EASY Pasta Salad with Bocconcini, Tomatoes and Basil

Here is an easy pasta salad made with creamy little balls of mozzarella, tangy cherry tomatoes and fresh basil.  It's then tossed with fusilli pasta and a simple marinade made of extra virgin olive oil, fresh garlic and seasonings.  A fast and delicious dish you can whip up in less than 15 minutes. 

A few days ago, I posted my Spring Tomato, Basil, Bocconcini Salad, which is the base for this dish.  All I did was added some pasta, and turned it into a simple pasta salad dish. You can certainly serve it chilled or even at room temperature. Either way it's a very tasty and refreshing salad.

I quickly made the bocconcini salad first, allowing it to marinade for a few minutes while the pasta was cooking in boiling water.  I then drained the pasta and set it aside to cool.  Once the pasta cooled down, I simply tossed in the bocconcini salad and it was done!  Super fast!  This can be an excellent pasta salad to serve for Mother's Day.  Or, bring it to a friends house.  It makes a beautiful, colorful and tasty appetizer as well.  It's a dish with all the Italian colors in it.  Enjoy!

Here's a tip:  If you are preparing this pasta salad for guests and need to refrigerate for a few hours prior to serving,  I recommend you leave out the mozzarella cheese while you marinate the rest.  Toss them in right before you serve. This will keep them pearly-white, and makes a prettier presentation.

Easy Pasta Salad with Bocconcini, Tomatoes and Basil
  • 1 pound Fusilli Pasta 
  • 3 cups cherry tomatoes
  • 1 pound bocconcini (small mozzarella balls)
  • 5 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil
  • 1/4 tsp. dried oregano
  • 2 garlic cloves- minced
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Salt the water with some salt.
Add the fusilli pasta to the water and cook the pasta until al dente. Drain in a colander and transfer to a large serving bowl and set aside to cool.  If you prefer, you can run the pasta under cold water to cool faster.

In the meantime, slice tomatoes in halves and toss them into a salad bowl along with the bocconcini, olive oil, basil, garlic, oregano, salt and pepper.  Gently mix and set aside for 5 minutes to marinade.
When the pasta is completely cooled. Transfer the tomatoes and bocconcini salad into the pasta.  Gently toss.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  And serve.

Tip:  If you feel you need to drizzle more olive oil to moisten the pasta, then do so.  Sometimes pasta salads has a tendency to absorb all the liquid, which would leave you dry pasta.  Adding extra-virgin olive oil is Ok and it's good for you, so enjoy!

Serves 6 to 8

Thanks for stopping by!  To all the mom's in the world out there, have a wonderful Mother's Day this weekend! 
Warmly,  xo Anna and Liz
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