Tortellini, Chicken and Baby Spinach Pasta Salad

A colorful dish with a roasted red pepper and olive vinaigrette that makes for a colorful dish. This is a salad that can be made ahead and works well for potlucks and buffets.
From Raising the Salad Bar, Catherine Walthers, Lake Isle Press, NY, 2007, p 150..
Total Time55 mins
Course: 45 - 60 Minutes to Table, Main Course - Chicken - Poultry, Pasta, Prepare Ahead - Serve Later, Salads - Main Course
Servings: 5 servings
Author: Catherine Christiano


  • 1 pound fresh or frozen cheese tortellini
  • 6 ounces baby spinach roughly chopped
  • 2 cups diced cooked chicken
  • Parmigiano Reggiano cheese for garnish

Roasted Red Pepper - Olive Vinaigrette

  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup roasted red peppers 1/4 inch dice
  • 3 tablespoons chopped kalamata olives
  • 1 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • salt and pepper


  • Use a 6-quart pot to boil water and cook tortellini according to package instructions. Drain pasta, return to pot and immediately combine with spinach. Cover pot until spinach wilts.
  • In a medium bowl, make vinaigrette by combining vinegar, lemon juice, and garlic. Slowly whisk in oil. Stir in diced roasted red peppers, olives, and parsley; season to taste with salt and pepper. 
  • To pasta and spinach, add chicken and 1/2 cup of dressing with lots of red peppers and olives. Stir well to combine, add additional dressing if necessary. Transfer to serving bowl or platter. Garnish with shaved Parmesan cheese.


Tomatoes can be substituted for the roasted red peppers.