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The Pesto Scallop Amuse Bouche

May 8, 2018 (Last Updated: September 11, 2020)

What could be more elegant than a pretty little pesto scallop amuse bouche!? It’s so lovely, so special and so simple to make!

A small shell on a plate containing 3 small scallops, pesto cream and mustard caviar next to a small fork.

I love surprising guests with these tasty little bay scallops. The shells are really easy to find on Amazon and look so pretty on your dinner table.

I remove them just before I cook up the scallops and pass them out while my guests are enjoying appetizers and cocktails.

A shell sitting on a clear plate on top of a white napkin on a black table. Next to the shell is a sprig of lavender and a small trident fork.

You can prep these tasty treasures in under 10 minutes if you make your pesto cream ahead of time – giving you more time to spend with your guests, and out of the kitchen!

If you’ve never made your own pesto before, you’ll be so happy you did!

You’ll never go back to the oily, store-bought kind ever again. It tastes so divine and it’s so easy to make! It’s delicious enough, as is, but when you add the cream, it’s simply dreamy.

A small shell on a plate containing 3 small scallops, pesto cream and mustard caviar.

The mustard caviar is key!

If you’ve never made mustard caviar, it couldn’t be simpler! You can make it with any kind of sauce you like! I have Sriracha caviar, pickle juice caviar, soy sauce caviar, and of course, this delicious balsamic caviar.

3 small bowls with different kinds of mustard caviar on a marble table.

Your mustard seeds just need to soak for at least 3 days, so be sure to give yourself enough time to let them sit before you plan to serve them at a party. After 3 days, they’re perfect for months.

A small shell on a plate containing 3 small scallops, pesto cream and mustard caviar.

A Few More Fancy Appetizer Ideas

Delicious Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus with Goat Cheese
Beautiful Vegan Squash Rosettes
Beautiful Baked Gruyère

For more inspiration, follow me on INSTAGRAM @shekeepsalovelyhome, on PINTEREST and FACEBOOK! And if you ever make any of my tasty drinks or treats, take a picture and tag me. I want to see! 

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4.67 from 3 votes

Pesto Scallop Amuse Bouche

What could be more elegant that a pretty little pesto scallop amuse-bouche!? It's so lovely, so special and so simple to make!
You'll require a small skillet (preferably cast iron), 8 appetizer shells or small bowls, a food processor and small mixing bowl for this recipe.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time3 mins
Total Time18 mins
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: scallops
Servings: 8 Servings
Calories: 131kcal


  • 24 bay scallops
  • Balsamic-soaked mustard seeds
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves
  • ¼ cup fresh grated parmesan
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp pine nuts - or pepitas
  • 1 tsp. white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tsp. butter - enough to just thinly cover your frying pan
  • Juice from half a lemon


  • Place 1 cup fresh basil, 2 tbsp. pine nuts (or pepitas) and ¼ cup fresh grated parmesan into a food processor. Pour ¼ cup olive oil and 1 tsp. white balsamic vinegar over the other ingredients. Blend everything together into a pesto paste. Add 1 tbsp. of heavy whipping cream and stir. Place in a sealable container. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  • Lay out your shells or tiny serving plates and add a dollop of  pesto cream to each. Add 1 tsp. butter to your pan and turn your heat up to high. Once your pan is quite hot, add 24 bay scallops, making sure there's a good amount of space between them. Too much moisture can build up between them if they're too close, preventing them from browning nicely.
  • Let them sit in the pan without moving for 2-3 minutes until a side is brown. Roll them over, then cook them for 3 more minutes.
  • Squeeze juice from half a lemon over them and let the juice sizzle for a few seconds while swirling the scallops in the pan. Remove quickly into a bowl so you can place them into your shells or plates.
  • Garnish with balsamic-soaked mustard seeds and serve.


Serving: 1Amuse Bouche | Calories: 131kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 16mg | Sodium: 232mg | Potassium: 116mg | Vitamin A: 225IU | Vitamin C: 0.6mg | Calcium: 45mg | Iron: 0.5mg


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