Chicken Broccoli Pasta Salad
Chicken broccoli pasta salad is the perfect compliment to any cookout! It combines tender shredded chicken, crunchy broccoli, crisp red onions, perfectly cooked pasta and creamy dressing to make a simple, yet totally irresistible pasta salad!
Chicken Broccoli Pasta Salad
Don’t you just love a good pasta salad? I love how versatile pasta salads are and how each family has their own personal favorite way to make pasta salad. Their specialty, if you will. This chicken broccoli pasta salad happened to be my great grandma’s specialty. My great grandma gave this recipe to my grandma and I was thrilled when she gave it to me.
This chicken broccoli pasta salad is truly delicious. And extremely simple to make, which is what I love most about it. Most of the ingredients it calls for I have in my refrigerator, so if I’m ever invited to a party, I can whip it up really quick and know it will be amazing. The combination of crunchy broccoli, crisp red onions, tender pasta and creamy dressing is to die for. Once you add the chicken to it, it takes it to a whole other level. It makes a great lunch, too, because it packs broccoli, chicken and pasta into one. Once you take this to a party, all your friends will be asking you to make it all the time!
How to make Chicken Broccoli Pasta Salad
Chicken: To make it as easy as possible, I just use rotisserie chicken. You can always boil and shred chicken breasts if you have them. Also, you can leave the chicken out to make it a little more budget friendly. Canned tuna is also a great replacement for chicken.
Pasta: You can use any kind/type of pasta you’d like. I like to use penne because the dressing gets inside the pasta and makes it extra yummy.
Dressing: You can substitute low-fat options for the sour cream and mayonnaise. I prefer to use full fat for both because it makes the dressing extra creamy but the low-fat options taste great also.
Other vegetable add-ins: This pasta salad tastes great with other veggies added in as well as the broccoli. You can use less broccoli and add in peapods or cauliflower. I’ve added in cucumbers before and found it refreshing. This pasta salad is so versatile that pretty much any kind of vegetable would taste awesome.
Refrigeration: This pasta salad tastes best when refrigerated for a couple hours before serving. My husband and I think it tastes best the next day when all the flavors can mingle together. Making the salad in the morning for an afternoon party would be fantastic.
- 2 cups cooked and shredded chicken; rotisserie chicken works well.
- 1 pound broccoli florets; rinsed and dried, or blanched, see notes
- 8 ounces pasta; cooked according to package directions
- 1 small red onion, finely diced
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon lemon pepper seasoning
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 tsp dried dill
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- Stir together cooked chicken, broccoli florets, cooked pasta and red onion in a large bowl.
- In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients under “dressing” and mix well.
- Pour the dressing over the chicken/broccoli/pasta/onion mixture and stir all the ingredients together until well combined.
- Refrigerate for a few hours before serving.
I usually blanch my broccoli for a few minutes to get the vibrant green color and to soften the broccoli a little. This it totally optional. To blanch the broccoli simple place all the broccoli florets into a large pot of boiling water. Let them hang out in the pot for 2-3 minutes. Drain, and rinse the broccoli until cold. Pat dry with a paper towel.