Create a nutritious lunch or dinner option by preparing a delightful Arugula and Peach Pasta Salad. This refreshing dish offers a fusion of citrus and spices, bringing together the flavor of arugula (also known as rocket), the sweetness of peaches, and perfectly cooked pasta.
With its vibrant colors and zesty flavors, this salad recipe is a feast for both the eyes and the taste buds. Enjoy a bowl (or two) of this vegan peach pasta salad with arugula and cherry tomatoes.
Ingredients you’ll need
- Cavatappi pasta
- Avocado oil
- Kosher salt
- Garlic powder
- Sweet paprika
- Donut peaches
- Fresh dill
- Cherry or grape tomatoes
- Hemp seed hearts
- Agave nectar
- Vegan mayo
- Olive oil
- White wine vinegar
- Stone ground mustard
- Dijon mustard
Can you use other pasta besides Cavatappi?
Feel free to choose your preferred pasta variety for this recipe. If Cavatappi is not available, you can opt for other small pasta shapes such as penne, elbow, fusilli, or farfalle. To make it gluten-free, you can substitute Cavatappi with alternatives like chickpea pasta, brown rice pasta, cauliflower pasta, or cassava pasta.
Tips for picking peaches
Typically, peaches are in season during the summer months. The exact timing can vary depending on the specific variety and the region where they are grown. In general, peaches are at their peak from May to September in many parts of the world. Check out your local farmers’ markets and grocery stores to find out when peaches are in season in your area. In the meantime, here are a few tips to pick out the most delicious peaches.
- Color: Look for vibrant, rich hues of yellow, orange, or red. Avoid green undertones.
- Firmness: Gently squeeze the peach – it should yield slightly without being too firm or mushy.
- Aroma: Sniff near the stem for a sweet and fragrant scent, indicating ripeness.
- Texture: Feel for a smooth and velvety skin, avoiding bruises, blemishes, or excessive wrinkles.
- Ripening: Select fully ripe peaches for immediate consumption. For later use, choose slightly firmer ones to ripen at room temperature, potentially in a paper bag for quicker results.
How to make peach pasta salad
Firstly, cook the pasta in salted water until al dente. Then, drain and rinse. Set aside.
Next, in a pan over medium heat, add chickpeas, avocado oil, kosher salt, pepper, garlic powder, and sweet paprika. Stir and cook for 3 to 4 minutes until heated, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, whisk together all Creamy Agave-Mustard Dressing ingredients in a bowl: agave nectar, vegan mayo, olive oil, white wine vinegar, stone ground mustard, dijon mustard, kosher salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
Moving on, in a large serving bowl or plate, combine arugula, cooked pasta, and juice of half a lemon. Give it a toss to combine.
Now, it’s time to top the salad with donut peaches, shallot, fresh dill, cherry or grape tomatoes, avocado, and hemp seed hearts. Add half of the dressing and gently toss everything together.
To add some crunch, sprinkle the chickpeas over the salad. Serve with the remaining dressing and lemon wedges on the side.
Why we love this recipe creator
We love Janet’s recipes because she specializes in quick plant-based meals and is the author of cookbook 15-Minute Vegan Meals where you’ll find comforting dishes that are healthier than traditional recipes, feeds the whole family, and are simple to make.
- 1/3 lb cavatappi pasta
- 15 oz chickpeas drained and rinsed
- 1 tsp avocado oil
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp sweet paprika
- 4 cups arugula
- 1 lemon juiced
- 1 1/2 donut peaches pit removed and thinly sliced
- 3 tbsp shallots finely chopped
- 2 tbsp dill finely chopped
- 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes halved
- 1 avocado diced
- 1 tbsp hemp seed hearts
Creamy Agave-Mustard Dressing
- 2 tbsp agave nectar plus 1 tsp
- 3 tbsp vegan mayo
- 1 tbsp olive oil plus 2 tsp
- 2 tbsp white wine vinegar plus 1 tsp
- 1 1/2 tsp stone ground mustard
- 1 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
- 3/4 tsp kosher salt
- 3/4 tsp pepper
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- Cook the pasta in salted water until al dente, then drain and rinse. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, place a pan on medium heat. Add the 15 oz. chickpeas, 1 tsp. avocado oil, ¼ tsp. kosher salt, ¼ tsp. pepper, ¼ tsp. garlic powder, and ½ tsp. sweet paprika. Stir, cook for 3 to 4 min until heated, stirring occasionally.
- Whisk together all Creamy Agave-Mustard Dressing ingredients in a bowl (2 tbsp. + 1 tsp. agave nectar, 3 tbsp. vegan mayo, 1 tbsp. + 2 tsp. olive oil, 2 tbsp. + 1 tsp. white wine vinegar, 1 ½ tsp. stone ground mustard, 1 ½ tsp. dijon mustard, ¾ tsp. kosher salt, ¾ tsp. pepper, ¼ tsp. garlic powder).
- Add the 4 cups arugula, cooked pasta, and juice of ½ the lemon to a large serving bowl or plate, and toss. Cut the remaining lemon into wedges for serving. Top the salad with the 1 ½ donut peaches, 3 tbsp. shallot, 2 tbsp. fresh dill, 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, 1 avocado, and 1 tbsp. hemp seed hearts, and about half of the dressing, and gently toss. Top with the chickpeas, and serve with remaining dressing and lemon wedges on the side.
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