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This avocado pasta salad recipe is healthy, easy to make, and it’s a perfect side dish for summer parties.
The flavor is mild but delicious. While there is plenty of flavor, there are no overpowering flavors here. It’s perfect for pairing with other dishes.
Ever Wonder Where Avocados Are Grown?
Here’s a little history and trivia for you.
“They are thought to have originated in Mexico and Central and South America. Avocado trees were first planted in Florida in 1833 and then in California in 1856. According to NASS, California now accounts for the majority of U.S. avocado production, followed by Florida and Hawaii.”AGMRC
Thank you, California, Florida, and Hawaii! We love our avocados! Keep em’ coming!
How Long Does Avocado Last In A Dressing?
Once the dressing is added to the pasta, the lemon juice will actually help keep the avocado fresh. You’ll still want to wrap up leftovers airtight, but the lemon juice will help keep the avocado from turning brown (though some light browning may still occur, but this doesn’t mean it’s bad! Especially after just a day or two in the fridge.)
Healthy Benefits Of Avocado
What Type Of Pasta To Use For Avocado Pasta Salad
You can use any type of pasta you prefer. However, the smaller your pasta is, the smaller you will want to chop your veggies. The only pasta I don’t think would work well here is spaghetti or fettuccini. Good choices for this salad are:
- Rotini pasta
- Penne pasta
- Farfalle pasta – a.k.a bowtie pasta
- Macaroni – if you want to make macaroni salad, chop everything as small as you can get it for the best result, even the fresh herbs.
- Gluten-free pasta will work here just fine. Just be sure to stir during cooking and rinse well to remove excess starch after cooking.
Total Recipe Cost
- 8 oz. whole grain pasta: $1-$2
- 1 medium perfectly ripe avocado: $1-$2
- 1 cup chopped cucumber: $0.50-$1
- ½ cup chopped red onion: $0.50-$1
- ½ cup chopped Italian parsley: $0.50-$1
- ¼ cup oil: $0.25-$0.50
- ½ cup fresh lemon juice: $0.75-$1.50
- 4 medium garlic cloves: $0.20-$0.40
- 1 tsp. salt: $0.05-$0.10
- ½ tsp. ground black pepper: $0.05-$0.10
The total cost for the estimated ingredients may range from $5.80 to $11.60, depending on the location, time of year, and where you purchase the ingredients.
Cost Per Serving
$5.80 / 5 = $1.16 (rounded to the nearest cent)
$11.60 / 5 = $2.32 (rounded to the nearest cent)
Please note that these are rough estimates and the actual cost may vary depending on the store, location, and availability of ingredients.
Vegan / Plant-Based – This recipe is naturally vegan and plant-based. No adjustments are needed.
Sugar-free – This recipe may contain some natural sugars from the pasta and veggies, but there is zero added sugar, essentially making this recipe sugar-free.
Gluten-free – You can use gluten-free pasta for this. I used chickpea pasta here and it was delicious.
If you want to add to this pasta salad, here are some suggestions for ingredients that would work well with this recipe.
- Fresh basil
- Cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes
- Feta cheese
- Parmesan cheese
- Ranch dressing
About The Pasta Salad Ingredients
Whole wheat pasta – Cook to package directions in well-salted water.
Avocado – Not too hard, and not too soft. You want a “perfect” avocado for this.
Cucumber – It’s up to you if you peel it or not, and any variety of cucumber will do.
Red onion – While a yellow onion will work here, I don’t recommend it. You really need the sweetness of red onion in this dish.
Fresh Italian parsley – This is flatleaf parsley. You can use regular, curly parsley if you wish, but the flatleaf parsley has a better flavor for this dish.
Oil – This can be any light-flavored oil you feel good about using. Extra virgin olive oil would be perfect here. Note that this will initially taste like a lot of oil. But after the pasta has chilled, it will have a far less oily texture.
Fresh lemon juice – You can also use bottled as long as it’s 100% juice with nothing else added. You can substitute it with lime juice if you prefer that.
Garlic cloves – You can go as heavy on the garlic as you like with this. I find that pressing it extracts more of the flavor than mincing it. But do what works for you here.
Salt – I used pink Himalayan salt. But any salt you normally cook with will work here. Make sure to be generous with the salt in the pasta water.
Ground black pepper – This is optional but tasty. And it won’t make anything overly peppery.
How To Make Avocado Pasta Salad
Cook pasta according to package directions in salted water in a large pot. Drain and rinse with cold water to cool it down, and set it aside.
While the pasta is cooking, prepare the vegetables. Cut the cucumber, and red onion into a small dice. Press the garlic, chop the parsley, and set aside.
In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, lemon juice, pressed garlic, salt, and black pepper until well combined.
Add all the veggies and parsley to the cooked and cooled pasta in a large bowl.
Pour the dressing over the salad.
Toss everything together until well coated in dressing, and set it in the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes before serving to allow the flavors to meld together.
Serve cold as a healthy and delicious side dish or light meal.
Store leftovers in an airtight container and keep them in the fridge for up to 2 days if the dressing is on it. Typically, pasta salad will last up to 5 days, but I find that the cucumber doesn’t last that long once cut, and the dressing will speed up the “getting-mushy” process. So if you have it for longer than 2 days, smell it, check for texture, and check the cucumbers before you eat it.
Do not freeze this recipe.
Can You Reheat Avocado Pasta Salad?
This is meant to be a cold salad. No reheating is required!
More Healthy Pasta Salad Recipes
- Orecchiette Pasta Salad
- Cavatappi Pasta Salad
- Bow Tie Pasta Salad
- Healthy Tuna Pasta Salad
- BLT Pasta Salad
- Homemade Hamburger Helper Cheese Burger Pasta
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Avocado Pasta Salad Recipe Card
Avocado Pasta Salad Recipe
- 1 pasta pot
- 1 Large mixing bowl
- 1 Measuring cup (liquid)
- 1 set of measuring spoons
- 1 set of measuring cups (dry)
- 8 oz. whole grain pasta (cooked to package directions in salted water)
- 1 medium perfectly ripe avocado (pitted, chopped and scooped out of the skin)
- 1 cup chopped cucumber (peeling is optional)
- ½ cup chopped red onion
- ½ cup chopped Italian parsley
- ¼ cup oil (anything light in flavor)
- ½ cup fresh lemon juice
- 4 medium garlic cloves (pressed or minced)
- 1 tsp. salt
- ½ tsp. ground black pepper
- Cook pasta according to package directions in salted water in a large pot. Drain and rinse with cold water to cool it down, and set it aside.
- While the pasta is cooking, prepare the vegetables. Cut the cucumber, and red onion into a small dice. Press the garlic, chop the parsley, and set aside.
- In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the oil, lemon juice, pressed garlic, salt, and black pepper until well combined.
- Add all the veggies and parsley to the cooked and cooled pasta in a large bowl.
- Pour the dressing over the salad.
- Toss everything together until well coated in dressing, and set it in the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes before serving to allow the flavors to meld together.
- Serve cold as a healthy and delicious side dish or light meal.