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Quick and Easy Fettuccine With Pesto, Shrimp, and Scallops

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Shrimp, scallops and fettuccini with pesto sauce

Shrimp, scallops and fettuccini with pesto sauce

How to Make Shrimp and Scallop Pesto Pasta

If you are looking for a simple recipe that takes little time and yet offers great taste and nutrition, look no further; this fettuccine dish with pesto, shrimp, and scallops is about as easy as it gets! This type of meal should appeal to anyone who is in a hurry to prepare a nourishing meal with little fuss.

I have purposely not specified exact measurements in this recipe. Just adjust the amounts of each ingredient to suit your needs and preferences.

Instead of using shrimp and scallops, you can substitute other types of seafood. A fillet of fish would be equally good with this recipe. Use your own good judgment and taste preferences.

Raw shrimp

Raw shrimp


  • Shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Scallops
  • Fettuccini, cooked following package directions
  • Pesto, homemade or from a jar
  • Chives (optional)

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

15 min

20 min

35 min

Serves 2 (recipe can easily be increased)


  1. Cook the fettuccini per package instructions. Drain in a colander when finished cooking.
  2. While the fettuccine is cooking, grab a sauté pan and put a tablespoon or two (depending upon the size of the cooking utensil) of extra virgin olive oil and a pat of butter in the bottom and begin to heat to a medium-high.
  3. Dredge the shrimp and scallops in flour and pat off the extra between your hands. Place the seafood into the pan when the oil and butter are melted and beginning to sizzle. Sauté for two minutes before turning to the other side. Sauté another 1 1/2 minutes or until done adding salt and pepper to both sides of the seafood to taste. Hint...The shrimp turns pink when cooked. When nicely browned on both sides and cooked (this only takes a few minutes depending upon the size of your shrimp and scallops) take out of the pan and set aside covering with foil to keep warm.
  4. Combine the cooked fettuccini with a few tablespoons or more (just enough to nicely coat the noodles) of the pesto and toss together.
  5. Arrange the dressed fettuccini in the center of a warmed plate and space the cooked shrimp and scallops artistically around the perimeter of the plate with one in the center.
  6. Use fresh chives (if desired) to garnish the plate.
  7. Pair this with a fresh salad for a delicious complete meal.
  8. If you like wine, a nice chilled Sauvignon Blanc is an excellent accompaniment.

Photo Guide

Lightly floured shrimp and scallops in a saute pan with EVOO and one pat of butter.

Lightly floured shrimp and scallops in a saute pan with EVOO and one pat of butter.

Sauteing the shrimp and scallops on the second side.

Sauteing the shrimp and scallops on the second side.

Homemade Pesto Recipe

  • 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan Reggiano, grated
  • 1/2 to 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 to1/3 cup pine nuts or walnuts
  • 2 to 3 peeled garlic cloves
  • Salt and pepper

Combine all of these ingredients in a food processor until smooth and blended. Makes approximately 1 cup of pesto.

Homemade Pesto Suggestions

Pesto sauce is so easy to prepare ahead of time and freeze. Just put a little extra virgin olive oil over the pesto when freezing it, and it will retain its bright green coloration as well as flavor when thawed later on to be used in many different recipes. I also put a little plastic wrap over the top of the oil before refrigerating or freezing it.

Another way to preserve homemade pesto is to freeze it in ice cube trays. When thoroughly chilled, wrap each piece in plastic wrap and place it into another freezer-duty plastic bag. Then when you wish for just a bit of pesto flavor, you can thaw what you think you might need for the dish you are preparing.

You can easily alter this pesto recipe as I did in this particular instance. My basil plants in the garden were coming to an end, and I did not have quite enough for the recipe, so I substituted some fresh spinach leaves instead of using all basil. The flavor is not quite as intense, but it is still delicious. Walnuts are also a good and less expensive substitute for the pine nuts. I think I also threw a bit of parsley into my homemade pesto combination. Don't be afraid to make substitutions with this basic pesto recipe.

© 2012 Peggy Woods