This ham pasta salad is the perfect side dish for your next cookout because it's made with fresh, simple ingredients. This dish is an easy way to make a light dinner on a weeknight or a refreshing lunch that you can cook ahead of time. When you want to cut calories, try this ham and pasta salad recipe!
Read on to learn more about how to make an easy ham pasta salad recipe, what tools you need, and the ingredients to use.
How To Make Pasta Salad With Ham
Below is a simple list of the things you need to make a big serving of ham and pasta salad.
You can use some of your leftover hams from another meal, cube-cut ham steaks at home, or a box of diced-cut ham from the meat section of your local grocery shop. All of these are good choices. Some cooks are always on the lookout for simple answers that don't require them to do much in the kitchen.
This pasta salad is usually made with tiny shells, but you can use any small-shaped pasta instead, like penne, elbow macaroni, rotini, or farfalle (bowties).
You could also use fresh chives or red onion instead of garlic (for a zestier bite).
Green Bell Pepper
The green bell peppers and celery in the salad give it a really crisp, fresh, and crunchy taste.
When frozen peas that have been thawed are added to a meal, they add a sweet flavor and a brighter shade of green color.
Mix vinegar, lemon juice, fresh dill, salt, sugar, and pepper. With these few common ingredients in the right amounts, you can make a salad dressing that is tasty and smooth as silk.
- After boiling and draining the pasta according, add the peas for the last two or three minutes of the pasta's cooking time. To lower the temperature, rinse everything with cold water then drain well.
- While you wait, put the ham, celery, red bell pepper, and green onion in a large bowl and set it aside. The rest of the ingredients should be mixed well in a separate, smaller bowl.
- After you add the spaghetti to the salad, mix everything together with a fork in a fairly strong way. After adding the mayonnaise mixture, toss the food to make sure it's well coated. You can serve it right away, or you can put it in the fridge, cover it, and eat it later.
- 30g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 2g fiber)
- 1 cup: 366 calories
- 35mg cholesterol
- 20g fat (4g saturated fat)
- 15g protein.
- 865mg sodium
Tools You Will Need For Ham And Pasta Salad Recipe
11-Piece Nonstick Stainless Steel Cookware Set – imarku
This set of pots and pans has:
- a 3.33-quart size of the saucepan with a lid
- an 8-inch size of frying pan
- an 8.15-quart size of a stockpot with a lid
- a 12.6-inch wok pan with a lid
- a 1.49-quart size of a saucepan with a lid
- a 3.94-quart size of saute pan with a lid
A stockpot with a lid that holds 8.15 quarts is also part of the set. (3.33-quart lid fits an 8-inch pan) Someone who spends a lot of time in the kitchen or is thinking about making good ham pasta salad recipes will want this set of cooking tools.
Since these cooking tools can go in both the dishwasher and a hot oven (up to 464 degrees Fahrenheit), it's almost as fun to clean them as it is to cook with them. Compatible with all kinds of cooking surfaces, including electric, gas, glass, ceramic, and induction. Easy to cook by boiling, frying, simmering, or braising.
These cooking pans are made with three layers and a core of pure aluminum making the pans heat up quickly and spread heat evenly, so there are no hot spots. To cook with this set, you only need to use medium or low heat, which saves energy and keeps the pans from turning colors. The handles are made in a unique Y shape that lets heat escape and keeps them from feeling hot when you touch them.
This kitchen set of pots and pans includes a frying pan, a saute pan, and a wok pan. The frying pan, saute pan, and wok pan all have nonstick coatings, which make cooking easier and don't change the taste of the food in any way.
The food doesn't stick to the pan and can be moved around easily. This healthy nonstick frying pan set does not have any PFAS, PFOA, lead, cadmium, flaky pieces, or other substances that could be harmful.
Chef Knife – imarku
If you want to make a special meal like ham pasta salad, you have to have this chef's knife on hand. This chef's knife can be used for chopping, mincing, slicing, and dicing. Since it's made of steel, it still works well even after a long time has passed. Also, the carbon content is between 0.6% and 0.7%, and the steel's tensile strength is greatly improved.
It's about twice as hard as other knives in its category, which have an average of 0.3% carbon content. The tool's handle is made of Pakka wood, which gives it a more professional look and keeps your fingers from hurting or going numb after long use.
This is a traditional African cloth that is known not only for how nice it looks but also for how long it lasts and how reliable it is.
Best Pasta For Salad
Pasta is essential, but it's important to choose the right kind of pasta. Some people like their pasta to have a little bit of a crunch to it, while others don't like it to be too soft. In light of this, it's essential that you choose a kind of pasta that is robust, such as penne, fusilli, rotini, or farfalle (bow tie).
