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A cold pasta salad is perfect in the warm summertime. Whether on a picnic, poolside, or just sitting on the patio in the sunshine, this broccoli pasta salad with miso caesar dressing really does the trick!
As I’ve mentioned before, mayo and I are not the best of friends. It usually ends up a little too rich for me, even as aioli on fancy sandwiches. I think it has to do with my primarily vegetarian (but not exclusively!) diet. I still get plenty of highly saturated fats with my ample consumption of cheese, but the solid state seems to be more appetizing that the more….viscous state. (Mayo’s not a liquid so I don’t know what to call it.)
You may be in this mayo-free camp also. In which case, I recommend you check out my other mayo-free swaps like this miso caesar dressing, this egg salad, and this green goddess pasta salad.
For this recipe, I used Baia Pasta durum sardinians. They look like baby gnocchi pasta 🙂 Cute right? Also very tasty! Baia Pasta was founded by a few guys who were involved with Slow Food International with a mission to produce good food, that’s good for people and good for the earth. You can read more about their story on their website.
I definitely recommend my vegan miso caesar dressing for this broccoli pasta salad. I love caesar dressing, and this one is super good! But, of course, you can always swap in another dressing or something that’s ready made if you prefer. I always serve the dish cold, especially in the summer. But you could also serve it warm with the residual heat from the pasta and roasted broccoli creating more of a caesar flavored creamy sauce.
Regardless of the temperature, this broccoli pasta salad with caesar dressing has some of my favorite things. Well, let’s be real, my current favorite things (because I’m obsessed with food and picking favorites is hardddddd):
- Charred, crisp, broccoli florets
- Caesar salad dressing
- Plenty of color and crunch
- Pasta! Because carbs.
Are we in agreement on any of these things? Yes? Great! That means you will also love this broccoli pasta salad!
What are some of your current favorite food things?
Broccoli Pasta Salad with Caesar Dressing
A dairy-free broccoli pasta salad with miso caesar dressing is perfect for summer! With charred broccoli, sweet red peppers, almonds and chickpeas, it's pasta salad you can feel good about.
broccoli, diced (about 5 cups)
recipe miso caesar dressing
chickpeas, drained and rinsed
red bell peppers, stems removed and diced (about 2 cups)
parsley, roughly chopped
Heat oven to 425°F.
Cook pasta according to directions. Drain and rinse with cold water.
While pasta is cooking, toss diced broccoli with olive oil and spread evenly on a large baking sheet.
Roast broccoli in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes until lightly charred.
Mix cooked pasta with miso caesar dressing
When broccoli is cooked, add to dressed pasta. Add in chickpeas, red bell peppers, almonds, parsley, and black pepper.
Mix well and serve.
I love the charred broccoli with slightly crisp florets. You could also use raw broccoli or lightly steamed broccoli. Since you’ve already got the oven on, roasted bell peppers would be another way to do this broccoli pasta salad with caesar dressing. I recommend cutting the peppers in half and roasting cut side down on a separate tray while you’re roasting the broccoli. Then, remove any charred skin once cooled and dice the peppers to add to the broccoli pasta salad.
Swap in the regular pasta for you favorite gluten free pasta. Or, use asian style rice noodles for a slightly modified take on this broccoli pasta salad.
The chickpeas add great protein and flavor to this broccoli pasta salad. But, you can add or swap shredded or grilled chicken to this broccoli pasta salad for omnivores. Serve it alongside grilled salmon or a roast chicken for a more traditional style meal.
CHECK THE FRIDGE
Make this miso caesar dressing from scratch or use a premade caesar salad. This broccoli pasta salad is also good with a vinaigrette, italian or ranch style dressing.
You could make a caesar dressing the traditional way with eggs and homemade mayonnaise. Check out this recipe from Serious Eats. Want to skip the anchovies? You can swap in for miso paste.