Home » All Recipes » Salad Recipes » Salmon Pasta Salad

Salmon Pasta Salad

5 from 12 votes

Sometimes, recipes with the simplest ingredients shine the brightest, such is the case with this Salmon Pasta Salad. It’s creamy, refreshing, and filled with flavor. It’s also delightfully different – give it a try and impress everyone!

Salmon Pasta Salad in a bowl with lemon and cucumbers in the background.

This post may contain affiliate link(s). As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. See Disclosure.

Sweet, tender chunks of salmon infuse this hearty Salmon Pasta Salad with oodles of flavor. Add to that a creamy dressing, refreshing cucumber, and plenty of dill, and you’ve got a show-stopping salad made with under 10 ingredients.

There’s something so satisfying about this salad, and I’ve been making it for eons. This is one of the salads I made back when I had my deli/restaurant, and people would buy pounds and pounds of it.

The secret to this recipe is cucumber. It keeps the salad so fresh and moist, and it adds a subtle flavor that pairs so nicely with the salmon.

This is the perfect leftover salmon salad. I make a wee bit extra salmon with dinner the night before so that I have some extra on hand to make this tasty salad. It’s easy, tasty, and filling – try it, and I’m sure you’ll love it!

Salmon pasta salad in a black bowl with forks and plates nearby.

What you’ll love about Salmon Pasta Salad


  • It’s a great use of leftover salmon.
  • Easy to make, this pasta salad recipe is hearty and delish!
  • This salad is hearty enough to be an entree or side dish.

Ingredients

A Salmon Pasta Salad recipe with fewer than 10 ingredients? You bet!

  • Cucumber – Shredded on a box grater.
  • Orecchiette pasta – Al dente; cooked according to the directions on the box.
  • Leftover salmon – Flaked but left in sizeable chunks.
  • Mayonnaise
  • Sour cream
  • Fresh dill
  • Fresh parsley
  • Lemon – Fresh lemon juice.
  • Salt and pepper – To taste.
Labeled Salmon Pasta Salad ingredients.

How To Make The Best Salmon Pasta Recipe

  1. Shred the cucumber on a box grater and add it to a strainer. Liberally salt the cucumber – about 1 teaspoon of kosher salt – and mix it well. Let it rest for about 20 minutes to drain out some of the liquid.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the directions on the package. You want the orechiette to be al dente. Drain it and chill it under cold running water.
  3. Mix the drained pasta with sour cream, mayonnaise, and dill.
  4. Give the draining cucumber a gentle squeeze to remove a bit more liquid, and then add it to the pasta. Mix well.
  5. Add the salmon. Don’t over-mix the pasta to keep the salmon in nice, lovely chunks.
  6. Season and serve!
Draining the grated salmon.
Draining the salted cucumber.

Chef Jenn’s Tips

  • Don’t overcook the pasta, and chill it as soon as you drain it. Pasta salads have a better texture if the pasta is a bit more al dente.
  • Sour cream and mayonnaise together make a delicious dressing for pasta salads. The sour cream lends creaminess and tanginess that is especially good in this salad.
  • If your salad looks a bit dry (some sour cream has more moisture than others) you can add a few spoonfuls of water to make it nice and creamy.
  • Fresh dill and parsley really make this salad pop, and a wee bit of lemon really makes the flavors come together nicely.
  • Baked salmon is my first choice for this recipe, but grilled salmon or pan-fried salmon will also work.

Recommended

A closeup of rotisserie chicken pasta salad.
Rotisserie Chicken Pasta Salad
A closeup of Steakhouse Pasta Salad in a white bowl.
Steakhouse Pasta Salad
Deli Seafood Salad on a black plate with a slice of lemon.
Deli Seafood Salad

Can I Make Salmon Pasta Salad with Canned Salmon?

You can. Just be sure to drain the salmon very well, and you’ll need probably about 3 cans – depending on the size of the can – to get enough salmon.

Serving Suggestions

You can serve this easy Salmon Pasta Salad recipe with a hearty meal of grilled steaks or smoked pork, or just enjoy it on its own! It’s really quite versatile, and it makes a great snack or lunch at the office, too. Save room for some of this Watermelon Smash Cake!

Storage

Store any leftover salad in an airtight container in the fridge for 1-2 days or less if your salmon has already been in the fridge for a day or two.

Salmon Pasta Salad in a bowl with lemon and cucumbers in the background.
Print Pin
5 from 12 votes

Salmon Pasta Salad

Creamy and herby and loaded with salmon, this easy and tasty Salmon Pasta Salad is perfect with leftover salmon. Hearty enough to be a meal on its own, it's a great summer salad or whenever you're in the mood for salmon!
Course Main Course, Salad
Cuisine American
Keyword cucumber, pasta salad, salmon, salmon pasta salad, salmon salad
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 253kcal
Author Chef Jenn

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces orecchiette cooked to al dente, drained, and chilled
  • 8 ounces cooked salmon grilled, baked, or pan-fried
  • 2 cups grated cucumber from 1 large English cucumber
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup chopped dill
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Shred the cucumber on a box grater and add it to a strainer. Liberally salt the cucumber – about 1 teaspoon of kosher salt – and mix it well. Let it rest for about 20 minutes to drain out some of the liquid.
  • Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the directions on the package. You want the orechiette to be al dente. Drain it and chill it under cold running water.
  • Mix the pasta with sour cream, mayonnaise, dill, and parsley.
  • Give the draining cucumber a gentle squeeze to remove a bit more liquid, and then add it to the pasta. Mix well.
  • Add the salmon. Don't over-mix the pasta to keep the salmon in nice, lovely chunks.
  • Season and serve!

Notes

Chef Jenn’s Tips

  • Don’t overcook the pasta, and chill it as soon as you drain it. Pasta salads have a better texture if the pasta is a bit more al dente.
  • Sour cream and mayonnaise together make a delicious dressing for pasta salads. The sour cream lends creaminess and tanginess that is especially good in this salad.
  • If your salad looks a bit dry (some sour cream has more moisture than others) you can add a few spoonfuls of water to make it nice and creamy.
  • Fresh dill really makes this salad pop and a wee bit of lemon really makes the flavors come together nicely.
  • Baked salmon is my first choice for this recipe, but grilled salmon or pan-fried salmon will also work.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.5cup | Calories: 253kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 27mg | Sodium: 65mg | Potassium: 293mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 330IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 35mg | Iron: 1mg

A Note on Nutritional Information

Nutritional information for this recipe is provided as a courtesy and is calculated based on available online ingredient information. It is only an approximate value. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site cannot be guaranteed.

Want More Delicious and Easy Recipes?

By Chef Jenn