They also have a lot of nooks and crannies that are great for catching the bits of salad dressing and cheese that fall off as you eat. It's possible that it will work with other types as well.
Orzo is a perfect type to use for ham pasta salad, but it needs to be cooked carefully so it doesn't get too soft.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do pasta shape and size matter?
Yes. It's important to choose the right size of pasta, especially if you're going to serve it at a casual gathering where people may or may not sit down to eat. In this case, it's better to use bigger pieces of spaghetti. There is no need to twist small shapes of pasta like farfalle or fusilli before serving or eating them. There is also no need to worry about the pasta sliding around on the plate when it's served. This makes it fairly easy to do.
It's important that the pasta you choose has places for salad dressing, herbs, and other flavors to get stuck. Tube-shaped pasta like penne or macaroni works well because they have a lot of surface area to soak up the flavor of a thick sauce with a strong flavor, like pesto. This lets the pasta keep its shape while soaking up the flavor of the sauce.
Do I need to salt the pasta water for the pasta salad?
Salting the water in which the pasta is cooked is of the highest importance when one is cooking a pasta salad since salt brings out its flavor. At each step of the salad's preparation, you should make it a priority to season the dish. Before putting the pasta into the saucepan with the water that is already boiling, put roughly a handful or a half of kosher salt into the water.
What are the best tips to cook pasta?
Once you've decided what kind of pasta to use in the pasta salad, keep in mind these three things about how to cook the pasta:
- To prepare it, bring it to a boil in water that already contains a significant amount of salt. Since food loses part of its attractiveness when it's cold, it's essential to properly season the pasta while it's still cooking.
- Pasta has to be cooked for a little longer than what is termed "al dente," which means it should still have some bite to it. Cook the pasta for one minute longer than you typically would since you won't be boiling it in a sauce before serving it warm. This means that it should be served at room temperature. However, you must take precautions to ensure that the pasta does not get mushy. If you leave the pasta in the oven for a little bit longer, it won't get dry and chewy as it cools since it won't have enough time to dry out.
- Add the sauce to the spaghetti when it's still a little bit warm to the touch. If you combine the pasta with the dressing while it's still somewhat warm, the pasta will be able to absorb more of the dressing, which will lead to an improvement in the dish's overall flavor.
How far in advance should I make pasta salad?
Before you want to serve the ham pasta salad, you should start preparing it anywhere from one to eight hours in advance. When the pasta is cooked for an excessively lengthy period, it will be able to reabsorb a substantial amount of the sauce. It's possible to save aside part of the sauce and use it in the pasta salad only before serving. This will ensure that the salad is pleasant and juicy.
How can I lighten up pasta salad?
By replacing non-fat Greek yogurt with half of the mayonnaise called for in the recipe, you may significantly reduce the number of calories that are included in the pasta salad that you are making. This will result in fewer calories and fat as well while imparting a deliciously creamy and sour flavor to the salad.
Why ham pasta salad is the best?
You just need one mouthful to realize that this is without a doubt one of the greatest pasta salads you've ever had the pleasure of eating. Since it has salty ham, sweet peas, sharp cheddar cheese, and fresh dill, this ham pasta salad is one of a kind.
This is an excellent dish to keep on hand if you have a large amount of leftover ham after the holidays. The ham may take on an entirely new flavor after being cooked in this manner, but it will still be edible.
The dish is given a new dimension in both appearance and mouthfeel by the addition of peas, which are both flavorful and crisp. The crisp flavor of the meal is enhanced by the use of fresh dill that has been coarsely chopped.
What is the shelf life of pasta salad in the refrigerator?
The shelf life of pasta salad in the refrigerator is anywhere between three and four days. It's true that salads whose dressing is based on oil may be stored for a longer period of time than salads whose dressing is based on mayonnaise or dairy products, but all you truly gain is an additional day or two. If some of the ingredients in your salad lose their freshness more quickly than others, the overall flavor will begin to shift even more rapidly.
Can I make pasta salad 2 days ahead?
Yes. However, you can start making this pasta salad as soon as possible because the flavors will become stronger and more noticeable after some time has passed. You can eat it right after mixing the ingredients, but the results will be better if you let it sit in the fridge for eight to twelve hours.
To be honest, one of the things we like best about ham pasta salad is how easy it is to make and how simple the ingredients are. Some simple meals might not fill you up as much as others, but a classic ham pasta salad won't let you down. If you want to have a good time at your next cookout, give this dish a go and see what happens. Enjoy!