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Bay Scallop Linguine Recipe

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You are going to LOVE this scallop linguine recipe! It’s perfect for date night or a special dinner at home. This easy bay scallop pasta features sweet and tender bay scallops, chewy linguine, a simple garlic butter sauce, all topped with a crunchy bread crumb and pine nut topping (I use the same topping in my shrimp linguine, crispy Parmesan cod and lemon ricotta pasta). Not only is this scallop scampi delicious, but it’s also easy to make! The scallops and linguine dish is made with simple ingredients and is comes together in just 20 minutes. Just like my lemon risotto, penne pomodoro, chicken broccoli ziti, and bucatini cacio e pepe – it’s simple enough for a weeknight dinner, but special enough for a date night at home, and I always pair it with my favorite NA sparkling rose.

If you like this lemon scallop pasta, you may also like my old bay shrimp boil, salmon with dill sauce, grilled bacon wrapped shrimp, or grilled salmon in foil next time.

Two bowls of bay scallop pasta

Estimated reading time: 8 minutes

What Is Scallop Scampi?

Scallop scampi is similar to shrimp scampi, a shrimp pasta dish made with a simple sauce made of garlic and butter or olive oil (and sometimes white wine). Traditionally, scampi was made with langoustines, but Italian cooks here in the US started using shrimp. I’ve taken a riff on the traditional shrimp version for this garlic scallop pasta. We’re essentially swapping the shrimp for scallops, and I’ve added a toasted bread crumb topping.

Bay Scallop Linguine on Twin Cities Live

What You’ll Love About This Scallop Linguine Recipe

  • Restaurant quality meal at home
  • Tender scallops, chewy pasta, and crunchy topping
  • Made with simple ingredients
  • Ready in less than 20 minutes

Scallop Scampi Ingredients

This scallop scampi recipe is made with simple ingredients: bay scallop pasta

  • PankoPanko bread crumbs are a must as they are flaky and get nice and crispy. I do not recommend subbing Italian breadcrumbs.
  • Pine nuts – Pine nuts are great, but if you want to sub something else in, try cashews, pistachios, walnuts, macadamia nuts, or sunflower seeds.
  • Garlic – Use fresh cloves garlic for best flavor.
  • Butter
  • Parmesan cheese – Use grated Parmesan cheese.
  • Lemon zest – Using the zest gives the bay scallop pasta bright citrus flavor
  • Linguine – Use high quality pasta or your favorite pasta brand.
  • Bay scallops – Bay scallops are smaller scallops, more on this below!
  • Olive oil
  • Sea salt and black pepper
  • Fresh parsley – Optional garnish, but highly recommended.
  • Lemon wedges – Optional garnish

How to Make Scallop Linguine

This pan seared scallops and linguine may sound fancy, but it’s surprisingly simple to make:

  • Make bread crumb topping. Pulse together garlic and pine nuts in a small food processor or chopper. Add panko and pulse until just combined.

TIP: Don’t over-process here, we want bread crumbs, not a dough!

Breadcrumb topping for scallop scampi in food processor
  • Toast bread crumb topping. Heat butter in a small nonstick skillet over medium heat and toast bread crumb mixture for 2-4 minutes, until golden brown. Set aside and when cook, stir in lemon zest and Parmesan cheese.
  • Cook pasta. Cook pasta according to package instructions, until al dente. RESERVE 1 cup of pasta water before you drain pasta.
  • Cook scallops. Pat scallops dry and heat olive oil and butter in a large skillet (stainless steel) over medium-high heat. When hot, add scallops to pan in a single layer and sprinkle in minced garlic. Season with salt and cook for 2-4 minutes, until cooked through.

TIP: Cooking time will vary depending on the size of your scallops.

Bay scallops in a skillet for scallops and linguine
  • Finish pasta. Add cooked linguine to cooked scallops and toss together, adding reserved pasta water if it is dry.
Skillet with scallops and linguine
  • Plate pasta. Divide pasta and scallops into shallow bowls or plates and top with bread crumb mixture. Add flaky sea salt, freshly cracked, and red-pepper flakes pepper to taste.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you use a different type of pasta?

