Welcome to The Cool Down, Hunker's definitive guide for staying cool, calm, and collected all summer long.
As the temperature rises, consider switching from hot pasta dishes to cold ones to keep the carb-y goodness going all year long. But don't limit yourself to the traditional tomato-olive-mozzarella recipe. Expand your horizons with flavors from all around the world, while keeping down the heat in the kitchen. (It's no-sweat cooking — literally!)
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Here are seven cold pasta dishes that will be the star of any summer dinner party.
1. The Mindful Hapa Avocado Pasta Salad
This delicious and healthy pasta salad is gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan — and it can be made in just 30 minutes. Instead of mayo, it relies on a creamy avocado dressing.
2. California Strawberries Strawberry Burrata Salad
Who could resist creamy burrata and sweet strawberries? Add in some balsamic vinegar and you've got a flavor explosion.
3. The Seasoned Skillet Bruschetta Pasta With Balsamic Drizzle
This riff on the classic Italian antipasto is incredibly versatile. Add protein, swap the pasta for a gluten-free option, or toss in some cheese — the options are limitless.
4. Blue Jean Chef Sesame Chicken Tortellini Salad
The sesame-ginger dressing takes this fresh pasta salad to the next level.
5. Cupful of Kale Roasted Zucchini Pesto Pasta
Pesto is a pasta classic. Toss in some roasted zucchini and you've got a perfect side dish for a summer barbecue.
6. Simmer and Sage Flaky Salmon and Dill Pasta
Craving a little seafood? This salmon and dill pasta salad has you covered.
7. The No Recipe Recipe Udon With Mango Carpaccio and Peanut Dressing
Consider us all in for fruity freshness, udon noodles, and a spicy peanut dressing.
Stefanie is a New York–based writer and editor. She has served on the editorial staffs of Architectural Digest, ARTnews, and Oyster.com, a TripAdvisor company, before setting out on her own as a freelancer. Her beats include architecture, design, art, travel, science, and history, and her words have appeared in Architectural Digest, Condé Nast Traveler, Popular Science, Mental Floss, Galerie, Jetsetter, and History.com, among others. In another life, she'd be a real estate broker since she loves searching for apartments and homes.