With double the bacon, this BLT Pasta Salad with Jalapeño Basil Ranch is the perfect summer salad. It’s almost no-cook and comes together in minutes. It has extra crispy bacon, romaine lettuce, and cherry tomatoes all tossed together with my creamy, spicy jalapeño basil ranch dressing. Toss in some cubes of cheddar cheese, grilled corn, and chunks of avocado and you’ll be good to go. This pasta salad is simple to toss together, super flavorful, and one of those recipes that everyone LOVES. Perfect for serving at your next backyard dinner. Enjoy this for dinner and save the leftovers for lunch!
I’m on a pasta salad kick this spring/summer. Well, pasta salads and ice cream, I’ve been making both on repeat. Usually, I’d have issue with all of this repetitiveness, but I’ve loved all of the recipes I’ve been sharing. each one even more than the last.
If it’s a good recipe, it needs to be shared. And you all, this pasta salad is a really GOOD recipe.
I’m not sure exactly what inspired me to mix this up. But a week or so ago I just felt like making a really yummy, simple BLT pasta. First, I wanted to make sure I hadn’t created anything like this BLT recipe I was dreaming of. So I searched BLT on the HBH site. I was surprised to see the scant number of “BLT” dishes that came up.
Over the past 10+ years, I’ve created only a handful of BLT dishes, and never a pasta salad. That was all I needed to make up my mind to move forward with this pasta.
Now the details
One of the biggest reasons I’m loving pasta salads so much is the simple fact that they’re usually easy to make. And that is just the case with this BLT pasta salad.
Simply mix the dressing, boil your favorite cut of short-cut pasta, then toss everything together.
Step 1: make the ranch dressing
This is one of my favorite dressings, especially for summer. It’s very creamy and easy to make with fresh basil, cilantro, and then the usual ranch ingredients. Mayo, buttermilk, chives, Worcestershire, garlic, onion powder, salt, and pepper.
Personally, I love to toss in a jalapeño too.
Blend everything up in a blender or food processor until creamy – super easy to do. This really adds all the flavor!
Step 2: cook the pasta
I recommend using a shortcut pasta with ridges, but whatever your favorite pasta cut is will work just fine.
Step 3: toss the salad
Toss the hot pasta immediately with the dressing and cubes of sharp, spicy cheddar cheese. The heat from the pasta will intensify the flavors of the herbs and melt those cubes of cheese.
It’s going to smell wonderful, but taste even more DELICIOUS. This is a small little secret my dad taught me for making the best pasta salad.
Step 4: add everything else
Once the pasta is tossed with the dressing, mix in the cherry tomatoes, lettuce, grilled or roasted corn, and then of course, lots and lots of crispy bacon. YUM!
You can eat this warm or at room temperature. I love hot food, so I like this best while it’s still a little warm.
What I will say is that the longer the pasta sits, the more flavor it develops, so this is also perfect for making ahead. Just be sure to add the bacon and avocado right before serving to ensure the bacon is crispy and the avocado is the perfect shade of green.
Looking for other summer salad recipes? Here are a few ideas:
Lastly, if you make this BLT Pasta Salad, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!
BLT Pasta Salad
Calories Per Serving: 462 kcal
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
Jalapeño Ranch Dressing
View Recipe Comments
- 1. To make the dressing. Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Boil the pasta to al dente, according to package directions. Drain.3. In a large bowl, toss together the hot pasta with dressing and cubes of cheese. Mix in the lettuce, tomatoes, corn, bacon, and avocado, gently tossing to combine. 4. Serve warm or cold. The salad will develop more flavor as it sits. If serving later, add the bacon and avocado just before serving.