This easy summer vegetable pasta salad is full of fresh veggies topped with a delicious homemade balsamic vinegar dressing. It is the perfect summer side dish or dinner!

summer vegetable pasta salad in a large glass bowl with a wooden spoon.

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Summer Vegetable Pasta Salad Recipe

I absolutely love summertime when my garden is overflowing with vegetables. I can never decide which veggies to highlight in my meals each day—they all just look so good! Will it be Garlic Shrimp with Blistered Tomatoes and Linguine, or should I use zucchini to make Zucchini Boats for dinner?

Luckily, this summer veggie pasta salad uses quite a few of my favorite garden goodies so I don’t have to choose. 

This easy pasta salad features cherry tomatoes, zucchini, broccoli, yellow squash, and red bell pepper. Then, I add freshly chopped basil for a pop of green color and intense summer flavor. Basil is the ultimate summer herb!

A little bit of feta adds a creamy texture and a perfectly salty taste, and the honey balsamic dressing ties the whole recipe together. I know that this simple summer vegetable pasta salad recipe will become one of your favorite recipes this season.

Now, the big question is, will you eat it cold, or do you like it better warm? This is another thing that I just can’t decide! 

(If you love satisfying pasta salad recipes, try my Tortellini Pasta Salad next! Want to keep it light? Skip the pasta and make Summer Salad instead.)

close up image of summer vegetable pasta salad.

Recipe Ingredients

To print: see recipe card below


  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar 
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic – One clove of garlic will make about a teaspoon of minced garlic for this recipe. 
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Pasta Salad

  • 12 ounces bowtie pasta – I love using multi-colored bowtie pasta to add even more color to the veggie pasta salad. 
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes – If you do not have cherry tomatoes, chop one large heirloom tomato. Heirloom tomatoes tend to be sweeter and have a similar flavor to cherry tomatoes. 
  • 1 zucchini – I like to keep the skin of the zucchini on to add color to the salad and keep some of those great nutrients. 
  • 1 broccoli crown – Try to cut the broccoli into pieces that will fit in your mouth with just one bite. Or, buy pre-chopped broccoli florets.
  • 1 yellow squash – Just like with the zucchini, keep the skin of the yellow squash on! 
  • 1 red bell pepper – Any color bell pepper will work, but red peppers are the sweetest. 
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil
  • 1 cup feta cheese – Adding feta is completely optional, but I love how it makes the salad a little bit creamy. It also adds a nice, salty taste that is delicious with all the veggies. 


  • Add 1 cup of chopped snap peas or red onion to the pasta salad. I like to use snap peas at the beginning of the summer when they are in season. 
  • Let the veggies sit in the marinade overnight. This will soften some of the crunchier vegetables and allow them to absorb all the flavors of the dressing. 
  • Use any shape of pasta to make this salad. I like to use smaller kinds of pasta that are bite-sized. 
  • Serve the summer veggie pasta salad warm or cold. Both ways are delicious! 
  • Swap the dressing with Italian dressing.
  • Use gluten-free pasta to keep this recipe gluten-free.
ingredients to make summer vegetable pasta salad.

Directions for How to Make Summer Vegetable Pasta Salad

  1. Prepare the dressing: Add all the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, honey, dried basil, garlic, salt, and pepper to a large bowl. Whisk until smooth.
  2. Add the veggies: Add all the diced vegetables to the bowl of dressing, and store to combine and coat. Set the veggies aside to marinate.
  3. Cook the pasta: Bring a large pot of water to a boil, and cook the pasta according to the package instructions just to al dente. Drain the pasta water, and rinse the pasta under cold water to stop the cooking process.
  4. Combine and chill: Add the cooked pasta to the bowl of veggies, and toss to combine. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and transfer your vegetarian pasta salad to the fridge to chill for at least an hour.
  5. Add the feta: Crumble the feta into the bowl, gently toss, and serve immediately!

