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Paleo Pasta Salad with Avocado Oil Vinaigrette

Paleo Pasta Salad with Avocado Oil Vinaigrette

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This is not your ordinary pasta salad. Paleo-friendly and incredibly healthy, it's a great salad to choose if you're looking for something easy and fresh.

Click here to see more recipes on Cindy's Table.


  • 1/2 Teaspoon dry mustard
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 Teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 Teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 Teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 Teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 Cup avocado oil
  • 1 medium spaghetti squash
  • 1 Teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 small can sliced black olives, drained
  • 1 ripe avocado, peeled, seeded and sliced
  • 4 Ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/4 Cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cooked chicken breast, from a rotisserie chicken

Salad Dressing And Vinaigrettes

A great way to make an ordinary salad stand out is to use a vinaigrette that brings depth and zing. We often fall into the trap of making the same few types of vinaigrette over and over again and might become tempted by the abundance of choices offered in grocery stores. We must make it a habit though to make our own dressings and vinaigrettes because the commercial ones often feature nasty ingredients like some unwanted vegetable oil or sweetener.

Eating our salads with dressing, lots of it, is not only tasty, but is also a very good idea nutritionally. First of all, we already know that fat is good for us and that obtaining up to 75% of our calories as fat is a good idea. The other part of this is that most vitamins are fat soluble, which means that the vitamins in the lovely vegetables will be much better absorbed in the presence of a generous quantity of fat.

Vinaigrettes and dressings don’t have to be boring or repetitive. Instead of the habitual extra virgin olive oil, you can use avocado oil, homemade Paleo mayonnaise, macadamia oil or even homemade yogurt. As for the acid part used in most oil based vinaigrettes, you have a multitude of choices: lemon juice, lime juice, apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar, rice vinegar, wine vinegar and tomato juice. It all becomes even more interesting with the addition of herbs, spices and flavorings. Ginger, garlic, basil, oregano, dill, black pepper, mint and mustard are all perfect examples.

If you indulge in a bit of dairy in your diet, crumbled feta and Parmesan are super-star cheeses for vinaigrettes that will get rave reviews from everybody who tastes them.

Paleo Pasta Salad with Avocado Oil Vinaigrette


  • 1 medium spaghetti squash
  • 4 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, stemmed and julienne-sliced
  • 1 small can sliced black olives, drained
  • 1 breast chicken, from rotisserie
  • 1 ripe, avocado, peeled, seeded and sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • Avocado Oil Vinaigrette Ingredients
  • 1/4 cup avocado oil
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce


  1. Prepare Avocado Oil Vinaigrette up to 24 hours before serving refrigerate.
  2. Halve squash lengthwise scoop out seeds. Place halves cut-side down in a large saucepan add water to a depth of 2 inches. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat simmer squash 20 minutes.
  3. Drain and cool squash. With a fork, pull off spaghetti-like stands of the squash and place in a large salad bowl.
  4. Add remainder of ingredients and toss with the spaghetti squash
  5. Top with vinaigrette before serving

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Avocado Oil Pasta with Lemon and Garlic

After a long month of heavy cooking and heavy eating, the last thing you want to think about is a complicated meal. Instead, let’s make this New Year more about simple, ultra satisfying meals. You know what I’m talking about. The meals that come together quickly and with only a few ingredients and taste as if prepared by the best chef in a five star restaurant.

This recipe is all of those things. The best ingredients are necessary, and that starts with avocado oil. The rich, fragrant taste pairs nicely with the garlic and lemon, the red pepper flakes give it a kick, and the fresh parsley gives it a bright flavor that rounds it all out. Oh, and don’t forget plenty of fresh black pepper.

You can add whatever you like to this dish customize it, but first try it as is — you will undoubtedly be surprised at how good it is. If you choose to adjust it, shrimp will add some quick cooking protein, and some fresh grated Parmesan is a nice touch. If you like more heat, add a few more red pepper flakes or less if spicy isn’t your thing (although side note: make sure they are fresh. I realized I needed a replacement when the little plastic container from my local pizza joint smelled spicy and pungent, and mine smelled, well, like nothing.)

I used whole-wheat angel hair here only because it felt more nutritious after weeks of non-stop indulgence, but plain old white pasta will work nicely. Add some crusty bread and a glass of wine, and you’ve got an elegant meal that’s perfect way to get your new year on track.


1 pound spaghetti noodles

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1 bunch flat leaf parsley, chopped

Aztec Sea Salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste


Cook the pasta according to the package directions and drain, reserving about 1/2 cup of the cooking water.

Heat a deep skillet over medium heat and add the oil and garlic. Cook for about a minute and add the cooked pasta. Stir until the pasta is well coated with the oil and add the remaining ingredients, including the reserved cooking water. Stir well, turn off heat, and serve.

