Skip to Content

BBQ Ranch Pasta Salad

Thanks for sharing!

This pasta salad has it all, BBQ, ranch, tomatoes, avocados, corn and more! It’s perfect for picnics, BBQs, potlucks and more!

serving bowl filled with pasta salad drizzled with bbq sauce

Macaroni salad is a summertime must.  It is a great make ahead dish so all you have to do is pull it out and serve it when it’s time to eat. This version is loaded with taste and texture. 

There is the ranch and bbq sauce of course, but also veggies and that wonderful pasta. Top it with a drizzle of BBQ sauce and a few fresh herbs for a pop of extra flavor.

Summer is definitely in full swing around here! The heat and humidity are up, sure, but that’s not what I’m talking about. Nope, I’m talking about BBQs and picnics!

Summer just begs for a few of each. Maybe I should change that to quite a few in our case!

Whether that means spreading a blanket under the tree in the backyard to eat a sandwich and piece of fruit or something more sophisticated that requires a basket and some travel, it is all fun!

I batted around the idea of putting together a fun sandwich or wrap, but couldn’t find the inspiration for something fun and new. In reality, I basically never eat sandwiches unless it’s the occasional grilled cheese and those aren’t very picnic-y.

My husband eats sandwiches almost every day, by I wouldn’t consider his ham, cheese, mustard and mayo on white bread very earth-shattering!

So I moved on to what I’ve been really loving lately, a picnic salad! I have definitely had a thing for them these past couple of years.

For a little while I made a bunch of quinoa salads, the caprese quinoa salad  was our favorite. Of course I love our deviled egg potato salad and grape orzo salad is always a fun one too.

bowl of bbq macaroni salad ready to eat.

But this week I was in the mood for a delicious pasta salad. It is amazing how many ways you can switch up a salad like this.

There’s the simple and classic versions with Italian dressing, creamier mayo and egg based salads and fun twists like BLT pasta salad.

But this time I thought I’d use some of our favorite classic summer flavors. That’s right, BBQ, ranch, tomatoes and corn. Doesn’t that sound like summer already?

I made ours as a side dish, but you could add some chicken and make it the whole meal if you’d like. Take a big bowl to a potluck and watch it disappear or spoon it into jars as an easy carry along to a picnic.

You can use ranch seasoning from a packet or make your own seasoning mix and adjust the amount to your flavor preferences.  I wanted it to have a noticeable ranch flavor without it kicking you in the face, you may choose to add a little more depending on your taste.

looking across a pile of pasta salad.

While this salad is the prettiest and freshest the first day, it does keep rather well. We ate it as a side dish on Sunday and then I brought some to work for lunch the next several days along with some greens. A few days in the avocados start to oxidize, but it still tastes great!

So break out your pick-i-nick baskets and throw together this salad. You might as well head out and soak in some of this sunshine!

Yield: 12 Servings

BBQ Ranch Pasta Salad

Bowl of pasta salad with swirly pasta, a ranch dressing, black beans and corn topped with herbs and a drizzle of bbq sauce.

This pasta salad has it all, BBQ, ranch, tomatoes, avocados, corn and more! It’s perfect for picnics, BBQs, potlucks and more!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes


  • 1 lb pasta, cooked according to directions and drained
  • 15 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup corn, frozen or fresh
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 avocado, cubed
  • 1 cup tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup BBQ sauce (plus more for garnish)
  • 3 teaspoons ranch seasoning
  • optional fresh herbs (parsley, cilantro, chives, green onions etc.)


  1. Stir together ranch seasoning, sour cream and BBQ sauce in a large bowl.
  2. Add cooked, drained and cooled pasta. Stir to coat.
  3. Add cheese and chopped vegetables except for the avocado. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  4. When you are ready to serve, dice avocado and stir into pasta salad.
  5. Garnish with additional BBQ sauce and fresh herbs if desired.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 224Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 21mgSodium: 336mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 5gSugar: 4gProtein: 8g

All nutritional information is estimated and will depend on the exact ingredients you use.

Did you make this recipe?

I'd love to see it! Share a picture on Instagram or Pinterest and tag me @carleecooks to let me know how it went!

This pasta salad has it all, BBQ, ranch, tomatoes, avocados, corn and more! It’s perfect for picnics, BBQs, potlucks and more!

Thanks for sharing!

Big Rigs 'n Lil' Cookies

Wednesday 26th of July 2017

Yes please! I've been on a real kick lately with BBQ sauce, so I need to try this. This could be the pasta salad to rock my summer!


Wednesday 26th of July 2017

I never used to like BBQ sauce, but now it is a staple! I hope you love it!


Friday 21st of July 2017

I admit I'm not a huge fan of pasta salads myself, but they are great for taking on a picnic or to a potluck.


Sunday 23rd of July 2017

My husband really isn't a pasta salad fan either. He usually will suffer through it once and I'll stir in some extra veggies or beans and take it for lunch until it's gone. He actually volunteered to eat this one a second time later in the week!


Tuesday 18th of July 2017

Love all of these flavors, especially mixing together BBQ and ranch! Genius!


Friday 21st of July 2017

Thank you so much!


Sunday 16th of July 2017

This sounds really good! I love pasta salad and a BBQ Ranch version sounds super tasty!


Tuesday 18th of July 2017

Thank you, Heather!


Sunday 16th of July 2017

This sounds amazing! My hubby loves anything BBQ! He will love it!


Tuesday 18th of July 2017

I never liked BBQ sauce growing up, but now I can't get enough! I hope your hubby enjoys it!

Skip to Recipe