Saturday, August 28, 2010

Grilled Vegetable Italian Pasta Salad

Why do I love these types of meals so much?? Because they are inexpensive to make, filling, great for a crowd or picnic, awesome eaten hot or cold, great for packing lunches for work and kids, and are good for the body too! I am always throwing together new variations of these types of meals. For this one, I was definitely in the mood for some Italian flavors, eggplant, artichoke hearts, olives, zucchini, and a fresh dressing. It was really delicious the first day, and just got more delicious by day two! Oh, and did I mention it is totally kid approved by my very own little taste testers? So pack some of this up for little ones lunches the next day.

Grilled Vegetable Italian Pasta Salad

What You Need:
16 ounces of whole wheat Penne pasta
1 medium purple eggplant
2 medium zucchini
olive oil, salt and pepper
1 14-ounce can artichoke hearts (in water)
1/2 cup sliced black olives
1 16-ounce can white beans, drained and rinsed well
2 tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup (big handful) fresh chopped Italian parsley

zest and juice of two lemons
1 small clove garlic, minced
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. Veganaise (vegan mayo)
1/3 cup olive oil
pinch of salt and pepper to taste

Whisk everything really well.

To Make Salad:
Heat a large pot of salted water. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain pasta, and place into a large salad bowl.
Heat an outdoor grill or a indoor grill pan to medium high heat. Slice the eggplant and zucchini into 1/2 inch thick slices (lengthwise). Brush them with live oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place on the grill and cook for several minutes on each side until grill marks from and the vegetables are getting slightly tender. Remove from grill, let cool a few minutes, and cut into bite sized pieces and add to the salad bowl.
Dice the rest of the vegetables, and add to the salad bowl, along with he beans and parsley. Pour dressing over the whole thing and toss well to coat. Taste and add any additional salt and pepper to taste.


  1. Looks so yummy and fresh! Another beautiful and delicious pasta dish to add to my collection. I know everyone will love this one.

  2. Wow!! I LOVE IT!! looks PERFECT, You make me hungry again..I wanna eat rght now :)
    healthy and yummy^_^

    you are awesome girl Morgan!!

  3. The recipe makes it sound even more delicious than it looks -- beans, olives, artichokes!

  4. Hey, Love!!! I agree, these are the BEST kind of meals! Fresh, quick, easy and healthy!! looks amazing, as usual!! Pasta and artichoke hearts are one of my favorite combos!!!

    Have a great weekend :-)


  5. Yum! Such a delicious looking and colorful salad.

  6. Looks good! I love pasta salads!

  7. What could you swap for the veganaise and mustard?

  8. Hello Ladies!! Thanks so much for your commetns!

    Mayday- you can just leave the Veganaise out, the dressing will still be good,just slightly less creamy, and for the mustard, a tsp of miso will prob. work good...

  9. Looks wonderful! Also not crazy about "mayo" over here, so I typically replace it with plain soy yogurt.

  10. Italian pasta sauces to determine the best type of tomatoes to make sauces, that is, of course, the diced tomatoes are packed in water, do not puree is the best. When you make a "pesto 'It's better to leave England to release the oil, blanch the garlic, pine nuts and toast. Range of Italian sauces go very far from a simple cream sauce. Were you ever tasted them to make the beans and lentils? Seafood? Poultry and meat?