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Buttery Balsamic Pasta and Asparagus

I love asparagus. I adore roasted asparagus! Roasting brings out the natural sweetness in vegetables, making them irresistible (even to a picky toddler). Cooking balsamic vinegar causes it to mellow and sweeten as well, making this a delicately flavored dish. Don’t be afraid of the butter folks. If you’re on the real food bandwagon, you know that it is considered a healthy fat, especially if it is from organic, pasture-fed animals. Add some crunchy pine nuts and chicken for protein and you have the perfect all-in-one springtime dish. No sides, no fuss, no extra mess. Welcome spring!

Buttery Balsamic Pasta with Asparagus


Kim @ onceamonthmeals.com


Asparagus is the quintessential springtime veggie.

  • 3.5 cups fresh asparagus
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • .5 teaspoons pepper, divided
  • .5 cups balsamic vinegar, plus 2 tablespoons
  • .5 teaspoons brown sugar (or sucanat)
  • 1 pound penne (or similarly shaped pasta)
  • .5 cups butter, cut into pieces
  • .33 cups grated Parmesan cheese (plus extra for serving)
  • 2 cups chopped, cooked chicken
  • .33 cups pine nuts, toasted


Remove tough ends from asparagus and cut spears into 1 inch pieces. Toss with olive oil and salt and pepper. Place on a baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes or until tender. Meanwhile, cook penne al dente according to package directions and set aside. While pasta cooks, cook vinegar down in a small sauce pan until only about 1/4 of original amount remains. Stir in brown sugar and pepper. Remove from heat. Toss drained pasta with butter, Parmesan, vinegar mixture, asparagus, chicken, pine nuts, and salt. Serve with extra grated Parmesan cheese.

Roasting will bring out the natural sweetness in vegetalbes.

Freezing Directions:

To freeze, follow directions above EXCEPT skip roasting of asparagus. After tossing pasta with sauce, chicken, and nuts, divide among freezer bags. TO SERVE: Thaw and reheat pasta while roasting asparagus as directed above. Combine roasted asparagus and pasta mixture and serve with extra grated Parmesan cheese.

Servings: 4




**conversion chart image provided by Erik Spiekermann

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7 Responses to “Buttery Balsamic Pasta and Asparagus”

  1. Amy J. says:

    This looks amazing! Can’t wait to try it.

  2. Miz Helen says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your great recipe with Full Plate Thursday. Hope you are having a great Spring week end and come back to see me real soon!
    Miz Helen

  3. Elizabeth says:

    This was a winner at my house tonight. Took 30 minutes from start to finish and every one wanted seconds. It does use a few too many pots and pans for me, but oh well what is a few more dishes for my hubby to wash. He he he.

  4. Sarah says:

    This looks yummy! Do you freeze the raw asparagus separately and thaw then roast it? Or do you not buy asparagus until you are ready to eat this and roast it fresh? Thanks for your help! I’m new and just making a few recipies today to freeze before my second baby is born!

    • kim says:

      I think it is best to roast fresh asparagus on your cooking day. It only takes a few minutes. Best wishes for you and your baby!

  5. [...] 16. Buttery Balsamic Pasta and Asparagus [...]

  6. Britnee says:

    I just made this about 30 minutes ago and it was amazing! It was so easy to make and was quick. I will be eating on this for a while!

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