Grilled Shrimp with Lemon-Basil Pesto

This lemony pesto is also good with chicken, fish or scallops.

Slideshow: Amazing Seafood Recipes

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  • Servings: 6


  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts
  • 3 cups packed basil leaves
  • 2 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 4 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds jumbo shrimp, shelled and deveined
  • Lemon wedges, for serving

How to make this recipe

  1. In a small skillet, toast the pine nuts over moderate heat, shaking the pan occasionally, until golden brown, about 2 minutes; let cool.

  2. In a food processor, pulse the pine nuts with the basil leaves, garlic, lemon juice, lemon zest and 6 tablespoons of the olive oil until combined. Add the Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and pulse until smooth. Scrap the pesto into a bowl and season with salt and pepper.

  3. Light a grill or preheat a cast-iron grill pan. Thread 2 or 3 shrimp on each of 6 skewers and brush with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper and grill over a medium-hot fire until opaque and cooked through, about 2 minutes per side. Serve the shrimp hot, with the pesto and lemon wedges.

Suggested Pairing

A Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc with herbal and citrus notes and a hint of oak complements the pesto's lemony character as well as the sweetness of the shrimp.

Contributed By Published October 2002

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