This Southwestern Pasta Salad is packed with healthy veggies and coated with the most flavorful southwestern dressing… it’s the perfect side dish for your next potluck or cookout!
Sign up for my free email subscription and never miss a recipe.
Southwestern Pasta Salad
This pasta salad is incredibly easy to make and comes together in just 30 minutes. It’s satisfying enough to eat as a main meal and feeds a crowd.
This recipe yields a huge bowl and feeds about 12 people (1-cup servings). The dressing is so zesty and flavor-packed. It’s not a mayonnaise-based dressing so it’s on the lighter side but couldn’t be more satisfying… always a crowd-pleaser!
If you’re going to prepare this a day ahead of time, skip the avocado add it just before serving so that it isn’t browned.
- 8 ounces small elbow macaroni, cooked according to package directions, drained and rinsed
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon salt (more or less, to taste)
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (more or less, to taste)
- 1 tablespoon freshly minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1 (15-ounce) can whole kernel yellow corn, drained
- 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup chopped bell pepper (I used a mixture of red, yellow and green)
- 1/2 cup sliced red onion
- 1 cup halved cherry or grape tomatoes
- 1 avocado, pitted and chopped*
- 1/3 cup tightly packed fresh chopped cilantro
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse with water and allow to cool.
- While pasta is cooking, prepare the dressing. In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, lime juice, chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, garlic and honey.
- Place corn, black beans, bell pepper, red onion, tomatoes, avocado cooked pasta and cilantro in a large bowl and toss to combine. Drizzle dressing over salad and stir until evenly coated. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
*If preparing a day ahead of time, skip the avocado and add just before serving.
- Category: Pasta
- Method: Boil
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: southwestern pasta salad, pasta salad, southwest pasta salad, southwest macaroni salad