California Spaghetti Salad

California Spaghetti Salad

California Spaghetti Salad Recipe

California Spaghetti Salad is a refreshing and colorful pasta salad that combines spaghetti noodles with crisp vegetables and a zesty dressing. It’s perfect for picnics, potlucks, or as a light lunch. Here’s how to make it:


For the Salad:

  • 12 oz spaghetti noodles (or pasta of your choice)
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 large cucumber, diced
  • 1 bell pepper (red or yellow), diced
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup black olives, sliced
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley (optional, for garnish)
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

For the Dressing:


  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup sour cream or Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon honey or sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried dill (or 1 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped)
  • Salt and black pepper to taste


1. Cook the Pasta:

  • Cook the spaghetti noodles according to package instructions until al dente. Drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process. Set aside.

2. Prepare the Dressing:

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sour cream (or Greek yogurt), red wine vinegar, Dijon mustard, honey (or sugar), garlic powder, dried dill (or fresh dill), salt, and black pepper until smooth and well combined.

3. Assemble the Salad:

  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked and cooled spaghetti noodles with the cherry tomatoes, cucumber, bell pepper, red onion, black olives, and shredded carrots.
  • Pour the dressing over the salad ingredients and toss gently until everything is evenly coated with the dressing.
  • Season with additional salt and black pepper to taste.
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4. Chill and Serve:

  • Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate the salad for at least 1 hour to allow the flavors to meld together.
  • Before serving, garnish with chopped fresh parsley if desired.

Tips for the Perfect California Spaghetti Salad

  1. Pasta: Be sure not to overcook the pasta. It should be al dente so that it holds its shape well in the salad.
  2. Vegetables: Feel free to customize the vegetables based on your preferences. You can add or substitute with ingredients like broccoli florets, diced zucchini, or cherry peppers.
  3. Dressing: Adjust the dressing ingredients to your taste. You can make it creamier by adding more mayonnaise or lighter by increasing the amount of sour cream or Greek yogurt.
  4. Make-Ahead: This salad can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. If it becomes a bit dry after refrigeration, toss it with a little extra dressing before serving.
  5. Variations: For added protein, you can include grilled chicken strips, cooked shrimp, or chickpeas to make it a more substantial meal.

Enjoy this vibrant and flavorful California Spaghetti Salad as a delicious side dish or a light main course on warm days or at any gathering!



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