Baby Pasta Shells with Asparagus and Marinara Sauce - Rancho Pecana
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Baby Pasta Shells with Asparagus and Marinara Sauce

Enjoy your day with this easy and healthy homemade pasta with asparagus and marinara sauce, topped off with toasted pecans. Add this pecan recipe to your plans for dinner!


  • 8 oz baby pasta shells or small gluten-free pasta
  • 1 bunch of thin asparagus (remove ends)
  • 1 1/2 cups of marinara sauce
  • 1/4 cup Pecorino Romano
  • 1/2 cup of toasted Rancho Pecana Natural Pecans (you pick! Halves or Pieces)
  • Salt and fresh pepper to taste


1. Boil about 4 inches of water in a large pot, when boiling add asparagus and cook about 2 to 3 minutes, or until tender crisp.

2. Drain and chop into small bite sized pieces.

3. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (you can use the same pot from the asparagus not to dirty too many dishes). Cook pasta according to package directions for al dente.

4. While pasta is cooking, in a medium saucepan heat 1-1/2 cups marinara sauce.

5. Drain pasta and RESERVE a cup of the pasta water.

6. Return pasta back to the pot and toss with marinara, asparagus, grated cheese, salt and pepper and a 1/4 cup of the pasta water or as needed to loosen the sauce.

Keep following our blog and our Instagram Page (@ranchopecana) for more Pecan Recipe s!

7. Divide between four bowls and top with fresh pepper, toasted pecans from @ranchopecana and more grated cheese if desired.