BLT Pasta Salad with Avocado

By Ann Fulton

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In recent weeks, I’ve heard from many readers who offered kind praise for my Mexican Street Corn Salad recipe. Many noted the big flavor punch delivered by the small amount of lime juice that’s added to the mayo.  The bright, fresh taste it delivers happens to be my favorite part of the salad, too.

In the following spin on what happens to be the favorite sandwich of every man in my family, another member of the citrus family steps up to the plate.  Here, lemon adds a zesty punch while thinning the mayo to the perfect dressing consistency.  The simple addition of dill and garlic powder creates a taste reminiscent of a homemade ranch dressing but with a fraction of the effort.

I’ve been using Tessemae’s mayonnaise all summer, although you can certainly use your go-to brand. After reading about it in this post, many people emailed me asking where they could buy.  If you are interested in trying, it may or may not be readily available in stores depending on where you live. If you’d like to check stores or order online, however, you can do so here.  The texture is ever-so-slightly different than the mayo I’ve used in the past, but my family really enjoys the flavor, and no one can tell a difference when mixed into our favorite salads.

BLT Pasta Salad with AvocadoI’ve made this recipe for potlucks, school picnics, and family dinners, and it’s always well received.  The recipe can easily be doubled to feed a crowd.

BLT Pasta Salad with Avocado
If you go heavy with the add-ins or simply like a liberal coating of dressing, feel free to double that portion of the recipe.

Yield: 4-6 servings
  • 6 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled or chopped*
  • 8 ounces rotini pasta or another short tubular or spiral pasta (use gluten-free pasta if needed)
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried dill
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon each kosher salt and several turns of the pepper mill
  • 1 cup halved cherry or grape tomatoes
  • 1 heart of romaine (may substitute 4 lightly packed cups baby spinach)
  • 1 avocado, pitted and diced
  1. In a large pot, cook the pasta according to the package directions. Drain, rinse with cold water to cool, and drain well again. Rinse the pot to cool, and then return the pasta to the pot. (Pasta may be prepared, tossed with a tablespoon of olive oil, and refrigerated until ready to use.)
  2. Meanwhile, combine the mayonnaise, lemon juice, dill, garlic powder, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Stir until smooth. (Dressing may be prepared in advance, covered, and refrigerated until ready to use.)
  3. To the cooled pasta, add the tomatoes and lettuce. Drizzle with about 3/4 of the dressing. Add the bacon and avocado, and toss to combine. Drizzle with more dressing, if desired, or reserve to add to any leftovers. The dressing also tastes great on steamed broccoli.
  • *For a mess-free way to cook bacon, line a baking sheet with foil and bake at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes, give or take, depending on thickness of bacon, individual oven, and how crisp you prefer your bacon to be cooked.  Remove to paper towels when finished. Alternatively, bacon may chopped and cooked in a skillet over medium heat until crisp.
  • ** If you plan on leftovers, you may wish to use the bacon and avocado as a topping rather than stirring into the salad. This will keep the bacon crisper and the avocado greener. Also, spinach will hold up a bit better overnight than romaine lettuce.
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The Fountain Avenue Kitchen

BLT Pasta Salad with AvocadoYour favorite mayo may be used, but Tessemae’s makes an all-natural alternative for those who may like to try.

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  1. Amin

    Oh wow this looks fabulous!! I’m always looking for new takes on classics, and this sounds perfect. My husband would just love it! Thanks!!!

  2. Mary Post author

    I made this for a family get-together over the weekend thinking it would be something that children and adults would likely enjoy. The bowl was scraped clean! I especially liked how the dressing tasted a lot like a good ranch dressing…but so easy. Will make again for sure!