This Smoked Mozzarella Pasta Salad is an easy copycat recipe from the Whole Foods Market salad bar deli. It's made with gluten-free penne' pasta and is ready to enjoy in under 20 minutes!
Smoked Mozzarella Pasta Salad
Today is my daughter's 20th birthday and I told her I would make whatever she wanted.
Because she still eats the S.A.D. (Standard American Diet), I was scared at what she would come up with.
But much to my surprise, she chose the famous Smoked Mozzarella Pasta Salad from the Whole Foods deli that she loves to get but is rather pricey at $9.99 a pound.
The ingredients are listed on the label attached to the container when you purchase it from the deli, so it was just a matter of guessing and tweaking the measurements of everything.
I've eaten my fair share of it back in the day before cleaning up my diet, so I know what it is supposed to taste like and I must say that it tastes pretty darn close.
It has a creamy, but tangy sauce tossed with diced pieces of smoked mozzarella, spinach, red bell peppers and topped with optional shredded Parmesan cheese.
Just make sure you use your favorite gluten-free penne if you need the dish to be 100% gluten-free.
And, not only do you have control over the ingredients (and cost), but you can use organic mayonnaise and not "canola oil mayonnaise" which is in the Whole Foods deli ingredients.
Expert Tips + Ingredient Substitutions For Smoked Mozzarella Pasta Salad
Here are some expert tips to make this recipe perfectly:
Parmesan Cheese. To make this recipe as authentic as possible, use shredded Parmesan cheese instead of the grated/powder-type.
Pasta. The reason you want to make sure the pasta is chilled or at room temperature before mixing everything in is that if it is hot, the mozzarella cheese chunks will melt. I put my pasta in the refrigerator while I prepared the sauce and diced the other ingredients and by the time I was finished, it was ready to go.
Time Saver. Make the sauce the prep the veggies and cheese while the pasta is boiling to save time!
Want More Healthy Pasta Recipes?
Check out these:
- Zucchini Pasta with Vegan Basil Pesto
- Spicy Roasted Butternut Squash Pasta
- Creamy Mushroom and Asparagus Pasta
- or my CLEAN EATING Cookbook with 75+ plant-based recipes made with clean real food ingredients that you will love!
Smoked Mozzarella Pasta Salad
- 1/2 pound organic gluten-free penne pasta
For the sauce:
- 1/4 cup organic shredded parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup organic mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup organic apple cider vinegar
- 3 cloves organic garlic
- Himalayan pink salt (to taste)
- 1-2 pinches organic cayenne pepper
For the add-ins:
- 1/2 pound organic smoked mozzarella cheese (diced)
- 2 cups organic baby spinach (diced)
- 1 organic red bell pepper (diced)
- organic shredded parmesan cheese
Prepare the pasta:
- Boil and prepare pasta according to package directions. Chill either in the refrigerator or let it come to room temperature, then set aside.
Prep the add-ins:
- Dice mozzarella cheese, baby spinach, and red peppers, then set aside.
Prepare the sauce:
- Add all ingredients for the sauce to a food processor and process until creamy and smooth.
- Taste and adjust the seasonings to your preference.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked pasta, the add-ins, and sauce and gently toss until all ingredients are evenly distributed.
- Optional: Sprinkle additional Parmesan cheese on top and serve.
Hi, I'm Karielyn! I'm the published cookbook author of CLEAN DESSERTS and content creator of The Healthy Family and Home website since 2012. I specialize in creating easy, healthy plant-based recipes that are gluten-free + vegan and made with clean, real food ingredients that you can feel good about eating.