Southwest Layered Pasta Salad

Fran Miller


After the popularity of my Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad (Thank you, JAP chefs!), I thought I'd develop another salad dish, this time with a Southwestern tang.

As always, choose the ingredients your family loves and realize that the amounts are always your choice. I'm just going to list what I do and give you some more options. Please share your variations! =^..^=


★★★★★ 1 vote

Depends on the amounts you use
15 Min
15 Min
No-Cook or Other


Add to Grocery List

  • some
    pasta; cooked, rinsed in cool water, drained (wagon wheel pasta is a nice touch) 1/2 pound of uncooked pasta makes enough for 4-6 servings
  • some
    salad dressing (ranch or chipotle ranch are my favorites)
  • some
    shredded or chopped lettuce
  • some
    tomato chunks
  • some
    sliced black olives
  • some
    chopped onion
  • some
    chopped peppers (green, jalapeno, etc...)
  • some
    cooked corn, drained & cooled
  • some
    black beans; cooked, rinsed in cool water, & drained
  • some
    shredded or small chunks of cheese (pepper jack, colby jack, cheddar, etc...)
  • some
    crumbled fritos

  • some
    chicken strips or chunks, seasoned with southwestern spices
  • some
  • some
    sour cream
  • some
    crumbled bacon or bacon bits
  • some
    ranch-flavored croutons, instead of crumbled fritos

How to Make Southwest Layered Pasta Salad


  1. While pasta is cooking, prepare your chopped vegetables. If using canned corn or black beans, just rinse & drain well. Cover & refrigerate until ready to assemble the salad.
  2. Mix the drained & cooled pasta with some of the salad dressing. Cover and refrigerate if you are not ready to eat.
  3. When it's time for dinner, layer the pasta, then the vegetables, in a large pasta bowl or individual salad plates.
  4. Top with crumbled Fritos and shredded cheese.
  5. Decisions, decisions... Will you top with more salad dressing or possibly salsa & sour cream?
  6. Whatever you decide, enjoy!

Printable Recipe Card

About Southwest Layered Pasta Salad

Main Ingredient: Pasta
Regional Style: Southwestern
Dietary Needs: Vegetarian
Other Tag: Quick & Easy

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