Easy Lemon Garlic Shrimp Pasta

By Crystal Baldwin



If you need a break from cooking between the holidays or you still have a house full of people to feed and need a quick and easy doesn't get much easier than this dish! 

If you have leftover shrimp cocktail from a party and want to use it up, you can do that with this dish as well.  If not, grab a bag of uncooked shrimp from the freezer and get your dinner done in about 20 minutes. 

Fresh pasta tastes amazing in this dish and my preference is linguini.  That being said, dried pasta, linguine or spaghetti will work just as easily..remember this is all about making this dish easy, simple and fast!

Tip - How to get plump shrimps!

Do you ever wonder how your favorite restaurant gets plump, juicy, crisp shrimp in every dish?  Here is the secret ingredient...baking soda!  This is so simple to do. 

Prior to cooking your shrimp, remove from the freezer and thaw, either in the fridge or in a bowl of ice water.  When ready to use, add the shrimp in a bowl with cold water and place 1 heaping teaspoon of baking soda in the water with the shrimp and stir to dissolve - mix well. 

Massage the shrimp getting the baking soda into each one.  Allow it to sit for 20-30 minutes while you prepare the ingredients for your dish.  Then rinse the shrimp very well to be sure to get any lingering baking soda out of the shrimp to avoid any bitter flavor.  Cook as directed.  This works with any shrimp dish! 

Easy Lemon Garlic Shrimp pasta


  • 1-pound large shrimp or use left-over shrimp cocktail
  • 1 Package dried or fresh linguini (can substitute spaghetti)
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 large lemon - juice and zest
  • 2-3 Tablespoons fresh parsley minced (or 1 tablespoon dried)
  • 3 cloves garlic sliced
  • 1 cup pasta water reserved
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Baby spinach optional
  • 1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese, plus a sprinkle to each plate
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil to drizzle on finished plate 


  • In a large pot, cook your pasta according to directions with a little olive oil to coat the pasta, drain, reserving 1 cup of pasta water and set aside.
  • Using the same pan, heat olive oil and 3 tablespoons of butter. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant about 1-2 minutes, stirring.
  • Add the shrimp, salt, and pepper to taste and reserved pasta water as needed. Cook until the shrimp starts to turn pink. If using left over shrimp, skip this step (see next step). Add spinach if using and cook until wilted.
  • If using left-over shrimp, run hot water over shrimp to warm, drain just before adding to the pasta.
  • Add the pasta back to the pot with the remaining butter, parmesan, and parsley. Stir until mixed and the butter is melted.
  • Add the lemon juice & zest and toss before serving. Serve immediately!

Download your printable recipe HERE


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