For seafood dishes with a butter or olive oil “sauce” – longer shaped pasta is recommended. Linguine is great, but you could also use angel hair pasta, spaghetti, bucatini, or fettuccine.

Should I use bay scallops or sea scallops?

The biggest difference between bay scallops and sea scallops is their size. Sea scallops are larger in size and most likely (sustainably) farmed. If you order a scallop dish at a restaurant, it’s probably sea scallops. Bay scallops are found off the East coast in bays (hence the name) and harbors. They are much smaller and sweeter and more tender and what you’ll find in dishes like stews or casseroles where a large scallop would be tricky to eat.

I recommend using bay scallops for this scallops over pasta dish as it’s easier to eat the scallops and pasta and you’ll also save some money!

Dish of bay scallop pasta with lemon and parsley garnish

Storage Instructions

This scallops and linguine recipe is best served fresh, but store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 1-2 days.

How to reheat

Reheat the bay scallops pasta in a hot skillet until warmed through. Drizzle some olive oil or heavy cream if it’s dry.

Can you freeze scallop scampi pasta?

This pasta won’t freeze very well, but I doubt you’ll have any issues finishing it! You can always cut the recipe in half if you need to.

Dish of scallop linguine

How to Serve Bay Scallop Pasta to the Whole Family

I get it, feeding kids can be tough! But following the Division of Responsibility and knowing your job and your child’s job makes it SO much more enjoyable. You’ll be able to feed your kids any meal, which will help ensure that they are eating a variety of nutritious foods – with plenty of play food sprinkled in. 😉

You know I’m a fan of feeding our kids the same things we feed ourselves…and this scallop linguine recipe is no exception! I know my kids adore pasta, but scallops aren’t a food we have frequently, so it was a new food to them. So I offered a tiny portion of a scallop. They ate the pasta and didn’t care for the scallop – next time it may change!

All of my articles on feeding kids can be found here and if you want a FULL list of all of the videos I have with hacks, tips, scripts, and ideas for feeding kids, check out my instagram or tiktok page.

What to Serve with Scallops and Linguine

This linguine with bay scallops doesn’t need much, but if you want to add a veggie side, here are a few ideas:

More Pasta Recipes

If you like bay scallop recipes with pasta, then you might also like some of these other easy pasta recipes:

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Helpful Tools to Make Scallops and Linguine

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Two bowls of bay scallop pasta

Bay Scallop Linguine Recipe

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This scallop linguine recipe tastes like a restaurant meal, but is easy to make at home. Tender bay scallop pasta + a crunchy pine nut topping. 


Units Scale

Breadcrumb mixture: 

  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (high quality)
  • 1 tsp. lemon zest

For the scallop linguine: 

  • 1 lb. linguine
  • 1 lb. bay scallops (the small ones)
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 2 cloves garlic


  1. In a small food processor, pulse together garlic and pine nuts until chopped into small pieces. Add panko bread crumbs and pulse until combined. Heat butter in a nonstick skillet over medium heat and toast breadcrumb mixture for 2-4 minutes, until golden brown. Set aside and when cool, stir in lemon zest and parmesan cheese.
  2. Cook linguine according to package instructions to al dente, reserving 1 cup of pasta water.
  3. Meanwhile, pat scallops dry with paper towel. Heat olive oil and butter in a large stainless steel skillet and when hot, add scallops in a single layer. Season with sea salt and cook for 2-4 minutes, until cooked through. Add garlic to skillet and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  4. Add cooked linguine to scallop skillet and toss together, adding pasta water if needed.
  5. Serve pasta in shallow bowls and top with breadcrumb mixture and season with flaky sea salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste. 


  • Bay scallops are smaller than sea scallops. 

Keywords: scallop linguine, bay scallop pasta, scallop scampi, scallops and linguine, scallop linguine recipe

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Photo Credit: All photos in this post were take by Loren at Sweet Rustic Bakes

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