Serving Suggestions

You can easily serve this summer vegetable pasta salad on its own as a vegetarian meal. Or, pair it with your favorite main course! Some great options include  Grilled Chicken KabobsEasy Grilled BBQ Chicken, or Easy Marinated Grilled Chicken Tenders.

How to Store

  • Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4-5 days.
  • Serve cold, or warm the pasta salad in 30-second increments in the microwave.
  • I do not recommend freezing this recipe!

Quick Tip

The flavor of this summer vegetable pasta salad actually gets better as it sits. I like to make the salad the day before I plan to enjoy it and let it marinate overnight. The noodles and veggies will absorb more of the balsamic vinaigrette and taste even better the next day!

close up image of summer vegetable pasta salad on a wooden spoon.


Is it better to make pasta salad the night before?

Yes! Making pasta salad a day in advance will allow the flavors of the vegetables and dressing to develop. It is definitely a good idea to make it early and let it chill overnight.

Why do you rinse pasta for pasta salad?

You can rinse the pasta after it has cooked to cool down the noodles quickly. This will ensure the noodles stop cooking and don’t turn mushy. Rinsing also washes away any starchy water that may still be on the noodles.

How do you keep pasta from sticking to cold pasta salad?

Tossing the noodles in the dressing right after they are done cooking will prevent sticking. The dressing will coat the noodles in oil which will keep them separate and not sticky.

A bowl of summer vegetable pasta salad.

Summer Vegetable Pasta Salad

My summer vegetable pasta salad is full of fresh veggies topped with a delicious, homemade balsamic vinegar dressing. It is the perfect summer dinner!
5 from 2 votes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Cooling Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes


  • 1 Large bowl
  • 1 pot



  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teasoon minced garlic
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Pasta Salad

  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 zucchini, diced
  • 1 broccoli crown, cut into small florets
  • 1 yellow squash, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeds removed, diced
  • 1/2 cup freshly chopped basil
  • 12 ounces bowtie pasta
  • 1 cup feta cheese crumbles (optional)


  • Add all of the ingredients for the dressing into a large bowl. Whisk well, blending the honey with the oil and vinegar.
    1/2 cup olive oil, 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar, 1 Tablespoon honey, 1 teaspoon dried basil, 1 teasoon minced garlic, 3/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Add all of the diced veggies to the bowl with the dressing. Stir to coat the vegetables in the dressing.
    1 pint cherry tomatoes, quartered, 1 zucchini, diced, 1 broccoli crown, cut into small florets, 1 yellow squash, diced, 1 red bell pepper, seeds removed, diced, 1/2 cup freshly chopped basil
  • Let the bowl of marinated veggies sit while you cook the bowtie pasta according to the package directions, boiling for about 7-10 minutes to soften the noodles.
  • Drain the pasta water, then add the cooked pasta to the bowl with the veggies and dressing. Toss everything together well, coating the noodles in the dressing.
    12 ounces bowtie pasta
  • Cover the bowl of pasta salad with plastic wrap and chill for at least one hour or longer.
  • Add the feta cheese, if using, right before you are ready to serve the pasta salad. Enjoy cold!
    1 cup feta cheese crumbles (optional)


  • Skip the feta cheese for a dairy-free pasta salad.
  • Use freshly chopped parsley in place of basil for a different, herby flavor.
  • Any shape of short pasta noodles will work in place of bowtie noodles.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 394kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 17mg | Sodium: 472mg | Potassium: 659mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 1486IU | Vitamin C: 109mg | Calcium: 161mg | Iron: 2mg
Did you make this recipe?Mention @kasey_allthingsmamma or tag #allthingsmamma!

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About Kasey Schwartz

For over 15 years, Kasey Schwartz, the mastermind behind All Things Mamma, has been the ultimate go-to for mouthwatering family recipes. Her work has been featured on, Buzz Feed, Better Homes and Gardens, and more, making her your go-to mom next door for all things delicious and family-friendly.

5 from 2 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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