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Italian Chilly Spaghetti Salad with Shrimp – The Pasta Undertaking

This straightforward chilly spaghetti salad recipe comes from the Central Italian area of Marche. The primary elements are pre-cooked shrimps or tiger prawns, rocket (arugula) and cherry tomatoes tossed with spaghetti in a easy oil and vinegar dressing. That is the form of pasta salad Italians like to take to a seashore picnic but it surely’s additionally nice as a lightweight lunch or for a potluck or buffet.

Italian cold spaghetti salad with shrimp

Spaghetti freddi (chilly spaghetti salad) from Marche.

Italians check with pasta salad as pasta fredda, which means chilly pasta. Though the origins of pasta fredda aren’t recorded, plainly it is a dish that has grown in reputation for the reason that 80s and 90s.

These days, there are numerous Italian pasta salad recipes, most of that are made with quick pasta. Nevertheless, there are a number of regional variations with lengthy pasta noodles equivalent to this chilly spaghetti recipe from Marche.

Italian cold spaghetti salad with shrimp

Conventional Italian pasta salad elements.

Spring and summer time are the seasons for pasta salad right here in Italy. Most recipes name for a mix of contemporary seasonal veggies. Nearly all of Italian salads made with pasta are vegetarian. Nevertheless, some have canned tuna or salmon or, like this spaghetti salad recipe, prawns or shrimps. There are few recipes of this type with meat, though some individuals add bresaola or different sorts of salumi. Cheese is a well-liked addition.

ingredients for cold spaghetti salad in white bowls
Step 1 Collect your principal elements: Shrimps or prawnd, small tomatoes, rocket (arugula) and olive oil.

Pasta salad for the seashore!

Again within the early put up battle years, it was widespread to see Italian households cooking and consuming pasta in huts on the seashore in August. However over time, the seashore huts disappeared and had been changed by eating places or picnics. Nevertheless, pasta remained a standard seashore meals and pasta salads changed the standard cooking on the seashore!

blanched prawns in white bowl, cut tomatoes in white bowl and washed rocket (arugula in white bowl
Step 2 Prep the elements: wash the rocket, wash and lower the tomatoes, blanch the shrimps or prawns in boiling water.

Right now, rice salad has change into as widespread on the seashore as pasta salad. In a current shopper research of Italian posts on Instagram with the hashtag #beachfood, rice or pasta salad are equally the second most uploaded seashore meals images after ice-cream.

Away from the seashore and different out of doors picnic venues, Italians serve pasta fredda as a chilly starter in summer time or as a part of a buffet at events and BBQs.

packet of square cut spaghetti from La Molisana
Step 3 Prepare dinner the spaghetti in boiling salted water till al dente.

What Italians don’t put in pasta salad.

The 2 principal variations between genuine Italian pasta salads and people made in different nations is firstly the condiment or dressing. Salad dressing isn’t an Italian factor, regardless of there being a well-liked American condiment referred to as Italian dressing! This was truly invented within the States in 1941 by the daughter of Italian immigrants!

cooked and drained spaghetti in white colander
Step 4 Drain the cooked spaghetti and rinse with chilly wate to take away the starch and cease cooking.

Right here in Italy, most sorts of salads are dressed or flavoured with further virgin olive oil, perhaps some vinegar, herbs like basil and salt and pepper. That is true of salad made with pasta as properly.  

Mayonnaise has change into a well-liked addition to rice salads however not often pasta salad and salad dressings equivalent to yogurt, ranch, blue cheese, thousand island and so on can’t be discovered within the common Italian pantry.

spaghetti salad ingredients in large salad bowl
Step 5 Put the ready greens and shrimp in a big salad bowl. Add olive oil, somewhat vinega and slat and pepper.

The opposite ingredient widespread overseas however not often included in pasta fredda is rooster! In truth, rooster isn’t very conventional or widespread (other than a number of exceptions) in scorching pasta dishes both! As I discussed above, Italians add protein to their salads with cheese or seafood or maybe salumi.

cooked spaghetti in salad bowl on top of other salad ingredients
Step 6 Add the cooked spaghetti to the opposite salad elements.

Making this chilly spaghetti salad.

I discovered this chilly spaghetti salad recipe in an Italian cookbook of recipes from Marche. Marche or Le Marche (which means the marshes) is a area on the Adriatic coast in Central Italy. It’s one in all my favorite Italian areas and part of Italy I’d like to dwell in.

Also known as ‘the subsequent Tuscany’, Marche is a reasonably unspoilt area with lovely seashores, mountains, historic hilltop villages and a novel delicacies. You possibly can learn extra about this area in my Marche put up.

