Mediterranean Chicken Pasta Salad
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An easy creamy Mediterranean Chicken Pasta Salad is the perfect lunch or dinner for summer. Grilled chicken is mixed with a creamy parmesan garlic dressing for the perfect combination of Mediterranean flavors. Thanks to the sponsorship of Safeway, I found everything I needed to make my first grilled chicken recipe of the season!
It’s been over 85°F here in California over the last week and it’s barely May! We even had to run our A/C because the pollen count is still so high, we can’t use the house fans and leave the windows open. Ah, the conundrum of Sacramento in spring: it’s technically not hot enough to use the A/C because it’s cool in the mornings and evenings, but allergies are so bad here, you have to use the air.
As soon as it gets above eighty, I no longer want to use my oven. Who wants to heat up the house more by cooking? So instead of baking, we grill a lot this time of year. In fact, we’ll be grilling through October or even November if Mother Nature continues the way she has for the last few years.
One of the things we grill quite often is chicken. We eat chicken several times per week, so I’m always trying to figure out how to make it or flavor it in a new way. We also love to grill a bunch of chicken on the weekends and eat off it all week long by putting it in salads and other easy meals.
This easy creamy Mediterranean Chicken Pasta Salad was born from our love of grilling chicken. We grilled several boneless, skinless chicken breasts on Sunday, and this easy pasta salad was dinner on Monday night!
You might be thinking, what makes something Mediterranean? When I think of cuisine from that area of the world, I think of pasta, tomatoes, olives, artichokes and garlic. All of those ingredients are included in this easy pasta salad recipe.
Easy pasta salads are one of my favorite things to make in the spring and summer. I love how you can dress them and eat them for a few days; sometimes they’re even better after sitting overnight in the refrigerator! And you can really throw anything you like into a pasta salad, from vegetables to meats to cheeses. You can really get creative when you’re shopping your pantry or grocery store looking for pasta salad ideas!
This easy creamy Mediterranean Chicken Pasta Salad is full of marinated chicken, juicy red tomatoes, salty olives, and soft artichoke hearts. It all comes together with a garlic parmesan vinaigrette and some parmesan cheese. It’s perfect to feed a large family or take to your first cookout of the year.
When shopping for my meals this week, I went to my normal grocery store: Safeway. I love all the products they sell, but I especially love their signature brands. I was able to buy everything in this salad at my local store, using their products.
I buy my Signature SELECT, Signature Kitchens, and Signature Farms products, available exclusively in my local area, at my local Rocklin Safeway. You can find all these brands at all of the Albertsons Companies family of stores, including Albertsons, ACME Markets, Safeway, Jewel-Osco, Vons, Pavilions, Randalls, Tom Thumb, Shaw’s, Star Market and Carrs/Safeway. Visit Safeway.com to find a store near you and discover more meal prep tips and recipe ideas.
I was especially excited to find that their Signature Farms® Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts came in a value pack. There were 6 good-sized and quality chicken breasts, perfect to grill for our week of meals.
We love using vinaigrettes as marinades, and I was especially excited to try it with the Signature SELECT Garlic Parmesan Vinaigrette. It turned out perfect and super flavorful! The creamy dressing was also perfect on the salad.
My absolute favorite pasta is Farfalle, which I was delighted to find in the Signature SELECT brand. I added some cut tomatoes as well as olives and quartered artichokes to complete the Mediterranean theme.
Mediterranean Chicken Pasta Salad is the perfect easy meal for a potluck, made with lots of yummy flavors and a creamy garlic parmesan vinaigrette.
This recipe makes a really good portion of pasta, and I only used two of the chicken breasts! If you want, add even more chicken for a fuller meal or to feed more people.
Use as much or as little dress as you want to make it perfect for you!
Tips for making a perfect pasta salad:
- Let your chicken marinate at least one hour (3-4 hours is preferable). Leftover chicken is great for pasta salads!
- If you prefer green olives, use those too.
- Make sure to cook your pasta al dente, a little under done. The dressing will soak in and make it perfect.
- Use more dressing if you like a creamier salad.
Creamy Mediterranean Chicken Pasta Salad
- 1 1/2 pounds Signature Farms® Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
- 1 bottle 12 fluid ounces/355 ml Signature SELECT Garlic Parmesan Vinaigarette
- 12 ounces 340g Signature SELECT Farfalle pasta
- 1 cup from a 6.5 ounce can Signature SELECT Sliced Black Olives
- 1 can 13.75 ounces Signature Kitchens Quartered Artichokes
- 1 cup sliced grape tomatoes
- 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
Cook the chicken:
- Place the chicken (about 3 breasts) in a large gallon size zip top bag. Add about 1/2 the bottle of vinaigrette. Seal the bag and marinate for at least 1 hour.
- Preheat grill to medium hot (about 350°F). Grill chicken until it reads 165°F internal temperature using an instant read thermometer (about 15-20 minutes).
- Let chicken rest at least 15 minutes before slicing and adding to pasta salad. If desired, chicken can be made up to 2 days ahead and stored in the refrigerator.
Make the pasta salad:
- Cook pasta according to package directions, cooking 1-2 minutes less than instructed (about 10-12 minutes). Drain then cool.
- Place pasta, olives, tomatoes, artichokes, and parmesan in a large bowl. Add cooled diced chicken. Add desired amount of dressing and toss to coat.
- Serve immediately or store up to 2 days in the refrigerator.
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Safeway.
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