Ontario Asparagus and Chicken Pasta Salad with Zesty Dressing

Use hot or mild salsa for the preferred "heat" level when dressing this main-course salad. Serve it hot, cold or at room temperature for busy-night family dinners or as part of a buffet meal. Brown-bag any leftovers for office or school lunches.

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Servings: 4

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  • 6 oz (175 g) dried penne pasta
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb (500 g) Ontario Asparagus, trimmed and cut in 1-inch (2.5 cm) pieces
  • 12 oz (375 g) boneless skinless Ontario Chicken, cut in 1-inch (2.5 cm) pieces
  • 1 large Ontario Portobello Mushroom cut in 1-inch (2.5 cm) chunks
  • 2 tbsp (25 mL) each olive oil and red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) salsa
  • 2 tbsp (25 mL) chopped fresh parsley
  • Salt and pepper


In large saucepan with at least 12 cups (3 L) of boiling salted water, cook penne for 5 minutes. Add garlic, asparagus, chicken and mushroom; return to slow boil. Reduce heat and simmer gently for 5 minutes or until chicken is cooked and penne and asparagus are just tender. Drain. Add oil and vinegar; toss well to coat. Add salsa and parsley; toss gently. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Nutritional information

  • Protein: 33.0 grams
  • Fat: 9.0 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 40.0 grams
  • Calories: 373