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Easy Greek Chicken Pasta Salad

This Greek Chicken Pasta Salad features kalamata olives, cucumbers, tomatoes, and artichoke hearts tossed with penne in a tangy tzatziki-inspired dressing. The salad is topped with juicy chicken and feta crumbles for a distinct Mediterranean flavor. This protein-packed pasta salad has 31 grams of protein per serving.

close up of a bowl of Greek chicken salad topped with slices of lemon

Upgrade your pasta salad with tastes of the Mediterranean! With this easy recipe, you’ll make pasta salad with ready-made chicken, a tangy Greek yogurt dressing, vibrant Mediterranean veggies, fresh herbs, and plenty of feta.

Tender pasta and fresh veggies tossed in a rich, creamy dressing are absolutely delicious. When topped with juicy Greek chicken and delicate feta cheese, this Greek pasta salad goes from delicious to absolutely divine. It’s seriously that good.

While you can use pre-cooked or leftover chicken, grilled chicken marinated in a simple Greek vinaigrette is perfect for slicing and serving over top of Greek chicken pasta salad. Either way, you’re going to love this Mediterranean chicken pasta salad!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • This is a great way to repurpose leftover chicken into a fresh Mediterranean dish!
  • Made with simple, fresh ingredients
  • It’s tossed in a creamy tzatziki Greek dressing.
  • It’s the perfect refreshing summer main dish or side dish.
  • Great to make once and eat all week

Ingredients You’ll Need

labeled ingredients for greek chicken pasta salad
labeled ingredients for Greek chicken salad dressing
  • Greek Yogurt Dressing: This pasta salad is rich and creamy, thanks to a mixture of Greek yogurt, EVOO, fresh dill, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper. Feel free to use low-fat Greek yogurt to lighten it up. You can also regular plain yogurt, but it doesn’t contain as much protein as the Greek varieties.
  • Penne Pasta: I like Dreamfield’s lower-carb pasta, but feel free to use any uncooked penne pasta (gluten-free, whole wheat, etc.).
  • Kalamata Olives: a non-negotiable in many Mediterranean dishes and a great source of antioxidants. If unpitted, don’t forget to remove the pits.
  • Cucumbers: Seedless English cucumbers are best. If using larger cucumbers, remove the seeds with a spoon before slicing.
  • Tomatoes: for bursts of juicy, sweet, and, savory flavor. I used cherry tomatoes, but feel free to use grape, Roma, or a medley of colorful heirloom tomatoes.
  • Artichoke Hearts: another non-negotiable ingredient in Mediterranean dishes. Marinated artichoke hearts have so much flavor, but a can of artichoke hearts works in a pinch.
  • Feta: I recommend whole feta. It’s rich in flavor and super creamy. If feta isn’t your thing, freshly grated parmesan is a good alternative.
  • Chicken: You can use any leftover chicken -grilled, rotisserie, pan-fried, etc. I recommend marinating chicken breasts or thighs in Greek vinaigrette salad dressing if you don’t have pre-cooked chicken. Homemade salad dressings have the best flavor, but you can marinate the chicken in a store-bought Greek dressing or marinade if you’re short on time. Leftover grilled chicken marinated in Greek dressing is my go-to for this recipe.

How To Make Greek Chicken Pasta Salad

With the chicken cooked in advance, the rest of the salad comes together quickly! You’ll start by making a creamy lemon and dill dressing:

Step 1: Make yogurt dressing. Add Greek yogurt, EVOO, dill, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and garlic to a food processor and blend thoroughly. Transfer to a bowl, cover, and place in the fridge while preparing the pasta.

Tzatziki dressing for Greek chicken salad in a food processor

Step 2: Cook pasta. Cook penne pasta according to the package instructions; drain, and rinse thoroughly with cold water until the noodles are cool to the touch.

cooked and cooled pasta in a colander

Step 3: Stir pasta salad. Stir cooled pasta, chicken, olives, cucumber, tomato, and artichoke hearts together in a large bowl. Add yogurt dressing and stir well to coat. Sprinkle feta cheese crumbles over the top.

creamy Greek pasta salad in a white bowl

Step 4: Chill and serve. Cover the bowl and place it in the fridge for at least an hour or until you’re ready to serve. When it’s time to eat, toss everything once more and place the chicken on top. Garnish with fresh chopped herb and lemon slices. Enjoy!

chicken pasta salad in a large white bowl garnished with lemon with lemon and herbs on a cutting board in the background

Recipe Tips

  • To make grilled Greek Chicken – Grill chicken marinated in Greek dressing over medium-high heat until the internal temperature reaches 160F (4 to 5 minutes per side depending on thickness). Let the chicken rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
  • Fresh lemon zest – Before squeezing the lemon, remove the zest. You can add it to the creamy dressing for a bolder citrus flavor or sprinkle a bit on top as a garnish.
  • Making ahead – Stir the salad together the night before, so all you have to do is give it a quick toss and add the chicken before serving.

