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ITALIAN TORTELLINI PASTA SALAD

This weekend is Easter and that means family get-togethers and potlucks. I’m going to share with you one of my most requested recipes that is always a huge hit every time I bring it somewhere. It is bright and colorful and would be the perfect dish to accompany your Easter supper!

Refrigerated tortellini usually can be found in the deli section of your local grocery store. I have made this with regular, tri color and even whole wheat tortellini. I have found that adding the  dressing immediately to the warm, drained pasta before adding the rest of the ingredients creates the best end result.

This pasta salad tastes best if you make it the day before serving and allow it to sit in the refrigerator overnight. I like to give it a good stir every few hours so that the flavors can marry  together and the pasta and veggies soak up the dressing. The mini pepperonis are delicious in this salad, but can easily be left out or substituted with something else if you prefer. I’ve made this many times with sliced deli turkey and it’s really good that way. I’ve also used sliced banana peppers, black olives and diced red onion when making a vegetarian version. Use your favorite deli meats and veggies and I promise you’ll get rave reviews.

Happy Easter!

Ingredients

• 18 oz pkg Refrigerated Cheese Tortellini

• 16 oz container Olive Garden Italian Dressing

• 5 oz pkg Pepperoni minis

• 1 cup shredded Parmesan Cheese

• 1 Red bell pepper, diced

• 1 Orange bell pepper, diced

• 1 Yellow bell pepper, diced

• 1 English cucumber, diced

• 1 pint sweet grape tomatoes, cut in halves

• 1 tsp ground black pepper (more to taste)

(Additional optional ingredients: Deli turkey, diced red onion, sliced black olives, sliced banana peppers)

Directions

1) Cook cheese tortellini according to package directions. Drain well and add to a large mixing bowl.

2) Pour entire container of dressing over warm tortellini and mix well. Allow to cool for about 15 minutes.

3) Add pepperoni minis, shredded parmesan, all veggies and black pepper.

4) Mix to incorporate everything, cover and refrigerate overnight or at least 8 hours.

5) Taste and add additional black pepper if desired.

This recipe serves about 8.

BEEFY TACO

ITALIAN TORTELLINI PASTA SALAD

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