Looking for a dreamy, summer pasta salad that’s an absolute must for your summer picnic BBQ? This Creamy Pesto Tortellini Tomato Salad is made with my almost-instant pesto dressing and tossed with grape tomatoes. Throw this together and watch the throw down go down!
Creamy Pesto Tortellini Tomato Salad
Back in my deli manager days here in wine country, I used to watch our house-made Pesto Tortellini Salad fly out the door. People were crazed for it, and with good reason. The tortellini, I believe, was the packaged fresh kind! And the dressing was a pesto cream sauce that our chef blended in a food processor. I don’t know the ingredients, but it was heavenly. I think she used either mayonnaise or sour cream as the base, to make it creamy.
I’ve always wanted to come up with a cheater version of that salad. One, because I don’t have the recipe, and two, I want a throw-together party dish that I know everyone will love, as I witnessed among our deli customers.
So for this recipe, I used packaged, pre-cooked tortellini (takes 4 minutes to boil), and made a healthier-ish pesto cream sauce, using packaged pesto and my usual hat trick…nonfat Greek yogurt with a little mayo…instead of mayo mountain. This is my usual reduced calorie technique I use in so many creamy recipes.
The ingredient lineup:
- cheese tortellini
- nonfat Greek yogurt
- basil pesto
- extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper
- grape tomatoes
- parmesan cheese
Kitchen tools I use for this recipe:
- chef knife and cutting board
- 5 quart pot (to cook tortellini)
- stainless colander or mesh basket (to drain tortellini)
- large mixing bowl
- silicone spatula or spoon
- Microplane fine grater (to grate cheese)
Interested in more summer picnic salads? Grab this Classic Macaroni Salad Made With Greek Yogurt recipe for your next BBQ. Or, check out this creamy, Grilled Zucchini Corn Salad with Feta Dressing. It’s loaded with vegetables and tossed in a creamy feta dressing.
* Note: This post has affiliate links, which means I get a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thanks for your support and please let me know if you have product questions!
This recipe was originally published to Amanda’s Cookin’ blog in May 2017.