There is one green that I occasionally allow in my life.

Crispy Shrimp Pasta with Arugula Pesto Cream Sauce I

I actually really enjoy arugula. Well, as much as someone who doesn’t love veggies can like a green.


One of the first recipes I ever shared here was arugula and asiago pesto. When prepared this way, I adore arugula. I love it’s peppery flavor and the bite it gives to every dish. In fact, I might be able to eat more veggies if I throw some arugula pesto on them. I need to get on that.

Crispy Shrimp Pasta with Arugula Pesto Cream Sauce I

It had been far too long since I made a batch, and I knew exactly what I was going to do with it.


Ever since making the crispy shrimp tacos, I can’t get that crispy shrimp out of my mind. We’ve eaten it four times in the last week and a half because it is so delicious, and perhaps most importantly – easy and quick! It is quite flavorful too.

Crispy Shrimp Pasta with Arugula Pesto Cream Sauce I

So I cooked up the shrimp, boiled some pasta, threw on the pesto, and had a full meal in minutes. There are layers of flavor going on in that bowl. Just the way I like it.

Crispy Shrimp Pasta with Arugula Pesto Cream Sauce I

Oh… and instead of just regular pesto? I made it into a cream sauce. Because everything is better with cream. You can leave that part out. But why would you want to?


This is a very green dish for me! It doesn’t get much greener than this.

Crispy Shrimp Pasta with Arugula Pesto Cream Sauce I

Crispy Shrimp Pasta

serves 2-4

1 pound raw, deveined shrimp (tails removed)

2 tablespoons olive oil

3 tablespoons flour

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 pound whole wheat fettuccine (or pasta of choice)

Boil water for pasta and begin to cook according to directions.

Make sure shrimp is clean and completely dry. Combine salt, pepper, and garlic powder and sprinkle it over the shrimp. Add the flour to a small bowl, and dredge the shrimp through the flour to get a very light coating on it. Heat a skillet on medium high heat and add the olive oil. Once hot, add the shrimp and brown on each side, about 2-3 minutes per side. Drain cooked pasta and add pasta to the shrimp. Top with pesto. To serve, garnish with fresh parmesan.


Arugula Pesto Cream Sauce

1 6-ounce bag of arugula

1/3 cup asiago cheese (you can sub parmesan if you’d like)

1 garlic clove

1/4 cup olive oil + more if needed

salt and pepper to taste

1/4 cup heavy cream

In a food processor, combine garlic, arugula and cheese. Pulse until combined. Stream in olive oil one tablespoon at a time until the pesto becomes smooth. Taste and season with salt and pepper if desired. Add pesto to a large bowl and stir in cream, using a large spoon. Add to shrimp and pasta when ready.

Crispy Shrimp Pasta with Arugula Pesto Cream Sauce I

I’m counting this as fifty servings of veggies. That sounds fair.

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111 Responses to “Crispy Shrimp Pasta with Arugula Pesto Cream Sauce.”

  1. #
    Natalia - a side of simple — March 18, 2011 @ 11:49 am

    Um can we discuss how much I adore you? My mom was just asking me what she should do with the shrimp she planned on making for dinner since it’s Lent. You’re pretty magical is ALL I’m going to say…


    • Jessica — March 18th, 2011 @ 6:03 pm



  2. #
    Ashley — March 18, 2011 @ 11:58 am

    I can’t get over how GREEN this is….The finished pile of pasta looks perfect!


  3. #
    Kim in MD — March 18, 2011 @ 11:59 am

    YUM! This pasta looks delicious! I am so proud of you for eating your veggies! :-)


  4. #
    Lee @ RealLeeRunning — March 18, 2011 @ 12:38 pm

    This looks amazing! Maybe this will be my pre-national half marathon meal! Thanks for the idea!


  5. #
    Alexa — March 18, 2011 @ 1:06 pm

    Oooh arugula pesto?! I always make my own pesto, but I’ve never thought of arugula in it…sounds terrific!


  6. #
    Greta — March 18, 2011 @ 1:51 pm

    This looks amazing! I made something a similar pasta sauce last week (same color, different ingredients)


  7. #
    Nicole, RD — March 18, 2011 @ 2:00 pm

    That looks SO good! Was the arugula a bit bitter/spicy?


    • Jessica — March 18th, 2011 @ 6:02 pm

      Yes, that’s why I love it!


  8. #
    Michelle — March 18, 2011 @ 2:52 pm

    The green is so vibrant! A perfect spring recipe :-)


  9. #
    Ellie@fitforthesoul — March 18, 2011 @ 3:01 pm

    Wow I can tell this is something I’ll like most def. :D Haha, it reminds me of green monster covered pasta or something? :P


  10. #
    Kate — March 18, 2011 @ 3:40 pm

    That green color is a-mazing! So vibrant!


  11. #
    Jen — March 18, 2011 @ 3:59 pm

    You need to stop making me want EVERYTHING you post! Ahhh! I love pesto!


  12. #
    Nicole — March 18, 2011 @ 4:19 pm

    We had pesto for st paddy’s day too! only with Basil and cashews nuts. and totally with you on the creamy pesto sauce thing! (and if you put in cooked green beans with the green stuff you get extra veggies without changing the taste!


  13. #
    Nikki — March 18, 2011 @ 4:27 pm

    Droooooling… this is all things that are perfect. Crunch? Yes. Shrimp? Yes. Pasta? Yes. ARUGULA? Umm there aren’t words. Thanks!


  14. #
    Kocinera — March 18, 2011 @ 4:31 pm

    I love the color of the arugula! That’s such a cool idea to turn pesto into a cream sauce. I’ll definitely be giving that a try! :D


  15. #
    kate — March 18, 2011 @ 6:05 pm



  16. #
    Mama Zen — March 18, 2011 @ 7:49 pm

    Oh, yum!


