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This recipe for Chicken and Tortellini Salad is sponsored by Farberware. As always, all thoughts and opinions are entirely my own.

A simple Mediterranean-inspired Chicken and Tortellini Salad is the recipe of the season! This crowd-pleasing dish is a great make-ahead dinner, an easy contribution to your next potluck, and a packable solution for picnics or travel.

Overhead shot of a bowl of chicken and tortellini salad with fresh vegetables and herbs

Hey, friends! I’ve got a lot to share with you today, so let’s jump right in — starting with our new favorite tortellini salad. It’s an easy recipe that has officially been approved by my husband AND my 3 boys (even if 2 out of 3 boys picked around the olives)!

When my family of 5 devours a meal without complaint, I consider it the ultimate culinary stamp of approval!A side shot of a bowl of chicken and tortellini salad with tomatoes sitting on a wooden surface

There’s nothing particularly fancy, difficult, or unusual about this recipe. Instead, it’s just a lovely combination of really delicious, fresh ingredients that work perfectly together.

The best part? You can prepare the tortellini salad in advance, pack it up in a container, and enjoy it when you need a quick, satisfying meal. The ingredients “marinate” together and just get better as they sit!A small glass lunch box container filled with a chicken and tortellini salad

Let’s make this easy Chicken and Tortellini Salad:

The total prep time for this dish, from start to finish, is about 30 minutes. To make the process efficient, I like to prep my vegetables while I’m waiting for the pasta and the chicken to cook.

I used my new Neat Nest™ collection of pots and pans to get it all done!

3 pots stacked inside of each other on a wooden surface with a white background

Neat Nest is Farberware’s awesome space-saving solution for storing pots and pans together without surface scratches, dents, and dings.

To prepare the tortellini salad, you’ll want to grab the 6-quart saucepot to boil water and cook your tortellini according to the package instructions. I like to use the largest pot because it gives the pasta plenty of space to cook without sticking together.

A side shot of a large pot filled with water and tortellini pasta

Drain the tortellini and allow it to cool slightly before combining it with the rest of your ingredients.

White colander with cooked tortellini sitting on a wooden surface

While waiting for the pasta water to boil, use the 12-inch skillet to brown your chicken.

I use chicken breast tenderloins because they cook really quickly, but you can use regular boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs if you prefer.

The large 12-inch skillet provides plenty of space for the chicken to cook and become crispy and golden on the outside, instead of overcrowding the pan which will steam the meat.

Chicken frying in a black frying pan with a white background to make a chicken tortellini salad

Allow the browned chicken to rest on a cutting board until it’s cool enough to handle. Then dice it into bite-sized pieces.

Diced chicken breast on a cutting board for Chicken and Tortellini Salad

While the chicken browns in the skillet and your pasta boils in the saucepot, it’s time to focus on the veggies! Take a few minutes to slice and dice these beautiful, fresh ingredients.

Cutting board with fresh vegetables for tortellini pasta salad

Making The Dressing

The dressing, which is really just a basic red wine vinaigrette, comes together in a jar in about 1 minute!

This recipe yields about 1 cup of dressing, but you will not need all of it initially. I like to save the extra dressing for later, since you might want to add a bit more vinaigrette to your tortellini salad if the salad has been sitting in the refrigerator for a day or two.

Bottle of homemade salad dressing for a tortellini salad sitting on a wooden surface

Then it’s just a matter of tossing everything together into one big, flavorful, and filling meal. It’s a pasta dish that satisfies your cravings without weighing you down.

You get the great taste of the cheesy tortellini, the satiating protein of the chicken, and the volume and texture of the fresh veggies.

Overhead image of a bowl of Mediterranean tortellini salad with chopped vegetables at the side

More easy tortellini recipes that you might enjoy:

Overhead shot of a bowl of chicken and tortellini salad with fresh vegetables and herbs

Chicken and Tortellini Salad

4.93 from 42 votes
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Chilling Time 1 hour
Total: 30 minutes
Servings 8 cups
Calories 260.6 kcal
A simple Mediterranean-inspired Chicken and Tortellini Salad is the recipe of the season! This crowd-pleasing dish is a great make-ahead dinner, an easy contribution to your next potluck, and a packable solution for picnics or travel.

Ingredients
  

FOR THE DRESSING:

  • ¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper

FOR THE SALAD:

  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast tenderloins
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 (9 or 10 ounce) package fresh three cheese tortellini pasta
  • 2 cups loosely packed baby spinach
  • 1 cup diced red onion
  • 1 cup halved grape or cherry tomatoes
  • 1 cup diced seedless cucumber
  • 1 (2.25 ounce) can sliced black olives, drained
  • ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
  • ¼ cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves, chopped

Instructions

  • Prepare the Vinaigrette: Combine all of the dressing ingredients in a large jar or measuring cup. Shake (or whisk) until completely combined. Set aside.
  • Prepare the Chicken: Season chicken with salt and pepper on all sides, to taste. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Place chicken in the skillet and allow the chicken to cook on one side, undisturbed, for at least 6-7 minutes. Flip, and cook the chicken for about 6-8 more minutes, or until it is nicely browned on both sides and cooked through.
  • The chicken is cooked through when the internal temperature reaches 180 degrees F, or when juices run clear.
  • When the chicken is cooked through, remove it from the skillet and place it on a cutting board to rest.
  • Prepare the Tortellini: Cook the tortellini in a large saucepot according to package instructions. Drain.
  • While the tortellini cooks, dice the chicken into bite-size pieces.
  • Assemble the Salad: In a large bowl, gently combine diced chicken, cooked tortellini, spinach, onion, tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, and feta cheese. Pour about ¼ cup vinaigrette over the salad (or more, to taste). Reserve remaining vinaigrette.*
  • Cover and refrigerate salad until ready to serve. You can prepare this dish up to 1 day in advance. Stir in the chopped fresh basil just before serving.

