Artichoke Pasta Salad (with Feta Cheese)

Artichoke Pasta Salad with Feta Cheese

 Artichoke Pasta Salad

How many meals are you making this weekend? I get all mixed up unless I plan out my meals and ingredients at holiday time. It is kind of like a list of meals board…if I don’t I get overwhelmed with all the cooking and company. . Then I can go to the market with my list and hopefully not forget anything.

 New Year’s Eve is one menu, New Years Day is another. It is hard to keep it all straight and not repeat anything you did on Christmas Eve or Christmas Brunch or Christmas night! No wonder us moms are all stressed out during the holidays! Geesh! 

I found this colorful “Wacky Mac” in the store last week. It looked
kind of festive so I bought it for our New Year’s Buffet.
Boil up the pasta in salted water…..Wacky Mac I mean….snicker….
Then drain and add your cut up veggies….I ran out of olives…so I didn’t include them
but this salad is better with the black olives….for sure! 

Salads have to be a little more special than normal, because, well……IT’S NEW YEARS!  Here is one that everybody loves no matter where I bring it.  


Green, yellow, OR  yellow bell pepper, diced (The colorful veggies make this salad so pretty!
cup artichoke hearts, drained, diced up into pieces
package FINELY crumbled feta cheese (about 1/2 cup)
cup pitted olives sliced in half 
1/2     cups of quartered and sliced celery or cucumber (for crunch)
3/4     cup chopped tomatoes or halved cherry tomatoes
3        cups cooked and drained pasta (9 oz) (bowtie, shell or rotini) or 1 bag
3/4     cup Greek vinaigrette with Feta Cheese (I like Gerrards-find at Target)
teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
A few shakes of Johnny’s seasoning to taste (find at Costco in a large bottle)
I usually buy my artichoke hearts from Costco because they are good quality and cheaper in the large jar.  I only use about half of this jar in one salad though. And you do have to cut them up into small chunks. The feta cheese is cheaper NOT in the quickie deli section. Look in the cream cheese section instead for a better price. 
I love these Girard’s salad dressings…they are not cheap, usually $3.99 on Sale! 
Girard's® Greek Feta Vinaigrette Dressing
Look for the Greek with Feta dressing (my favorite for this salad….)
Or if you have some good Italian like Kraft House Italian…that will do too in a pinch….
Boil the pasta ( I look for colorful pasta for holidays…sometimes in fun shapes too) but any kind will do, curly, shell, or ziti style or bowtie are all good. Then drain it. Add the sliced artichokes, chopped tomatoes, diced peppers and cucumber, celery, and olives. I cut my olives in half. Add a few cups of diced rotisserie chicken for a meal.
Then add the Feta Cheese to the Artichoke Pasta Salad…I pinch it all and crumble
it till it is as fine as cottage cheese…

Crumble the feta cheese over everything and then add the Greek dressing (it looks like an olive oil thick Italian with bits of cheese in it, kind of cloudy looking). A good brand of Greek dressing is hard to find.  Look for Girrards Greek and Feta Cheese or Trader Joe’s Greek Dressing or make your own. A good recipe is HERE at All Taste and shake a little seasoning salt over it.  Let it marinate in the fridge for a few hours before serving.
Use whatever color you want of the fresh peppers…I used red on this one..

Artichoke Pasta Salad…yummy! (Better with black olives…I didn’t have any on hand)
But trust me…It’s better WITH olives…and looks more Greek too….
Colorful and rich and Greek Artichoke & Feta Pasta Salad!  
It is delicious and you will get many compliments on it. It is just a little different from stuff everybody else brings to the New Year’s Party. It is the bomb for a juicy good side dish! 

Mango Green Apple Cole Slaw

I posted my first recipe on It is a cole slaw recipe and it is really sweet and good. I love it for a side dish when I’m making any kind of fish. It’s a little sweet and a little tart from the mango and green apple. So anyway, if you are sick of Christmas sweets like I am….(I’m lying….I’m eating a Chocolate covered cherry as I type this…try a chopped salad. Yum.
Crunchy Mango-Green Apple Coleslaw Recipe

Recipe for Mango Green Apple Cole Slaw


  • 1 small head of cabbage chopped up in small chunks.
  • 1 medium granny smith apple diced
  • 1 small,ripe mango diced
  • 1 chopped carrot (or 8 sliced mini carrots)not shredded
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds (long fat style)
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup wine or rice vinegar (both work well)
  • 1 1/2 T of lime or orange juice
  • dash of pepper
  • dash of Lawrys or salad seasoning to your taste


  1. Coursely chop up all the ingredients. Then in a small bowl whisk mayo, sugar, vinegar, lime or orange juice and seasonings to your taste. Pour over salad right before serving. For less calories use less of the dressing and it’s still yummy.

Easy Taco Salad

 I got this recipe from a friend of mine long ago. She was a very health conscious person and whenever a recipe called for ground beef, she would use ground turkey. That was the first time I’d ever tried ground turkey. It is great for this recipe because it is leaner, less fat to remove, and you can’t tell the difference too much in taste. 

So here is my recipe:
1 pound ground turkey fried up and drained, then mix with 1 taco seasoning packet, a little water, 
add in 1 small can green chili salsa or regular mild salsa. Simmer till reduced. 

Put together salad made up of…..
1 small head of iceberg or romaine lettuce chopped into bite size pieces
1 can of drained kidney beans
1-2 small cut up tomatoes
3/4 to 1 cup cheddar cheese grated
1 1/2 cups Doritos Nacho Cheese variety crushed into bite size pieces
black olives optional

Kraft Catalina Dressing (pour over just before serving to taste, about 1/2 cup) It is just as good with the reduced calorie variety of dressing. 

kidney beans drained….

cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, I ran out of olives….OOPS! 

Taco meat…..leave this separated till right before mixing up the dressing or it wilts the lettuce…..

Easy ingredients for a yummy taco salad….

I’ve used both varieties….I can barely tell the difference…so go for the Low Cal! 

Yummy and pretty healthy too! Sometimes I add olives to it for more color, sometimes a diced avocado if I have one. Yummy! 

Perfect with a side of cornbread muffins! Yum!