This summer salad recipe for Spinach Pesto Salad is a delicious combination of baby spinach, penne pasta, and a creamy pesto dressing. It is perfect for parties, holiday dinners, and summer barbecues. summer barbecue recipe!
During the summer, we go to so many barbecues and summer salads are one of the things that I love to bring! When my family got together for my mom’s birthday recently, I made this Spinach Pesto Salad and a Chicken Fajita Southwest Salad. I took pictures of both so that I could share the recipes.
Disclaimer: This post contains links to products for making this recipe. If you use those links, I may earn a commission. Learn more here.
How To Make Spinach Pesto Salad
Cook the mini penne according to the instructions on the package. Rinse with cold water and drain.
Mix together the pesto and mayonnaise.
Put the baby spinach in a large bowl. Add the cooked penne and creamy pesto. Stir until coated.
Top with shredded Parmesan cheese.
This is one of my nephew’s favorite salads! He loves eating veggies and really likes broccoli. When he was younger, he would look out of the car window at all of the trees and tell his mom, “Yum! It at all that broccoli!” Not too many kids would say that!
Spinach Pesto Salad Recipe Bonus Tips
1. If you want to make your own pesto and follow my recipe here: Spinach Penne Salad
2. To make this salad as a meal, add some cooked, shredded chicken! Rinse the mini penne with hot water and then stir in the creamy pesto, baby spinach, and shredded chicken. Sprinkle with shredded Parmesan and enjoy while warm.
3. To prepare ahead of time, store the cooked penne, creamy pesto, baby spinach, and shredded Parmesan in separate containers or plastic ziplock bags in the fridge and combine before serving.
4. Want to bulk up the recipe? Add more toppings! This salad would be delicious with chopped veggies such as broccoli, cauliflower, onions, and tomatoes. You could also add fresh mozzarella cubes and black olives.
Mateo Pedersen says
Love that pesto recipe! It’s such a great addition to anything– makes a meal just taste special. I have a great watercress recipe I use a lot– so peppery and fresh.
Sally J says
This was so good!! I added a little bit of bacon too. Will surely make this one again!!
Wonderful! I just made this for my family last week and added chicken to make it a meal. Next time I’m trying bacon too! Thanks!
Hi, two questions: How many servings does this make? And, do you know how long this would last in the fridge? Thanks!
Depending on how much salad each person wants, it should serve 8-10 people. It is best when eaten the same day you make it. Leftovers the next day, can still be eaten but the pasta soaks up the moisture so you might need more dressing.
Best of luck,
Okay, in that case maybe I’ll make a smaller portion and keep the leftover ingredients so I can make it again the next day, since I’m just one person but don’t want to waste ingredients. Thanks.
Made this for a BBQ and it was delicious! Flavorful and just an all around great summer salad. I added roasted pine nuts, as well as mixed in more Parmesan cheese, in addition to putting it on top of the salad. And, it’s easy to put together! Will definitely make this again.
Randi - Dukes and Duchesses says
Yum, yum, yum! That sounds so delicious, Tonia! Can’t wait to try it!
Anne @ Domesblissity says
That’s my kind of recipe Tonia. Looks lovely.
Love pesto pasta salads! Can’t wait to give this one a try!
Jane's Adventures in Dinner says
Yum! A meal salad-perfect.
Stephanie@Henry Happened says
I love it when salads have a bit of pasta inside – makes it easier to eat, haha! this one sounds like a delight!