Notes

*I like to use the extra vinaigrette to "refresh" the salad if it has been sitting in the refrigerator for a few hours. As it sits, the pasta will absorb some of the dressing, so you may need to add more to the bowl just before serving.
Cooking for a Small Family? Cut all of the ingredients in half. Cooking instructions remain the same.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cupCalories: 260.6kcalCarbohydrates: 18.3gProtein: 19.6gFat: 12.3gSaturated Fat: 2.4gCholesterol: 46.8mgSodium: 331.2mgFiber: 2.4gSugar: 1g
Keyword: chicken pasta salad, pasta salad
Course: Lunch/Dinner
Cuisine: Italian
Author: Blair Lonergan
blair

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

Read More

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    What great timing! I am hosting a group of gals from my church as we meet to brainstorm ideas for the packing of our Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes. I had decided to serve a few different kinds of salads including a green salad, a fruit salad and one more which was yet to be determined. This Chicken Tortellini salad will round out the menu beautifully!
    (And for anyone who is not familiar with Operation Christmas Child Shoebox program, check out the great information on the Samaritan’s Purse website.) Once you pack a shoebox for a child who has never received a gift or has NOTHING to call his own, I guarantee, you will be hooked!

    1. That’s wonderful, Linda! We participate in the Operation Christmas Child Shoebox program each year through the church, and it’s really a great service! 🙂

  2. Not only are your recipes easy to follow and delicious, the photographs
    are some of the nicest I have seen. They are colorful and appetizing every time.

  3. 5 stars
    My grandson is making the tortellini salad for dinner on his nite to cook. He loves the simple salad idea.tThanks for giving us a new recipie.to enjoy together..

  4. I also live in Virginia. It’s a beautiful state. I am crazy about pasta salad. I can’t wait to try your recipe! It’s on the menu for this week. Love the Faberware pots and pans too! High quality and the stackable feature is ingenious!

  5. I am loving the dump and bake meals! They’re really helping me get meals together at a time when I am struggling to do just that.

  6. 5 stars
    Was looking for another way to cook pasta with chicken — this is a really good one. I substituted angel hair for the tortellini (grandchild likes that best). Followed the rest of the recipe faithfully. FANTASTIC. Thanks so much for sharing.

    1. That’s great, Paula! I’m so glad that you enjoyed the recipe, and I’m glad to know that the angel hair pasta works well too!

  7. I too have been using a set of Faberware for many years. It does hold up and I do like the way these pans stack so neatly together. Thanks for the giveaway.

  8. Thanks for the giveaway! I love reading your week in meals! With 3 kids playing ball (in 2 different leagues!) as well, I love seeing the quick dinners. When the season first started, I couldn’t keep up with practices, games, & supper! I have much respect for you cause you seem so put together!!! Thanks again!!!

    1. Hi, Kristi! I can assure you — I am NOT so put together! I often feel like I’m running around like a chicken with my head cut off. I try to prioritize getting a meal in the kids’ bodies each night, but sometimes that looks like fish sticks, a sandwich, frozen pizza, or a bowl of cereal when I don’t have the time or energy for anything else. I think the key is to just give yourself some grace. I do my best, but I also don’t set expectations that overwhelm me or make me feel guilty when I can’t fulfill them. My kids are healthy and happy — even when they eat cereal for dinner on occasion — and that’s all that really matters.

      I’m glad that you find the meal ideas helpful (that’s definitely my goal), but I also hope that you cut yourself some slack and just do the best that you can! 🙂 Thanks for reading the blog!

  9. 5 stars
    Hi,
    Thanks for the yummy sounding/looking recipe. I look forward to trying it tomorrow. I am so impressed & in awe of your organizational skills in such a busy, full life. How do you do it all????? You provide an awesome service to all of us.
    Thanks,
    Brenda

  10. 5 stars
    Tortellini salads are always the favorite at home and potlucks. Thank you for a new delicious recipe. Also the chance to win new
    Farberware is much appreciated!

  11. 5 stars
    What a great summer meal! It would also be a good choice for a potluck dish. I can’t wait to try it!

  12. Going to be making this on Saturday for a cookout my family is going to. Can’t wait to try it!

  13. This salad looks yummy, Blair! We have a busy weekend planned with the Farmers Market and some gardening with the grandbaby, and I’m planning to try it out then! Have a great week!

  14. 5 stars
    Easy, light, and delicious!!! My husband wanted me to make it again the next night. I added a little Italian seasoning to the vinaigrette and liked the addition. I also used more feta because we love feta. Also prefer green olives. I’ve shared this recipe with friends and family. I might try rotisserie chicken next time as a shortcut. Thanks!!!

    1. Sounds perfect! Thank you so much, Mary Beth! 🙂 And yes — love the rotisserie chicken shortcut!