Pasta salad is one of my go-to sides to make for a beach day picnic or barbeque. It’s easily packable, sharable, & compliments most summer side dishes. This simple caprese pasta salad is one of my favorites to make because I often have the ingredients ready to go in my fridge and I absolutely love the flavor pesto can add to such a simple dish. I always have fresh sweet basil growing in my kitchen, which is perfect for making fresh pesto & adding a fragrant kick to this summer pasta salad.
Caprese Pasta Salad
4 tablespoons pesto
1 lb orzo (1 box)
2 cups grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cup Ciliegine, halved (small fresh mozzarella balls)
2 tablespoons olive oil
Fresh cracked pepper
Heat salted water in a 3 qt pot. Once water reaches a rolling boil, cook orzo until al dente. Drain pasta and let cool.
Once pasta is cooled, fluff the orzo and put in a large mixing bowl. Add pesto & olive oil and mix until homogeneous. Add cheese and tomatoes, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix and fluff again, plate in a serving bowl, and garnish with fresh basil.