This creamy pasta salad is packed with cheese, artichoke hearts, spinach, roasted peppers and chopped green chiles. It's a great salad to take to a covered dish dinner and you can make it a day or two ahead.
1 (6-ounce) jar marinated artichoke hearts
1 (8-ounce) package rotini pasta, cooked
1 (7-ounce) jar roasted red bell peppers, drained and cut into strips
1/2 pound smoked mozzarella cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes*
1/2 (5-ounce) bag baby spinach leaves (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 (4.5-ounce) can chopped green chiles, drained
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Garnishes: tomato wedges, baby spinach leaves
How to Make It
Drain artichokes, reserving marinade. Cut artichokes into strips, and place in a large bowl. Add pasta and next 4 ingredients, and gently toss.
Stir together reserved artichoke marinade, mayonnaise, and next 4 ingredients until blended. Add to pasta mixture, stirring to combine. Cover and chill. Garnish, if desired.
*1/2 pound smoked Gouda or Cheddar cheese may be substituted for smoked mozzarella, if desired.
I've made this salad many times. I've used it as a side on special occassions as well as taken it to pot luck suppers. Very easy to make and can be made ahead and refrigerated. We don't care for green chiles so I do omit that item. Sometimes I throw in sliced ripe olives - yummy! Makes a large bowl of pasta salad.
Made this dish for a 4th of July party at our home - it was by far the best pasta salad i've ever had. Not a big fan of those italian dressing based pasta salad, and this one was a nice alternative with lots of delicious veggies. I made the following changes: used the entire box of 12 oz rotini, substitued smoked provalone for smoked mozz, used double the shaved parmesean, substitued a couple swirls of EVOO for the mayo (not necessary), used a 12 oz jar of marinated artichokes, added some chopped cherry tomatoes and chopped red/yellow sweet peppers, along with fresh chopped parsley/basil. Our guests wanted the recipe!
This salad was really great. It was so quick and easy to make. Very nice for an after work dinner. I added a few more chilies for a little more heat.
Served with a fresh baquette and a beverage on the patio Yummy.