Download this recipe in easy to print PDF format: Avocado Oil Pasta with Lemon and Garlic

Paleo Strawberry Avocado Salad

An easy Paleo Strawberry Avocado Salad recipe that is the perfect kickoff to the warmer months! This salad comes baring fresh fruit like strawberries, pineapple and avocado, and the creamy strawberry & lime vinaigrette could not be more refreshing!


My favorite part about making a salad is including plenty of fresh fruit in the recipe. This is especially true for this particular Paleo Strawberry Avocado Salad. The farmhouse bacon chopped salad kit itself includes many delicious ingredients like:

  • Green cabbage
  • Kale
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Carrots
  • Red cabbage
  • Roasted sunflower seeds
  • Green onions
  • Bacon

After adding the fresh strawberries, pineapple and avocado, this salad is absolute perfection. I&rsquove topped it off with more fresh herbs, green onions and black sesame seeds. Get ready to be blown away! Oh, and let&rsquos not forget about the vibrant pink dressing&hellip I&rsquoll fill you in on that below.

This salad and accompanying dressing just scream &ldquosummer!&rdquo

The flavor combination in the dressing may start making an appearance a lot more frequently on my salad creations.

Be sure to keep your eyes peeled.


The best part about making this salad is that it won&rsquot take you long&hellip at all. In fact, 10 minutes is being generous.

That&rsquos the beauty of using this pre-made Farmhouse Bacon Chopped Salad kit.

The easiest way to get your hands on it is to use the store locator here.

Taylor Farms is available at most major grocery stores all over the country. Just after receiving these salad kits in the mail, I stumbled across an entire array of their product line at my local Sprouts and Baron&rsquos markets. Woo hoo!

5. Healthy Quinoa Salad with a Speedy Avocado Oil Vinaigrette

This Healthy Quinoa Salad is packed with colorful vegetables and tossed in an easy peasy whisk-and-pour Mediterranean dressing featuring avocado oil and red wine vinegar. I cannot WAIT for y’all to try this superfood salad!

23 Mouthwatering Paleo Salad Dressing Recipes

Salads make up a pretty regular part of the Paleo diet plan because you’ll want to balance out all of the meat you’re eating with a good portion of veggies at each meal. Salad dressings are a great way to make the salad taste better, but pretty much everything you find on store shelves is going to be a no-go because food manufacturers can’t help but put additives and preservatives that aren’t really needed into them. Here’s an assortment of dressings that keep it simple and healthier for you.

Updated March 18th, 2019.

Easy Paleo Caesar Salad Dressing

Homemade Caesar paleo salad dressing is incredibly easy to make and tastes much better than the bottled version. And the taste wouldn’t be the same without a bit of anchovy paste, which can be found near the canned fish in the grocery store. If you prefer not to use raw egg yolk for the recipe substitute one tablespoon of mayonnaise.

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 egg yolk
3 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp spicy Paleo mustard
2 cloves garlic
3 tsp anchovy paste
1/2 tsp dried parsley
1/4 tsp salt
Freshly ground pepper, to taste

1. Place all of the ingredients except the olive oil into a food processor and blend until smooth. Slowly add in the olive oil to emulsify.

Servings: approximately 1/2 cup
Difficulty: Easy

Raspberry Vinaigrette

Simple and easy to throw together, this colorful raspberry vinaigrette is excellent served with salads. Fresh or frozen raspberries can be used to make this sweet, tangy dressing. Toss it with mixed greens and pecans for a vibrant, delicious lunch.

1/2 cup raspberries
1/4-1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp honey
Pinch of salt
4 fresh basil leaves, chopped

1. Place all of the ingredients into a blender or food processor and blend until smooth, adding more olive oil to reach desired consistency. Adjust the amount of honey to taste.

Servings: about 1/2 cup
Difficulty: Easy

Creamy Herb Paleo Salad Dressing

Dill, parsley, and chives provide a lot of flavor in this dairy-free option for a creamy paleo salad dressing. Use this dressing to pour over mixed greens, mix into coleslaw, or to make a tasty cucumber salad. If you do not have fresh herbs available you can substitute the dried version.

1 cup raw cashews
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 cloves garlic
1 tbsp chives, chopped
1 tsp fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp fresh dill, chopped
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp salt
Freshly ground pepper, to taste

1. Soak the cashews in a bowl of water for at least one hour. Then place all of the ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth. Add more water if necessary to achieve desired level of creaminess.

Servings: approximately 1 cup
Difficulty: Easy

Ginger Dijon Paleo Vinaigrette

This vinaigrette takes only minutes to whisk together for topping your salad. It is a simple dressing with a kick of Dijon and ginger, best for pouring over a light salad of mixed greens or romaine.

