and enjoy cold or warm!
  4. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one week. I like to put mine in individual containers so it’s ready to grab and go for that day’s lunch.


  • This salad can be eaten cold or warmed.
  • The quinoa pasta gets tough when it’s cold, so I would recommend using a different type of pasta if that texture bothers you.
  • You can also microwave 2 cups of pasta for 20 seconds to soften it up without fully heating. Isaac said that’s the way he likes to eat it!


Healthier Pasta Salad |

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What do you think

  1. Sarah Jean says:

    I love making any traditional recipe healthier.

  2. I love pasta salad so finding a healthier version is exciting! I will have to give the quinoa pasta a try.

  3. Chrissy Z. says:

    This looks delicious!

  4. Mia Sutton says:

    Mmm, I love a good cold pasta salad, my favorite! :)

  5. Yum! I love pasta so any way to make it a little healthier is a win for me!

  6. Jenny says:

    This looks so yummy! Definitely going to have to try it.

    xoxo, Jenny

  7. Brianna Wronko says:

    looks delicious I love making non-mayonaise pasta salads!

I'm becca, and I'm so glad you're here.

I'm a sinner saved by grace who loves staying active and eating healthy. I am married to my high school sweetheart, Isaac, and I'm mama to James and an adorable puppy named Lillie.

meet becca

healthy living blogger


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