Melon & Chicken Pasta Salad

May/June 2013

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Melon, prosciutto and dried cranberries pair well together in this chicken pasta salad recipe. Fresh grilled chicken breast is best, but you can save time by using roasted or grilled chicken from the supermarket. For the best flavor, combine the pasta salad with the dressing about 1 hour before serving.

about 1 1/3 cups

Melon & Chicken Pasta Salad

Makes: 6 servings

Serving Size: about 1 1/3 cups each

Active Time:

Total Time:



  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup low-fat mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon or 1 tablespoon dried
  • 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar

Pasta Salad

  • 8 ounces (about 3 cups) whole-wheat bowtie pasta
  • 2 cups cubed cantaloupe or honeydew melon
  • 2 cups thinly sliced baby spinach
  • 2 cups cubed or shredded cooked chicken
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup chopped prosciutto (about 3 ounces)
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste


  1. To prepare dressing: Mash garlic and salt in a medium bowl with the back of a spoon into a chunky paste. Add buttermilk, mayonnaise, tarragon and vinegar; whisk until combined.
  2. To prepare pasta salad: Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling water according to package directions. Drain, transfer to a large bowl and let cool. Add melon, spinach, chicken, cranberries, prosciutto, pepper and the dressing; toss to coat.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate, without dressing, for up to 1 day. Toss with the dressing about 1 hour before serving.


Per serving: 294 calories; 6 g fat (2 g sat, 1 g mono); 54 mg cholesterol; 38 g carbohydrates; 3 g added sugars; 25 g protein; 4 g fiber; 633 mg sodium; 400 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (57% daily value), Vitamin C (38% dv), Magnesium (15% dv)

Carbohydrate Servings: 2 1/2

Exchanges: 1 1/2 starch, 1/2 fruit, 2 1/2 lean meat, 1/2 fat

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Recipe Categories

Main Ingredient

July 4th
Ease of Preparation
Type of Dish
Main dish, meat
Total Time
45 minutes or less
May/June 2013
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