Well, hi there, cooking enthusiasts! Don’t you just love a good picnic under an inviting summer sun? Be it in our backyard, or a lush-friendly park, there’s something positively enchanting about spreading that gingham blanket and unpacking a delightful meal. Speaking of which, let me share a foolproof gem from my secret recipe stash: a kid-friendly Pasta Salad. Yes, I hear you, Pasta and Salad? Together? But trust me, done right, this delightful duo is a match made in culinary heaven!
Now, Pasta Salad is kind of my secret weapon when it comes to keeping both the grown-ups and the kiddos in my family happy. The simple combination of delicious pasta and fresh, vibrant ingredients makes it a nutrient-packed crowd-pleaser. I mean, let’s face it – most kids turn up their noses at the word salad, right? So, the trick is to pitch the pasta first, reel them in, and then – bam! You’ve got them noshing on fresh veggies without a squeak of protest!
I like to start with some fun-shaped pasta, something that screams ‘fun,’ like fusilli or bow ties, they have this uncanny knack of making me feel like a kid again. This isn’t just a breeze to prepare, but also a sneaky way to get the kiddos involved in cooking. Let them pick out their favorite shapes – you’d be surprised at how something so small can encourage them to dig into their greens!
Then it’s all about the bells and whistles – we’re talking fresh cherry tomatoes, crisp cucumbers, and bell peppers of every hue. Oh, and don’t forget my ace in the hole: sweet corn! For that finishing touch, I toss in some shredded chicken or turkey (for pro veggie-hiders, you can totally blend this in with the pasta). Bind all these flavorful elements together with a light yet tangy vinaigrette, and voila! You’ve unveiled the magical creation that is Pasta Salad!
But you know what the cherry on this pasta salad cake is? It’s great for leftovers! Hot day, empty fridge, but hey, what’s that? Pasta salad ready to go just sitting pretty in a lunch box? Spot on! So let’s bring out that inner kiddo in us, roll up our sleeves, and whip up a bowl full of nutrient-rich, colorful, and super fun pasta salad! Cooking is, after all, child’s play when you’re having fun, isn’t it?
Let’s Get Cooking!
- 3 cups of fusilli pasta
- 1 cup of cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 cup of diced cucumbers
- 1/2 cup of diced bell peppers (multiple colors if available)
- 1 cup of sweet corn, cooked
- 1 cup of shredded cooked turkey
- Salt to taste
- Pepper to taste
- 2 tbsp of olive oil
- 3 tbsp of apple cider vinegar
Steps for the recipe:
- Begin cooking the fusilli pasta as per the instructions on the packaging.
- While the pasta cooks, prepare your vegetables. First, dice the bell peppers and cucumber, and halve your cherry tomatoes.
- Once the pasta is cooked to al dente, strain it and run it under cold water to stop the cooking process.
- Transfer the cooked, cooled pasta into a large salad bowl.
- Now, add the diced bell peppers, cucumbers, halved cherry tomatoes, and cooked sweet corn in with your pasta.
- Add your shredded, cooked turkey to the mix.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the olive oil and apple cider vinegar to create your light, tangy vinaigrette.
- Drizzle the vinaigrette over your pasta salad, then season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Finish by tossing your pasta salad to ensure everything is well combined and your salad is dressed appropriately.
- Once done, screwd food thermometer into the turkey to make certain it’s cooked to the safe temperature, which is 165°F (74°C) for poultry. Never jump the gun and risk undercooked meat. Your loved ones’ safety always comes first!
Remember, whenever you’re cooking with meat, especially poultry, always use a food thermometer to confirm it’s cooked to the safe temperature. Being food-safe is always of paramount importance. Plus, it ensures perfect doneness every single time. Now that’s good food, with peace of mind thrown in for good measure!
We think your kids will love it!