Photo: Jennifer Causey; Styling: Claire Spollen
Serves 4 (serving size: about 2 cups pasta mixture, 1 tablespoon pistachios, and 1 1/2 teaspoons mint)

A touch of butter stirred into the finished pasta helps to bind the delicate sauce. If you prefer not to use wine, substitute unsalted vegetable stock.

How to Make It

Step 1

Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/4 cup cooking liquid. Return pasta and 1/4 cup reserved cooking liquid to pan. Cover and keep warm over low heat.

Step 2

Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add asparagus; sauté 3 minutes or until crisp-tender. Stir in white parts of green onions and garlic; cook 30 seconds. Add wine; cook 1 minute. Add asparagus mixture, salt, and pepper to pasta mixture. Stir in remaining 2 teaspoons oil, remaining green onions, butter, and cheese. Divide pasta evenly among 4 bowls. Sprinkle evenly with pistachios and mint.

Chef's Notes

MyRecipes is working with Let's Move!, the Partnership for a Healthier America, and USDA's MyPlate to give anyone looking for healthier options access to a trove of recipes that will help them create healthy, tasty plates. For more information about creating a healthy plate, visit

Ratings & Reviews

OK, but no "wow"

April 17, 2015
This was fine, we ate it and mostly enjoyed it, but there was no wow at all. I made the recipe as written but ended up adding more salt and way more cheese to get some real flavor. The pistachios and mint were a nice touch. Not sorry I made it but probably won't make it again.

3 1/2 stars

January 17, 2017
So tonight my rating was over-ruled.  I thought it was just ok.  Hubby and 19 year old daughter said they really liked it.  Minor change - doubled the garlic, used just butter at the end (vs butter and oil).  I also had made a side dish with some sauteed mushrooms and garlic and that went very well with the penne.  Meatless Monday is always worthwhile, so I will make it again.

super customizable

May 26, 2016
That Penne Asparagus and Mint dish is great because its so customizable. Add sliced mushrooms, sausage, red chili flakes in the oil as it heats. Lots of ways to go. Makes a ton of food AND I think its better with gluten free pasta than whole wheat if you are looking at gluten.  Anyway, a total winner. 

Very Fresh for the Easter Table

March 28, 2016
I made this recipe as part of Easter dinner.  All of the flavors were very fresh and springy. The mint was a tad bit overbearing. I would probably back off a little on it next time.  I added more pasta water and cheese both of which I think made it better. 


July 29, 2015
We loved this. My 7 year old said it was the best thing I ever made (btw I cook all the time and he loves my food). The nuts were delicious. My husband doesn't like mint so everyone added as much as they wanted to their own plates. Forgot the pasta water but didn't need it. Definately make this one! The dude artichoke salad was just ok - the dressing need something more.

Really yummy!

July 27, 2015
This one went straight to my recipe binder. All of the flavors work really well together. Definitely a new favorite for me!

Not bad, especially for quick weeknight meal

June 18, 2015
I thought it was quite nice for a simple weeknight meal.  I think I over-chopped the mint a bit, making it more like a mince of fresh mint, and I think it negatively affected the texture and flavor.  Next time, make it more of a chop and less of a mince.  Also, the Baby Green and Artichoke Salad was a nice accompaniment, but like so many of CL's side salad recipes, it had far too little dressing.  Make sure to prepare twice the amount of dressing and then dress to taste.

Very Good

April 25, 2015
We enjoyed it very much. The delicate sauce was a little different for us. It was quick to make start to finish. We will make this again. 

Penne with asparagus etcetera

April 20, 2015
My family loved this. Simple, but divine. Quality ingredients, including real pecorino Romano and good pasta, may be the keys.