  17. #
    Kat @ Cupcake Kat — March 18, 2011 @ 11:18 pm

    I love arugula. This dish is so green it makes me think of spring


  18. #
    Danielle — March 18, 2011 @ 11:28 pm

    This pasta looks amazing!!! I can’t wait to make it!!! I love pesto!!!


    • Danielle — March 18th, 2011 @ 11:30 pm

      This pasta looks amazing!!! I can’t wait to make it!!! I love pesto!!!


  19. #
    Lauren from Lauren's Latest — March 18, 2011 @ 11:33 pm

    I could probably eat this entire recipe single handedly. How delicious!


  20. #
    Roz — March 19, 2011 @ 1:23 am

    HI Jessica, just found your blog via Alissa’s blogroll. HAD to say “hi” and thanks for such a BEAUTIFUL site. Your photos are stellar! I have bookmarked, will visit often and I can’t wait to try some of your amazing looking recipes. Have a great weekend.


    • Jessica — March 19th, 2011 @ 11:53 am

      Thank you Roz!


  21. #
    elle marie — March 19, 2011 @ 3:09 am

    What a fantastic idea for pesto.. I LOVE it, your photos in each post, are getting better and better, not that I’m an authority on photography, but I just wanted to compliment you. = )


    • Jessica — March 19th, 2011 @ 11:52 am

      Thank you so much!!


      • Louis phillip — January 18th, 2012 @ 6:32 am

        how long is the shelf life of the pesto if i store it.?

  22. #
    Peggy — March 19, 2011 @ 8:46 am

    I love irregular pestos! And I love arugula so this would be a fantastic thing for me to try!


  23. #
    Kristen — March 19, 2011 @ 12:56 pm

    I am going to print this recipe- my family would LOVE it. And I know st pats day has past, but it would be a great GREEEN meal to have haha


  24. #
    Aggie — March 20, 2011 @ 1:57 pm

    how pretty is that green sauce! I love arugula, and now am craving this pesto! :) I think I have all the ingredients I need too!


  25. #
    Maranda — March 20, 2011 @ 5:04 pm

    I don’t tend to like greens…or veggies in general really. But I feel as though I can get behind this dish. And I completely agree that everything is better with cream. Thanks for sharing!


  26. #
    Teri [a foodie stays fit] — March 20, 2011 @ 6:12 pm

    holy cow, that sounds amazing!! love the green color too!


  27. #
    Holly @ yepiatethat — March 20, 2011 @ 10:15 pm

    Shrimp with pesto cream sauce is one of my favorite things on the planet. I bet this is aaaammazinggg!


  28. #
    Gena — March 20, 2011 @ 11:35 pm

    Way to squeeze so much green into that recipe! It looks awesome, and I’d love to try my hand at veganizing it.


  29. #
    stacey — March 22, 2011 @ 12:59 pm

    wow, looks amazing!
    do you think you could use maybe plain yogurt instead of cream to keep fat/calories down??


    • Jaxanahalf — March 24th, 2011 @ 9:41 am

      just saw this and thought I would comment- I made this last night and used fat free half and half in place of heavy cream and it came out perfectly :)


      • stacey — March 24th, 2011 @ 7:22 pm


  30. #
    Jaime — March 22, 2011 @ 3:23 pm

    Holy yum!! So totally flagging this to make in the next couple of weeks!


  31. #
    Jaxanahalf — March 24, 2011 @ 9:30 am

    Awesome recipe! I made it last night for me and my boyfriend and we both LOVED IT. It got me in the mood for spring with the green color and the fresh taste – too bad we woke up this morning to snow! ohhhh New England! The one thing keeping me happy today? I have the leftovers today for lunch :)


  32. #
    Cyndall — March 24, 2011 @ 3:18 pm

    I made this for dinner last night, well honestly it was more of a bastard knockoff of your superb version because I was trying to use what I had on hand. Instead of plain arugula, I used spring mix from Costco. Instead of asiago, I used Romano, instead of shrimp I used chicken, and instead of a garlic clove I used minced garlic from a jar. Oh and instead of whole wheat noodles I used super cheap not very good for your enriched flour bow ties. I also added red bell pepper and mushrooms because otherwise they would have met their death in bottom of the fridge.

    Still even with all these alterations it was absolutely delicious!!! What a great recipe! And man oh man can you believe it’s even BETTER the next day? How’d you do that? lol

    I read your blog everyday, thanks for all the great ideas!


    • Jessica — March 24th, 2011 @ 6:28 pm

      So glad you liked it!! :) Thanks for reading!


  33. #
    Genevieve — March 25, 2011 @ 9:48 pm

    Just wanted to say that I made this tonight, and it was delicious! But I had to leave out the cream (the way you feel about vegetables is the way my father feels about cream). Even though it was cream-less it still tasted awesome. The arugula pesto has a great flavor to it. Thanks for the great recipe!


  34. #
    Alexandra — August 26, 2011 @ 12:42 pm

    My mouth/brain/stomach is a really big fan of all of these crispy shrimp recipes. Definitely going to try this pesto soon.


  35. #
    Isabella — October 28, 2011 @ 6:10 pm

    My daughter made this for me today as a surprise birthday lunch. It was delicious! So fresh tasting and of course green!


  36. #
    Michelle — February 21, 2012 @ 8:38 pm

    I just discovered your blog and I was so excited to try this dish. I have to say, as a fan of standard pesto with basil, I found the pesto too peppery, too biting. I’ll keep trying recipes, though, because your blog looks great!


  37. #
    morgan — March 1, 2013 @ 11:28 pm

    Just discovered your blog and I tried this recipe tonight. It was amaze-balls! Thanks!



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