Shrimp Pesto Pasta is full of pesto flavor, loaded with seared shrimp, and bursting with roasted cherry tomatoes. When fresh shrimp and herbs abound, this mouth-watering dish is a go-to. It makes a quick, easy, and healthy dinner recipe or a romantic date night dish. 

Roasted cherry tomatoes in a pesto pasta recipe.

Easy Shrimp Pesto Pasta Recipe

It’s not very often I find wild AND fresh Gulf shrimp at our local grocery store.

But when I do, it is ON! I am making just about everything with shrimp for the week.

Combine that with an abundance of fresh basil from the aero garden, and the obvious answer is this Shrimp Pesto Pasta.

These Roasted Cherry Tomatoes take this dish over. the. top.

(You can also pile them on some toasted baguettes or add them to this Honey Balsamic Chicken… but my absolute favorite way would have to be in this shrimp pesto pasta.)

They are like little flavor bombs of tomato-ey goodness amongst an already delightful plate of gluten-free pesto pasta.

And the best part… you can literally throw all of this together and have it on the table in under 30 minutes. It works just as well for a busy weeknight as it does for a fancy dinner party!

If you’re a fan of pesto, don’t miss this Pesto Risotto for an easy dinner recipe. And Shrimp Scampi Linguine is a crowd pleaser, too.

Tomatoes, pine nuts, shrimp, pesto sauce, and Parmesan cheese as the ingredients for a shrimp pesto pasta recipe.
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Ingredients

  • ShrimpWild and fresh shrimp are the best type to purchase. Wild shrimp, meaning they have not been farm-raised, normally have a better, less “fishy” flavor.  They are also healthier for you. Fresh shrimp have not been previously frozen and tend to have a better taste and the best texture. Shrimp season is generally between mid-May to late July. However, if you are unable to find wild AND fresh, you can always just opt for one or the other. The shrimp size used in this recipe was a 21/25 count per pound.  If you buy larger or smaller you will need to adjust the cooking time accordingly.
  • Pesto. You can either make your own basil pesto sauce or buy the prepared pesto (the refrigerated kind is best!) from your grocery store.
  • Pasta. Fettuccine, linguine, and tagliatelle all work great in this recipe. Angel hair pasta is great, too. Grab a gluten-free variety if needed.
  • Roasted Cherry Tomatoes. You can also just cut up and add fresh tomatoes if you’d prefer.
  • Pine Nuts. Lightly toasted pine nuts add a wonderful texture to this pesto pasta.
  • Parmesan Cheese. Totally optional, but definitely delicious!
5 Secrets to Healthier Family Dinners
Tips & recipes for getting yummy — and healthy — meals on the table.

How to Make Shrimp Pesto Pasta

Please see the recipe card below for more detailed ingredient amounts.

1. Roast the Tomatoes and Cook Pasta

You can slice the tomatoes in half or leave them whole, it’s up to you.

In a large bowl, toss together the tomatoes with the oil, minced garlic cloves, salt, and black pepper until everything is coated.

Spread the tomatoes on a rimmed baking sheet in a single layer. Roast in a preheated 400℉ oven for 20 to 25 minutes. The skin should begin to shrivel.

Cook the pasta according to the package instructions for al dente.

Tomato halves and garlic in a single layer on a baking sheet.

2. Roast the Pine Nuts

Spread the pine nuts across a small baking sheet. Roast the nuts in a preheated 400℉ oven for 3 to 5 minutes. Stir occasionally, just until the pine nuts are golden brown. 

Set them aside.

Roasted pine nuts are a golden brown color with a buttery, nutty flavor.

3. Make the Pesto Shrimp

Add olive oil to a large skillet or large saucepan over medium or medium-high heat. Add the deveined shrimp and cook for 2-3 minutes per side or until cooked through.

Pan-searing shrimp in a stainless steel skillet for a Pesto Shrimp Pasta recipe.

4. Mix Together

Add the drained, hot pasta to a large bowl and stir in the creamy pesto sauce and roasted cherry tomatoes. Sprinkle extra salt if needed.

Serve the pasta with the tender shrimp, pine nuts, and Parmesan cheese. Drizzle some fresh lemon juice for a hit of brightness, as well.

For a low-carb option, serve with zucchini noodles.

Shrimp pesto pasta in a white bowl with roasted cherry tomatoes and pine nuts.

FAQs

Do you heat pesto before putting on pasta? 

No, you do not need to heat pesto before adding it to pasta, especially if the pasta is freshly cooked and hot already. You can definitely warm it up before adding to cold pasta if desired.

Is pesto the healthiest sauce? 

While pesto has many health benefits from fresh herbs and healthy fats, it is still quite high in calories and should be enjoyed in moderation.

