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A classic pasta salad with an unexpected dill pickle tangy twist. Dill pickle pasta salad combines zesty dill pickles, tender pasta, cubes of cheese, and a creamy dressing.
Dill Pickle Pasta Salad
Creamy dill pickle pasta salad is the perfect side for any barbecue or potluck.
Dill pickles are not only the main flavor in this pasta salad, but they even add a great crunch.
This flavorful pasta salad is a crowd favorite, particularly for anyone who loves the tangy flavor of dill pickles.
The dressing can even be made ahead of time, making assembling the pasta salad even easier.
Dill Pickle Pasta Salad Ingredients
- Pasta - rotini pasta, cooked, drained, and rinsed in cool water
- Pickles - diced whole dill pickles
- Cheese - cubed cheddar or Colby-jack cheese
- Dill - fresh dill, chopped
- Sour cream
- Dill - dried dill
- Onion powder
- Pepper - black pepper
- Parsley - dried parsley
- Dill pickle juice
Substitutions and Additions
PASTA: You can use any type of pasta you prefer. Rotini, bowtie, penne, or macaroni all work well in this recipe.
CHEESE: Pepper jack, provolone, sharp cheddar cheese, or Swiss would all be great options in addition to either cheddar or Colby Jack.
Shredded cheddar can also be used instead of cubed cheese.
MEAT: Chicken, tuna, ham, or bacon, could also be added to this pasta salad recipe.
DILL PICKLES: Try using sweet pickles for a touch of sweetness or spicy pickles to add some heat to the salad. You can also use bread and butter pickles for a tangy and slightly sweet twist.
SPICY: You can add a dash of crushed red pepper flakes to the dressing to add a kick of heat to this recipe.
MAYONNAISE: If you're looking for a lighter alternative to mayonnaise, you can substitute it with Greek yogurt or sour cream.
Greek yogurt will add a creamy and tangy element to the pasta salad, while sour cream will provide a richer and slightly tangier flavor.
Both options work well and can be used in equal quantities as a replacement for mayonnaise.
HERBS: If you don't have dill weed or prefer a different herb, you can substitute it with fresh parsley or chives.
Fresh parsley will add a mild, herby flavor, while chives will contribute a subtle onion-like taste. Both herbs work well in pasta salads and will provide a touch of freshness.
Use the same quantity as specified for dill weed to maintain a balanced flavor.
MUSTARD: For a different twist, you can add Dijon mustard or whole-grain mustard.
Dijon mustard has a slightly tangier and spicier flavor profile, which can add complexity to the dressing.
Whole grain mustard, on the other hand, will bring a delightful texture and a deeper, more pronounced mustard taste.
Add a tablespoon of your favorite mustard to this recipe.
VEGGIES: You can add celery, diced cucumbers, or bell peppers for a refreshing taste and vibrant color.
ONION: You can add onions, scallions, or shallots. Green onions will provide a milder and fresher taste, adding a subtle onion-like flavor without overpowering the dish.
Shallots, on the other hand, have a sweeter and more delicate taste that can elevate the overall flavor profile.
Remember, these substitutions and additions may alter the taste and texture of the recipe, so feel free to experiment and adjust according to your personal preferences.
Enjoy the process of creating a customized version of this dill pickle pasta salad that suits your taste buds!
How to Make Dill Pickle Pasta Salad
FIRST STEP: In a large salad bowl, toss together cooled pasta, dill pickles, cheese, and fresh dill.
SECOND STEP: In a small mixing bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, sour cream, dried dill, onion powder, black pepper, dried parsley, and pickle juice to make the dressing.
THIRD STEP: Pour dressing over the tossed salad ingredients and stir until combined.
FOURTH STEP: Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour to allow the flavors to blend.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I make this recipe vegetarian or vegan?
Yes, you can easily make this recipe vegetarian by ensuring that all the ingredients you use, including pasta and pickles, are vegetarian-friendly.
For a vegan version, substitute the mayonnaise with a vegan alternative.
How can I adjust the level of tanginess in this pasta salad?
If you prefer a milder tanginess, you can reduce the amount of pickle juice used in the dressing.
Likewise, if you want a stronger pickle flavor, you can increase the amount of pickle juice. Adjust it according to your personal taste preferences.
Can I use light or reduced-fat mayonnaise?
Yes, you can use light or reduced-fat mayonnaise if you prefer. It may slightly affect the taste and texture of the dressing, but it's still a viable option.
How to Store Dill Pickle Pasta Salad
IN THE FRIDGE: To store your Dill Pickle Pasta Salad in the refrigerator, transfer any remaining salad into an airtight container or cover the serving dish tightly with plastic wrap.
It will stay good in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. However, keep in mind that the pasta may become softer over time as it continues to absorb the dressing.
MAKE-AHEAD: Pasta salad dressing can be made several hours or even a day in advance and then kept chilled to enhance the dill flavor. Then the salad can be served right away after tossing it with the dressing.
This dill pickle pasta salad is the perfect addition to any summertime meal loaded with tender pasta, seasonings, cheese, and pickles.
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Dill Pickle Pasta Salad
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- 16 ounces rotini pasta (cooked, drained, and rinsed in cool water)
- 2 cups diced whole dill pickles
- 1½ cups cubed cheddar or Colby-jack cheese
- 1-2 tablespoons fresh dill (, chopped)
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 tablespoon dried dill
- ½ tablespoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon black pepper ()
- ½ teaspoon dried parsley
- 2 tablespoons dill pickle juice
- In a large salad bowl, toss together cooled pasta, dill pickles, cheese, and fresh dill.
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, sour cream, dried dill, onion powder, black pepper, dried parsley, and pickle juice to make the dressing.
- Pour dressing over the tossed salad ingredients and stir until combined.
- Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour to allow the flavors to blend.