Saturday, June 30, 2018

Cuban Sandwich Pasta Salad

Your favorite Cubano Sandwich turned into mouthwatering Cuban Sandwich Pasta Salad with Mojo Dressing!  This flavor bursting salad is loaded with fixings but is super simple to prepare.  It will be the in-demand pasta salad recipe at all your summer potlucks!

This Cuban Sandwich Pasta Salad is an electrifying combination of pillowy, cheesy tortellini, cubed pork roast, ham, salami, Swiss cheese, tomatoes, pickles pickled jalapenos, red onions, Romain lettuce and cilantro – are you drooling yet?!

Cuban Sandwich Pasta Salad

All this hearty, satisfying goodness gets enveloped in zesty garlic, citrus Mojo Dressing that enlivens the salad and brightens the complexity of flavors and textures.

This salad is hearty, comforting and vibrant and plain can’t-stop-eating delicious!

Cuban Sandwich Pasta Salad

Hi all, its Jen from Carlsbad Cravings and I am excited to be with you again sharing another summer side!

I love summer eats from my Strawberry Salad and Brown Sugar Pineapple Chicken to this new favorite Cuban Sandwich Pasta Salad.  There is just something so invigorating about summer on a plate!

Cuban Sandwich Pasta SaladThis Cuban Sandwich Pasta Salad is a celebration of summer with its bright, bold flavors and needs to be rushed to the top of your “to make” list for the 4th of July.

I guarantee everyone will be singing its praises and your praises then begging for the recipe!

Cuban Sandwich Pasta Salad

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And we have included kitchen tips to make dinnertime less stressful.

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Cuban Sandwich Pasta Salad

Helpful Tips to make Cuban Pasta Salad:

  • The deli counter is your best friend for this Cuban Pasta Salad recipe. You can give them a list of exactly what you need (including the Swiss Cheese) then continue to shop and come back to pick up everything at the end of shopping. They won’t cube the meat/cheese for you, but they can slice it to your specified thickness.or.
  • If your deli doesn’t have pork roast (some do, some don’t), then you can purchase sliced pork top loin.  To cook, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat.  Season pork with salt and pepper and cook for about 3 minutes per side.  Let rest 5-10 minutes before chopping into cubes.
  • It is important to not overcook your tortellini otherwise it will fall apart when tossed.
  • To stop your pasta from cooking after it’s removed from the heat, rinse and drain it in cold water.
  • Discard the very top flimsy part of the Romaine because it doesn’t have as much crunch then use the lettuce closest to the bottom stem for maximum crunch.
  • You can make the dressing up to 24 hours in advance and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.  I think the dressing is far superior when made in advance because the flavors have time to develop. 
  • As written, the dressing is infused with garlic and citrus but not overpowering.  If you want even a more sour taste characteristic of Mojo sauce, then add 1-2 tablespoons cider vinegar – but be sure you to taste the dressing first!

What you will need to make Cuban Pasta Salad:

  • Colander this kitchen essential makes life so much easier!  You can use it to drain pasta or wash veggies and fruit.
  • Cutting Board- A big good solid cutting board so you can prep all your veggies on one surface.  I use my cutting board daily so it’s worth the investment. 
  • Quality Knives- Quality knives make prep time much quicker and are important for safety as well.  If you make one kitchen investment, I believe it should be in quality knives. 


With love from our simple kitchen to yours. 

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Check out more of our favorite pasta salad recipes: 

Cuban Pasta Salad
Yield: 8

Cuban Pasta Salad with Mojo Dressing

Your favorite Cubano Sandwich turned into mouthwatering Cuban Salad with Mojo Dressing! This flavor bursting salad is loaded with fixings but is super simple to prepare. It will be the in-demand pasta salad recipe at all your summer potlucks!
prep time: 25 minscook time: 10 minstotal time: 35 mins


Pasta Salad
  • 20 oz. cheese tortellini 
  • 8 oz.  1/2-3/4" cubes pork roast (or cooked pork top loin)
  • 8 oz.  cubes honey glazed ham
  • 4 oz.  1/2-3/4" cubes salami or chopped sliced salami
  • 6 oz.  1/2-3/4" cubes Swiss cheese 
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2/3 cup chopped dill pickles
  • 3 tablespoons chopped pickled jalapenos (or more to taste)
  • 1/4 of a small red onion, thinly sliced 
  • 2 cups packed roughly chopped romaine lettuce
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
Mojo Dressing
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • Juice and zest of one lime
  • Juice and zest of one lemon
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2/3 cup canola oil


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook tortellini according to directions on the package.  Drain and add to a large serving bowl. 
  2. Combine dressing ingredients in a pint size mason jar. Seal and shake vigorously. Pour half of the dressing over the warm pasta and toss to combine.
  3. Add the remaining salad ingredients to the bowl EXCEPT romaine lettuce and toss until well coated.  Chill in the refrigerator at least one hour.  When ready to serve, add romaine and remaining dressing and toss to combine.

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  1. I love Cuban sandwiches and I am sure I will love this Cuban Sandwich Pasta Salad. I am going to make this soon. Thank you for sharing.

  2. Do you have any recommendations for good substitutions for the pork. Unfortunately I have an allergy but this sounds amazing

    1. I omit it and used turkey lunch meat instead.


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