Cold tortellini salad is packed with delicious pasta, chicken, olives, tomatoes and fresh mozzarella. It can be served any time of year but is especially perfect for summer menus.
The summer is an excellent time for pasta salad. Pasta salad made with tortellini has always been my absolute favorite. It adds even more delicious flavor than plain pasta, although I wouldn’t turn that down either.
I love this pasta salad so much that I used the entire bag of frozen tortellini so that I would have leftovers in the refrigerator. It makes a little over three quarts, making it great for taking to get togethers.
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But, I’m going to be honest with you. I love it so much that I ate it for almost every meal until it was gone. I can say that because mom didn’t have any at all since she isn’t eating pasta anymore.
I can’t blame its absence on her at all. It was all me. I ate every bit of it and I wouldn’t mind if there was more. I’ve already checked the freezer to see if we have more tortellini. ha!
It seems like there are a lot of ingredients but don’t let that fool you. There is easy prepping, especially with your chicken already cooked.
I’ve used boiled chicken for this recipe because mom bought a family size package of chicken breasts. Rather than process for the freezer, we decided to boil all of it and use it for individual recipes.
Two boiled chicken breasts make about three cups chopped chicken. You can also use leftover rotisserie chicken. Chop or shred it for this recipe.
Why use Safflower Oil?
It’s unusual for us to use safflower oil. We almost always use olive oil or avocado oil. Sometimes, we will use vegetable oil. But, we don’t use safflower oil very often.
We like to use this oil for cold salads because it doesn’t turn into a solid like other oils. If you’ve ever taken a bite of salad with a cold, slimy chunk of olive oil, you will know exactly why we use safflower in this cold pasta salad.
The oil has only 1 gram of saturated fat per tablespoon so it has that going for it as well. While all oil is fat, obviously, you can still make wise choices about the oil you want to use for different things.
You can fry foods with it as well. This high oleic safflower oil can be heated over 500 degrees. It’s a great choice.
More Summer Salad Recipes
Although these recipes are great for summer picnics and get togethers, they can certainly be made and enjoyed all year as well.
Cold Tortellini Salad with Chicken
- 19 ounces Tortellini frozen, fresh or dried, prepared according to package directions
- 2 Chicken Breasts boneless, skinless, boiled and chopped
- 14 ounces Artichoke Hearts canned or jarred, drained and chopped
- 1/2 pint Grape Tomatoes halved
- 6 ounces Black Olives medium, whole, drained
- 3 ounces Baby Spinach raw
- 8 ounces Fresh Mozzarella like BelGioioso Cheese Pearls or chopped into bite size pieces
- 1/3 cup Safflower Oil
- Sea Salt and Ground Pepper to taste
- Prepare tortellini according to package directions. Drain. Rinse with cool water so the temperature comes down quicker.
- Chop chicken breasts and artichoke hearts. Cut grape tomatoes in half.
- Toss all ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
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