Pesto Pasta with Shrimp and Asparagus


In case you haven’t noticed I reeeeealy love pasta! We have pasta of some sort at least once a week. You should see my pantry, about 1/3 of it is stocked with pasta and noodles. I mean not to be a hater but zoodles are an abomination! Okay, I’m only kidding. I can’t say that until I’ve actually tried them. Someday I’ll get there but I’m not quite ready yet :). What can I say? I love carbs. They make me full and therefor no longer hangry…or in other words they make me a kind and happy human.

Pesto Pasta with Asparagus and Shrimp | Cooking Classy

Todays pasta recipe is linguine with shrimp and asparagus and it’s tossed with a homemade basil and parsley pesto, and let me tell you it is oh so good! It is abundantly flavorful thanks to the fresh pesto and a bit of fresh lemon juice, plus you get those delicious and unique flavors from the fresh asparagus and shrimp. So far my family is 2 for 4 that like shrimp, one daughter and myself and I now I just need to get my husband and my other daughter to like it too. But for now I guess it just means more for me. Just like I used to be kind of annoyed by the fact that my husband didn’t like fresh tomatoes so he’d request his serving without, then I just realized once upon a time that that meant more tomatoes for me so there are no complaints there. We all have different taste buds but hopefully yours agree with me on this, this pasta dish is incredibly delicious! If you really don’t like shrimp, or if you don’t want to pay the higher price for it, feel free to replace the shrimp with chicken breasts diced into 1-inch cubes, then increase the cooking time by about 6 minutes (or until cooked through). 

Homemade Pesto | Cooking Classy Pesto Pasta with Shrimp and Asparagus | Cooking Classy Pesto Pasta with Shrimp and Asparagus | Cooking Classy Pesto Pasta with Shrimp and Asparagus | Cooking Classy


Pesto Pasta with Shrimp and Asparagus

Yield: 5 servings



  • 2 cups (55g) packed fresh basil leaves*
  • 1/2 cup (14g) slightly packed parsley leaves
  • 1/3 cup finely shredded parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tbsp pine nuts (toasted or untoasted)
  • 1 clove garlic , peeled
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 Tbsp olive oil


  • 12 oz dry linguine pasta
  • 1 lb asparagus , tough ends trimmed and discarded, remaining diced into 2-inch pieces and steamed
  • 1 lb medium shrimp , peeled and deveined
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice


For the pesto:

  1. To a food processor add basil, parsley, parmesan, pine nuts, garlic and season with salt and pepper to taste (I use 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper). Pulse until finely chopped, then with processor running slowly pour in olive oil and let run several seconds until it's well combined and smooth.
  2. For the pasta:
  3. Boil pasta in salted water according to directions on package, reserve 1/3 cup pasta water before draining. While pasta is cooking, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add shrimp, season with salt and pepper and cook, tossing occasionally until opaque throughout and outsides are pink, about 3 - 4 minutes. Pour lemon juice over shrimp and toss. Add pasta and asparagus to pan with shrimp and toss while seasoning with salt and pepper to taste. Let it cool for one minute (I just like to do this so it doesn't cook the pesto), and add the pesto and toss to coat, thin with reserved pasta water as desired. Serve immediately.
  4. *If you'd like your pesto be be a vibrant green that stays nicely green (which is what I used here) blanch the basil first, this is totally optional. If doing so drop the basil leaves in boiling water, boil only 5 seconds then immediately remove and transfer to an bowl filled with ice water. Let rest in ice water about 10 seconds then transfer to paper towels and gently dab dry, then add to food processor and proceed with pesto as directed.
  5. Recipe source: Cooking Classy


  • Vanessa: Would it be okay to not add the pine nuts? October 5, 2016 at 10:12pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Yes but I recommend adding walnuts instead – if you don’t have a nut allergy. Otherwise just omit them. October 6, 2016 at 11:04am Reply

  • Katie: Love this dish. What else would you serve with it? July 20, 2016 at 1:42pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Fresh crusty bread and good olive oil. July 20, 2016 at 1:51pm Reply

  • Jaime O: Had this for dinner tonight and it was delicious! Thanks for the fabulous recipe. I added lemon zest along with the juice and the flavors were awesome. May 4, 2016 at 6:46pm Reply

  • Leslie: This looks delicious – dinner tonight! April 24, 2016 at 1:56pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I hope you love it! April 25, 2016 at 12:17am Reply

  • anna: i love the combination of this dish…I will e it today… April 13, 2016 at 1:41pm Reply

  • Liz: I too really love pasta. Thanks for the nice recipe. April 13, 2016 at 8:33am Reply

  • Anne: Zoodles are a fun way to eat zucchini (or any other veggie that’s spiralized) but they are no substitute for pasta! Your recipe looks delicious and I can’t wait to try it! April 13, 2016 at 8:15am Reply

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