Pasta Salad

I got this idea last night at Albertson’s while ordering my husband some Chicken Strips from the deli. While waiting for them to bag my item, I saw a large bowl in the cold case labeled “Lemon Broccoli Parmesan Salad.” From the deli to the aisles I went to find all the ingredients to attempt their pasta salad. I didn’t ask for a sample because I wanted to create my own version. What’s fun about this recipe is you add in what you like and leave out what you don’t like. Have fun with it! 


1 box of your favorite noodles – I chose Barilla Tri-Color Rotini for color and shape

1/2 cup of sun-ripened tomatoes in oil (Mezzetta) Costco also sells a huge jar for way less than the grocery store

1 small head of broccoli

1 tsp. or more of shredded Parmesan

Salt & pepper to taste

1/2 of lemon, juice only (optional)

Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)

Optional: Newman’s Own Italian Dressing, to taste


Boil a pot of water and add a little salt to the water.

Add in your box of noodles and cook until al dente. About 10 minutes.

While noodles are cooking, you can clean and cut your broccoli into tiny pieces leaving off the stems. I chose to steam my broccoli for a few minutes but you can add them to the salad raw if you like.

Drain the water from the noodles and add your EVOO; about 1 tsp. 

Optional: Squeeze the juice of one half of a lemon onto the pasta. You can leave this out if you don’t like lemon.

Add in your broccoli.

Scoop 1/2 cup or more of sun-ripened tomatoes into the noodles.

Add in 1 tbsp. of shredded Parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper.

Optional: Taste your noodles to see what consistency  

Make sure everything is stirred together.

Top the pasta off with a little extra cheese.

You can serve this right away as hot pasta or you can place it in the fridge and serve it cold. Feel free to add in grilled shrimp, chicken, red pepper flakes, and much more. Either way – tastes amazing and sure beats store-brand pasta salad. Perfect for a potluck, baby shower, or picnic.