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Spicy Garlic Shrimp Pasta

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Spicy Garlic Shrimp Pasta with Tomatoes & Asparagus is bursting with bold flavors. This easy seafood recipe is a complete meal in a bowl, and on the table in about 30 minutes. The homemade shrimp stock is simple to make and adds incredible flavor. Use quinoa pasta spaghetti to keep this a gluten free meal!

overhead shot of finished Spicy Garlic Shrimp Pasta in white bowl with glass of white wine to the left side

When I moved to Oklahoma in 2007, I refused to eat any seafood. Having grown up in Maryland, I couldn’t bring myself to eat seafood in a landlocked state.

About a year later I began to buy frozen seafood from Sam’s Club or Costco, and I also discovered 2 seafood markets in Tulsa that fly in fresh product daily.

I eat shrimp more than any other type of seafood because it cooks fast, and works well in many different dishes.

When I make fried rice at home its almost always Shrimp Fried Rice. My first soup on the blog was Thai Shrimp Soup. And in the summer when basil is plentiful, I make Blackened Shrimp Pesto Pasta Salad.

I recently discovered  Quinoa Spaghetti Pasta tand I was on a mission to use it. It tastes like regular pasta, cooks the same, and is gluten free and vegan. So I created Spicy Garlic Shrimp Pasta with Tomatoes and Asparagus

WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS
  • It’s a complete meal, with protein, vegetables and starch in every bite
  • The dish is incredibly flavorful, thanks to an easy homemade shrimp stock
  • It’s on the table in under 30 minutes
close up overhead shot of Spicy Garlic Shrimp Pasta in white bowl with glass of white wine on left side

MAKE YOUR OWN SHRIMP STOCK! 

Raw shrimp is usually sold with both the shells and tails and, like most people, I always threw the “trash” away. Then I saw several chefs on the Food Network talk about the ease of making shrimp stock, so I decided to try and make it myself.

All you need for the perfect quick shrimp stock is to simmer shrimp shells and tails, whole black peppercorns, bay leaves, raw garlic, and fresh parsley in a pot of water. And in about 10 minutes, you have amazingly flavorful stock that takes Spicy Garlic Shrimp Pasta to a whole new level.

TIPS ON BUYING SHRIMP

Frozen shrimp is almost always fresher than shrimp at the seafood counter. Why?

  • When fishermen return to the dock, they immediately put the shrimp into ice and freeze them. The shrimp remains frozen until you’re ready to thaw it
  • Almost all fresh shrimp at the seafood counter was previously frozen, and you have no way of knowing when it was thawed
  • NOTE: If you have a fishmonger that gets daily deliveries, or you’re lucky enough to live near a market that sells product off the dock, then absolutely buy fresh! 

Shrimp size is determined by the number of shrimp per pound. For example, a label of 31/35 means there are 31-35 of these shrimp per pound. Ignore the size name (like large/XL/jumbo) because brands can name sizes differently.

TO THAW SHRIMP: Place frozen shrimp in an airtight container in the fridge for at least 8 hours.

close up shot of shrimp speared by fork over bowl of Spicy Garlic Shrimp Pasta
STEP BY STEP INSTRUCTIONS FOR SPICY GARLIC SHRIMP PASTA

In a large pot of salted, boiling water, cook pasta for 10 minutes. Reserve 1/4 cup of water and discard the rest.

Season both sides of shrimp generously with seasoning mixture.

Melt butter in a skillet, add shrimp and cook for 1 minute per side, until slightly pink and curling at the edges.

Remove shrimp and set aside. The residual heat will continue to cook the shrimp a little bit in the bowl.

process shots: raw shrimp and seasoning on left; cooked shrimp on right

Warm pepper flakes in the skillet for 1 minute, then add sliced garlic and cook for 2 minutes, making sure garlic does not burn.

