A light summery cold pasta salad full of refreshing flavours, textures, colour and crunch. Loaded with the goodness of fresh pineapple, onions, sweet corn, red peppers, avocados, jalapenos, pomegranate seeds & black olives. The addition of a protein element such as tofu, red kidney beans or boiled egg chunks for vegetarians or then cooked ham, tuna chunks or boiled / barbeque chicken for non-vegetarians makes this one a crowd pleaser!
Options for vegans with and without dairy (mayonnaise and yoghurt) also available.
Tossed in the most delightful tropical spicy-sweet-sour dressing, this creamy, juicy salad is bright, hearty and full of island flavours that are an instant hit! Naturally popular with kids of all ages, trust me when I say the adults can rarely resist the second serving themselves!
The best part of this salad is its fabulous flexibility as per your taste and availability. Replace pineapple with mango and avocado or grape, cranberries & orange with bacon bits for some smokiness. The mint and spring onion greens add an awesome green minty crunch to this salad.
I first learnt this recipe from a dear friend when my kids were much younger, equally delicious, and later just kept tweaking it until it tasted a wee bit more flavoursome with the addition of pineapple juice & titbits. However, I have also mentioned a whole load of ingredient options below in Notes, should you have issues with accessing pineapple. The point is only to moisten it with a lot more juicy flavour! I have also given options for people with dairy issues.
Recipe for Hawaiian Pasta Salad-with Dairy Free Option
Ingredients (Serves 4-5 Persons)
- 400 gms farfalle / bowtie pasta
- ½ cup diced fresh pineapple
- ¼ cup diced red pepper
- ¼ cup grated carrot
- ½ cup sweet corn, boiled
- ½ cup diced red onion, rinsed to cut pungency
- ¼ cup diced cucumber
- ¼ cup pomegranate seeds
- 2 tablespoons sliced black olives
- 2 tablespoons chopped spring onions
- 2 tablespoons mint, chopped
- 2 jalapeños, finely chopped (optional)
- 1 tablespoon, minced celery
- 2 tablespoons oil for cooking pasta
- Salt to taste
- Optional protein ingredient of your choice- tofu / boiled egg / cooked ham / boiled diced chicken / tuna chunks
For the dressing (for vegan option see notes below)
- ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt / hung curd made at home / 5 tablespoons regular plain yoghurt
- ¼ cup plain mayonnaise or sour cream
- ¼ cup pineapple juice
- 3 tbsp lime juice
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Italian mixed herbs of your choice
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- ¼ teaspoon red chilli flakes (optional)
- Salt to taste
- ½ teaspoon white pepper powder
- Cook the pasta al dente according to packet instructions in salt water.
- Drain, rinse in cool water, toss in a spoon of oil.
- While still warm, transfer the cooked pasta to a large bowl and add in 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar. Toss well and leave aside covered to cool.
- While the pasta is cooling, to make the dressing, add the following ingredients to a bowl or medium glass jar: Greek yoghurt/hung curd, mayonnaise or sour cream, pineapple juice, olive oil, minced garlic, mixed herbs, salt, white pepper powder, red chilli flakes. Whisk well a couple of times until you get a smooth dressing or close the lid and shake the glass jar. Keep aside.
- Add the pasta to a large bowl and add the onions, carrot, red peppers, cucumber, sweet corn, pomegranate seeds, sliced olives, spring onion greens and mix.
- Finally pour the entire dressing over the pasta and toss gently a couple of times until well combined.
- Cover with cling film and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before serving.
- Garnish with chopped mint leaves and a sprig of mint for a fresh blast.
- Serve as a fresh main course or as a side with with pizza or other dishes.
- In the absence of pineapple, you could also use grapes & grape juice or one mango & mango juice or 2 whole oranges & orange juice with some honey / sugar to sweeten it if necessary.
- A cup of chopped avocado also makes for a delicious and healthy addition.
- A variety of ingredients could be added or subtracted as per availability and tastes.
- If you are vegan, skip the mayonnaise and yoghurt and replace them with 1 tablespoon mustard and 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice and honey