Creamy Tuna Pasta Salad


This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

Creamy Tuna Pasta Salad  is one of our favorite versions of classic tuna salad! When you add in a handful of veggies and some pasta, this becomes an entire meal in no time at all! 

This pasta salad recipe is a warm weather go-to for quick meals or even potlucks!

Pasta with tuna, cheese, peas and celery all tossed with a creamy dressing, in a clear bowl

What’s In Tuna Pasta Salad?

Just like most tuna recipes (think tuna casserole or tuna melts) this pasta salad is simple and delicious. With two main ingredients, tuna and pasta this dish is no-fuss and great as a quick dinner or an easy lunch.

This pasta salad uses sweet pickle relish in the dressing but of course you swap it with chopped dill pickles (but you may want to add a pinch of sugar to the dressing if you do).

  • Tuna: Choose good quality tuna that is packed in water so it doesn’t make the rest of the salad oily. Be sure to drain it well.
  • Pasta: A medium shape pasta works well for this recipe like rotini or shells, the ridges grab the dressing well adding lots of flavor!

Pasta, peas, cheddar cheese, celery and tuna in a clear bowl, with the dressing assembled on the side in another glass bowl

How to Make Tuna Pasta Salad

Making a pasta salad isn’t hard! With a little prep work and three easy steps, you can have this salad ready in 30 mins!

  1. Boil a large pot of water and cook the pasta. Drain, set aside to cool.
  2. Drain tuna and add in vegetables.
  3. Gently fold in the mayonnaise and add diced cheddar cheese (cheese is optional).

Whether making in advance or making fresh to eat, keep it chilled until you are ready to serve. Add in a little salt and pepper to taste and watch the flavors pop when served cold!

Pasta salad with tuna tossed with a creamy dressing, ready to serve.

Here’s How to Store It

Keep your tuna pasta salad in a sealed container so it doesn’t absorb the flavors of the other things in the refrigerator. And if taking to a potluck, put ice packs in a cooler around it to keep it chilled!

When serving it outdoors where everyone is helping themselves, put the salad in a bowl and try to position it on a small tray or plate of ice to keep it cold. Stir frequently to keep it all the same temperature!

More Delicious Pasta Salads

5 from 3 votes
Review Recipe

Creamy Tuna Pasta Salad

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Author Holly Nilsson
Course Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American
This creamy salad combines pasta & tuna to create the perfect light lunch or side to supper! With the addition of pickles, cheese, and peas it is sure to be a hit!

Ingredients

  • 3 cups rotini pasta measured dry
  • 6 ounces canned tuna drained
  • 1/2 cup celery diced
  • 3 green onions sliced
  • 3/4 cup baby peas defrosted and drained
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese diced (optional)
Dressing
  • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried dill

avatarFollow Spend with Pennies on Pinterest

Instructions

  1. Combine all dressing ingredients and set aside.

  2. Cook pasta al dente according to package directions. Rinse under cold water to stop cooking.

  3. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.
  4. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.

Recipe Notes

Nutrition Information does not include optional ingredients.
Nutrition Information
Calories: 431, Fat: 28g, Saturated Fat: 9g, Cholesterol: 47mg, Sodium: 406mg, Potassium: 237mg, Carbohydrates: 28g, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 5g, Protein: 16g, Vitamin A: 600%, Vitamin C: 8.7%, Calcium: 175%, Iron: 1.5%

(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.)

Keyword Tuna Pasta Salad
I love this creamy tuna pasta salad recipe! Whether taking it to a potluck or enjoying at a barbecue it's fresh and light flavors are always a hit. With pickles, cheese, pea and of course tuna & pasta, it's the best summer side dish I've made! #spendwithpennies #tunapastasalad #pastasaladrecipe #summer #sidedish #30minmeal
I love this creamy tuna pasta salad recipe! Whether taking it to a potluck or enjoying at a barbecue it's fresh and light flavors are always a hit. With pickles, cheese, pea and of course tuna & pasta, it's the best summer side dish I've made! #spendwithpennies #tunapastasalad #pastasaladrecipe #summer #sidedish #30minmeal
I love this creamy tuna pasta salad recipe! Whether taking it to a potluck or enjoying at a barbecue it's fresh and light flavors are always a hit. With pickles, cheese, pea and of course tuna & pasta, it's the best summer side dish I've made! #spendwithpennies #tunapastasalad #pastasaladrecipe #summer #sidedish #30minmeal

More Recipes You'll Love

About the author

Holly

pinterest facebook twitter instagram

Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!

More Posts by Holly

Latest & Greatest Dishes

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments

  1. I just put this all together for dinner about 90 min from now. Plenty of time to get chilled. It looks and tastes fabulous. The dressing is quite tasty. I didn’t have the green onions and almost substituted white onion but decided it was fine without it. This looks like a keeper recipe. Looking forward to a cold dinner on a 90 degree day!

  2. Holly, the tuna pasta salad looks so good, can’t wait to try this. Perfect for these HOT summer days. Anything I don’t have to turn the oven on is a blessing.

  3. This looks really good, and nice to have when it’s so HOT outside!!! And easy to make also! :)
    Thanks…. will be trying it soon and let u know how it much we enjoyed it. :)