A fresh and easy southwest tortellini pasta salad that can be made in less than 30 minutes! It’s loaded with veggies and protein and coated in a deliciously simple and healthy southwest dressing.
If I had it my way, I’m pretty sure I could live off of pasta salad. I think I’ve mentioned that before. I have a ton of various pasta salad recipes on my site because they make a great main dish OR side dish! You can usually customize them with ingredients you already have in your pantry too.
One thing I especially love about this Southwest pasta salad is that it’s made with TORTELLINI! Tortellini pasta are pretty much a staple in my freezer. They’re perfect for nights when I need something really quick to throw together, and my family loves them! A few of our other favorite tortellini recipes include One Pan Lemon Chicken Tortellini and Creamy Tomato and Spinach Tortellini.
Some things I really love about this Southwest Tortellini Pasta Salad:
It can be made ahead of time. Cook the tortellini, chop the veggies and make the dressing on the side. Then combine everything right before you’re about to eat! It’s already a really quick dish to prepare, but doing those things ahead of time make it the perfect side dish to dinner, BBQ’s or any type of event where you have to bring a side dish to share.
Refrigerated cheese tortellini are my favorite! Although the dry packaged kind will work for this recipe, I just don’t think they taste as good. The refrigerated kind only take a few minutes to cook once your water is boiling and they’re cute little bite-size bites of cheesy bliss 🙂
This is one of the healthier meals I like to feed my kids. They LOVE it, and I love that it’s loaded with veggies and good protein from the beans. The dressing is pretty mild–definitely not too spicy for my family. If you do want to add a little “heat” to the dressing you could add some Valentina hot sauce.
- 20 oz package three cheese refrigerated tortellini
- 1 cup corn, (fresh from 1 ear of cooked corn, canned or frozen corn)
- 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 avocado, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes halved
- 1/4 cup chopped red onion
- 1/4 cup packed cilantro finely chopped
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- Juice from 2 fresh limes
- 2 Tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tsp EACH sugar, chili powder, cumin
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Cook the tortellini according to package instructions. Drain and rinse with cold water.
- Add tortellini to a large bowl. Add cooked corn, black beans, bell pepper, avocado, cherry tomatoes, onion, and cilantro.
- Combine all of the dressing ingredients in a resealable jar. Shake until combined. Pour desired amount of dressing (you may not want to use it all) over the pasta and toss to coat.
To make ahead: Make the dressing and refrigerate. Make the pasta salad separately and store in an airtight container. Add dressing to pasta salad when ready to eat.
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