Tortellini Caprese Salad with Balsamic Dressing

Tortellini caprese salad combines the goodness of cheese-filled tortellini with juicy cherry tomatoes and fresh mozzarella pearls tossed in a simple balsamic dressing. It’s a refreshing pasta salad filled with fresh summer flavors and the perfect side dish for your next backyard barbecue.

a close up of tortellini salad in a bowl

This pasta salad couldn’t get any easier! It takes just a few simple steps to prepare and tastes great as a side dish or entree with green salad for a tasty summer dinner.

🤍Why you will love this recipe

  • Flavor! This cold pasta salad is so refreshing and flavorful; and it’s filled with simple, fresh ingredients.
  • It’s and easy salad that is also versatile; change it up and add more ingredients – see variations below.
a picture of the ingredients for the tortellini salad recipe

Here is what you will need

This is an overview of the ingredients and steps to make this easy broccoli salad recipe; scroll down for a printable recipe card with exact measurements and detailed instructions.

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  • Cheese tortellini pasta
  • Pearl mozzarella balls
  • Cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes
  • Fresh basil leaves
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Garlic powder


  • Salad bowl

How to make Tortellini Caprese Salad

Prepare the ingredients: Cook the tortellini according to the package instructions, rinse the cooked tortellini under cold water and drain it.

Cut the cherry tomatoes in half, chop the basil and mix the dressing ingredients in a small bowl or jar.

a bowl with basil cheese and tomatoes in it

STEP 1: Place the tomatoes, pearl mozzarella balls and basil into a large bowl.

STEP 2: Add the cooked and rinsed tortellini and the dressing; gently toss everything together.

a picture of dressing pouring into a bowl of pasta salad

Ingredient notes and substitutions

Mozzarella cheese – I like to use fresh mozzarella pearls in this salad. If unavailable, they can be replaced with fresh mozzarella cheese cut into cubes.

Olive oil – Extra virgin olive oil is best for making salads and dressings. It can be replaced with regular olive oil if it’s unavailable.

Basil – Fresh basil is the star of this dish, and should not be replaced with dried basil. If it’s not available, you can use a tablespoon or two of fresh basil pesto.

an overhead view of tortellini salad in a bowl

Serving Suggestions

Serve this easy caprese pasta salad garnished with a little bit of parmesan cheese sprinkled on top of the salad with burgers, grilled chicken, and a refreshing garden salad.

tortellini caprese salad on a plate

Recipe variations

Caprese tortellini pasta salad is simple and the perfect dish for versatility! Here are some ideas to get you started:

Pesto Tortellini Caprese Salad – Instead of balsamic dressing, use pesto sauce and a light drizzle of balsamic glaze.

Mediterranean Tortellini Caprese – Add sliced kalamata olives, red onion, chopped baby spinach leaves, crumbled feta cheese and chopped oregano.

Add vegetables – Toss in grilled or roasted vegetables such as zucchini, eggplant or red peppers.

How to store leftovers

Store leftover tortellini pasta salad in an airtight container for 3 days. If the dressing has been absorbed after sitting in the refrigerator, stir in a little bit of olive oil before serving.


  • Cook the tortellini perfectly, follow the instructions on the package, don’t overcook it, and aim for al dente.
  • Since this salad is made with simple ingredients, try to use the freshest ingredients you can find for the best flavor.
Can I serve the tortellini caprese salad warm?

Even though refreshing caprese salads are usually served chilled, you can serve this salad at room temperature or slightly warm. This can be done by not rinsing the cooked pasta under cool water and serving the salad immediately.

What other dressings can I use with tortellini caprese salad?

You can try using a basic Italian vinaigrette, a lemon herb dressing or just plain extra virgin olive oil.

Can I use canned tomatoes to make tortellini caprese salad?

This salad is filled with fresh ingredients, and it is not recommended to use canned tomatoes instead of fresh tomatoes, which will compromise the fresh flavors in this salad.

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a close up of tortellini salad in a bowl

Caprese Tortellini Salad

A refreshing salad that is perfect for the summer!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 8
Calories 249 kcal


  • 10 ounces Cheese Tortellini
  • 8 ounces Mozzarella Pearls
  • 1/2 cup Fresh Basil
  • 14 Cherry Tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Garlic Powder


  • Cook 10 ounces Cheese Tortellini according to the package instructions; rinse cooked tortellini in cold water
  • Cut 14 Cherry Tomatoes in half, and roughly chop 1/2 cup Fresh Basil
  • Place 8 ounces Mozzarella Pearls, cherry tomatoes and basil into a bowl.
  • Mix the dressing ingredients together in a small bowl (3 tablespoons Olive Oil, 2 tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar, 1 teaspoon Garlic Powder)
  • Pour the dressing over the salad ingredients and gently toss.


Store leftover pasta salad in the refrigerator for 3 days.
See the article above for recipe tips, suggestions and more.


Calories: 249kcalCarbohydrates: 19gProtein: 11gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 5.7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.9gMonounsaturated Fat: 6.3gSodium: 324mgSugar: 2g
Keyword tortellini caprese salad
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