Green Garlic and Asparagus Cream Sauce over Penne Pasta

Green garlic is a delicious and flavorful preview to the goodness of the summer garlic crop. You’ll notice that it is sweet and mild when sauteed. Feel free to use your favorite pasta shape in this recipe or change up the fresh herb based on what you have available. Make this a gluten free dish by using brown rice pasta!

Recipe adapted from Chow.


  • 2 Tbsp butter or olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion or shallot small dice
  • 1/3 cup green garlic white and light green parts only; minced
  • kosher salt and fresh-ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 lbs penne pasta whole wheat, semolina or a GF option like brown rice
  • 1 lbs asparagus woody ends removed and thinly sliced on the bias
  • 2 Tbsp parsley minced


Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil over high heat.

Melt the butter or heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium heat until foaming. Add the onion and 1/4 cup of the green garlic. Season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is tender but not browned, about 5 minutes.

Add the cream and bring to a boil. Immediately reduce the heat to low and simmer until the onion is completely tender and the flavors have infused the cream, about 5 minutes. Add the parsley, taste and season with additional salt and pepper as needed. Remove the sauce from the heat and set aside.

Add the pasta to the boiling water. Boil, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is almost cooked, timing will depend on the pasta shape. Add sliced asparagus to the boiling pasta for the last minute of cooking time.

Reserve 3/4 cup of the pasta water. Drain the pasta and asparagus and return them to the pot. Add the reserved cream sauce, remaining 2 tablespoons of green garlic, and 1/2 cup of the pasta water. Toss to coat the pasta and vegetables, adding more pasta water by the tablespoonful as needed to reach the desired consistency. Taste and season with more salt and pepper as needed; serve immediately.

Entree asparagus entree gluten-free green garlic spring side

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