1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp Paleo Dijon mustard
2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp dried parsley
Pinch of salt

1. Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl or jar and stir well to combine. Store in an airtight jar in the refrigerator.

Servings: approximately 1/2 cup
Difficulty: Easy

Lemon Basil Vinaigrette

Make this quick, flavorful vinaigrette for a great way to use up any extra basil you may have in your garden. Light and refreshing, lemon and basil work well together in this recipe. The recipe can be used for salad dressing, and can also act as a sauce for fish, chicken, or tomato salad.

1/2 cup basil leaves, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Zest of 1/2 lemon
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 tsp Paleo spicy mustard
1/2 tsp honey
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

1. Place all of the ingredients into a blender or food processor and blend until smooth, adding more olive oil to reach desired consistency. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.

Servings: about 1/2 cup
Difficulty: Easy

Best Paleo Salad Dressing Recipes of All-Time

Creamy Avocado Paleo Salad Dressing

Avocado makes up the base of this rich salad dressing. Although it is dairy-free, the dressing is still luscious and creamy. Lemon and cilantro add extra zest and flavor to the avocado. Toss this simple dressing with a chopped salad or even use it as a topping for taco salad.


1 avocado, pit removed
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup water
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp cilantro, chopped


1. Place all of the ingredients into a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Adjust salt to taste. Drizzle over salad to serve.

Chipotle Paleo Ranch Dressing

Add some spice into regular ranch dressing with a bit of adobo sauce. Chipotle ranch dressing is a tangy spin on the classic to add some variety into your kitchen. Use the recipe as a dip for veggies or toss with lettuce for a tasty salad.


1/4 cup Paleo mayonnaise
1 tbsp adobo sauce
1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/4 tsp cumin
2 tsp cilantro, chopped
1 tsp fresh dill, chopped
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste


1. Whisk all of the ingredients together to combine. Add some water if necessary to reach desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Greek Dressing

Serve this greek paleo dressing over a salad of crisp lettuce, tomatoes, olives and cucumbers for a delicious lunch full of Greek flavors. The dressing does not need to be refrigerated, so it travels well for picnics and gatherings. It is actually best when you let the mixture sit for 30 minutes to let the flavors blend.


1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
1 tsp Dijon mustard


1. Whisk together all of the ingredients except the olive oil in a small bowl. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil while whisking to make an emulsion. Serve immediately or store at room temperature tightly sealed.

Orange Poppy Seed Salad Dressing

This tangy and sweet poppy seed dressing is terrific on a fresh fruit salad. Low in fat and calories, the recipe relies on simple ingredients to provide bright flavors. You could also try it tossed with a traditional green salad or as a dressing for coleslaw.


Juice of 1 orange
Zest of 1 orange
3 tbsp red wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 small shallot
1 tbsp Paleo mustard
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tsp poppy seeds


1. Place all of the ingredients except the poppy seeds into a food processor and blend until smooth. Pour into a small bowl and stir in the poppy seeds. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.

BLT Salad (with homemade creamy paleo dressing)

Vietnamese Shrimp Salad (with the best asian paleo salad dressing)

Almost Ranch Dressing
You don’t have to give up the classic taste of Ranch dressing just because you’re following Paleo. It just requires a little bit of tinkering to make sure that there’s no diary or artificial ingredients being used. Traditional Ranch dressing has buttermilk, mayo, and sour cream, three ingredients that get the kibosh on Paleo. This version of Ranch is using a genius mix of cashews, coconut milk, and the required spices to replicate the taste while sidestepping all of the ingredients that can cause trouble to your digestion and health. You can use this as a salad dressing, or a dip for anything Ranch-worthy.

French Tarragon Shallot Vinaigrette
This is a vinaigrette with a fancy name which may seem like you’re taking Paleo to the gourmet level. But in actuality it has just a handful or so of ingredients and it keeps things pretty simple with Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Champagne Vinegar. The vinegar gets its name because it’s made by using the same types of grapes used to make champagne, so it’s not just a phony title. The tarragon, shallots, and garlic all do well to make this a treat for your taste buds, and poured over a kale or spinach salad make it easy to top up on your veggies.

Red & White Balsamic Vinaigrette
This recipe proves that you don’t always have to have it plain and simple with Paleo, and that you can experiment with different flavors to find what works. Here it’s the use of both white wine vinegar and red wine vinegar in what would otherwise be a simple balsamic vinaigrette. Since each vinegar has a slightly different taste, it comes out with a different flavor than if you’d just used one. The dijon mustard also provides a strong flavor that makes this a special creation, while keeping it within the confines of a Paleo inspired diet..

