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Easy to make pasta salad with fresh, flavourful and zesty ingredients. The quick-fix meal when you’re in a pinch and have to resort to pantry ingredients and a bunch of random jars your not sure what to make use of in the fridge.

Using mostly pantry staples to make the easiest pasta salad with very little effort for big flavours. When times are tough.. this recipe makes plenty for a weeks worth of lunches, it’s easy to make ahead, can feed a crowd, and it keeps well.

One of the main reasons this salad is so flavourful is the juices and oils the ingredients are kept in. You’ll notice a difference in taste if you eat it right away compared to once it’s been chilling and stored the next day. The flavours become a little bit more intense because they have had time to infuse together and soak into the pasta.

Even though this is a pasta salad, it doesn’t at all feel like your eating something heavy that’s high in calories which is normally the result of a more classic pasta salad with a creamy mayo-based dressing. It’s dressed using store bought pesto (we like the Costco kind), extra olive oil and oils from the jars.

Don’t stress if you’re missing some of the ingredients. Generally almost anything can be added to a pasta salad and taste good. Easy substitutes are:
Basil: other herbs like parsley will do. If you have mint reduce the amount to half.
Hot banana peppers: other pickled peppers, pickled asparagus or eggplant.
Cucumber: peppers, carrots, celery
Bocconcini: fresh mozzarella, shaved parmesan, feta
Arugula: spinach, or spring mix (completely optional and can be left out)
Nuts: we didn’t add any but if you want more healthy fats and protein go for it!

We hope you enjoy this recipe. Be sure to tag us @thecommunalfeast and #thecommunalfeast we would love to hear from you.

antipasto pasta salad

Full of pantry staples, this is an easy low maintenance pasta salad with a light pesto vinaigrette.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Total Time25 minutes
Course: Salads
Servings: 6
Author: the communal feast


  • 1 pound small pasta
  • 1 jar marinated artichoke hearts drained
  • 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil chopped
  • 1/2 cup hot banana peppers roughly chopped
  • 2 cups mini bocconcini drained (sub mozzarella)
  • 1/2 cup black olives sliced
  • 1/4 cup red onion diced
  • 1 cup arugula
  • 1 cup cucumber chopped
  • 1 lemon zested
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves chopped
  • For the dressing
  • 2 TBS pesto store bought or homemade
  • 1 TBS sun-dried tomato oil
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook pasta al dente according to package directions. Drain and rinse under cold water and add to a large bowl.
  • To make the dressing combine all the ingredients into a jar or container and shake to combine. Set aside.
  • To assemble the salad: Combine remaining ingredients with the cooked pasta tossing to evenly distribute. Pour the salad dressing over top and stir to evenly coat. Serve immediately or let cool in the refrigerator.

Antipasto pasta salad


April 1, 2020


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