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Macaroni Salad with Tomatoes

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This lighter version of Macaroni Salad with tomatoes and black olives is the perfect side dish for any summer BBQ.

This lighter version of Macaroni Salad with tomatoes and black olives is the perfect side dish for any summer BBQ.
Macaroni Salad with Tomatoes

When the weather starts to warm up, you can find me outside, taking advantage of the sunshine. I especially love a good outdoor summer BBQ, and this creamy Macaroni Salad with Tomatoes is perfect for the occasion. It’ll definitely be a hit. Some other delicious macaroni salads that you should try are this Summer Macaroni Salad with Tomatoes and Zucchini, BLT Macaroni Salad, and Mayo-less Tuna Macaroni Salad.

This lighter version of Macaroni Salad with tomatoes and black olives is the perfect side dish for any summer BBQ.

This tomato macaroni salad recipe is my favorite way to make it. I use light mayonnaise and less of it than most recipes to cut calories. I don’t add any sugar, but I do add tomatoes, onions, and black olives for more nutrition. You can also use whole wheat pasta for more protein and fiber or gluten-free macaroni for a gluten-free salad.

Macaroni salad is great with any grilled meat topped with my homemade BBQ sauce. Some of my other favorite side dishes for BBQs are Lemon-Parsley Potato Foil Packets, Corn Tomato Avocado Salad, and Potato Salad with Apples.

This easy macaroni salad is excellent for parties. You can make it the day before to save time the day of your event. All you have to do is cook the pasta and then stir everything together. I usually mix the summer tomatoes in with the other ingredients in a bowl while the pasta cooks. The tomatoes release their juice and make the sauce creamy and saucy.

Should you rinse pasta before making macaroni salad?

Yes, it’s best to rinse hot pasta with cold water before making macaroni salad. Typically, if you’re eating your pasta cold, like in a pasta salad, you’ll want to rinse it with cold water right after it’s done cooking. The cold water stops the cooking process, cools off the pasta, and helps prevent the noodles from clumping together.

This lighter version of Macaroni Salad with tomatoes and black olives is the perfect side dish for any summer BBQ. pasta salad

More Pasta Salad Recipes You’ll Love:

Macaroni Salad with Tomatoes

4.95 from 18 votes
This lighter version of Macaroni Salad with tomatoes and black olives is the perfect side dish for any summer BBQ.
Course: Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
This lighter version of Macaroni Salad with tomatoes and black olives is the perfect side dish for any summer BBQ.
Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 25 mins
Yield: 7 servings
Serving Size: 3 /4 cup


  • 6 oz uncooked elbows, wheat or gluten-free
  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced
  • 1/4 red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup Hellmann's light mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar
  • dash garlic powder
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 2.5 oz sliced black olives
  • salt and pepper


  • Cook pasta in salted water according to package directions.
  • Drain and rinse under cold water.
  • In a medium bowl, combine mayonnaise, vinegar, tomatoes (and any juice from the tomato), olives, onion, garlic powder, oregano salt and pepper. Mix well.
    tomatoes, black plives and red onion in a bowl
  • Add elbows and mix well.
    tomatoes and mayo in a bowl

Last Step:

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Serving: 3 /4 cup, Calories: 125 kcal, Carbohydrates: 21.5 g, Protein: 3.5 g, Fat: 3.5 g, Saturated Fat: 0.5 g, Cholesterol: 2.5 mg, Sodium: 165.5 mg, Fiber: 1.5 g, Sugar: 0.5 g



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101 comments on “Macaroni Salad with Tomatoes”

  1. This was such a great side with bbq pork chops. I used chick pea cavatappi, and there was about 2 ounces over but I didn’t change anything and still thought the mayo coverage was perfect. I thought I had olives as I usually do since I love them. Almost didn’t make it when I discovered I didn’t, but I saw a recommendation to replace with roasted red peppers and that was an excellent idea!! I make a lot of bbq pork and chicken so will be using this as a side a lot! Also, the roasted parm green beans worked well to balance it all out.

  2. Made this today for the Labor Day weekend. This salad recipe is very good and yes lite. I added celery because I love the crunch. Used the last of my heirloom pear little tomatoes. Will make this again!

  3. I made the macaroni salad with tomatoes . It wasn’t your typical Mac sals but was  a delightful and refreshing change. The flavor improved after I refrigerated it for several hours as the sauce penetrated the noodles. 

  4. I just went to the farm and bought the first great summer tomatoes. I was hoping for a toasted tomato sandwich (with mayo); had no bread. I found this recipe; just made it and it is great! I didn’t use onions (I don’t like raw onions); I used a little apple cider vinegar. Everything else I used. It is SO GOOD. In the fridge and can’t wait for us to have it tonight.

  5. I’ve made many good pasta and macaroni salads before but none have been good enough to make again. I was about to buy some for a bbq but decided to try this one and I have no reason to make any other kind again. So much flavor and so easy to make. I don’t like black olives so my only change like others was red peppers instead. 

  6. made this. It was good. We had some leftover ahi tuna turned that into tuna fish to go on top..Perfect

  7. This salad is delicious and so easy to make. I’m not on WW but saw this recipe and knew we would love it. The red onion comes through so nicely. I added 1/2 diced red pepper as I needed to use it. I’ll definitely be making this again.

  8. Very easy to make. Great to have in the fridge for lunch or a quick side for dinner. Will be having it with some ribs tonight.

  9. Delish! Even my very picky husband loved it went back for seconds and thirds. We don’t like olives so I just added some extra salt, bell pepper and some cucumbers! Will deff make again! 

  10. That’s all I use in pasta salads….Way better than black olives as they have a lot more flavour 🙂 You will enjoy!

  11. Avatar photo

    I thought this was a little bland. I added cucumber. I’m glad I did. It was better the next day. It was quick to make. I will probably make it again.

  12. Avatar photo
    David R Campbell

    Made this today. It was excellent! Thanks for the recipe!

    My wife wants me to replace the olives with red peppers next time.

    BTW, my first time using Hellmann’s light mayonnaise. Loved it!!

  13. Avatar photo
    Sunny Drohan

    Just made this tonight. Followed recipe with the exception of: used Kalamata Olives(all I had)used Orecchiette pasta(had it in pantry)large cherry tomatoes on the vine(again what I had)used Dukes Mayo(all I use). Put in fridge to thicken up and add one slices scallion. Husband grilled burgers. 
    Great meal, great salad. Thanks. 

  14. Don’t skip the oregano! I am not a fan of oregano and was going to use another herb, but my family convinced me to try the recipe as it was written. I am so glad I did. The oregano adds the right note to it. This is such a simple, tasty recipe. I will definitely make this again!

  15. This salad looks amazing, olives are not a huge hit in my house, any substitute you can recommend, or others have tried?

  16. Hello,
    I put this recipe in my WW app to see if the points would be different using 150 Calorie Hy Vee white noodles. Could someone do the same and make sure I am doing it right? It came up same points I would rather have white noodles than whole wheat. Thanks