Don't Be Afraid To Use Sauce On Your Pasta Salads This Summer

serving pasta salad dish
serving pasta salad dish - Solstock/Getty Images

Salads bathed in pasta sauce may not be the ingredient combination that comes to mind when planning al fresco menus, but when it comes to summer dishes, this pairing is well worth considering. Sure, vinaigrette can add a tangy, zingy punch to your pasta dishes, and creamy sauces can bring a boost of refreshing smoothness to your meal, but the sauce has a respectable place in pasta salad recipes, too. Dousing your pasta salad in the sauce is a surefire way to offer the ultimate pasta salad to your guests.

Whether you're a fan of a simply dressed bowl of pasta covered in olive oil, a fresh sprinkling of herbs, flaky sea salt, and freshly ground pepper or look forward to spooning into a comforting pasta bowl coasted in tomato sauce made from scratch, transfer this culinary approach to your summer picnic dish. Your favorite pasta sauces can be matched with the pasta salads you intend to serve at tomorrow's backyard barbecue, and no, this dish doesn't need to be placed on the table hot.

Read more: 44 Types Of Pasta And When You Should Be Using Them

Get Ready To Get Saucy

close up of pasta salad
close up of pasta salad - Lauri Patterson/Getty Images

Not sure how to go about introducing pasta sauce to your salads? Try upgrading a veggie antipasti Italian pasta salad recipe with the pesto you used for last night's dinner, or replace the mayo and sour cream dressing in a southwest pasta salad recipe with an arrabbiata or vodka sauce for a fresh take on summer dinner.

Prefer a more buttery bite to your noodles? Mix pasta salad with a coating of garlic that has been cooked to crunchy delicious in butter, flavored with herbs, and seasoned to perfection with a crackle of black pepper and sea salt. As with any pasta-based dish, keep in mind the ratio of ingredients as you bring in the sauce. Slathering the noodles in an overdressed dish can turn into a runny mess, whereas skimping out on the sauce can result in disappointing mouthfuls that fall flat. Start conservatively, and should your noodles need an extra dose prior to serving, you can always add more sauce before setting plates on the table.

Read the original article on Tasting Table