The Lazy Lady’s Guide to Surviving Without Takeout: Vaguely Greek Pasta Salad

True confession time: I eat a lot of takeout. And it’s not because I don’t know how to cook, or because I’m a bad cook, it’s because I’m lazy. Really, truly, bone-deep lazy. It’s OK. I’ve made my peace with it.

The trouble is, not only am I lazy, but I’m kind of poor, too. And eating out all the time is freaking expensive. So, I’ve embarked on a journey of discovering things that I can make that are both satisfying enough that I don’t want to run out and order sushi afterwards, but also easy enough that I’ll actually make them. I’ve noticed that convenience is a big thing for me; I like to open the fridge, grab something, and just eat it right then and there. I’m not big on the process of preparation. I’ve discovered that things I can make a lot of and eat for a bunch of meals work pretty well for me. I tend not to get sick of stuff, so I can survive off of the same thing for two dinners and a lunch.

One of the dishes I’ve found that meets all of my criteria is pasta salad. It’s especially good in the summer, when the last thing I want is a hot meal. I’ve made about a zillion variations of pasta salad, but this one is one of my favorites. It takes about 20 minutes to prepare, and I usually get a good couple of meals out of it.

PoM’s Vaguely Greek Lazy Pasta Salad

(All measurements are imprecise, because I’m lazy.)

  • Boil water. Dump in a box of tri-color rotini. Set timer for whatever the box tells you to.
  • While pasta is cooking, grill or pan-fry some chicken. I like Trader Joe’s frozen chicken breast tenderloins, because they’re small and cook quickly, and also because you can toss them into the pan straight from the freezer without defrosting. I usually use about 5 or 6 of these, which is probably equal to one chicken breast, maybe a little more.
  • When pasta is done, drain it and rinse with cold water. Pour into a big bowl; you need a little extra room for mixing.
  • Mix together: about a quarter cup of olive oil and a bunch of spices (Trader Joe comes through for me again– I use their 21 Seasoning Salute, which is just a bunch of different kinds of spices). Pour mixture over pasta and mix well.
  • Chop up some kalamata olives into small-ish bits (quarters, maybe?). I usually do about half a jar. I love olives.
  • Slice grape tomatoes (a pint? Is that how much those plastic containers are?) in half. Add olives and tomatoes to pasta, mix well.
  • Add about a cup (or more, if you’re me) of crumbled feta cheese. Mix well.
  • Once your chicken is cooked and cooled a little, cut into bite-sized pieces. Add to pasta, mix well.
  • Cover your bowl with Saran Wrap and stick it in the fridge.

8 replies on “The Lazy Lady’s Guide to Surviving Without Takeout: Vaguely Greek Pasta Salad”

My dad makes a vaguely Greek pasta salad that has grape tomatoes, kalamata olives, and feta with olive oil, but he uses ground lamb instead of chicken. (Also, we use the farfalle because bowties are cool.) It is one of the Mister’s favorite things that I make. Which is good because it’s super simple!

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