Delicious Pasta Salad with Burrata is the best pasta salad recipe I’ve made. The dressing is unique and rich, the veggies and pasta are so fresh, the creamy burrata on top is incredible. Excellent vegetarian main dish or show stopping side.
I found this recipe on Giadzy from Giada De Laurentiis and it’s the best pasta salad I’ve ever made. A unique dressing made with oil-simmered shallots, vinegar, and Dijon. The fresh veggies and pasta topped with silky burrata are super fresh. After testing it and having my own way with it, here’s how I enhanced it so my family would love it.
In Giada’s recipe, she calls for fregola, similar to Israeli Couscous, for the pasta and wax and green beans. In my first try, I found that the couscous didn’t do anything for the dish; it needed more chew and texture, so I swapped in a Torchiette pasta which not only is much more pretty than the little couscous balls, but it holds the dressing better and compliments the cut beans in the dish. For the wax beans, my taste testers and myself are not fans of that aptly named legume so I bought fresh asparagus and it was a huge win. I also tweaked quantities during testing to get the best and brightest flavor possible. Let’s dive in and make this delicious pasta recipe.
Ingredients in this Delicious Pasta Salad Recipe-
Green Beans, asparagus, and cherry tomatoes: The combination of fresh French-style green beans (haricots verts, pronounced “ari-coe vare”), and asparagus gives two different textures and flavors but they’re just right together; cherry tomatoes are a great pop of color and adds nice acidic flavor to the greens.
Edamame: Don’t even think of swapping in peas for the edamame, unless you can’t find it. I buy the fresh, vacuum-packed, shelled edamame from Trader Joe’s and they add a great nutty taste and creamy-yet substantial texture, they’re key to this dish.
Pasta: Use a pasta that works well in salads, one that has twists, spirals, or ridges to hold the dressing. Torchiette, rotini, or fusili are great options.
Tarragon and Basil: Fresh tarragon and basil go so well in this recipe, these fresh herbs should be paired all the time. With tarragon’s bright yet light lemon-licorice flavor and basil’s peppery bite, this salad is destined for greatness.
The dressing ingredients-
Shallots: Shallots are a fabulous onion-garlic combination that’s mild enough yet distinct in its adaptable flavor.
EVOO and Avocado oil: Using a combination of extra virgin olive oil and avocado oil to cook the shallots is something I’ve never done before but it’s truly genius. As the shallots soften to be ready to puree for the dressing, the oils become infused with the flavor from the shallots. This method creates the secret ingredient that makes the dressing unique.
Cider vinegar, Dijon mustard and salt: All three of these ingredients are perfect for acidity and flavor-enhancement that makes this dressing bright yet light.
The last ingredient but pinnacle to the whole collaboration is the BURRATA (picture fireworks coming out here). This beauty in the world of Italian cheese is mildly nutty-tasting on the outside but the inside is soft like cream. Gently placed on top of the pasta salad and then dolloped with extra dressing, this is a masterpiece of a meal. All the bright and creamy ingredients in this recipe are so good that black pepper has no place here. Many tasters thought the black pepper would distract from the light brightness that makes this recipe what it is.
Even though I said the Burrata was the “last” ingredient, the “final” but another important ingredient is a dash of flake salt, like Maldon, flourished on the pasta salad just before serving. Because a little extra bite of salt in just the right foods is delightful, it works well here.
When I served this to a group of friends recently, everyone was picking out individual ingredients, discussing them and the rightness that each ingredient lent to the dish, while also savoring the burrata that absolutely belongs on top.
Perfect for a meatless main dish or served as the best side dish at any dinner or luncheon, if you want something easy but impressive, this is one delicious pasta salad recipe and dare I say the best pasta salad you’ll ever make too.
I hope you enjoy this and all my other recipes too.
Delicious Pasta Salad
Salad Dressing Ingredients
Pasta Salad Ingredients
- ½ pound haricots verts, French green beans or regular green beans, trimmed into 1-inch pieces.
- ½ pound asparagus spears trimmed into 1-inch pieces, using only the top 2 or 3 inches of the asparagus. Save the rest for another use, like soup, etc.
- ½ pound favorite pasta rotini or torchiette work well
- ¾ cup shelled edamame
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, (quartered) more if desired
- 2 tbsp tarragon leaves chopped
- 2 tbsp fresh basil leaves chopped, more as desired
- 1 pound fresh burrata 2 whole balls cut into thirds
- Flake salt like Maldon
Make the dressing:
- Place the shallots, olive oil, and avocado oil in a small saucepan over low heat. Cook the shallots gently for 25 minutes, until a knife is easily inserted all the way through the shallots (the shallots should be very soft). Remove from the heat and allow them to cool to room temperature.
- Place the softened shallots along with ½ cup of the oil, the cider vinegar, Dijon mustard and kosher salt in a food processor. Process until smooth. Taste and add salt if needed. Set aside.
Make the salad:
- To prepare the salad, bring two medium saucepans of salted water to a boil. One will be for your pasta and one to blanch the beans and asparagus. Fill a bowl with cold water and ice, and set it aside.
- Add the pasta to one pot of boiling water, and allow to cook until al dente (you may add extra water to this one to flavor the pasta). In the second pan, add the green beans and let them boil for one minute. Add the asparagus to the green beans and boil two minutes more. Using a strainer or sieve, remove the beans and asparagus and place them in the ice water until the pasta is done cooking.
- Drain the pasta, add to a large bowl and add ½ cup of the dressing. Drain the green beans and asparagus and add to pasta along with edamame, quartered cherry tomatoes, tarragon leaves and fresh basil. Season with ½ teaspoon kosher salt, and toss gently.
- Divide the salad onto serving plates, top with burrata thirds. Spoon more dressing as desired onto the burrata and sprinkle finished salad with flake salt. Enjoy.
- Use a pasta that holds dressing well. Something with ridges or spiraled.
- It's important to simmer the shallots until they're very soft so you get a smooth dressing when processed.
- If desired, you may toss mozzarella pearls into the salad and add a bit more dressing and salt if you don't want to bother with the burrata, however, I strongly recommend it.
- Quantities listed for the beans, asparagus, cherry tomatoes, and edamame may be changed to your liking. Quantities listed are approximate.
- The salad keeps well in the refrigerator for up to 4 days after making, though you may need to add more dressing as the pasta soaks up a bit of it.
Recipe slightly changed from Giadzy’s Sardinian Pasta Salad.