Quick and easy recipe for buttery garlic shrimp cooked with a light wine broth. Serve with pasta for restaurant-quality shrimp scampi pasta in under 30 minutes.
I love making this recipe because it’s a fast meal and it makes my guests feel special. If you have a guest who doesn’t like shrimp or you’re just looking for a more economical meal try our chicken scampi recipe instead!
The size of the shrimp you use is really a matter of personal preference. Smaller shrimp will require more cleaning time because there are so many to peel and devein.
I prefer using medium-large to large shrimp. Something in the rage of 40 shrimp per pound is my target. This gives every bowl of pasta about 10 shrimp.
Anything larger than these and I feel like the shrimp need to be cut in half before eating it. Knives and pasta don’t really mix well in my opinion.
This recipe tastes best when fresh garlic has been used. In a pinch I have used the chopped garlic packed in oil you can find in large store produce sections.
If you find yourself without either one of these options, granulated garlic can be substituted. Start with ¼ of a teaspoon and add more if needed.
Shallots will add a hint of onion flavor to the sauce. They are a nice addition, but not necessary and can be omitted or a tablespoon of finely minced onion can be substituted.
The best wine for shrimp scampi is a dry white wine. Make sure you use a wine you would be happy drinking.
The white cooking wine you can buy in a grocery store is OK in a pinch, but it might make your shrimp dish too tart or taste “off.”
Shrimp Scampi for pasta can be made without wine. Substitute the wine with chicken broth that has been diluted with water.
You want to dilute the chicken broth because straight broth will get really salty as it reduces.
You’ll also need to add additional lemon juice to replace the acid white wine provides.
How to Make it Creamy
To turn this recipe a creamy shrimp scampi, add ½ cup of heavy cream and ¼ cup grated parmesan or Romano cheese at the very end of cooking.
I usually turn off the heat before adding and stir just until the cream is heated through and the cheese has melted.
Serve the creamy version on pasta or with bread. The only real difference is the addition of cream and cheese.
It is best to store the shrimp scampi and the pasta in separate air-tight containers so that the scampi sauce doesn’t absorb into the pasta.
Cooked shrimp scampi will be fine in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. I think the quality is best when eaten within 3 days though.
Cooked garlic shrimp can be safely stored in the freezer for up to 3 months, but I try not to make more shrimp than we will eat within a few days. Besides, it’s just s quick to make fresh shrimp scampi.
The best method for reheating shrimp scampi is to heat a skillet over medium heat and add the scampi sauce to the pan. Once the sauce is hot, add the shrimp and heat, stirring often, until the shrimp are heated through.
While the sauce and shrimp are reheating, reheat the pasta in the microwave. Alternatively, you can heat some water to boiling in a small saucepan. Once the water is boiling, add the cold pasta and cook for 45 to 60 seconds, or just until the pasta is hot. Drain the pasta immediately to stop the cooking process.
Shrimp scampi pasta that has been combined can be reheated in the microwave for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Stir the pasta and shrimp about halfway through. You might need to add another 30 to 60 seconds of cooking time depending on the serving size being heated.
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Shrimp Scampi Pasta
- 4 tablespoons salted butter
- 2 tablespoon light olive oil
- 4 large cloves garlic finely minced
- 1 small shallot finely minced
- 1/2 to 1 cup dry white wine
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes more can be added for a spicier sauce
- 8 ounces dried pasta like linguine
- 16 ounces medium-large to large shrimp peeled and deveined
- 1/2 large lemon
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley finely minced
- Peel and devein shrimp if not already done.
- If using pasta, fill a large pot with water and set over high heat.
- Heat olive oil and butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add garlic and shallots and heat just until fragrant.
- Add wine and red pepper flakes and reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the wine has been reduced by about half.
- Once the water is boiling, add the pasta to the water and cook according to package directions.
- About 6 minutes before the pasta is done cooking, increase the heat on the scampi sauce to medium-high. The goal is to have the shrimp and pasta ready at about the same time so that both can be served hot.
- Add the shrimp to the scampi sauce and cook, stirring occasionally just until the shrimp have been cooked through, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the juice from the lemon half to the mixture, stir and remove from the heat.
- Drain the pasta, and add to serving bowls and top with shrimp and sauce. Top each plate with freshly minced parsley. Serve immediately.