Shrimp Scampi with Pasta is a classic Italian-American dish that is quick, easy, and packed with flavor. It’s perfect for a weeknight dinner or a special occasion, and it’s sure to please both seafood lovers and pasta lovers alike.
Why this recipe works
One of the great things about Shrimp Scampi with Pasta is that it’s incredibly simple to make. With just a few ingredients, you can create a dish that’s bursting with flavor and texture. The key to this recipe is the combination of garlic, butter, and white wine, which create a rich and savory sauce that pairs perfectly with the delicate sweetness of the shrimp.
What is shrimp scampi
Shrimp Scampi is a classic Italian-American dish that typically consists of large shrimp that have been cooked in a sauce made from garlic, butter, white wine, and lemon juice. The shrimp are then served over a bed of pasta, which is typically spaghetti or linguine. The dish is typically finished with a sprinkle of fresh parsley and grated parmesan cheese.
Best ingredients for shrimp scampi pasta
To make the best Shrimp Scampi with Pasta, it’s important to use high-quality ingredients. Here are some of the key ingredients that you’ll need:
Pasta: Spaghetti or linguine are the traditional choices for this dish. Be sure to use a high-quality pasta that will hold up well in the sauce.
Shrimp: Large, peeled, and deveined shrimp are the best choice for this dish. Look for fresh shrimp if possible, but frozen shrimp can also work well.
Garlic: Fresh garlic is essential for creating a rich and flavorful sauce.
Butter: Unsalted butter is the best choice for this dish, as it allows you to control the seasoning.
White wine: Dry white wine is the best choice for this dish, as it will add acidity and flavor to the sauce.
Lemon juice: Fresh lemon juice adds brightness and acidity to the dish.
Parsley: Fresh parsley adds a bright and herbaceous flavour notes.
How to make shrimp scampi pasta
Now that you have your ingredients, let’s dive into how to make shrimp scampi step-by-step:
Step 1: Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water until al dente, according to the package instructions. Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water, then drain the pasta and set aside.
Step 2: In a large skillet or saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and red pepper flakes (if using) and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly, until fragrant and lightly golden.
Step 3: Add the shrimp to the skillet and season with salt and black pepper. Cook the shrimp for 2-3 minutes on each side until pink and cooked through.
Step 4: Pour in the white wine and lemon juice, and simmer for 1-2 minutes until slightly reduced and slightly thickened. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed.
Step 5: Add the cooked pasta to the skillet, along with the reserved pasta cooking water and parsley, and toss to combine with the shrimp scampi sauce. Cook for an additional 1-2 minutes until the pasta is heated through and the sauce has thickened slightly.
Step 6: Divide between two serving plates, top with remaining parsley and parmesan cheese. Enjoy!
Storing and freezing tips
If you have any leftovers, you can store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, simply place the shrimp scampi and pasta in a pan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until heated through.
If you have made a larger batch and want to save some for later, you can freeze the shrimp scampi and pasta in an airtight container for up to 2-3 months. However, please note that the pasta may lose some of its texture and become slightly softer after being frozen and reheated.
When you are ready to enjoy your frozen shrimp scampi with pasta, simply remove the container from the freezer and let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Once thawed, reheat in a pan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until heated through.
Top tips for the best shrimp scampi with pasta
- Use high-quality ingredients: Since this dish has a few simple ingredients, it’s important to use the best quality you can find. Fresh, large shrimp and good-quality pasta will make all the difference.
- Don’t overcook the shrimp: Shrimp cook quickly, so it’s important to keep an eye on them and not overcook them. Overcooked shrimp will become rubbery and tough, so aim to cook them until they are just pink and cooked through.
- Don’t overcook the pasta: Overcooked pasta will become mushy and lose its texture. To avoid this, cook the pasta according to the package instructions and make sure to check it for doneness a minute or two before the recommended cooking time.
- Reserve some pasta water: The starchy pasta water is an excellent addition to the sauce as it helps to thicken it and makes it stick to the pasta better. Be sure to reserve some before draining the pasta.
- Adjust the seasoning: Taste the shrimp scampi sauce and adjust the seasoning as needed. If it needs a bit more salt or lemon juice, don’t hesitate to add it.
Can I use a different type of pasta?
Yes, you can use any type of pasta you like, such as fettuccine, angel hair, or penne.
Can I omit the white wine in the shrimp scampi recipe?
Yes, you can omit the white wine if you prefer. You can replace it with chicken or vegetable broth or simply omit it altogether.
Can I use frozen shrimp in the shrimp scampi?
Yes, you can use frozen shrimp, but make sure to thaw them completely and pat them dry before cooking.
Can I make shrimp scampi with pasta ahead of time?
While this dish is best enjoyed fresh, you can prepare the shrimp scampi sauce ahead of time and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. When you are ready to serve, simply reheat the sauce in a pan, cook the pasta, and combine the two.
Did you make it?
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