Ladybug Pasta Salad

pasta salad
Zac Williams
  • Yield: 4-6 servings


2cups mini penne
1 (8-ounce) container cherry or grape tomatoes
1 (2.25-ounce) can sliced black olives, drained
3/4cup mini pepperoni
3/4 to 1 cup cheesy dressing (Bernstein's Cheese Fantastico salad dressing)
2 whole olives, cut in half


  1. Cook the pasta according to package directions; drain and rinse with cold water and then let cool completely.
  2. Wash the tomatoes and then set 3 of the biggest and most oblong-shaped tomatoes aside. Cut the rest in half or quarters.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the pasta and the cut tomatoes. Add the drained sliced olives, keeping 2 or 3 slices out with the reserved tomatoes. Stir in the mini pepperoni. Toss with the dressing and refrigerate until ready to serve.
  4. To make the little ladybugs for your garnish, slide a toothpick through the center of each reserved tomato lengthwise and then stick an olive half on one end to make the ladybug’s head. Cut the reserved olive slices into little pieces to make the ladybug’s “spots” and then place on the tomato. Place ladybugs on salad before serving.

Recipe from Noodlemania! 50 Playful Pasta Recipes by Melissa Barlow (Quirk Books, 2013)