Creamy Lemon Asparagus Spaghetti with Prawns (Shrimp)

Creamy lemon and herb sauce with asparagus and prawns for pasta. Quick and healthy recipe using 3 egg yolks. Also good with roasted chicken or leftover cooked turkey. Save the egg whites for making macarons.

prawn lemon and asparagus spaghetti

Quick, Healthy Dinner Recipe With 3 Egg Yolks

This is my kind of fast food: easy and tasty. Moreover, it’s a quick recipe that use 3 egg yolks so it’s perfect if you’re planning on making macarons and need the whites!  I mentioned this recipe briefly in the egg yolk pages in my Mad About Macarons book’s annex, but here it is in more detail. Save the egg whites and store in a jam jar in the fridge for about 3 days and the whites will be ready for making macarons.

This recipe has just evolved over the years of making macarons. I’ve always loved lemon pasta – Antoinio Carluccio had a wonderful recipe in his book, “Passion for Pasta” served with Angel’s Hair pasta but I digressed and served it with spaghetti.  So when Nigella Lawson came on the scene with her similar Creamy Lemon Linguine using 2 yolks, I was smitten. Instead I omitted the butter and full fat cream and increased it to 3 yolks with a small tub of half fat crème fraîche or cream.


Versatile Creamy Lemon Sauce For Vegetarians

Vegetarians can omit the prawns and have a lovely lemony cream sauce with the asparagus.  However, when asparagus isn’t in season, toss in cooked peas (fresh or frozen) instead. It’s also delicious served with fried artichoke hearts.
It’s as simple and as versatile as that.


Seafood Pasta With Parmesan?

My sincere excuses to my Italian friends for this photo.  As you can see, I do love pasta with my parmesan! Authentic Italian dishes stipulate that parmesan isn’t normally served with seafood pasta dishes. I personally adore it.

Each time my husband and I sprinkle parmesan on our pasta with seafood, my Corsican Mother-in-Law reminds us how naughty we are. Seafood? No parmesan.

Quick Recipe to Make For Leftover Turkey

Well, if you want to be good with your pasta and parmesan, replace the prawns with roasted chicken. It’s a handy recipe to serve during the holidays with any leftover cooked turkey.

lemon spaghetti

Creamy Lemon Asparagus Spaghetti with Prawns or Chicken

lemon spaghetti

Creamy Lemon Asparagus Spaghetti with Prawns or Chicken

Author: Jill Colonna
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time12 mins
Total Time22 mins
Course : Main Course
Cuisine : French, Italian
Keyword : creamy lemon pasta, recipe 3 egg yolks
Servings : 4 people


Creamy lemon and herb sauce with asparagus and prawns for pasta. Quick and tasty recipe using 3 egg yolks. Also good with roasted chicken or leftover turkey. For vegetarians serve just with asparagus or artichokes or peas when not in season.


  • 12-16 large cooked prawns (shrimp) peeled
  • 1 unwaxed lemon (juice and zest) organic
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 20 cl (small tub) half fat crème fraîche or cream 12-15% fat
  • 50 g (2oz) fresh parmesan finely grated
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley or other herbs (thyme, basil)
  • bunch asparagus (or peas)


  • Shell and remove the black central vein of large, cooked prawns (shrimp).
    Either serve plain like this in the pasta or toss them for a couple of minutes in a hot frying pan with a little butter and glaze with a splash of Pastis (or Ricard, Casanis). Set aside.
  • Meanwhile, prepare the pasta. Cook dried spaghetti or linguine in boiling salted water for about 10 minutes or until al dente (according to packet instructions).
  • In a separate bowl, mix the yolks, the lemon juice and zest, crème fraîche (or cream), the parmesan and fresh herbs.
  • Break the stems off the asparagus (where they break naturally, about quarter up from the bottom) and cook them for about 5 minutes until al dente in the boiling water with the pasta.
  • Drain the pasta and asparagus (keeping a tiny bit of pasta water left for the sauce). In the same pasta pan, add in the sauce and toss the pasta and asparagus in it to heat.  Add the prawns and decorate with extra fresh herbs such as flat leaf parsley, lemon thyme or chives.


Serve immediately with a glass of chilled Chenin Blanc or Chardonnay to bring out the lemon flavours.
Reserve the remaining 3 egg whites in a jam jar and keep in the fridge for up to a week. Great for making macarons, meringues, financiers or tuiles.

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Comments (17)

wow, i love shrimps in pasta. that is such an easy dish to whip up especially when pressed for time. it looks yummy and definitely worth a try 🙂

There’s a Nigella recipe for lemon pasta with egg yolks that I’ve always wanted to try. You’ve just reminded me of it and I love the addition of asparagus, gorgeous with the parmesan!! 😀

Interesting, thanks Natalie. I’ve got one of her recipes using lemons but with garlic, mushrooms and olive oil – don’t know of this one. Zut! Here was I thinking this was cleverly easy, too, using a Normandy classic sauce (altered a fish recipe from my tattered Crème Fraîche Cookbook) for pasta.

Load up on the parmesan. Go on, you deserve it 🙂 This is an outstanding dish, great use of those pesky egg yolks as well!