Strawberry Rosemary Dressing
The use of strawberry in this dressing gives it a nice color, as well as the sweet fruity taste you’ve come to expect from strawberries. Fresh rosemary goes nicely with fresh strawberries, and they’re using olive oil and lemon juice to complete the dressing. They show this being served on a bed of arugula, but it can be used to flavor up any type of salad. Try this simple salad on for size: a bed of baby spinach leaves, fresh organic cucumber slices, a fresh tomato cut into wedges, and baby carrots sliced in half. It’s a simple and tasty salad with all Paleo friendly ingredients and this dressing goes nicely with it.

Ginger Dijon Vinaigrette
This recipe should only be used by those Paleo followers that like the taste of ginger as well as dijon mustard. That’s because when the two of these combine it forms a taste that will definitely perk up your mouth and make you pay attention. Olive oil and apple cider vinegar are used to create the classic vinaigrette backdrop, but what you’ll really taste is the ground ginger mixed with the dijon mustard. Try this on a steak salad like the one shown on the recipe page. It’s nice to get a half and half mix of meaty protein and fresh vegetables.

Carrot Ginger Salad Dressing
This is a nice light dressing that will have a bit of an Asian zing to it because of the ginger. It’s the sort of dressing you’ll often see on the salad that is served before sushi at a Japanese restaurant. You can replicate that experience at home while on Paleo, just be sure to eat sashimi, which often is served without rice so you’re just getting fresh and raw fish. They show this being used on a very simple salad, which will really make the dressing pop.

Avocado Ranch Dressing
What can make Ranch dressing even better? Avocados! Not only do they lend their distinctive flavor, but they provide an extra creamy and smooth texture, and loads of healthy benefits. They have plenty of fiber and healthy fat, as well as potassium and a bit of protein, not to mention an assortment of vitamins and minerals. This recipe uses no dairy whatsoever, with coconut milk getting the call instead.

Asparagus Avocado Salad with Walnut Vinaigrette


2 bunches of thin asparagus, trimmed

1 avocado, seed and skin removed

1 tablespoon shallots, minced

1 tablespoon fresh mint, minced

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

3 tablespoons toasted walnuts, chopped


Poach or grill the asparagus until cooked, but still crisp. Allow to cool and then chop into bite size pieces.

Place the Dijon, shallots, mint, lemon and vinegar in a bowl and whisk. Slowly add the oil until combined, and then season with salt and pepper. Add the asparagus pieces to the bowl and stir.

Slice the avocado into half moons and add to salad.

Top with walnuts and season if necessary.


  • Olive oil packed anchovy fillets: Yes, you need to use anchovies. Don’t turn your nose up at them—they’re what makes this salad so delicious and full of umami! You can use any leftover fillets to make my Tonnato Sauce.
  • Garlic cloves: The minced garlic gets warmed up in the skillet with anchovies, resulting in a potent and heavenly dressing.
  • Sherry vinegar: Zippy sherry vinegar is the perfect foil to the bold anchovies and garlic. If you don’t have any on hand, red wine vinegar or Champagne vinegar work well.
  • Shallot: The mellow sweetness and slight crunch from the warmed shallots are EVERYTHING.
  • Dijon-style mustard: Mustard helps emulsify the dressing and adds some tang to the warm dressing.
  • Extra virgin olive oil: Use a high-quality, freshly-pressed extra virgin olive oil for the dressing.
  • Mixed baby lettuces: Phyllis sometimes serves the avocado cups by themselves or on top of butter lettuce, hearts of romaine, or cabbage salad. Personally, I like to use Little Gem lettuces and/or whatever looks fresh at the market.
  • Hass avocados: Use ripe avocados that yield slightly when you give them a little squeeze. I put mine in the fridge as soon as they’re close to being ripe so I can make sure they don’t ripen too quickly.
  • Fresh herbs: A handful of chopped parsley and/or cilantro work well as a final garnish, but feel free to use your favorite combination of fresh herbs.
  • Coarse sea salt: I like using a crunchy, flaky sea salt in this recipe for the texture and flavor.

– Pasta Salad Extras –

These tasty pasta salad toppers are next-level delicious! I’ve included a mix of vegan, vegetarian, and T-Rex options.

  • Cubed Cheddar Cheese
  • Marinated Mozzarella
  • Fresh Basil
  • Crumbled Feta or Goat Cheese
  • Sliced turkey, ham, or bacon crumbles (for the T-Rex crowd)
  • Thinly Shaved Fresh Parmesan-Romano Cheese
  • Finely Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • Fresh Dill
  • Fresh Parsley
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Sunflower Seeds

If you need some extra inspiration for your dream-combo pasta salad, I’ll list my favorite recipes at the bottom of this post.