Creamy Ranch Pasta Salad Recipe

This salad is a family favorite at our house. Even the pickiest eaters love this one. It is so quick and simple to throw together and tastes absolutely amazing. If you are looking for a quick and healthy side, this one is highly recommended.

Creamy ranch dressing gives this pasta loads of flavor.  Whether you make this salad as a side dish or eat it as a main course, your whole family is sure to love it.
This salad is perfect to bring to parties and you can even prepare it in advance and keep it in the fridge until it is time to eat.
It soaks in all the flavor of the dressing and is so delicious. My husband is a huge pea hater. He can’t stand the flavor, but he loves this side dish.
It is one of his favorites, and he always loads up on it whenever it’s at a bbq, or I make it for dinner.
It’s the perfect dish for a potluck, bbq, or large gathering. It’s easy to double, and serves a crowd.

turn it into a main dish:

This recipe was designed to be a side dish. However, add some protein to this bad boy, and you can make it into a main dish.

I like to add shredded chicken, grilled chicken, or chicken sausage to this dish, and it is way more filling, and tastes so yummy.

You could also add steak, or any meat you feel would pair nicely with it.

It’s the perfect summer meal to make, because baking and heating are minimal, and it can be made ahead of time, without any problems.

healthier alternative:

For this recipe, I like to split the ranch in half, and use plain Greek yogurt, and ranch. This adds a little more protein and creaminess to the salad.

Again, this is totally optional and you could easily make this with just ranch, but I like to do half and half.

The ranch flavor won’t be as strong, but it is a healthier alternative.

watch How to make another pot luck favorite, here:

Did you know that you can make potato and egg salad in the INSTANT POT?

1. Cut your potatoes into bite sized pieces and put it in the bottom of your Instant pot. Place your eggs right on top of your potatoes.
2. Close the lid and put on Sealing. Push the manual button (or high pressure) and cook for 6 minutes.
3. Move the knob over to venting (or quick release)
4. Add the remainder of the ingredients just like in the recipe below!

You can cook the eggs and potatoes at the same time. Watch how to do it here:

Creamy Ranch Pasta Salad Recipe
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Ingredients

  • 1/2 box shell shaped pasta
  • 1 head of broccoli, chopped
  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 1/2 package mini pepperonis
  • 8 Monterey Jack cheese sticks, cut into cubes
  • 3 medium carrots, chopped
  • 1 packed Ranch dressing, prepared as directed

Instructions

  1. Cook pasta shells according to directions on the box, being sure not to overcook because you don't want your pasta to be too soft. Rinse pasta in cold water and drain. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine broccoli, peas, pepperonis, cheese and carrots. Fold in cooled pasta. Pour prepared ranch dressing over the pasta and stir until evenly coated. Keep refrigerated until served
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(Recipe adapted from Simply Real Moms)

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