clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
healthy macaroni salad

Healthy Macaroni Salad

  • Author: Liz Thomson
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Chill Time: 2 hours
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 cups 1x
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian


This healthy macaroni salad recipe is packed with fresh veggies, chickpea pasta, and a high-protein dressing that makes this side dish super creamy! This satisfying dish is low in calories and high in flavor, perfect for your next cookout!


Units Scale
  • 8oz chickpea pasta or whole wheat pasta
  • 1/2 cup cottage cheese (low-fat is fine)
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 2 ribs of celery, minced
  • 2 medium carrots, shredded
  • Salt to taste (adjust based on the saltiness of your cottage cheese)
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper


  1. If using chickpea pasta, cook the pasta according to the package directions. If using regular pasta or whole wheat pasta, cook the pasta up to one minute past al dente.
  2. Blend the cottage cheese, mayonnaise, vinegar, salt, and pepper, using an immersion blender until the mixture is completely smooth with no lumps. (See note for blending tips.)
  3. Combine the cooked pasta, celery, carrots, and dressing. Stir until combined.

  4. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.


Make sure you blend the cottage cheese really well. I used an immersion blender because that is the easiest way to blend a small amount. Sometimes it’s hard to blend a small amount in a blender. It took about a minute of blending for it to be smooth and creamy. If you don’t have an immersion blender, I’d recommend blending a whole cup of cottage cheese, then dividing it in half. You can use one half in the dressing and save the other half for smoothies.

Keywords: healthy macaroni salad