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Fresh Tomato and Basil Summer Pasta Salad

(recipe, Marissa Lippert)

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For more protein in this salad, toss in some grilled chicken breast or chickpeas.


  1. 1 15.0 oz. box regular or whole-wheat penne pasta (substitute bow-tie pasta if desired)
  2. 6 to 8 ripe plum, vine-ripened, or heirloom tomatoes, diced
  3. 1 cup fresh basil leaves, rinsed, torn in small pieces
  4. ¼ cup balsamic vinegar (enough to evenly coat pasta)
  5. ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  6. Salt
  7. Freshly ground black pepper
  8. ¾ to 1 cup fresh shredded pecorino romano cheese


  1. Boil water for pasta. Once the water boils, cook the pasta 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente. Once the pasta is cooked, drain it, rinse it, and allow it to cool.
  2. Combine the pasta, tomatoes, basil, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar in a large bowl; mix thoroughly to evenly distribute. Season with salt and pepper to taste, top with pecorino romano, and mix lightly again. Serve at room temperature or chilled.


Read more about summertime produce in Marissa Lippert's "Summer produce, rich in nutrients."