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Dill Pickle Vegan Pasta Salad with Bacon & Ranch

Pasta salad with bacon and ranch dressing in a bowl on a wire rack.

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Dill pickle vegan pasta salad with bacon and creamy ranch dressing is the ultimate big bowl of umami, sweet, sour, and irresistible pasta salad.


Units Scale
  • 1 batch vegan tofu bacon (about 1 1/2 cups bite-sized bacon bites)


  • 1 cup cashews, soaked
  • 1/4 cup dill pickle juice
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup plant milk
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup fresh dill, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh chives, chopped



  • 3 cups dry pasta shells, macaroni, or bow ties
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 2 stalks of celery, diced
  • 1/2 cup dill pickles, chopped



  1. Soak the cashews. Place the cashews in a small bowl and pour boiling water over them. Set them aside while you start the bacon.
  2. Make the bacon. Follow the instructions for making tofu bacon here. Once the bacon strips have cooled, cut them into bite-sized pieces.
  3. Blend the ranch dressing. While the bacon bakes, drain and rinse the cashews and place them in a blender. Add the dill pickle juice, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, plant milk, and garlic powder to a blender or food processor. Blend the ingredients until smooth. If the dressing is thick, add more plant milk.
  4. Add fresh herbs and pepper. Transfer the dressing to a bowl. Then add the chopped dill, chives, and ground black pepper. Mix well and set it aside.
  5. Cook the pasta. While finishing up the bacon, bring a large pot of water to boiling, then add the dry pasta. Cook the pasta until it is just tender. Immediately, drain it and rinse it.
  6. Mix pasta and dressing. Place the pasta in a large salad bowl, add a little more than half the dressing and mix them together.
  7. Finish the salad. Add the chopped onions, celery, cherry tomatoes, dill pickles, and bacon. Mix well, and then stir in the remaining dressing. Taste and add salt or more black pepper if desired. Serve chilled or at room temperature. 



  • The nutritional information is based on 6 main-dish servings.
  • Use dry, bite-sized, short pasta such as macaroni, bowtie, fusilli, farfalle, rotini, and penne. Aim for pasta with shapes that catch the dressing and small salad ingredients.
  • This recipe doesn’t specifically call for added salt. The bacon and celery both have a salty flavor. If you want to add salt, do this after mixing and tasting the salad.
  • Store leftover salad in an airtight container for 3 days. To serve, add a few drops of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar to spruce it up.
  • Not interested in making tofu bacon? Consider easy hemp seed bacon bits as a substitute.