Pan Seared Scallops with Pasta
Let’s face it…sometimes you just crave carbs. And there’s nothing like a big bowl of pasta to satisfy that craving! I love tossing my pasta with a simple mixture of sauteed garlic, freshly squeezed lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil and freshly grated Parmesan cheese. I’ve made spaghetti like that time and time and again as a side dish! But sometimes I like to dress it up a bit by adding some vegetables or a protein, like I did with this Pan Seared Scallops with Pasta. And I can serve it as a main entree.
The scallops cook quickly and have a tender, buttery texture that pairs really well with the zesty fresh tasting pasta. Don’t like scallops? Or can’t find scallops? Try shrimp or even chicken! It’s a light, bright and completely flavor-packed dish that will easily become a family favorite! My kids think all proteins are a form of chicken, so they declared these “chicken scallops” as “yummy in my tummy.”
- 1 lb jumbo scallops
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes
- 12 oz spaghetti (or pasta of choice)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup vegetable broth
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Fresh chopped parsley, for garnish
- Grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish
- In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Pat the scallops dry on both sides using a paper towel to soak up all the moisture, then season with salt and pepper on both sides.
- Place the scallops on the hot pan, keeping space between the pieces as to not overcrowd the pan and create too much moisture.
- Cook for 2-3 minutes per side without moving the scallops, until they are golden brown. They will naturally release from the pan when fully cooked; set aside covered to keep warm.
- In the same pan used to cook the scallops, cook the cherry tomatoes on medium heat for a couple minutes until they soften and set aside with the scallops.
- In the same pan used to cook the scallops, heat one tbsp of olive oil on medium heat and cook the garlic for 1 minute, until fragrant.
- Add the chicken broth and lemon juice to the pan and stir to combine. Cook the sauce on high heat until it is reduced to desired thickness.
- While the sauce is cooking, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook spaghetti according to package instructions. I like to cook mine al dente for this recipe.
- Drain pasta and add to the sauce. Toss to combine, then season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Plate the pasta, then add the scallops and cherry tomatoes and garnish with parsley and grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.