Greek Pasta Salad

All the flavors of classic Greek salad in a picnic-ready pasta salad! We've got kalamata olives, tomatoes, cucumber, and feta cheese, all tossed with pasta and a lemony dressing. This salad is easy to make ahead and pack up for your next backyard party.

Greek Pasta Salad Recipe
Sabrina Modelle

Packed with fresh tomatoes, peppers, and cucumbers—not to mention Kalamata olives and feta cheese—this pasta salad has all the flavor of your favorite Greek salad! The lemony garlicky dressing is also flavorful enough to stand up to olives and feta, but it doesn’t overpower the more delicately flavored ingredients such as cucumber and tomato.

Another bonus? Instead of dealing with salad greens, which get soggy the longer they sit, this version holds up way better on a picnic table.

Video: How to Make Greek Pasta Salad


Greek Pasta Salad

Choose Any Pasta You Like! Even Gluten-Free!

Feel free to use your favorite pasta shape here. I liked rotini pasta the best, but penne or farfalle could also be excellent.

I follow a gluten-free diet, so when testing this recipe, I tried it with a lentil-based pasta, regular gluten-free pasta, and a chickpea pasta. We loved the way the lentil-based pasta held together even after a few hours in the fridge, and added a hearty flavor to the salad. This one was our favorite.

Greek Pasta Salad with Feta combine the salad ingredients
Sabrina Modelle
Gluten-Free Greek Pasta Salad make the dressing
Sabrina Modelle

Make-Ahead Greek Pasta Salad

You can prep all of the ingredients for this Greek pasta salad the night before and store them in separate containers or bowls, including the salad dressing. Aside from the pasta, nothing else requires cooking—which is really nice on hot summer days.

If you prepare the pasta ahead of time, rinse the pasta to cool it off and remove some of the starch. Then, toss with a tiny bit of olive oil, transfer to a container with lid and cover it tightly. You can prepare this the day before and keep it refrigerated until you assemble the salad.

You may have some dressing left over, but it will keep well in a covered glass jar in the fridge. I’ve used this versatile dressing on salads, on fish, and to enhance the flavors of grilled veggies.

Sabrina Modelle

Soaking the Onions

I love the flavor of red onion, but sometimes their punchy bite can overpower a dish. A chef friend taught me a simple technique for taming raw onion. A ten-minute soak in cold, lightly salted water keeps the onions crisp and brightly flavored, yet mellows them out enough to play harmoniously with other ingredients.

Other Pasta Salads to Try!

Greek Pasta Salad in a bowl
Sabrina Modelle

Greek Pasta Salad

Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Servings 8 servings


For the lemon olive oil dressing:

  • 1/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice (from 2 to 3 lemons)

  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest

  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley

  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh oregano, optional

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

For the pasta salad:

  • 1 pound rotini pasta, or other pasta shape of your choice

  • 1/2 small red onion, quartered and thinly sliced

  • 1 red pepper, finely diced

  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved

  • 1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives

  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta

  • 1 cucumber, quartered and sliced

  • 1/4 cup parsley, roughly chopped

  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Cook the pasta and drain:

    Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook pasta until al dente. Immediately rinse in cold water until the pasta is cool to the touch.

  2. Soak the onions:

    Soak the slices of onion in cold water with a pinch of salt. After 10 minutes, drain the water from the onions.

    Sliced red onions soaking in vinegar in a prep bowl to make a vegetarian pasta salad.
    Sabrina Modelle
  3. Make the dressing:

    In a small lidded jar, shake all the dressing ingredients together. Taste and add more seasonings to taste.

    Vegetarian Greek Pasta Salad combine the dressing ingredients
    Sabrina Modelle
    Gluten-Free Greek Pasta Salad make the dressing
    Sabrina Modelle
  4. Assemble the salad ingredients:

    In a large bowl, mix together the cooled pasta, drained red onion, peppers, tomatoes, olives, feta, cucumber, and parsley. Toss gently with 1/4 cup of the lemon olive oil dressing and mix. Add more dressing, in small increments, as needed.

    You may not use all of the dressing, but it stores well in the fridge for about a week. Season with salt, pepper to taste.

    Greek Pasta Salad with Feta combine the salad ingredients
    Sabrina Modelle
    Greek Pasta Salad recipe serve the salad
    Sabrina Modelle
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
332 Calories
12g Fat
48g Carbs
10g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8
Amount per serving
Calories 332
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 12g 15%
Saturated Fat 3g 14%
Cholesterol 8mg 3%
Sodium 249mg 11%
Total Carbohydrate 48g 17%
Dietary Fiber 3g 11%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 10g
Vitamin C 34mg 170%
Calcium 80mg 6%
Iron 3mg 15%
Potassium 311mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.