Asparagus Penne with Almonds and Browned Butter is a simple vegetarian meal when spring asparagus is in season! Only 7 ingredients, perfect for busy weeknights!
Seasonal Spring Asparagus
Spring is finally here and asparagus is back in season! Asparagus Penne is so fast and easy! By the time your pasta cooks, you can make your sauce and put it all together. This meal is quick, light and with few ingredients, and goes great with a big side salad. Start by setting your pasta water to boil and cook pasta following package instructions. Mine was 7 minutes. Trim and slice your asparagus and add it to the boiling pasta for the last 3 minutes of cooking time so they can finish together. In that short time while your pasta cooks, you can throw together the simple sauce.
In a large saute pan, large enough to toss the entire dish together with the pasta, melt your butter. Allow your butter to start to bubble, add you almonds and garlic and season with salt and pepper. Let the butter slowly continue to brown, adding in your rosemary sprigs. Adjust the heat so the butter doesn’t burn! When the pasta and asparagus are done, reserve a cup or so of the cooking liquid by dipping in a coffee mug before you drain it. Toss the pasta and asparagus with the sauce, along with Parmesan cheese and a bit of the starchy pasta water as needed. Toss really well and serve with more Parmesan. That’s it, dinner on the table in just 20 minutes! To make this a heartier dish, add grilled chicken or Italian sausage links, or leftover roasted salmon.
More Favorite Pastas!
- Creamy Farfalle Pasta with Prosciutto and Peas
- Bacon Kale Spaghetti
- Mom’s Best Homemade Spaghetti
- Bacon Cauliflower Mac & Cheese
- Ragu Pasta Bake
- Peppers & Fennel Sausage Penne
- Creamy Pesto Fettuccine
Asparagus Penne with Almonds and Browned Butter
- 1 lb Penne Rigante (small penne)
- 3 T butter
- ½ c whole raw almonds roughly chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- ½ t kosher salt
- 8 grinds fresh black pepper
- 1 lb asparagus ends trimmed, spears cut in thirds on a bias
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary (optional, fresh sage, or thyme could substitute)
- ½ c Parmesan cheese grated (plus more for topping)
- Bring water to a boil, add a pinch of salt and add pasta, cook following package instructions (about 7 minutes). Add asparagus to the boiling pasta for the last 3 minutes of the pasta cooking and let them finish together. Reserve 1 cup of the pasta water before draining (dipping in a coffee mug works great!).
- Meanwhile, in the time it takes to cook the pasta, make the sauce. Heat a large skillet over medium low heat and melt butter. When butter starts to bubble and slightly brown (but not burn) add almonds and garlic and toss.
- Season with salt and pepper and continue to stir butter mixture so it does not burn. Adjust heat if necessary. Add rosemary.
- Drain pasta and asparagus and add to the butter mixture. Add in the reserved pasta water a ¼ cup at a time to the sauce if needed. Mix well, adding grated Parmesan as you go.
- Served topped with extra Parmesan, and continue adding the reserved pasta water if the pasta gets dry.