Bacon and Avocado Macaroni Salad


A simple macaroni salad loaded with fresh avocado and applewood smoked bacon tossed in a lemon-thyme dressing – the best macaroni salad I’ve ever had!

Bacon and Avocado Macaroni Salad - Loaded with fresh avocado and applewood smoked bacon tossed in a lemon-thyme dressing!

When Fresh & Easy started opening up around town, I honestly didn’t know what to think of it. I already had my grocery routine down, starting my Saturday morning grocery store errands at Trader Joe’s and then finishing up at my local grocery store. But surprisingly enough, I could find everything that I needed right at Fresh & Easy, saving me from an extra grocery store trip. Plus, their prices are very comparable to Trader Joe’s (if not cheaper), there are no lines to the cash register and they always have these weekly $5 off coupons (expires 7/7).

Bacon and Avocado Macaroni Salad - Loaded with fresh avocado and applewood smoked bacon tossed in a lemon-thyme dressing!

So with my most recent Fresh & Easy shopping adventure, I stocked up on some elbow macaroni pasta, bacon, avocado, fresh thyme and a bag of lemons in hopes of making an out-of-this-world-type macaroni salad. And boy, was I in for a treat.

This simple macaroni salad of just three main ingredients comes together so beautifully as they get tossed in an incredibly creamy lemon-thyme dressing. It has such a wonderful burst of fresh flavors with just enough savoriness from the fatty, crisp, salty bacon. It’s become my most favorite summer picnic recipes yet!

Bacon and Avocado Macaroni Salad - Loaded with fresh avocado and applewood smoked bacon tossed in a lemon-thyme dressing!

Bacon and Avocado Macaroni Salad

Loaded with fresh avocado and applewood smoked bacon tossed in a lemon-thyme dressing!

Ingredients:

  • 12 ounces elbows pasta
  • 5 slices bacon, diced
  • 2 avocados, halved, seeded, peeled and diced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, for garnish

For the lemon thyme dressing

  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/3 cup olive oil

Directions:

  1. To make the dressing, combine mayonnaise, lemon juice, lemon zest, sugar and thyme in the bowl of a food processor; season with salt and pepper, to taste. With the motor running, add the olive oil in a slow stream until emulsified; set aside.
  2. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; drain well.
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add bacon and cook until brown and crispy, about 6-8 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.
  4. In a large bowl, combine pasta, bacon, avocado, lemon-thyme dressing, salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Serve immediately, garnished with thyme.

Adapted from The Cozy Apron.

Disclosure: I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.