This Lemon Cavatappi with Asparagus and Garlic is perfect for any time of the year, but it’s bright flavors are PERFECT for a summertime dinner.
Bonus- it’s vegetarian! For you non-vegetarians, don’t fret- it’s got SO much flavor you don’t even need meat in it, but…you could throw in some rotisserie chicken if you really needed to. As is- this dish is 260 calories per serving- score!
I bought some really good asparagus from our local produce stand, and it was SO fresh and delicious. I always forget how much I love asparagus! Pair it with garlic, lemon, and parmesan alongside some pasta….yep, I’m on board.
Here’s how we cut asparagus for this pasta dish
Start by washing your asparagus, and cutting the ends off. I’ll show you a few pictures of how I cut my asparagus, 1) how far up I cut off my ends, and 2) the side of asparagus chunk I used for this lemon chicken asparagus pasta dish. They’re about 1-1.5 inches long.
While I chopped my asaparagus, I boiled my pasta- you’ll want to keep about 1/4 cup of the pasta water to use in your skillet, but that’s for later . I used Cavatappi, which is Italian for ‘corkscrew’. #themoreyouknow. You could use any shaped pasta with this dish- even Orzo would be fabulous. I chose Cavatappi becuase- well, I’m frankly not sure, I just like the shape!
Once you’ve boiled your pasta (to your liking- whether soft or al dente), and reserved a 1/4 cup of your pasta water, strain the pasta, and toss it in olive oil so it doesn’t harden or stick.
This is a really simple dish, and the sauce is just as simple, but it packs a punch of flavor. Combine butter, lemon zest, parsley, fresh garlic, and lemon juice into a skillet and toss on medium high for about 3-5 minutes. Careful not to overdo it, otherwise the asparagus will turn mushy, and we don’t want your asparagus to be mushy.
Once you’ve poured your pasta into your skillet, turn off the stove, you’ll add in parmesan cheese, and the leftover pasta water, toss some more, and boom! Dinner is READY!
We love a quick healthy meals so much we have over 100 recipes HERE!
A few of them that we make all the time are this Greek Sheet Pan Dinner with potatoes, veggies and chicken all cooked at the same time on the same pan! And this 15 minute Cauliflower Rice with Feta and Thyme….you won’t miss the carbs of the rice with this flavorful dish!
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To healthy, fast and fresh meals!
A delicious, zesty dish that's vegetarian friendly!
- 2 cups uncooked cavatappi pasta or ANY shape of pasta works
- 1 cup asparagus ends removed & chopped into 1-1.5 inch chunks
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shredded
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 cup reserved pasta water
- 2 tbsp butter, salted
- 2 tbsp lemon zest about the yield of one lemon
- 1/4 cup lemon juice freshly squeezed
- 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley
- 2 tbsp fresh chopped garlic clove
Boil pasta according to package directions. Reserve 1/4 cup pasta water and set aside. Drain pasta. Toss olive oil over warm pasta to prevent it from sticking together..
In small skillet, combine chopped asparagus, and skillet sauce ingredients. Cook on medium-high for 3-5 minutes, until bubbling.
Add in cooked pasta to skillet, along with reserved pasta water, and parmesan. Turn heat off, and toss until fully combined.
Garnish with parsley and lemon slices if desired. Enjoy!