Enjoy a Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad with pasta, tomatoes, burrata, strawberries, bacon, and basil. It’s fast, simple, and crowd-pleasing good!

Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad with basil

Here’s a salad you’ll want to make all summer long, because it’s that good. Keep this Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad in the fridge, because the flavor gets better and better the longer it sits.

Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad

The addition of pesto adds another layer of savory basil flavor to this Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad. The spiral-shaped pasta acts as a magnet for the creamy dressing. Add to that juicy, sweet strawberries that complement the tomato deliciously. And  the crispy bacon adds an additional savoriness.

This salad screams summer! With these additions of strawberries and bacon, this salad is substantial enough to have as a meal by itself (or as a side dish).

Caprese Pasta Salad

The caprese salad is classic for warm weather months, when tomatoes and fresh basil flourish. 

Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad in black bowl

Looking for the best Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad?

I love how fast and easy this Caprese Pasta Salad recipe is to make, as it only takes about 25 minutes! It also makes plenty, so bring it to your next summer gathering.

We love the combination of fresh mozzarella (or burrata), tomatoes, and basil. You may have already tried our Caprese Chicken Casserole. For dinner at night, we’ll often have some form of caprese … something … because it’s so easy and good.

Think caprese sliders, a Caprese Pasta Bake, or grilled polenta if you love this combo as much as we do.

caprese salad with strawberries

Ingredients for Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad

  • Burrata (mozzarella)
  • Mini heirloom tomatoes
  • Strawberries, quartered
  • Crispy bacon
  • Pasta
  • Fresh basil
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad witih burrata

What is the difference between burrata and mozzarella?

Burrata can be used much like mozzarella. While mozzarella has a softer taste and is more elastic in texture, burrata is pillow-like and more flavorful. Due to the cream, burrata is higher in calories, but it’s absolutely one of our favorite cheeses.

How do you make creamy pesto dressing?

Gather these ingredients. We love this sweet and savory dressing so much!

  • Pesto
  • Mayo
  • Dijon
  • Honey
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste

caprese salad with bacon

How do you toss a caprese salad?

  1. In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes and strawberries with the chilled pasta, bacon, and dressing.
  2. Toss to combine, then transfer to a serving platter or bowl. Add the burrata pieces and season the pieces with salt and pepper, then drizzle with olive oil.
  3. Garnish with the remaining tomatoes, strawberries, and bacon, and finish with a generous sprinkle of basil.

fresh Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad

Tips and substitutions:

  • In order to have this salad be well seasoned, it is essential to heavily salt the pasta water before the pasta cooks.
  • Any short pasta (don’t use long varieties like angel hair, fettuccini) with lots of surface area can be used: spirali (what I used) fusilli, rotini, farfalle, gemelli, etc.
  • Make sure the salad is well chilled before serving, for the best result.
  • This salad would be AMAZING with the addition of grilled chicken breast or rotisserie chicken, or even shrimp or steak.

Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad in black serving platter

How do you store a caprese pasta salad?

You have to keep an eye on the burrata cheese in this salad. We recommend that you make and store in the fridge, and serve on the same day. But because it’s dressed in a mayo base, it can keep in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Looking for a few more pasta salad recipes to try?

ENJOY!

Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad with basil
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Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad

The caprese salad is classic for warm weather months, when tomatoes and fresh basil flourish. This salad is inspired by the classic dish, but with a few twists. Instead of mozzarella, burrata is used as a creamy substitute.

Ingredients

  • For the salad:
  • 6 oz burrata, quartered
  • 3 c halved mini heirloom tomatoes, or other larger variety cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 heaping c strawberries, quartered
  • ¾ heaping cup chopped crispy bacon
  • 1 lb pasta, (see note) chilled
  • Basil to garnish, thinly sliced (chiffinade)
  • Olive oil to drizzle
  • Salt and pepper to season
  • Pesto dressing:
  • ½ c pesto
  • 2 Tbsp mayo
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1 ½ Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Cook pasta according to package directions, making sure to heavily salt the water. Chill pasta completely before mixing into the salad.
  • Make the dressing: Combine the pesto, mayonnaise, Dijon, honey, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste. Chill until ready to use.
  • Season the tomatoes and strawberries with salt and pepper and toss. Reserve about 1/2 cup to garnish the dish (optional). Reserve about 1/4 c bacon to garnish as well (optional).
  • In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes and strawberries with the chilled pasta, bacon, and dressing. Toss to combine, then transfer to a serving platter or bowl. Add the burrata pieces and season the pieces with salt and pepper, then drizzle with olive oil. Garnish with the remaining tomatoes, strawberries, and bacon, and finish with a generous sprinkle of basil.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Notes

In order to have this salad be well seasoned, it is essential to heavily salt the pasta water before the pasta cooks.
Additionally, the tomatoes and strawberries, pesto dressing, and burrata need to be seasoned to taste with salt and pepper to get the most flavor out of each delicious ingredient.
Any short pasta (don’t use long varieties like angel hair, fettuccini) with lots of surface area can be used: spirali (what I used) fusilli, rotini, farfalle, gemelli, etc.
Make sure the salad is well chilled before serving for the best result.
This salad would be AMAZING with the addition of grilled chicken breast or rotisserie chicken.
Did you make this recipe?Tag @reluctantentertainer on Instagram and hashtag it #reluctantentertainer!

Creamy Caprese Pasta Salad

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