Summer Salad ~ Pasta Caprese

I wish I could say our summer travel took us to the island of Capri…


It’s on the bucket list.

Instead we will enjoy a salad which gained it’s fame on the gorgeous Amalfi Coast ~ Caprese Insalata

We went to spend an evening with our neighbors last weekend and I offered to bring a salad. With four bright red tomatoes from my friend’s community garden plot sitting in our vegetable crisper and a bunch of basil in our own backyard, I decided to do a caprese salad, but add in pasta for a heartier side dish yet still fresh and summery.

Pasta Caprese

{recipe via}

  • 1/3 cup EVOO
  • 1/8 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/8 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced {I used about 8 cloves!}
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sugar (optional)
  • 2 pounds tomatoes, cored, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 pound pasta, such as campanelle, penne or fusilli {I used gemelli}
  • 12 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest

Whisk the olive oil, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, shallot and garlic in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Add sugar, if desired (depending on the sweetness of your tomatoes). Add the tomatoes and gently toss. Marinate at room temperature, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook as the label directs. Drain in a colander and run under cold water to stop the cooking.

Add the pasta and mozzarella to the tomato mixture and toss. Stir in the basil and lemon zest, and season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate, tossing occasionally, until serving.

{Note: the original recipe called for 1/4 cup lemon juice. I felt it needed some balsamic so I subbed 1/8 cup with that acid, but if you don’t have that on-hand, you could go with 1/4 cup lemon juice}


It was delish and perfect for the warm summer months. This pasta would also be festive during the holidays, as well!

Enjoy! Happy Tuesday.


P.S. Linking up with Mel over at The Larson Lingo….get your summer salad swap on!

Summer Salad Swap

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