Pasta Salad w Italian Dressing

Recipe by Emily Popenhagen 

This meal plan is yummy because it has good texture with crunchy cucumber and capsicum and soft tomatoes and feta cheese. It also has a dressing to give it a soft element and pasta to give it some structure. It’s also fresh with plenty of raw fruits and vegetables. The flavours also complement each other for a classic pasta salad. 

This meal plan is sustainable because most of the ingredients are in season right now which makes this a cheap and sustainable meal. There is also no meat in this recipe, meaning it is more environmentally friendly and sustainable. This recipe uses lots of fruit and vegetables making it a healthy meal for you to enjoy. 

Salad Ingredients 

300g penne pasta  

1/8 cup red onion 

1/2 cup cucumber 

1 cup grape tomatoes 

1/2 cup capsicum 

1/4 cup feta cheese 

1/2 cup cauliflower 

1/8 cup fresh Italian parsley 

1/8 cup fresh dill 

Dressing ingredients 

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil 

1/8 cup red wine vinegar 

1/2 garlic clove, minced 

1/2 Tbsp honey 

1 tsp Italian seasoning 

Zest of 1/2 a lemon 

Kosher salt and fresh black pepper to taste 


  1. First cook your pasta in salted boiling water according to the directions on the packet until al dente. The amount of time will depend on what pasta you use. Immediately drain and rinse under cold water, then set to the side to drain and cool. 
  1. While the pasta is cooking, whisk together all the dressing ingredients in a small bowl. Taste and season according, then set to the side. 
  1. Next cut the salad ingredients. Finely dice the red onion and cut the cucumber into thin half-moons. Cut the grape tomatoes in half and the capsicum into pieces around the same size as the cucumber and tomato. Cut the feta cheese into about 1cm cubes. Roughly chop the dill and parsley and cut the cauliflower into pieces around the same size as the other ingredients. 
  1. Next assemble the salad. Put all the salad ingredients including the pasta into a large bowl. Pour the dressing you made over the salad, then toss thoroughly to mix and coat. Taste then season with salt and pepper accordingly. 
  1. Cover and refrigerate for at least one hour before serving. Make sure to mix again before serving.