Roasted Pesto Marinated Shrimp + Scallops


Below is one dish from a simple Sunday afternoon Mediterranean dinner at home in early May. My husband, Tom, is the creative yin to my yang. He shares some recipes from our cookbook. We simply returned to the Italian Mediterranean foods that Tom’s family has been cooking since they left Naples and Sicily.

The secret to my pesto recipe is lemon juice. What I found over many years is that some chefs underestimate the power of raw garlic.  Just a little squeeze of lemon juice not only cuts the raw out of the garlic but freshens up the sauce.  Give it a try.

For the pesto:

  • 4 cups fresh basil, packed
  • 2 teaspoons garlic, minced
  • 1 cup pine nuts
  • 1 cup freshly grated pecorino Romano cheese
  • 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice


  • 1/2 pound large shrimp, de-shelled and de-veined
  • 1/2 pound medium scallops, cleaned
  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. Place the basil leaves in a food processor and process until well chopped. Add the garlic and pine nuts, and blend.  Drizzle in the olive oil until fully incorporated into basil and it forms a thick smooth paste. Remove the basil paste from the food processor and place in a mixing bowl.  Add the cheese and lemon juice.  Mix completely.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. In a large bowl, add the shrimp, scallops and 1/3 of the pesto, and toss. Cover bowl with plastic wrap,  and let stand at room temperature for 1 hour.  Spread pesto marinated shrimp and scallops on a baking sheet. Roast until edges of shrimp and scallops start to just brown; approximately 20 minutes.
  4. On serving plate, place shrimp and scallops and drizzle remaining pan juices and pesto.  Garnish with lemon wedges and fresh parsley.

Yields: 4 servings

Per serving (shrimp & scallops with pesto): 9.5 g carbohydrates

Want to submit a recipe to us? Email us at!

WRITTEN BY Thomas & Rebecca DiStefano, POSTED 05/16/16, UPDATED 11/28/22

The authors Thomas and Rebecca DiStefano live in Boca Raton, Florida. Thomas is an inventor, business consultant and former chef/restaurant owner (currently house chef). Rebecca is a corporate attorney, advocate and fundraiser active in the type 1 diabetes community. Roman is an 11 year-year-old 6th grader, travel baseball player and jazz & rock drummer. He is researching nutrition for type 1 diabetes for his countywide science fair presentation in December.