Our Easy Creamy, Smoky BBQ Pasta Salad makes the perfect side dish for any summer BBQ, Cookout, Potluck, or Picnic! Goes with everything and tastes Amazing!

Barbecue-Pasta-SaladI love pasta salad. It just seems to be the perfect food for warm weather eating. It reminds me of picnics and block parties and all the other wonderful gatherings of summer. I found this recipe a few years ago and instantly fell in love.

Barbecue pasta salad?!? Well, hello YUM! I have a couple other favorite pasta salad recipes but this is the one I like best when I’m making barbecue. What type of food goes more perfectly with a big batch of tender smoked ribs or barbecued chicken. Well, more barbecue of course! It might sound like barbecue flavor overload, but somehow, IMHO, it’s absolutely perfect!

5 from 1 vote

BBQ Pasta Salad

Our Easy Creamy, Smoky BBQ Pasta Salad makes the perfect side dish for any summer BBQ, Cookout, Potluck, or Picnic! Goes with everything and tastes Amazing!

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 12 Servings
Calories 261 kcal
Author kathleen


  • Salt
  • 16 Ounces Elbow Pasta
  • 1 Sweet Red Pepper Finely Chopped
  • 1 Rib Celery Finely Chopped
  • 6 Green Onions Thinly Sliced
  • 1 Small Red Onion Finely Chopped
  • 1 Small Bunch Fresh Cilantro Chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 Teaspoon Brown Sugar
  • 3 Teaspoons Dried Chili Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Dried Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Hot Sauce
  • 1 Cup Mayonnaise
  • 1/2 Cup BBQ Sauce


  1. Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot.  Add 1 tablespoon salt and pasta and cook pasta until just al dente.  Drain in a colander and rinse with cold water until cool, then drain again briefly, so the pasta remains somewhat moist; transfer to a large bowl.

  2. Stir in bell pepper, celery, green onions, red onion, cilantro, vinegar, brown sugar, chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, black pepper, and garlic powder.  Let sit a few minutes for flavors to absorb.

  3. Stir in hot sauce, mayo and BBQ sauce.  Check to season and adjust if necessary. Enjoy!

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Nutritional Information

Nutrition information will vary based on the specific products. To be safe, check the nutrition facts labels of your products. Optional object listed above have been left out of nutritional data.

Nutrition Facts
BBQ Pasta Salad
Amount Per Serving
Calories 261 Calories from Fat 45
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 5g 8%
Cholesterol 3mg 1%
Sodium 453mg 19%
Potassium 224mg 6%
Total Carbohydrates 45g 15%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Sugars 8g
Protein 6g 12%
Vitamin A 14%
Vitamin C 21.5%
Calcium 2.7%
Iron 5.5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

More Pasta Salad:

Italian Pasta Salad – is potluck and picnic ready! Surprise your friends with a peppadew and pepperoncini juice dressing over a tangy penne salad.

Tuna Pasta Salad– where the chicken of the sea meets the salad of Southern gatherings! You’re gonna want another serving of this fresh and creamy pasta mix.

Pasta Salad – This classic tri-colored spiral Pasta Salad is full of veggies, cheese, meat, and tons of flavor. The tangy vinaigrette coats every piece to perfection!

Pesto Pasta Salad – tops vegetables and bow-tie pasta in a creamy, dreamy pesto dressing – positively perfect ! Premade pesto makes this salad a snap to make!

Chicken Pasta Salad – This isn’t a plain-Jane pasta salad! Tangy, creamy, & full of chicken, veggies, & pasta, Chicken Pasta Salad feeds a crowd. They’ll be lined up for seconds!

Southern Macaroni Salad – Get ready for a blast from the past! This crazy creamy, sweet and tangy classic Southern Macaroni Salad is just like Grandma’s!

Source: Adapted From Cook’s Illustrated