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5 from 3 votes

Chicken Pasta Salad

Chicken Pasta Salad- the BEST pasta salad for potlucks, parties, and picnics! This simple pasta salad has chicken, bacon, tomatoes, fresh basil, Parmesan cheese, and a light lemon dressing.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Pasta
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 8
Calories: 512kcal

Ingredients

For the Dressing:

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste

For the Pasta Salad:

  • 1 lb penne pasta or similar pasta
  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken tenders or breasts, cooked and chopped
  • 6 strips bacon, cooked and chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups halved grape tomatoes
  • 3 green onions, sliced
  • 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  • Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
  • Extra basil and parmesan cheese, for garnish

Instructions

  • To make the dressing, combine the olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, honey, Dijon mustard, garlic, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Whisk until well combined.
  • In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook the pasta until al dente, according to package directions. Drain well and transfer to large bowl.
  • Add the cooked chicken, bacon, tomatoes, green onions, Parmesan cheese, and basil to the pasta. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss well. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  • For best flavor, let the salad stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes before serving. Garnish with extra basil and Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Notes

You can use grilled chicken, baked chicken, saluted chicken, or even rotisserie chicken for this recipe.: Feel free to stir in a few handfuls of arugula or chopped spinach. You can also add in chopped avocado right before serving.

Nutrition

Calories: 512kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 14g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 56mg | Sodium: 389mg | Potassium: 521mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 634IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 177mg | Iron: 1mg