Everyone needs more lunch ideas. I pretty much eat almost the same thing every day. Its more for ease of meal prep than anything. But this week, I thought that I would make something different. I have a physical job and am on my feet pretty much all day so a well balanced meal is really important if I want to be able to make it to the end of my day with out crashing.
Enter: Greek Pasta Salad with Tofu Feta. This salad has all of my favorite elements of all the Greek Salads I’ve had over the years: Kalamata olives, cucumber, tomato, roasted red pepper and feta. Marinated tofu feta, that is. It may sound weird to be eating tofu raw, but when it is marinated this way it tastes remarkably similar to feta so give it a try.
This is also the perfect thing to make for a cook out or picnic. Just toss everything together in a big container, put the lid on and go. Its a crowd pleaser- trust me. I tested it on a crowd.
With this and all pasta salads, I like to reserve some of the dressing to add just before serving because the pasta soaks everything up. If you wanted to skip a step, you could always use store-bought balsamic dressing here. I’m just in the habit of making my own dressings because I always have the ingredients on hand. If you’ve never made your own dressing before, do it! Its so simple and you can put whatever you like into it.
I used Banza brand chickpea pasta here, but any legume pasta will work perfectly. Or whole wheat if that’s what you prefer!
Greek Pasta Salad with Tofu Feta
1/2 Block Extra Firm Tofu, drained, patted dry and diced
4 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
3 Tbsp Water
1/2 tsp Oregano
1/4 tsp Onion Powder
1/4 tsp Garlic Powder
1/4 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
1/4 tsp Salt
For the Dressing
1/4 Cup Balsamic Vinegar
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Tsp Dijon Mustard
1/2 tsp Maple Syrup
1/4 tsp onion Powder
1/4 tsp Garlic Powder
Pinch of Salt and Black Pepper
For the Pasta Salad
1-8 oz Box of Banza Chickpea Pasta (I used rotini)
1 Cup Cherry tomatoes, quartered
3/4 Cup Cucumber, Diced
1 Cup Roasted Red Peppers, drained, patted dry and sliced
1/4 Cup Kalamata Olives, drained and chopped
To make the tofu feta: Measure rice vinegar, water, garlic and onion powders, oregano, red pepper flake, salt and pepper in to a container that has a high fitting lid. Put the lid on and give the marinade a shake to mix, then add tofu cubes, put the lid back on and gently shake to coat. Put into the refrigerator to marinate for at least 2 hours or even over night.
To make the pasta salad: Make pasta according to package directions. After draining, since under cold water to cool it down. Leave in the colander to cool while making the dressing.
To make the dressing: Into a small bowl add all dressing ingredients and combine well with a whisk.
Into a large bowl, combine roasted red peppers, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers and olives. Rinse the pasta in the colander once more- the noodles are likely stuck together and this will separate them. Add the pasta to the bowl and then add half of the dressing and gently toss to combine.
Drain the tofu feta and add it to the pasta salad and gently toss once more. Add remaining dressing just before serving.
Let me know how this recipe worked for you and if there is anything you’d like to see me make next!