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Lemony Purple Asparagus Pancetta Pasta Boulderlocavore.com

Lemony Purple Asparagus Pancetta Pasta

Purple asparagus is not only fetchingly beautiful; it’s the sweetest and tenderest of the asparagus. It is versatile in many dishes, adding a bit of visual intrigue and fabulous spring flavor. If you cannot find any substitute green asparagus; this pasta dish should not be missed!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword asparagus pasta, pancetta pasta recipes, purple asparagus recipe
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 616kcal
Author Toni Dash


  • 1 bunch Purple Asparagus , bottom of stalk trimmed and lower third of stalk peeled
  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons (plus a bit to drizzle on the finished pasta) Olive Oil
  • Kosher Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1 package Spaghetti or Fettuccini (I used Tinkyada’s gluten-free White Rice Spaghetti for the light visual appearance and taste)
  • 2 teaspoon Pickled Lemon , finely chopped
  • ½ large Shallot (about 3 teaspoons), finely diced
  • 1 ½ ounce thinly sliced Pancetta , cut into ¼ inch strips
  • 6 tablespoons Pine Nuts
  • Fresh juice of 1/3 large lemon
  • Garnish: Sprigs of Lemon Thyme


  • Preparation: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Set a pot of water for the pasta to boil on the stove top (cook the pasta as soon as the water is ready; drain, rinse if called for and place in a serving bowl with a drizzle of olive oil and tossed to prohibit the pasta from sticking together).
  • Brush the prepared asparagus with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Place on the prepared baking sheet and lightly salt and pepper. Place in the heated oven for 10- 15 minutes; check for doneness (should be lightly roasted, tender to bite but not overly soft). Remove and set aside to cool.
  • In a large skillet over medium high heat, add pine nuts. Stir constantly until they begin to release oil and brown (about 2-3 minutes). Remove from skillet and set aside.
  • Cut asparagus into 1 inch slices, sliced on the diagonal, and set aside.
  • In the large skillet add 2 teaspoons olive oil, heat over medium-high heat. Add diced pickled lemon and shallot. Sauté, stirring constantly for 2 minutes.
  • Add the pancetta strips; stir mixture constantly for 1 ½ minutes as pancetta begins to shrink and brown.
  • Add the asparagus, and fresh lemon juice. Gently toss/stir until mixture is combined and lemon juice is absorbed (about 1-2 minutes).
  • Add skillet mixture to freshly prepared pasta; toss gently to combine. Plate and garnish with roasted pine nuts and lemon thyme sprigs!


Serving: 4g | Calories: 616kcal | Carbohydrates: 90g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 79mg | Potassium: 588mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 850IU | Vitamin C: 7.6mg | Calcium: 51mg | Iron: 4.7mg