It’s hard to beat late summer, field ripened, tomatoes and this bruschetta pasta salad is a great way to enjoy them! Bruschetta is an appetizer where toasted baguette slices are topped with a mixture of diced tomatoes, onions, garlic, basil and a splash of balsamic vinegar. This pasta salad takes the same ingredients, replacing the toast with pasta, and dressing it in a balsamic vinaigrette. I like this pasta salad just like that and it’s also nice to make it into more of a light meal with the addition of grilled chicken add diced fresh mozzarella cheese!
Grilled Chicken Bruschetta Pasta Salad
A pasta salad with grilled chicken, summer ripened tomatoes, onions and fresh basil, tossed in a tangy balsamic vinaigrette!
- 1 pound pasta (gluten-free for gluten-free)
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts (or thighs), pounded thin
- salt and pepper to taste
- 4 cups tomatoes, seeded and diced
- 1/3 cup red onion, diced
- 1/3 basil, thinly sliced
- 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, diced (optional)
- 1/2 cup balsamic vinaigrette
- Cook the pasta as directed on the package, drain, mix with olive oil and let cool, mixing every 5 minutes. (The oil and mixing helps prevent it from sticking together while it cools.)
- Meanwhile, season the chicken with salt and pepper to taste, and grill (or pan fry), over medium-high heat until cooked through, about 3-5 minutes per side, before setting aside to cool, and slicing into bite sized pieces.
- Mix the pasta, chicken, tomatoes, red onion, basil, and mozzarella.
- Toss the salad and the dressing and enjoy!
Option: Omit the chicken for a vegetarian version!
Option: Season the chicken with ½ teaspoon of oregano or Italian seasoning, in addition to the salt and pepper.
Option: Cook the chicken a day ahead of time.
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