Lemon Tarragon Pasta Salad – Perfect for Showers

Share on FacebookGoogle+Pin on PinterestEmail to someone

lemon tarragon pasta salad

This salad belongs at every single shower ever held. It is quintessential shower food. It is the definition of shower.

I had this salad at a baby shower (the one these cookies came from) and I loved it. I’m generally not a pasta salad fan. But this stuff was divine. I got the recipe and have since served it at showers and recommended others serve it at showers.

lemon tarragon pasta salad

It is great no matter what time of day. Having a mid morning shower? The lemon keeps this feeling light. Having an afternoon shower? Pasta is perfect for lunch. Having an evening shower? The chicken makes it filling.

Also can we just talk about tarragon? Or course, I’ve heard of the stuff. I thought I knew what it was all about. That was before I bought a package of fresh tarragon and smelled it. Oh my good gravy! It is my new favorite herb and I will be planting it in the herb garden lickity split. It has an anise/licorice-y smell. Not what I was expecting. It pairs amazingly well with the lemon.

This salad is similar to a salad at a local deli called Plates and Palates. It comes with almonds, but I usually don’t recommend nuts at gatherings where allergies may be an issue. But at home, go for it.

This will seem like a lot of mayonnaise, but the pasta really soaks it up, so keep the faith. You can add it in stages if you get nervous.

Just so you know, those are grapes, not olives. My husband was very put off by the idea of olives in the salad. (I love them, he doesn’t.) We got a bad batch of green grapes the last time I purchased them and I couldn’t bring myself to getting more green grapes. I had to go with purple. Go with whatever color you want as long as they are seedless. And it is wise not to add the grapes until just before serving. They tend to get a little mushy.

I demand you make this for the next shower you host. Or even before.

Lemon Tarragon Pasta Salad

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Yield: About 8-10 cups


  • 1 lb bowtie pasta, cooked according to directions, then drained, rinsed with cold water and drained again
  • 1 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallot
  • 2 lemons, zested and juiced
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2+ tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon (save a few whole leaves for garnish)
  • 1 cup thinly sliced celery
  • 1 cup halved or quartered grapes
  • 2/3 cup chopped green onion
  • 2 cups chopped roasted or grilled chicken breast (I use a Costco roasted chicken)
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds (optional)


  1. While the pasta is cooking, make the dressing.
  2. Whisk together the mayonnaise, shallot, lemon zest and juice, sugar, salt and tarragon leaves.
  3. When the pasta has cooled, gently toss together the pasta, celery, green onion and cubed chicken breast. Drizzle with dressing and gently stir until it even coats the salad. Let sit for 20 minutes or up to 2 hours for best flavor.
  4. Immediately before serving, gently fold in the grapes.
  5. Garnish with slivered almonds (optional) and a few whole tarragon leaves.
  6. Gently fold in gapes be

Recipe source: The Crafting Chicks (Their recipe was missing some key ingredients -like grapes- and I changed up the quantities.)

Share on FacebookGoogle+Pin on PinterestEmail to someone


  1. mom says

    I can vouch for tarragon. I can vouch for the very yummy and delicious salad, but there were no grapes in the original recipe. I feel hoodwinked!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>