Add the white wine, scrape up the bits of flavor, and cook until reduced by half. Then add 1 cup of shrimp stock and cook until reduced by half.

process shots: red pepper flakes & garlic on left; shrimp stock added on right

Add 1/4 cup stock plus asparagus, and cook for about 5 minutes. Finally, add tomatoes and 1/4 cup stock, and cook for 2-3 minutes.

process shots: asparagus added to skillet on left; tomatoes added to skillet on right

Add pasta and reserved pasta water to the skillet and combine well. Add shrimp, and finish with a garnish of parsley.

process shots: pasta added on left; shrimp added back on right
off-set overhead shot of Spicy Garlic Shrimp Pasta in white bowl
SPICY GARLIC SHRIMP PASTA IS VERSATILE
  • I use quinoa pasta, but it’s also delicious with traditional spaghetti
  • Substitute other vegetables for asparagus
    • Green beans – cooks in the same amount of time as asparagus
    • Zucchini – add it about 5 minutes before tomatoes, so they don’t turn to mush
    • Baby spinach – add with the tomatoes, as it wilts quickly
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Spicy Garlic Shrimp Pasta - Karyl's Kulinary Krusade

Spicy Garlic Shrimp Pasta with Tomatoes & Asparagus

Yield: 2 people
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Spicy Garlic Shrimp Pasta with Tomatoes & Asparagus is bursting with bold flavors. This easy seafood recipe is a complete meal in a bowl, and on the table in about 30 minutes. The homemade shrimp stock is simple to make and adds incredible flavor. Use quinoa pasta spaghetti to keep this a gluten free meal!

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces quinoa pasta spaghetti (gluten free and vegan)
  • 1/2 lb 31-35 shrimp
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 1 Tablespoon avocado oil or olive oil
  • 2 large cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (more or less, to taste)
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 12 spears asparagus, ends removed, spears sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 12 cherry or grape tomatoes, halved or quartered

SHRIMP SEASONING

  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh-cracked black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt

SHRIMP STOCK

Instructions

  1. Remove shells and tails from shrimp, and add to a small saucepan.  Add black peppercorns, bay leaf, garlic, parsley and water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 10 minutes. Remove from heat, and drain stock into a bowl
  2. In a small bowl, combine garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, chili powder, oregano, basil, salt, and pepper. 
  3. Pat shrimp dry, and season both sides generously with seasoning mixture.
  4. In a large pot of salted, boiling water, cook quinoa pasta for 12 minutes. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup of pasta water
  5. In a large skillet, add butter and 1/2 Tablespoon oil, and melt over medium heat. Add shrimp to skillet and cook until it turns pink and slightly curls. Remove shrimp and set aside in small bowl. (31-35 shrimp takes about 1 minute per side)
  6. Add remaining 1/2 Tablespoon oil, plus red pepper flakes. Cook over medium/low heat for 1 minute. Add sliced garlic and cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally to make sure garlic does not burn
  7. Add white wine and cook for 1 minute, scraping the bits off the bottom of the pan. Add 1 cup shrimp stock and cook for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until stock reduces in half. Then add another 1/4 cup stock plus asparagus, and cook for 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and 1/4 cup stock, and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  8. Transfer pasta and reserved pasta water to skillet, and combine well. Add shrimp and toss lightly. 
  9. If desired, add a little more red pepper flakes, and garnish with parsley

Notes

Shrimp size is determined by the number of shrimp per pound. For example, a label of 31/35 means there are 31-35 of these shrimp per pound

Shrimp cooks quickly, and overcooked shrimp is rubbery, so don't walk away! I cook 31-35 shrimp for about 1 minute per side, and transfer to a bowl. With the residual heat, the shrimp will actually continue to cook a little and will be perfect.

I use quinoa pasta. But I’ve also made it with regular spaghetti, and it’s just as good.

Substitute other vegetables for asparagus

  • Green beans – cooks in the same amount of time as asparagus
  • Zucchini – add it about 5 minutes before tomatoes, so they don’t turn to mush
  • Baby spinach – add with the tomatoes, as it wilts quickly

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 2 Serving Size: 2 people
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 499Saturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 300mgSodium: 1268mgCarbohydrates: 56gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 29g
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