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Pasta salad with cherry tomatoes, black olives, arugula, red onion pieces, and yellow bell pepper in a white bowl. There is also a pile of arugula and a bowl containing the remaining pasta salad in the background.

Rainbow Pasta Salad

5 from 2 votes
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4
This Rainbow Pasta Salad is vegan, gluten free, oil free AND nut-free. It's also bursting with delicious flavor from colorful veggies and a tahini-lemony dressing. =)


  • 8 ounces whole wheat pasta - or gluten free- I use fusilli
  • 1/2 medium red onion -  finely chopped (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1   medium orange bell pepper - seeded and diced
  • 1 cup cherry/grape tomatoes - halved
  • 3.8 ounce jar sliced black olives - drained
  • 1 1/2 cups baby arugula - packed
  • Dressing:
  • 2   cloves garlic - minced
  • 2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
  • 1 tablespoon tahini
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • juice from 1 lemon - 2-3 tablespoons
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup - or agave nectar
  • 1/4 teaspoon   sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon   freshly ground pepper


  • Cook pasta according to package directions, al dente (note: I use fusilli and it takes roughly 8-9 minutes until al dente). Drain and rinse with cold water and set aside.
  • Meanwhile, prepare and chop veggies. Add chopped red onion, bell pepper, cherry tomatoes, black olives and arugula to a large bowl.
  • Prepare the dressing by combining all dressing ingredients to a small bowl. Note: I like to use this zester to mince garlic. Stir with a small whisk until smooth.
  • When the noodles are done, add noodles to the large bowl of veggies. Next add the sauce and stir until combined. Serve immediately.
  • This dish makes 6 (1/3-cup) servings. Store in the fridge in an airtight container for 2-3 days.


  • If making this ahead of time, I HIGHLY recommend keeping the sauce separate until serving, so the pasta retains its flavor over time.
  • This dish also goes great topped with toasted pine nuts, or pepitas (shelled pumpkin seeds).


Serving: 1.3cups | Calories: 219kcal | Carbohydrates: 42.1g | Protein: 7.8g | Fat: 3.2g | Sodium: 273.2mg | Sugar: 5.3g
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