Variations

Dressing – As a shortcut, you can use a bottle of Greek dressing from the store instead of making the creamy yogurt dressing (although making homemade dressing is always worth it).

Veggies – Feel free to enrich your Mediterranean pasta salad with more veggies and herbs, such as:

  • Thinly sliced red onion,
  • Diced red, yellow, or orange bell pepper
  • Chickpeas
  • Sliced hearts of palm
  • Fresh oregano, basil, and parsley

Protein – As mentioned, any tender shredded or diced chicken works. Instead of chicken, you could try making it with flakey tuna or salmon.Vegetarian – Boost the protein with giant white beans and chickpeas instead of chicken.

Storing & Freezing

Storing: Store leftover Greek chicken pasta salad in an airtight container in the fridge for 4 to 5 days. Brighten up the flavors with lemon juice and a quick stir before serving.
Freezing: Creamy pasta salads should not be frozen.

Recipe FAQ

Why is my pasta salad dry?

If your salad seems dry, it’s most likely because the noodles are undercooked and too firm, so the dressing isn’t sticking to the pasta. When cooked just right, the dressing sticks to the noodles instead of sinking to the bottom of the bowl.

What is a good side dish for Greek chicken pasta salad?

With chicken, this Greek pasta salad is a hearty meal. To make it a feast, serve it with greek chicken stew, Greek-style braised kale, and greek meatballs.

Can I make this pasta salad dairy-free?

It’s only been tested with a Greek yogurt-based dressing, but you could try making it with your favorite dairy-free Greek-style yogurt instead.

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close up of greek chicken pasta salad in a large bowl garnished with lemon and herbs

Greek Chicken Pasta Salad

This Greek Chicken Pasta Salad features kalamata olives, cucumbers, tomatoes, and artichoke hearts tossed with penne in a tangy tzatziki-inspired dressing.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Greek
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 475kcal
Author: Amee

Ingredients

  • 6 oz plain Greek yogurt I recommend full-fat for best creamy texture and taste
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh dill
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves can use 1-2 cloves if you prefer a more mild garlic flavor
  • 16 oz uncooked penne pasta I like to use Dreamfield's lower-carb pasta
  • 24 oz chicken breast cooked and chopped into bite-size pieces
  • 1 cup pitted kalamata olives drained 
  • 2 cucumbers peeled, seeded and sliced
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes sliced in half
  • 14 oz artichoke hearts drained and chopped. Regular canned artichoke hearts or marinated for added flavor.
  • 4 oz crumbled feta cheese I go for whole feta…more flavor and creamier

Instructions

  • Process first 7 ingredients in a food processor 30 seconds or until thoroughly blended.  Transfer to a bowl, cover, and chill while you prepare the pasta.  
  • Cook pasta according to package directions; drain and rinse with cold water.  
  • Place cooled pasta in a large bowl. Stir in chicken, olives, cucumbers, tomatoes, and artichokes until well blended.
  • Add yogurt mixture and stir until well coated.  Top with crumbled feta cheese.  
  • Cover and chill at least 1 hour, or until ready to serve.  Toss well before serving and garnish with chopped fresh herbs (dill and/or parsley) and lemon slices, if desired.

Notes

  • To make grilled Greek Chicken – Grill chicken marinated in Greek dressing over medium-high heat until the internal temperature reaches 160F (4 to 5 minutes per side depending on thickness). Let the chicken rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
  • Fresh lemon zest – Before squeezing the lemon, remove the zest. You can add it to the creamy dressing for a bolder citrus flavor or sprinkle a bit on top as a garnish.
  • Making ahead – Stir the salad together the night before, so all you have to do is give it a quick toss and add the chicken before serving.
  • Nutrition info is for using regular penne pasta. You can lower the carbs by using a lower carb pasta variety.

Nutrition

Calories: 475kcal | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 68mg | Sodium: 1017mg | Potassium: 727mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 500IU | Vitamin C: 18mg | Calcium: 138mg | Iron: 2mg
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Amee Livingston
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10 Comments

  1. Yum!! This sounds so incredible; just bursting with vibrant flavors and healthful ingredients. I think I would actually like this with farro in lieu of the pasta. What are the spices in the Greek spice mix you used?

5 from 2 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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