Cheese Tortellini Pasta Salad For Your Next Summer Picnic

When you're feeding a big group it can be tough to get all the timing with food right. It's always nice to have something that you can quickly prepare ahead of time and pull out of the fridge when you need it. This cheese tortellini summer salad is just that. It's so easy to make and is full of summer flavors. Citrus, zucchini and garden herbs keep this salad fresh and light. Say goodbye to the standard pasta salad of yester-year and try something different!

Serve it hot or cold. Your choice.

Cheese Tortellini Summer Salad

close up of tortellini pasta in a red bowl


  • 1 large package of cheese tortellini
  • 1 tbsp of fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp of fresh lemon zest
  • 3 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic minced or pressed
  • 2 small zucchinis
  • 1 cup of green peas
  • 1/2 cup fresh green herbs (we like Italian parsley and basil)
  • salt & pepper


Cook the cheese tortellini (in a large saucepan on your stove-top) as per the instructions on the package. This is generally 8 minutes in salted, boiling water.

While the pasta is cooking use a peeler to create zucchini strips.

small green zucchini being peeled into strips over a cutting board

Cut your fresh herbs and set them aside. If you're using frozen peas measure out a cup and run cold water over them to help them thaw. Strain the pasta and leave a few tablespoons of the water so that the tortellini doesn't dry out and stick together.

Squeeze the fresh lemon juice over the pasta and use a microplane to grate in the lemon zest.

fresh lemon juice and zucchini being added to cooked cheese tortellini

Add the olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Stir the pasta well. Add the thawed peas, herbs and zucchini strips.

fresh lemon juice and zucchini being added to cooked cheese tortellini
Green herbs and peas being added to pasta salad

Mix this together and scoop it into a serving bowl. You can save any leftovers and reheat them as a side dish for about a week.

pasta salad being stirred to combine ingredients