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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
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