Ham and Cheese Pasta Salad is the perfect side for summer barbecues! Dill pickle juice is the secret ingredient and everyone will be wanting the recipe.
We keep popping in and out of Spring here neat Portland. It was warm and sunny before we left to go to California and then when we came back so did the rain and cooler temperatures. It was an adjustment. My kids spent most of their lives in the desert of Arizona so I was glad that we moved up here to Oregon in the summer. That way they could slowly transition into winter. The time we spent in California was beautiful and so warm and sunny that when we came back the kids were used to that weather again. It was raining pretty good and in the low 50’s when we got back home. My little 5 year old monkey fell asleep in the car and had to be woken up to go in the house. He was pretty tired and not used to the weather anymore that he started crying and refused to get out of the car saying, “I’m not used to it anymore, I’m not used to it.” Poor little guy. Kids bounce back quick and he was out playing in the rain again the next day! This week we are heading back into the 70’s and 80’s and I’m planning to grill and eat more of this tasty Ham and Cheese Pasta Salad!
The not so secret, secret ingredient in this Ham and Cheese Pasta Salad is the pickle juice. I had never heard or even thought of adding pickle juice to my food until a pot luck at work years ago. My manager at the time brought in this Macaroni Salad and I had to have the recipe. I couldn’t tell what it was that I like so much but I LOVED it. When she gave me the recipe I was surprised to hear it had pickle juice. It really did make it! I love to have some sort of pasta salad to go with grilled or barbecued food and this Ham and Cheese Pasta Salad is another one that will be made a lot this summer!
- 12 ounces farfalle pasta (bow-tie pasta)
- 1/2 cup non-fat Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup dill pickle juice
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 7 ounces Canadian bacon (or leftover cooked ham)
- 1 cup dill pickles chopped
- 1 cup Swiss cheese shredded
- 1 cup frozen peas defrosted
- cook pasta according to package directions, making sure to not over cook
- in a large bowl combine the Greek yogurt, mayo, pickle juice and salt and pepper
- cook Canadian bacon in a dry skillet over medium heat until color has developed on both sides
- slice into 1/2 inch strips
- run cold water over the pasta when it's draining to cool down
- add drained pasta to the bowl with the sauce
- toss with pickles, Swiss cheese, and Canadian bacon
- refrigerate until ready to serve
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