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We had the honor of hosting good friends of ours this weekend.  Brandon and I decided it would be a nice time to pull out the smoker and cook up some ribs (so good!) and I needed a few side dishes that could be made ahead of time (so I could clean my house right before they arrived…)  Inspired by the  really tall and fragrant dill plants in my garden, I created this healthy and delicious pasta salad.

It is loaded with veggies, made with whole wheat pasta, tastes fresh, and is perfect for a summer BBQ.  This recipe can be easily adapted to what you have on hand, but the combo of veggies and flavors listed below was wonderful.  One word of caution, don’t make this too far in advance because it seems to “dry out” a bit once refrigerated for over 12 hours.  The first day we had it, the salad was creamy and perfect, but on day two it was a bit drier, but still tasty.  Oh yeah, the kids loved it on both days, score!

Creamy Dill Pasta Salad

  • 1 pound whole wheat penne pasta
  • 4 green onions, sliced thin
  • 2-3 baby cucumbers sliced or 1 large cucumber
  • 2-3 stalks of celery, sliced thin
  • 1-2 cups kale, chopped
  • 1-2 cups brocoli florets, cut small
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • Dressing

  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 3 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 1 Tbs. red wine vinegar
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
  • 2-3 Tbs. fresh dill
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • dash of cayenne
  • black pepper to taste

Cook the whole wheat pasta according to the directions on the package.

While the pasta is cooking whisk together the dressing in a medium bowl.  Combine the yogurt, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, garlic, dill, salt, cayenne, and black pepper.  Set the dressing aside.

When the pasta is done cooking rinse it in cold water for a few minutes to cool it down and keep the noodles from sticking together.  When the noodles are cool put them in a large mixing bowl.  Stir in the cut veggies and then pour the dressing over the top.  Mix to combine the dressing and the noodle/veggie mixture.  Taste and adjust the salt and pepper as desired.  Top with cherry tomatoes and serve or refrigerate a few hours before serving.

Serve with barbecued chicken, pork, or ribs using my Memphis Rub for flavor!