Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad

Prep 15 mins
Cook 15 mins
Total 30 mins
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This Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad recipe is quick, easy and totally delicious. Creamy pasta salad with cheddar cheese, bacon, peas & ranch seasoning all tossed together for a great potluck dish!

A Creamy Homemade Pasta Salad Recipe – With Bacon!

This Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad is going to be your new favorite side dish to take to a party, a potluck, a bbq…or to eat all all alone. It’s seriously just that good. If I make it ahead for a party, I can’t stop sneaking bites!

I have made a good handful of pasta salad recipes over the years and this one might win the title for my favorite pasta salad, ever.

The only one that makes me question the title is Kerri’s Tuna Pasta Salad. Cause that’s the bomb.com too.

Pasta salad close up photo in a bowl.

They have some similarities, and a few differences, but both are extra delicious. This Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad might have a little edge on the tuna salad because it is loaded with bacon and ranch seasoning. You know, only two of the best flavors…ever.

Ellie and Lyla have grown ever more picky lately and I can only assume it’s because they are coming closer and closer to the dreaded three’s. When they were about a year old and younger, they ate almost everything and anything. That said, I was incredibly excited to watch them gobble down this homemade pasta salad.

Crispy fried bacon on parchment paper

Recipe Ingredients

Obviously, there are three can’t miss ingredients right in the name. Bacon, Ranch and Pasta. 

Bacon: you want fresh crispy bacon that is pan fried or bacon cooked in the oven. Drain and crumble it.

Pasta: Elbows, rigatoni, shells, bow tie, or campanelle, it’s all good! 

Ranch: head to the salad dressing aisle and grab the package of the dry ranch dressing mix. 

There are a few more ingredients that add a ton of flavor, peas, cheddar cheese, sour cream and mayo. 

If you want, you can also add a little actual ranch dressing, but I find it’s not needed. 

Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad in a bowl with bacon, cheese and peas.

Make Ahead or Fresh?

This Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad is best within a couple hours of making it, in my opinion. However, some of my girlfriends make this and their families prefer it the next day! 

If you make it the day before, the pasta will soak up more of the liquid and flavors. So if you are making it ahead, you will want to add additional sour cream, mayo or ranch dressing before serving. 

It’s really all about personal preference, both ways are good!

Up close image of bacon ranch pasta salad with cheese.

I hope you enjoy this pasta salad as much as my family does! It’s one of those recipes we make over and over.

This pasta salad has traveled with us to many a family get together and is always one of the first to go. 

It is the perfect dish to bring to a potluck or bbq, is super easy to make and has a ton of flavor.

Yield: 10 servings

Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad Recipe

Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad: a quick, easy and creamy pasta salad with cheddar cheese, bacon, peas and ranch seasoning all tossed together for a great potluck dish!

Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad: a quick, easy & creamy pasta salad with cheddar cheese, bacon, peas & ranch seasoning all tossed together for a great potluck dish!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 (16 oz) box elbow noodles
  • 1 (1 oz) package hidden valley ranch dip seasoning mix
  • 1 (16 oz) container sour cream
  • 1/3 cup mayo
  • 1 (16 oz) block cheddar cheese (sharp or mild), cubed
  • 1 (10 oz) bag frozen peas, thawed
  • 8 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

  1. Boil pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse with cold water, stir so they don’t stick. Let cool while you prep the rest.
  2. Mix the ranch seasoning, sour cream and mayo together until well combined.
  3. Place pasta in a large bowl. Mix together with ranch mixture.
  4. Toss in cheese, peas and bacon. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Serve immediately or store in an airtight container until ready to serve.

Notes

If you make this Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad ahead, know that it might suck up some of the sauce over time, so you can add a little more sour cream, mayo or regular ranch dressing if needed.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

10 servings

Serving Size:

1 serving

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 139Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 16mgSodium: 307mgCarbohydrates: 5gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 5g

Categories

Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad: a quick, easy & creamy pasta salad with cheddar cheese, bacon, peas & ranch seasoning all tossed together! #BaconRanchPastaSalad #PastaSalad #RanchPastaSalad #PotluckRecipes #PicnicRecipes #Recipe #PastaRecipe #Bacon

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Comments

70 Responses
  1. Jill

    I added shredded chicken along with the bacon to this salad. It did have good flavor, but I did increase the ranch seasoning to a packet and a half. I also added cracked pepper and some salt to taste. I found myself adding some olive oil and milk to mayo and sour cream mixture. It was a little stiff. I like the dressing on my pasta salads to be creamier.
    I think next time I would use more mayo in the recipe and less sour cream. Maybe even amounts of mayo and sour cream. Might help it to be creamier.
    But the flavor of the salad was good.
    I also added onion. Onion gives it an extra kick.

