The BEST Easy Greek Pasta Salad Recipe!

This easy Greek bowtie pasta salad recipe with feta, kalamata olives, roasted red peppers, and more, is everything a pasta salad should be. This Mediterranean pasta salad is light, flavorful, and full of ingredients you’ll love, and is perfect for a potluck, picnic, or party!

Greek pasta salad with feta, pepperoncinis, kalamata olives, tomatoes, and roasted red peppers

Originally published Feb. 19, 2017. Updated May 18, 2019.

I’m a sucker for pasta of all sorts, especially a good pasta salad recipe. I love making a big batch and eating it cold or at room temperature for lunch all week. It’s such a great and easy way to meld all your favorite flavors together! 

And there are sooo many ways to make a pasta salad better than that horrible deli kind that is drowning in overly-sweet Italian dressing and filled with celery. You know what I’m talking about.

Greek pasta salad recipe ingredients: feta cheese, pepperoncinis, kalamata olives, tomatoes, and roasted red peppers

That’s why I love this Mediterranean pasta salad with Greek dressing, feta cheese, kalamata olives, pepperoncinis, and roasted red peppers. It’s lightly dressed but super flavorful. Plus, it’s a great way to load up on all my favorite antipasto-type ingredients and call it a meal.

Greek bowtie pasta salad in a white bowl

Let me tell you a little story. One time the department downstairs from my office brought in a bunch of food for someone’s birthday, and when they were done they brought the rest up to the break room for everyone to enjoy.

I saw a delicious looking pasta salad with feta cheese, kalamata olives, and some other tasty-looking ingredients and went straight for that one first, putting a big pile on my plate. It reminded me of the easy Greek pasta salad recipe I liked to make! And it was delicious.

Later I found out it had been brought in by my coworker who frequently cooks from my blog, and it WAS my Greek bowtie pasta salad recipe! Turns out he and his family had incorporated it into their weekly dinner rotation!

Just give this Mediterranean pasta salad with Greek dressing a shot and it will be one of your favorites too!

Can I make this pasta salad the night before?

Absolutely! 

I find in many pasta salads that after sitting overnight, the flavor has absorbed and is gone forever, (my brother-in-law refers to pasta as a “flavor eraser”) but this Greek pasta salad recipe is just as flavorful the next day. 

Greek dressing pouring on ingredients for Mediterranean bowtie pasta salad

It’s kind of addictive actually. I had to test the leftovers the next morning to see how it held up overnight and I couldn’t stop eating the noodles with my fingers.

If you do make this the day before a potluck or something, I would recommend adding the tomatoes just before serving, since they lose their firm texture overnight in the fridge, but the rest of it can be made in advance. 

Tossing pasta salad with Greek dressing

How long will this pasta salad last?

I would recommend eating it within 3-4 days. The only downside to eating this Greek pasta salad recipe after it spends some time in the fridge is the halved tomatoes lose their texture.

If you’re making it in advance for a specific event like a picnic, I’d recommend adding the tomatoes just before serving, but if you’re just making it to eat for lunches all week it will be fine for a few days!

Greek dressing for Mediterranean pasta salad

What is Greek salad dressing made of?

The dressing in this Greek bowtie pasta salad makes this dish super-flavorful without being soupy.

It’s a simple vinaigrette with a base of red wine vinegar and lemon juice. Add to that tons of Greek herbs and spices like oregano, basil, freshly minced garlic, onion powder, a little dijon mustard to emulsify, and your favorite olive oil, and you’re almost there! 

I like adding a little feta cheese into the dressing itself in addition to in the pasta salad because I think it makes the dressing a little creamier when you mix it well. 

Don’t be shy with the herbs and spices! That’s what helps keep this pasta salad with Greek dressing from losing its flavor overnight like so many vinaigrette-based pasta salads.

There’s just enough sugar to mute the tanginess of the vinegar and lemon juice, and enough seasonings that the flavor doesn’t just disappear into the pasta.

Closeup of Mediterranean bowtie pasta salad

Is this Mediterranean pasta salad good for a potluck?

Why yes, it is! First, the flavor doesn’t disappear over time and get absorbed into the pasta, so it’s just as good hours after you make it or even the next day.

A pasta salad with Greek dressing is great for a potluck or picnic since it’s tossed with a vinaigrette rather than something mayo-based. That means you don’t have to worry about mayo getting weird at room temp.

