Cheese tortellini mixed with cherry tomatoes, marinated artichokes, garlic, and pesto makes a perfect pasta salad. Serve it as a side or dinner, perfect for cook-outs, BBQ’s, summer picnics, and potlucks.
As soon as the weather starts getting nice, I get excited to start my garden. Fresh basil is the number one item I plant every year. Making homemade pesto like this tastes fabulous and freezes great. I made the pesto in this recipe last summer and stored it in ice cube trays in my freezer.
Italian cheese tortellini salad needs to be your go-to pasta salad for the summer. Your family and friends will thank you for not making another salad with mayonnaise! Add whatever protein topping you like; I did chicken, but I bet grilled shrimp would taste just as good.
If using homemade pesto, make in advance to make this a 15 minute dinner recipe!
- 1 lb cheese tortellini
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, washed
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup red onion, diced
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup marinated artichokes, coarsely chopped
- 1 lb chicken strips, seasoned with salt and pepper
- ½ cup homemade pesto
- Cook cheese tortellini according to package directions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water.
- Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp olive oil in sauté pan over medium heat. Add red onion and cook until they begin to brown, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Remove and add to a large serving bowl.
- In same pan, add 1 tbsp olive oil and cook chicken strips over medium heat until cooked through, about 9 minutes, flipping half way through.
- Once pasta is cooked, drain it and add it to the large serving bowl with the red onion and garlic.
- Add in cherry tomatoes, artichokes, and chicken.
- Stir in pesto. Add pasta one 1 tbsp at a time to thin out if needed.
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