  2. SeattleGracie

    How come so many of you always have to comment or say that you made the recipe but added this or changed that or changed the entire recipe altogether?

    Just post your own recipes.

    I made this a few times last summer and again today and I actually only use 1/2 packet of the dry ranch dip which is absolutely perfect. How someone in a comment said this salad is too bland no flavor for her family, I completely disagree. Half a packet is plenty of the ranch dip. I’ll probably make it with 2 full packs of bacon the next time instead of an entire pack because bacon is what makes this salad so great and just 8 slices will never be enough for our liking. Such an easy and with hardly any ingredients salad.

    Absolutely delicious. I’m always looking for the super of easy recipes and this one is a definite keeper.

    Much appreciated by us at my house. Yum!

  3. Amy Forsyth

    Gonna make today or tomorrow and do my add in’s such as red onion, maybe green as well, plus chopped Roma tomatoes! Will probably double the bacon, bc, you can NEVER EVER, have too much bacon! Thanks for the recipe!

  4. Summer meals in August - A Net in Time

    […] The one I made thinking my hubby would be delighted with it… he was, as was my son.   Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad.   I did a herb garlic base and added 1/3 of a red pepper along with half a white onion.  Total […]

  5. Christine @ myblissfulmess

    This salad makes a lot and is PERFECT for a summer cookout! It’s easy and quick to make and is SO tasty! Leftovers did not dry out so that was a big plus so we could eat the leftovers with lunch the next day. I used light mayo and light sour cream and center-cut bacon to cut back on fat and calories. As usual, no one was the wiser! I also added chopped red onion to this salad to amp up the flavor. It was PERFECT!

  6. James Steele

    I’ve made this 3 times already!! Every time it get’s eaten so quickly. It’s a great one to have on hand during the week to fill in gaps when you forget to cook and need something savory. This hits the spot so everytime!

  7. Momi

    Can’t wait to try this. Recipe says hidden valley ranch dip mix (which is what I bought), but your comments say dressing mix. Does it matter?

  8. Erin N

    Absolutely love this, my daughter started eating the ranch dressing mix before I could put it in the salad lol. I was reading the nutrition info on your recipe and it states 1 serving but not how big the serving is. How would I find this out? I’m trying to count calories, thanks!

  9. Helen Joy

    You had me at Bacon-Ranch-Pasta, but I have 3 words as an option:
    SMOKED
    CHEDDAR
    CHEESE
    That is all!!! Great recipe 🙂
    Helen

  10. Jo P

    Very good at first bite. I added black olives and green onions with a small amount of red onion. I guess it’s the dried ranch dressing that makes it such a hit but very bright and tasty. Will definitely continue to make this particular pasta recipe

  11. Dee

    Love the recipe. Used Barilla pasta made from chickpeas and red lentils, helps with blood sugar spikes. Used 2 packets of HVR seasoning, Fiesta with the 16oz. sour cream and just a little extra milk for extra creaminess and also added a can of seasoned black beans, drained and rinsed and a small can of corn, drained, and peppered real bacon bits. Super Yummy!!

  12. Anne Li

    I quite liked the salad. I added some romaine lettuce instead of the peas to help absorb the sauce a bit more. I also used ranch and some seasonings instead of the dry sauce. It was very easy and quick! I loved the recipe!

  13. Suzanne Scriven

    As much as we love pasta, bacon, and Hidden Valley Ranch Dip, our family thought this macaroni salad was much too bland. Wouldn’t make it again.

    1. Sydne

      I added double the ranch packets. My family is heavy on the spice in everything I make. It made a difference adding extra ranch and extra salt and pepper.

  14. Nancy Z

    Made this for a sailing club potluck and it was a big hit. It was a big hit with me because I had the ingredients on hand.
    A few comments…I didn’t have HVR dressing mix, just a generic, and I’m sure HVR would have bolder flavors. I used shredded sharp cheddar rather than a cubed block cheddar and think cubed cheese would have added a bit more punch. Next time I think I will use a bit more mayo and a bit less sour cream. I also like the idea of adding a bit of chopped celery and onion for more crunch. Last, I’ve learned to add the bacon just before serving to keep it crispy.
    This recipe is definitely a keeper!

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Jessica
I'm a trial & error, self taught, sugar addict who thankfully learned how to survive in the kitchen! I am also a wife, mama of 3.
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