Summertime Protein Power

By Gina Caputo

Summertime Protein Power

I didn't intend to make this a One Bowl Wonder post but it go so much action on Instagram that I'm putting it here after all! It's a lot like the Picnic Pasta Salad that's already on here but has the added bonus of more vegetarian protein!


  • 1 8 oz. box of Banza chickpea pasta shells
  • 1 15 oz. can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans) rinsed thoroughly
  • 1/2 pint of cherry tomatoes, washed and halved vertically
  • 1 8oz tub of mozzarella balls – perline size if you can find or slice cilegine in half
  • 2-3 ears of corn, flash-boiled and then cut off the cob
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 5 big handfuls of arugula
  • 1 bunch basil, chiffonaded 
  • Balsamic vinaigrette 
  • Sea salt & pepper


  1. Prepare the pasta per package directions
  2. Meanwhile, flash-boil the corn and cut off the cobs. Vertically slice the tomatoes and dice the avocado then sprinkle with pinch of sea salt.
  3. Chiffonade the basil and prepare the balsamic vinaigrette.
  4. Drain the protein pasta when it is done and let it cool. You can do a quick rinse in cold water to speed that up before it gets stuck together. Drain completely.
  5. Place in a large festive bowl and add the chickpeas, corn, tomatoes, arugula and mozzarella balls. Drizzle balsamic vinaigrette and toss well. Start conservatively with your dressing, remember you can always add more but can’t take away.
  6. Once it is coated to your liking. Add the avocado and chiffonaded basil and toss gently to combine. Note: if you add the avocado earlier, it will mush up when you toss the salad.
  7. Check your salt and fresh cracked pepper and adjust to your liking!