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If your little ones (or big ones) are as picky of eaters as my son, I have the perfect recipe for you – this Antipasto Pasta Salad with Salami and Bologna. The best part about this recipe is that it’s super versatile and you can use ingredients that your family likes. For this recipe I used:
- Eckrich Genoa Salami – I like using this salami as it is made with authentic spices;
- Eckrich Original Bologna – this one is made with the highest quality of ingredients;
- Colorful Rotini Pasta – doesn’t this just look amazing?;
- Mozzarella Cheese – a kids’ crowd pleaser;
- Cherry Tomatoes – they are the sweetest of them all;
- Roasted Red Peppers – these just scream “Italian”;
- Green Olives – my personal favorite olive (I know kids who are pop these olives like candy! Wish it was mine);
- Marinated Artichoke Hearts – I’ll take artichokes in any form!;
- Basil – so fresh & fragrant – add them right before serving;
- Apple Cider Vinegar, Maple Syrup and Extra Virgin Olive Oil for the dressing – perfect sweet dressing with the apple undertone that the kids will love.
As I mentioned above this Antipasto Pasta Salad can be alter to your liking. Here are a few suggestions:
- Eckrich Honey Cured Ham, instead of salami;
- Eckrich Pickle & Pimento Loaf, instead of bologna;
- Farfalle Pasta or Tortellini, instead of Rotini;
- Provolone or Cheddar Cheese, instead of mozzarella;
- Little colorful heirloom tomatoes, instead of cherry tomatoes;
- Fresh bell peppers (maybe orange one), instead of roasted tomatoes;
- Kalamata or black olives, instead of green olives;
- Pickles, instead of artichokes;
- Balsamic vinegar, instead of Apple Cider vinegar.
You may wonder why I used green olives and artichokes in this Antipasto Pasta Salad recipe as the little ones may not be too fond of them. I actually wanted to show you how you can use this recipe to fit your whole family. I would add ingredients gradually:
- My son wouldn’t touch any green or marinated vegetables – so for him I would just stop after I added salami, bologna, pasta, cheese, tomatoes and put it into a separate container;
- Then for my husband I would add artichokes as he’s really addicted to them, and combine in a separate container;
- Finally, I’d add olives to the base for me. So as you can see, with a few minor tweaks the whole family can be satisfied. 🙂
Above I’d suggested both ham and pimento loaf as substitutes, but Eckrich Deli Meats offers a full line of delicious meats, so I’m certain you can find whatever suits you. And if you want to use it in this recipe buying at Walmart Deli Counter is fantastic. You can ask their deli counter worker to cut the meat however you please – & in the same visit you can stock up on whatever else your house needs. I really wanted to have cubed pieces of salami and bologna for this recipe, so I ask the deli counter worker to cut 1/2 inch thick slices for me. I also ask him to thin slice both meats for me as well. I did so because I really wanted to add a variety of textures to this salad, and I also wanted to have some coldcuts for sandwiches. I must admit, I have a special relationship with bologna – I feel like every great love story starts that way. When I was growing up in Poland we didn’t have a lot of meats to choose from for our dinners. My mom would often buy our bologna rations in 1/2 inch thick slices. She would then breaded them, and then fry them up like chicken cutlets. This is a familiar taste from my childhood & that’s why I wanted to use it in this recipe. I wonder if anyone else had bologna fried cutlets growing up?
My family is always budget conscious, & so I also love how affordable Eckrich Deli Meats are. I make sandwiches for my husband’s lunches almost every day. So I love to have a lot of deli meats handy, that way he can enjoy a delicious and flavorful lunch any day of the week. This week though I am serving him this delicious Antipasto Pasta Salad with Salami and Bologna and he’s thrilled. I forgot to mention that this salad is super easy to make. You can make a huge batch on a Sunday evening, have it ready in a separate container for each family member, so then in the morning they can just grab and go. No stress whatsoever! One more important note about this recipe: I didn’t use any vegetables that would wilt while in the fridge. Whole cherry tomatoes are perfect because they won’t change their texture while dressed. If you want you can add some other vegetables right before eating. I sprinkled it with basil because I love its fragrance. This can be added in the morning or right before eating. Below you can find a printable recipe, and beneath a step-by-step tutorial.
- 12 oz pasta Rotini
- 0.25 lbs Eckrich Genoa Salami cubed
- 0.25 lbs Eckrich Original Bologna cubed
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese cubed
- 1/2 cup green olives
- 1 cup roasted peppers cut in slices
- 1/2 cup artichoke hearts marinated
- 1 tbsp basil chopped
For the dressing
- 1/2 cup olive oil marinated
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Maple Syrup
- salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Cook pasta according to instructions. Once cooked, rinse with cold water;
- Cut up salami and bologna into small cubes;
- Cut up mozzarella into small cubes;
- If your roasted pepper isn't pre-cut, cut in into small strips;
- Add pasta, salami, bologna, mozzarella, roasted peppers, artichokes and olives into the bowl;
- Place all dressing ingredients into the mason jar and shake well. Pour it over the pasta bowl;
- Mix everything well together. Check for seasoning & sprinkle with basil right before serving.
- You can use any pasta shape you like
- You may use Eckrich Honey Cured Ham and Eckrich Pickle & Pimento Loaf instead of Salami and Bologna
- You can skip the olives or substitute a different kind
- You can skip the artichokes and add pickles instead
- You can top with green veggies right before serving
Step-by-step tutorial for this Antipasto Pasta Salad with Salami and Bologna:
- Boil the pasta according to instructions;
- Rinse the pasta with cold water (this step is important because you don’t want to have extra starch on the pasta);
- Prepare and cut up salami and bologna into small cubes;
- Cut up mozzarella cheese and if your peppers aren’t pre-cut, cut them into thin slices;
- Mix up the dressing ingredients & season with salt and pepper;
- Add everything into a bowl;
- Mix salad ingredients, and add dressing;
- And just like that you’re ready to serve, or to put into the individual containers for easy lunches;
- Add basil right before serving, AND consume with pleasure!
With a little planning, and the perfect ingredients on hand, preparing a meal when school is back in session can be a breeze. For more back-to-school recipe inspiration and a chance to enter the #EckrichFlavor sweepstakes click here.