Italian cold spaghetti salad with shrimp
Step 7 Toss the spaghetti with the opposite elements. Add extra olive oil if wanted. Serve at room temperature.

Within the cookbook, this pasta salad is named spaghetti freddi (chilly spaghetti). It’s tremendous easy to make and requires little or no cooking. You simply should cook dinner the spaghetti and blanch the precooked shrimps or prawns in boiling water.

The opposite elements are few and there’s little or no prep. Other than the pasta and shrimps, you want cherry tomatoes and rocket (arugula). The dressing is just further virgin olive oil, somewhat vinegar, salt and pepper.

The shrimps or prawns.

This recipe requires ‘gamberetti’ that are small shrimps in Italian. I truly determined to make use of ‘mazzancole’ or caramote prawns that are a kind of tiger prawn. I like them as a result of they’re so meaty and I should purchase them prepared peeled and cooked. In fact, you need to use small shrimps as a substitute.

Italian cold spaghetti salad recipe from Marche

The pasta.

This recipe is for spaghetti, however I assume it might work with many different sorts of pasta. I used sq. lower spaghetti from La Molisana. Typically referred to as spaghetti alla chitarra, as a substitute of being rounded these noodles are sq.. I like these as a result of they’re barely thicker than regular spaghetti. In fact, regular spaghetti is ideal too.

Make this recipe your personal.

This chilly spaghetti salad has only a few elements. We liked it as is, however you’ll be able to in fact add different veggies equivalent to contemporary celery or bell peppers to present it some crunch or maybe somewhat garlic or pine nuts. However, I wouldn’t change it an excessive amount of.

Italian cold spaghetti salad with shrimp recipe from Marche

Italian delicacies is famously easy, notably when the elements are contemporary and seasonal. Too many additions will make the flavour complicated and also you’ll lose the style of these summer time tomatoes and the contemporary rocket (arugula).

When you make this recipe I’d love to listen to the way it seems and in case you preferred it. Please depart a remark right here on the weblog or on The Pasta Undertaking Fb web page. Trying ahead to listening to from you.

Buon appetito!

Italian cold spaghetti salad with shrimp

Italian chilly spaghetti salad with shrimp


This straightforward chilly spaghetti salad recipe comes from the Central Italian area of Marche. The primary elements are pre-cooked peeled shrimps or prawns, rocket (arugula) and small tomatoes tossed with spaghetti in a easy olive oil and vinegar dressing. Excellent for a chilly lunch, picnic, buffets and potlucks!

Prep Time 15 minutes

Prepare dinner Time 15 minutes

Course Foremost Course, pasta salad

Delicacies Central Italy, Italian, Le Marche, Marche, Mediterranean


  • 400 g spaghetti (14oz) I used sq. lower spaghetti from La Molisana
  • 300 g pre-cooked and peeled shrimps or prawns (10.5 oz) I used tiger prawns referred to as mazzancole in Italian
  • 100 g rocket (arugula) (3.5oz) washed
  • 300 g cherry or datterini tomatoes (10.5oz) washed and lower in halves or quarters
  • further virgin olive oil. as required
  • 1 tsp vinegar (white wine or apple cider)
  • salt for pasta and to style
  • freshly floor black pepper. to style


End and serve your spaghetti salad

  • Put the tomatoes, prawns, and rocket in a big bowl with some olive oil, a touch of vinegar, and salt and pepper to style. Add the cooked spaghetti. Combine properly. Add extra olive oil if crucial and serve instantly. This spaghetti salad is greatest served at room temperature, not too fridge chilly.


This recipe requires spaghetti however different pasta varieties would work too. 
This spaghetti salad could be made somewhat upfront and saved coated with cling movie within the fridge till able to serve. However the rocket (arugula) will begin to get soggy fairly shortly due to the olive oil and liquid from the tomatoes. If you wish to put together upfront add the rocket when able to serve.
Concepts for different elements see textual content above.

Key phrase chilly spaghetti, pasta salad, spaghetti salad

Different Italian pasta salads to attempt

  1. Summer season tagliolini with marinated greens
  2. Inexperienced pasta salad with edible flowers
  3. Pasta salad crudaiola Barese
  4. Vermicelli di Positano
  5. Pasta alla caponata

If you’re curious about studying the right way to make home made pasta and several types of gnocchi, try my store web page for some nice video on-line programs from my associates in Rome! Nothing beats studying to make pasta from Italians! Plus when you’re there why not order a replica of one in all my pasta recipe cookbooks or checkout some beneficial pasta making instruments?


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