Pasta, romaine lettuce, homemade croutons, chopped vegetables, and Den Dressing come together to create this bold and flavorful Radiatori Salad recipe. It’s perfect for picnics, parties, and so much more!
What do you get when traditional salad meets pasta salad? You get this Radiatori Salad! Equal parts lettuce and pasta (with some homemade croutons thrown in for good measure) come together to create a unique and delicious summer salad recipe.
This Radiatori Salad is a dish I enjoyed many years ago. I often talk about a cafe in my hometown where I worked when I was a teen. I’ve been thinking back to some of my favorite recipes from those days and this was one of them. I had forgotten about it for quite some time and when my mom reminded me about it, I knew I had to make it and share it with you!
I haven’t had it in years and it tastes as good today as it did twenty-plus years ago.
What is Radiatori Salad?
As I mentioned above, this is a unique salad. While it has pasta in it, it’s not really a pasta salad. On the other hand, because it has a fair amount of pasta in it, it’s not quite a traditional salad either! After I decided to make and share this recipe, I did a quick Google and Pinterest search and couldn’t really find anything similar. I’m honestly not really sure where or how this recipe was born.
Another thing that makes this salad unique is the dressing. It’s called Den Dressing. (You can get the full recipe and story behind this dressing HERE.) The original DEN Dressing was born out of Erie, PA. It’s like a robust version of French dressing. It’s so good!
Let’s get into the details of this Radiatori Salad recipe.
Here’s what you’ll need to make this Radiatori Salad.
- radiatori pasta – I love pasta that has lots of nooks and crannies as it really holds in the flavor. Radiatori pasta is hard to find. (I purchased mine HERE.) Fusilli makes a good substitute.
- romaine lettuce – Romaine adds body, flavor, and crunch.
- tomatoes – Any type of tomato will work. I used the basic standard tomato, but use what you have/love.
- green pepper – This adds another layer of flavor and crunch.
- homemade croutons – Homemade is the way to go. You can get my super simple recipe HERE.
- Den Dressing – As I mentioned above, you can find my recipe HERE. It’s heavy on ingredients but really simple to make. You can also purchase DEN Dressing HERE.
How to Make Radiatori Salad:
The process is really simple. I’ll walk you through the steps here. I’ve also provided a detailed ingredients list and instructions in the printable recipe card below.
- Begin by cooking the pasta according to the package directions for al dente. Rinse with cold water and allow to cool.
- Add the pasta to a large bowl along with the tomatoes, green pepper, romaine lettuce, and croutons.
- Drizzle with Den Dressing.
- Toss to combine. Serve immediately.
And with that, your Radiatori Salad is ready for serving. Doesn’t that Den Dressing give this salad a gorgeous hue? In addition, it adds tons of delicious flavor. In fact, my mouth is watering as I’m writing this post. Yum!
You can prepare this salad in advance. Add all the ingredients to a bowl except for the croutons and dressing. Before serving, add the croutons and dressing, then toss to combine.
Can’t find radiatori pasta? Don’t fret! Use fusilli pasta instead.
If you’re looking for a delicious and easy new side salad recipe, I highly recommend trying this Radiatori Salad. The combination of flavors and textures makes this a winning salad recipe.
If you make it, I would love to know what you think! Be sure to head back to this post and leave a review in the comment section below.
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- 1 lb radiatori pasta
- 2 heads romaine lettuce - roughly chopped
- 2 cups chopped tomatoes
- 1 green pepper - cored, deseeded, and chopped
- 4 cups homemade croutons
- 2 cups Den Dressing
- Being by cooking the pasta according to the package directions for al dente. Rinse with cold water and allow to cool.
- Add the pasta to a large bowl along with the tomatoes, green pepper, romaine lettuce, and croutons. Drizzle with Den Dressing.
- Toss to combine. Serve immediately.