Recipe for Shrimp Spaghetti

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This recipe for shrimp spaghetti is not only delicious, but it’s also easy and quick. You can make this shrimp and spaghetti recipe in less than 30 minutes. Follow this recipe and you’ll have it on the dinner table ready to serve in no time.

Just like all my Italian recipes, we use simple and fresh ingredients. For the pasta, you can use spaghetti or other long pasta such as linguini or fettuccini.

shrimp and pasta

Recipe for Shrimp Spaghetti

This post will include step by step instructions that anyone can follow. This is a family recipe, very similar to our linguini and clams recipe. It’s about as easy as you can get. If you’ve never cooked with shrimp, don’t worry I’ll step you through it. It’s easier than you think!

The first thing to do is get over any fear you have of cooking shrimp. I rarely cook seafood so overcoming the fear of raw fish or seafood is always a big challenge for me.

However, with this recipe it really is super easy. It takes no time at all to cook the shrimp. You just have to be sure not to overcook them or they will get tough.

Shrimp Spaghetti List of Ingredients

Everything in this recipe besides the shrimp you most likely have already in your pantry.  Here are the ingredients:

  • Shelled shrimp
  • Olive oil
  • Butter
  • Garlic
  • Fresh parsley (ideally Italian flat leaf)
  • White wine
  • Spaghetti
  • Romano or Parmesan cheese for sprinkling on top 

When I make this spaghetti and shrimp recipe, I will sometimes use homemade pasta. I find the texture of the fresh pasta is really nice with the shrimp. If you haven’t ever tried homemade pasta it’s awesome.  You can check out my review of the Philips Pasta Maker here. I used the fettuccine die cut.

The recipe calls for 5 cloves of garlic, and yes it sounds like a lot, but in these types of white wine sauces, you want that garlic. It will not overpower the dish.

How to Make Shrimp Spaghetti

Since this recipe has just a few steps, let’s go through what’s involved for when we want to make shrimp spaghetti. You can grab the detailed instruction sheet further below, but here is an overview of the recipe process.

Go here if you prefer to jump down to Recipe details.

How to Cook Shrimp with Spaghetti

Using shelled shrimp makes it easy for cooking shrimp with spaghetti. You can purchase frozen shelled shrimp at just about any grocery store or large wholesale store. I see them at Meijer, BJs, Walmart etc.

We first cook the (shelled) shrimp in a little water in a pan until they are almost done – just a few minutes. You know they are done right when they start turning color to that bright beautiful red. So remove them right as they start to turn color.

If you think you cooked the shrimp too long, run them under cold water to stop any further cooking.

Set the shrimp aside because we’ll be adding them back in to finish cooking in a few minutes.

Cook the Spaghetti Noodles

Meanwhile, get a pot of spaghetti noodles started. If the pasta is done before you’ve got the sauce ready, simply strain it and set it aside with a little water to prevent sticking.

Create an Olive Oil and White Wine Sauce

The next step will be to create a light olive oil, garlic, and white wine sauce. This too is quick and doesn’t require long or arduous cooking or prep. There is garlic used, but it is not too heavy for the recipe.

Nor is this is a creamy sauce like some other recipes. This is a light, yet flavorful sauce that we will add to the spaghetti.

Finish Cooking the Shrimp in the Sauce

We then add the shrimp back into the olive oil and white wine sauce. This will finish up cooking the shrimp for about 2 minutes (just enough time to warm them up again).

Use medium size shrimp if you can, not the super tiny kind as I think those would get too tough too quickly.

About the Shrimp Spaghetti Sauce

Another thing you’ll notice in this recipe is that it uses a combination of both olive oil and butter.  This is common with these light sauces and the butter adds just enough creaminess along with that slightly buttery texture.

Using butter is very common in the Northern regions of Italy. You’ll feel like you’re sitting in a fancy upscale restaurant. 😉

But what really seals the deal is the white wine. Not white wine vinegar, you want actual white wine and a cheap/inexpensive one will do.

We’ll put that in at the last minute otherwise it might cook off too much and we lose that added element of flavor.

What Kind of Spaghetti to Use?

fresh homemade pasta with shrimp

I prefer to use long pasta with my shrimp. You can choose fettuccine which is a wider and flatter shape than regular round spaghetti.  You can also cook delicate angel hair or capellini pasta.  So don’t worry if you don’t know which long pasta to use, just use what you have.

How to Season Shrimp Spaghetti

To season the shrimp and pasta we rely on two main ingredients: Italian parsley also known as flat parsley, and garlic.

Garlic is commonly used to season shrimp with pasta recipes. What makes this recipe different however is the use of the parsley.

If you don’t know the difference between Italian parsley and curly parsley, Italian is flat and darker green. It has a slightly bitter taste and is not used as a garnish like curly parsley.  

Use Flat Parsley to season the shrimp and pasta

If you don’t have fresh Italian parsley then you can use dried, but fresh is preferred. If you only have curly parsley, you can use that but it will have a different flavor so don’t judge this recipe until you try it with the flat parsley.

By the way, I don’t recommend swapping herbs for this recipe.  Sometimes I say you can use basil instead of such and such, but in this case keep it only to the parsley.

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Ready to get started?  Hopefully I’ve prepped you for the recipe and your confidence is sky high.  Here’s the recipe and enjoy!

What can I Make with Shrimp and Spaghetti Noodles

Shrimp and spaghetti noodles go great with fresh Italian green salad and artisan bread. You can also use soups such as easy winter minestrone soup. Avoid meats as sides.

Try some beets marinated in vinegar with onions, or try a some fried eggplant slices if they are in season.

shrimp and pasta

Shrimp and Spaghetti

Enjoy an amazing meal with this Italian recipe for shrimp and spaghetti.  Simple ingredients and very easy to prepare and cook. Completely impress your friends and family!
5 from 1 vote
Print Rate
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Italian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients

  • 3 cups medium shrimp (peeled and de-veined)
  • 1/2 cup fresh Italian parsley
  • 5 cloves crushed/roughly chopped garlic
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 12 oz long pasta angel hair, fettuccini, etc.

Instructions

  • Cook the shrimp covered in water in a large frying pan until almost done.  You'll know when the shrimp is almost done when it starts turning red, just a few minutes.
  • Drain the water and set the shrimp aside.
  • Meanwhile, start heating the water for the spaghetti in a large pot/sauce pan. 
  • When the water is boiling, add in the spaghetti and cook until done/al-dente.
  • Next, in the large frying pan, heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat until the butter is melted.
  • Add in the garlic and saute for a few minutes until fragrant.
  • Add the white wine and simmer for about 2 minutes to blend the flavors.
  • Add the shrimp and cook for 2 more minutes until the shrimp is done.  
  • Remove from heat and serve over the pasta with grated Italian cheese.

Notes

Serve with fresh artisan bread and salad.
Some people really like pepper flakes with this type of recipe, so if you like a more spicy flavor, try adding some.  I prefer mine without, but that’s just me. 🙂 
This recipe is very similar to my linguine and clams recipe I got from my mother.  It is a family favorite of mine, so if you don’t have shrimp, you can always add some canned chopped clams to substitute. 

This recipe was originally posted December 5, 2017. It was updated on January 13th, 2023.

Recipe for Shrimp SpaghettiRecipe for Shrimp SpaghettiRecipe for Shrimp Spaghetti

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