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Shrimp and Pesto-Rice Salad

- Photo: Alison Miksch; Styling: Vanessa McNeil Rocchio
Photo: Alison Miksch; Styling: Vanessa McNeil Rocchio

Serve this brand-new twist on the old rice salad warm, or make it ahead, chill, and serve cold.

Hands-on time: 20 minutes
Total time: 25 minutes
Yields: Makes 6 servings

Ingredients

1 pound peeled, large raw shrimp, deveined

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/2 cup olive oil, divided

2 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided

2 teaspoons loosely packed lime zest, divided

1/2 cup loosely packed fresh mint leaves

1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and diced

2 large garlic cloves, smashed

1/4 cup fresh lime juice

2 (5-oz.) packages fresh baby spinach

4 cups warm cooked long-grain rice

1/2 cup smoked almonds, chopped

How to Make It

Preheat oven to 425°. Toss together shrimp, black pepper, 1/4 cup oil, 1 tsp. salt, and 1 tsp. lime zest. Spread shrimp in a single layer on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet; bake 5 minutes or until shrimp are pink and done.

Meanwhile, process mint, next 3 ingredients, 1 (5-oz.) package spinach, and remaining 1 1/4 tsp. salt and 1 tsp. lime zest in a food processor until finely chopped. With processor running, pour remaining 1/4 cup oil through chute in a slow, steady stream, processing until combined.

Toss remaining 1 (5-oz.) package spinach with warm rice. (Spinach will wilt slightly.) Stir pesto into rice mixture; sprinkle with almonds. Top with shrimp.

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