Recipe Tips

  • Go fresh. Choose wild caught shrimp that hasn’t been frozen for the best quality results.
  • DIY. Make your own homemade pesto sauce for the most flavor. You can grab a bottle from the grocery store if needed.
  • A little nutty. Don’t skip the pine nuts, they add the perfect crunch.
  • Make it work. Both regular and gluten-free pasta work great in this recipe.
  • Add a kick. Top this pasta dish with some red pepper flakes for some spice.
A healthy pesto pasta with shrimp, tomatoes, and pine nuts.

What to Serve with Shrimp Pesto Pasta?

Pair this shrimp pasta recipe with your favorite side dishes for a complete meal.

You can’t go wrong with a side salad, whip up your own Caesar Salad Dressing. Or try a Spinach Beet SaladLemon Arugula Salad, or a Peach Salad.

You can also serve some roasted veggies, like Herb Roasted CarrotsHoney Roasted Broccoli, or Italian Oven-Roasted Vegetables.

Other Easy Pasta Recipes

If you’re looking for other dinner recipes full of pasta-y goodness, try a simple recipe like any of these options.

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5 from 5 votes

Best Shrimp Pesto Pasta Recipe

Shrimp Pesto Pasta is full of pesto flavor, loaded with seared shrimp, and bursting with roasted cherry tomatoes. When fresh shrimp and herbs abound, this mouth-watering dish is a go-to.
Roasted cherry tomatoes in a pesto pasta recipe.
Yield 5 servings
Prep 15 minutes
Cook 15 minutes
Total 30 minutes
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Ingredients 

  • 10 oz. fettuccine pasta or tagliatelle, gluten-free if needed

Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

  • 1 lb. cherry tomatoes or grape, cut in half
  • 1 Tbsp. oil avocado or olive
  • 2-3 cloves garlic finely minced
  • ½ tsp. salt to taste
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper to taste

Shrimp Pesto Pasta:

  • 1 lb. shrimp 21/25 count, peeled, deveined
  • 1 Tbsp. oil olive or avocado
  • ½ cup pesto sauce prepared, homemade or store-bought
  • ½ tsp. salt divided
  • ¼ cup pine nuts toasted, optional
  • Parmesan cheese optional

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 400℉.
  • Cook pasta according to package directions.
    10 oz. fettuccine pasta
  • Roast the Tomatoes: Toss together tomatoes, oil, minced garlic, salt, and pepper in a large bowl until tomatoes are well coated. Place tomatoes on a large baking sheet in a single layer. Roast tomatoes for 20-25 minutes or until the skin begins to shrivel.
    1 lb. cherry tomatoes, 1 Tbsp. oil, 2-3 cloves garlic, ½ tsp. salt, ¼ tsp. black pepper
  • Roast the Pine Nuts: Add pine nuts to a small baking sheet and roast in oven for 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until golden brown. Set aside until ready to use.
    ¼ cup pine nuts
  • Make Pesto Shrimp: In a large skillet over medium heat add olive oil and shrimp. Cook shrimp for 2-3 minutes per side or until cooked through.
    1 lb. shrimp, 1 Tbsp. oil
  • Mix Together: Toss drained pasta with pesto sauce, roasted cherry tomatoes, and remaining ½ teaspoon salt, to taste. Serve pasta with shrimp, a sprinkle of pine nuts, and parmesan cheese. Enjoy!
    ½ cup pesto sauce, ½ tsp. salt, Parmesan cheese
Last step! If you make this, please leave a review letting us know how it was!

Tap stars to rate!

5 from 5 votes

Notes

Prep-Ahead Instructions:
You can absolutely meal prep the roasted cherry tomatoes, toasted pine nuts, and pesto sauce (if you are making it from scratch) ahead of time. Wait to cook the noodles and shrimp.
Storage Directions:
This recipe most definitely tastes best when enjoyed immediately after making it but can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 2-3 days. I would not advise freezing this recipe. The best way to reheat this pasta is to either microwave it or add it to a skillet over low heat with a touch of olive oil and water. Cover it and let it warm up for 5-10 minutes.
Recipe Tips:
  • Go fresh. Choose wild caught shrimp that hasn’t been frozen for the best quality results.
  • DIY. Make your own homemade pesto sauce for the most flavor. You can grab a bottle from the grocery store if needed.
  • A little nutty. Don’t skip the pine nuts, they add the perfect crunch.
  • Make it work. Both regular and gluten-free pasta work great in this recipe.
  • Add a kick. Top this pasta dish with some red pepper flakes for some spice.

Nutrition

Calories: 485kcal, Carbohydrates: 48g, Protein: 26g, Fat: 22g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 0.03g, Cholesterol: 148mg, Sodium: 763mg, Potassium: 486mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 947IU, Vitamin C: 21mg, Calcium: 113mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Made this recipe?Leave a comment below!
5 Secrets to Healthier Family Dinners
Tips & recipes for getting yummy — and healthy — meals on the table.

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    1. Yay, Amy!! I’m so happy to hear you and your family enjoyed the meal. Thanks so much for your comment and rating!