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Avocado Caprese Pasta Salad

Avocado Caprese Pasta Salad
  • Meal

    Side Dish

  • Cusine

    Italian

Ingredients

10 oz. mini penne pasta shells

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes

2 small avocados

8 oz. fresh mozzarella pearls

1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves

1 1/2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, then more for serving to taste

1 cup slightly packed fresh basil leaves

1 cloves garlic

1/4 cup olive oil

2 Tbsp finely shredded parmesan

1 Tbsp pine nuts or chopped walnuts

Directions

Cook pasta in boiling salted water according to directions on package. Drain and let cool completely. In a food processor pulse 1 cup basil leaves, parmesan, pine nuts, and garlic until minced. Pour in olive oil and process until everything is finely minced. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add pasta and tomatoes to a salad bowl. Pour basil (pesto) mixture over pasta and tomatoes and toss to evenly coat. Add in avocados, mozzarella, basil (set some aside to garnish over top if desired), and pour in balsamic vinegar and toss just lightly. Serve immediately with more balsamic vinegar and parmesan if desired.