Summer is many things to many people, but one thing most of us can agree on is that it is time for backyard parties, barbecues and pitch-ins.  Every year I tend to find one great recipe for bringing to parties and make it again and again, all summer long.  Now having made this tortellini salad with fresh summer veggies and browned butter I can say without a doubt, this will be my staple pitch-in item this year.

This is not the usual tired pasta salad drenched in bottled dressing.  This is pasta salad with a much needed, much deserved update.  It’s fresh, bright, and that magical browned butter that makes everything taste better certainly does its job well here.  The fresh chives are a perfect finishing touch and really bring the dish together, so don’t skip them.  Now, bring on the parties!

  • Yield about 10 servings


  • 20 oz. fresh cheese tortellini
  • 8 tbsp. butter
  • 1 pint cherry (or grape) tomatoes
  • 2 ears of corn, husked
  • ½ cup peas, fresh shelled or frozen and thawed
  • Small handful of chives, minced
  • Shaved Parmesan cheese, to taste
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  • 01

    Bring a large pot of water to boil.  Cook tortellini according to package directions.  Drain well and rinse briefly with cold water to stop cooking and cool the tortellini slightly.

  • 02

    Meanwhile, heat the butter in a small skillet over medium heat.  Let melt and continue to cook, swirling occasionally, until the butter is a deep golden brown color (be careful not to burn it).  Set aside to cool slightly.

  • 03

    Slice or quarter the cherry tomatoes.  Cut the corn kernels from the cobs.  In a large mixing bowl, combine the tortellini, tomatoes, corn, peas and browned butter.  Toss gently to combine.  Stir in the chives and shaved Parmesan.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.