Za’atar Marinated Pasta & Chicken Salad

A flavorful and fresh pasta salad that comes together in minutes.

2-3 servings

Time: 35 mins

By Ethan Chlebowski

Dressing a protein with a flavorful marinade after cooking is faster and more effective than soaking it for hours beforehand. Learn more about this seasoning technique in the original video.

Ethan Chlebowski

Ethan Chlebowski



  • Chicken

    • chicken breasts
      225 g1/2 lb
    • salt
      a sprinkle
    • cooking oil
      a drizzle
  • Za’atar Marinade Dressing

    • olive oil
      50 g
    • vinegar
      , of choice
      50 g
    • za'atar
      10 g2 spoonfuls
    • dried oregano
      5 g a spoonful
    • red pepper flakes
      , 3 g
      1/2 spoonful
  • Pasta Salad Components

    • short pasta of choice
      112 g1 part
    • chickpeas
      , drained
      75 g1/2 part
    • parmesan
      , shaved
      30 g1/4 part
    • arugula
      30 g1/4 part
    • tomatoes
      , chopped
      30 g1/4 part
    • red onions
      , thinly sliced
      15 g1/8 part
    • pepperoncini peppers
      , chopped
      15 g1/8 part


Step 1: Boil the pasta

the pasta according to package directions (in salted water). While the pasta cooks, make the chicken or prep other ingredients.

Step 2: Sear the chicken

First, thin out the chicken breast(s) with a knife so it cooks more evenly and quickly. You can either butterfly it into one thinner piece, or slice it horizontally into two thinner pieces.

Once thinned out, add a sprinkle of salt to both sides of each piece (optionally you can let this rest in the fridge overnight to dry ).

Add a drizzle of oil to a pan or griddle on high heat and the chicken pieces on each side until cooked through.

  • Pull the chicken breast off the heat when the internal temp hits 155°F/68°C (so it doesn’t dry out). Let it rest before slicing up to maintain moisture, during which you can mix the sauce.

Step 3: Mix the dressing

Combine all za’atar marinade dressing ingredients in a bowl. If you haven’t already, drain the pasta and gather or prep any remaining ingredients.

Step 4: Combine & finish

Dice up the cooked chicken and add it to a large mixing bowl. Add the drained pasta followed by all of the remaining pasta salad components.

Slowly add in the marinade dressing while tossing everything together. Taste and add more dressing until it has reached your desired seasoning and sauce consistency. Adjust with salt or extra ingredients or spices as needed.

Serve warm or cold.



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