Sometimes ingredients like cucumbers will degrade overnight (especially if salted), making your pasta salad watery and unappetizing. The only ingredient in this Greek bowtie pasta salad that I’d recommend adding in later is the halved tomatoes. You can make the rest of the recipe in advance and add in the tomatoes the day you’ll be serving it!

Overhead shot of Mediterranean pasta salad with Greek dressing

What goes with pasta salad?

I love eating pasta salad as a side to sandwiches and burgers. It’s a great side dish for picnics and potlucks, or you can eat it as a main dish with a simple green salad on the side. Here are some suggestions of what to serve with this easy Greek pasta salad recipe!

Enjoy this Greek bowtie pasta salad with:

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This Greek pasta salad is everything a pasta salad should be: light, flavorful, and full of ingredients you'll love! Perfect for a potluck, picnic, or party!

You can adapt this recipe to include your favorite Greek inspired ingredients. In fact, after making this, I really wished I had put in some quartered artichoke hearts, so I’m including that in the recipe notes. You can also add diced chicken if you want a heartier main dish, but we had it as is and it was great!

This Greek pasta salad is so light and springy I know it will be making a repeat appearance this year at picnics, potlucks, and parties. I think this will be a new favorite, right up there next to the sun-dried tomato pasta salad!

This Greek pasta salad is everything a pasta salad should be: light, flavorful, and full of ingredients you'll love! Perfect for a potluck, picnic, or party!

The BEST Easy Greek Pasta Salad Recipe!

This Greek pasta salad is everything a pasta salad should be: light, flavorful, and full of ingredients you'll love! Perfect for a potluck, picnic, or party!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: Greek
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4 main course servings
Author: Caroline Lindsey

Ingredients

  • 1 lb bowtie pasta
  • 12 oz roasted red peppers cut into 1-inch strips (about 2 whole peppers)
  • 1 cup pitted kalamata olives 6 oz jar
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes halved lengthwise
  • 12 oz pepperoncinis sliced into rings, seeds removed (about 2/3 cup)
  • 1 cup feta cheese crumbles 2 tbsp reserved

For the Greek dressing

  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp feta cheese crumbles
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

Instructions

  • Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse under cold water.
  • Meanwhile, prepare the dressing. Combine ingredients from vinegar through feta cheese crumbles and mix thoroughly. I use my handheld milk frother for this but you can whisk it too. Then, while whisking, slowly drizzle in olive oil. Alternately, combine all dressing ingredients in a jar or bottle and shake to combine. 
  • Combine all pasta salad ingredients in a large bowl. Top with dressing and toss to thoroughly combine. 

Notes

If preparing this in advance, cut and add the grape tomatoes just before serving for optimal texture.
This would also be great with a can of quartered artichokes (in water, not marinated). I prefer Progresso brand because I find it to be the least fibrous/woody.
Add diced chicken for a heartier main dish pasta!

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6 Comments

  • Reply
    David
    February 24, 2017 at 11:26 am

    Beautiful presentation! Can’t wait to try the salad. And, Magnolia Gardens looks awesome!

    • Reply
      Caroline Lindsey
      February 26, 2017 at 7:29 pm

      Thanks, David! If you’re ever in Charleston, especially in springtime, you should give Magnolia Gardens a shot!

  • Reply
    Hope Acquilano
    May 25, 2019 at 9:03 am


    This recipe has become a family favorite at our house! We love to make it for guests, or for ourselves and have left overs for a few days. The combination of flavors is just perfect. Every time we have made it for guests, they ask for the recipe. So quick and easy to make and always a crowd pleaser! If I could I would give it 10 stars!

    • Reply
      Caroline Lindsey
      May 25, 2019 at 9:05 am

      Thanks so much, Hope! I’m so glad you and your family (and your guests!) love it!

  • Reply
    Anna Grell
    August 8, 2019 at 8:14 am

    Hello! Wondering what I can use in place of feta cheese; any suggestions?

    • Reply
      Caroline Lindsey
      August 15, 2019 at 9:03 am

      I suppose it depends on why you’re skipping the feta – is it not readily available? Or does someone not like it? I think cotija cheese might be a good substitute but if it’s a question of availability it’s definitely not as easy to find as feta. If not, you could substitute chunks of mozzarella, but it would not have as Greek a feeling to the pasta salad, if that’s important to you. You could also just leave it out completely if you’d like.

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