Gluten Free Pasta Salad with Broccoli

Looking for a gluten free pasta salad recipe that doesn’t get hard as rock when making it in advance? This gluten free¬†broccoli pasta salad recipe does just that. Just be sure to add the dressing to the pasta when you refrigerate it and then add additional as needed and bring it to room temperature.

Gluten Free Pasta Salad with Broccoli


Yield: Serves 6 as a side

Gluten Free Pasta Salad with Broccoli

A gluten free pasta salad with optional ingredients to suit your tastes. Serve with a sweet and creamy dressing or a light or heavy vinaigrette.


    For the Salad:
  • 12 oz. gluten free penne pasta ¬†(preferably a non-rice-based GF pasta such as Heartland if refrigerating. Otherwise use Trader Joe's Brown Rice Penne, Tinkyada, or Jovial)
  • 1 bunch of broccoli florets, cut into smaller florets
  • 1 large red pepper, sliced thinly
  • 10 sliced olives (black, purple, or red)
  • 1/4 red onion, chopped or thinly sliced (optional)
  • 3 oz. Hormel real bacon bits (optional)
  • 1/2 cup shredded medium to sharp Cheddar cheese (optional)
  • For the Vinaigrette¬†Dressing:
  • Light Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing or
  • Balsamic Dressing
  • For the Sweet and Creamy Dressing:
  • 1¬†1/2¬†cups mayonnaise
  • 1/2¬†cup gluten-free sour cream (most are gluten-free, but watch out of "lite" or "light"
  • 1/4¬†cup granulated sugar


  1. Boil a much larger pot of water than you normally would need to boil gluten pasta. Add a dash of oil and then the pasta. Boil until it reaches your desired texture. I don't care for al dente; therefore, I cook the Trader Joe pasta for 17 minutes, though the package suggests 16. Drain the pasta, run under cold running water, strain it, and transfer to a large bowl.
  2. While pasta is boiling, bring a pot of water to a boil for the broccoli. Once it boils, blanch the broccoli for 3 minutes or until it reaches your desired tenderness. Drain and add it to the pasta bowl.
  3. Rinse out one of the above pans, dry it, add a bit of oil to the bottom and preheat over medium heat. Saute red pepper until tender, about 7 minutes. Transfer to top of pasta in the bowl. Alternatively, you can cut the pepper in half, oil them, and roast them in the oven at 400¬ļF until lightly charred. Then thinly slice them.
  4. Add all of the ingredients you decide to use to the pasta bowl and toss with your favorite dressing. Serve at room temperature or chill the vegetables first, if desired.

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