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Seared Scallops Over Garlic Pasta

Pan seared scallops over garlic pasta with olive oil, lemon and parsley makes the perfect easy yet elevated at home date night meal!

Seared Scallops Over Garlic Pasta - Dash Of Mandi

Valentine’s Day is coming up so I figured it was time to throw up another “dash of date night” recipe. These seared scallops over lemon pasta are the perfect recipe to make if you’re celebrating at home! The scallops are cooked easily (and perfectly) in a skillet. The pasta is also so simple, but absolutely delicious.

This pasta is actually inspired by one of my favorite movies, Chef. This is known as “Scarlett’s pasta” because it’s from the scene where he makes pasta for Scarlett Johansson’s character. If you’ve never seen this movie, I cannot recommend it enough. Although, I must warn you to have some snacks ready. It’ll make you SO hungry.

Chef Roy Choi [3] and Jon Favreau actually show how to make it in their Netflix show, The Chef Show [4]. So full credits go to them. However, I did change it up just a bit. In this photo/recipe I used spaghetti. But, any other time I’ve made this pasta I’ve used linguini which is just my preference. You can use any pasta you’d like!

Scallop Pasta - Dash Of Mandi

If you’re lucky enough to live near the ocean you will not have a problem finding yourself some good sea scallops. However, living in the middle of Texas I don’t have that luxury. I guess I could say the burgers make up for it. I’ve been getting my scallops through Butcher Box [5] and they’ve been amazing. If I don’t use the ones I get from Butcher Box, I’d get them from Central Market [6]. If you live in a Texas city, you know where I’m talking about 😉 Their seafood selection is great!

Some other date night recipes you’ll love:

Seared scallops over cauliflower mash [7]

Shrimp scampi cauliflower gnocchi [8]

Chimichurri steak frites [9]

Apple cheddar stuffed chicken [10]

Baked coconut shrimp [11]

Thai coconut mussels [12]

I’m personally a huge fan of staying in on Valentine’s Day. First of all it’s a whole lot cheaper than those fixed menus. Also, it’s always crowded. Considering this year is on a Friday, it will probably be twice as crowded. We will probably make this recipe and pair it with a bottle of red wine.

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Seared Scallops Over Lemon Pasta



Seared scallops

1 lb. scallops

salt and pepper

12 tbsp olive oil, ghee or butter

Lemon Pasta (recipe adapted from chef movie/chef Roy Choi)

1 lb. spaghetti or linguini

1 & 1/2 lemons, juiced

1 lemon zested

3/4 cup olive oil

1/2 cup water that the pasta was cooked in

1 cup flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

67 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced

1/3 cup parmesan cheese, grated, add more/less to taste

salt and pepper

1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes, or to taste


First make the pasta:

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. You can add a little bit of olive oil (this keeps the pasta from sticking together, but is a personal preference)

Add the spaghetti or linguini, cook according to package instructions until al dente, Drain, but make sure to reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta water.

In a large pan or the same soup pot, add the olive oil over medium heat.

Add the garlic and cook until golden brown, stirring frequently to make sure it doesn’t burn. Add the crushed red pepper, salt and pepper.

Add the drained spaghetti to the pan and toss, add the reserved pasta water and mix.

Add the parsley and parmesan and mix to fully coat the pasta.

Remove from heat and add lemon juice and zest. Taste and adjust seasonings if needed.

For the scallops

Pat dry your scallops and season both sides with a pinch of salt and pepper.

In a large non-stick skillet, add 1-2 tbsp olive oil, ghee or butter over medium high heat.

Once hot, add the scallops in a single layer, preferably without crowding them.

Cook on one side without touching for about 2 minutes. Flip and reduce heat to medium and cook the other side for another 2-3 minutes or until they’re cooked through, depends on size. They should have a slightly golden crust.

Serve seared scallops over lemon pasta and enjoy!