Cajun Shrimp Pasta + Video
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Cajun Shrimp Pasta features tender-crisp veggies smothered in a Cajun parmesan sauce! Make this quick and easy recipe in just 25 minutes!
One-pot recipes help keep me out of the kitchen so I can enjoy all of the beautiful weather in the summer. They are a quick and easy way to have a delicious dinner on the table fast.
Cajun Shrimp Pasta
This New Orleans style shrimp dinner is packed with flavor, and it’s just beyond simple to make! Everything cooks together, even the noodles, so there are fewer dishes to do after dinner. Now that’s what I call easy!
This One-Pot Jambalaya Pasta is another favorite Cajun shrimp recipe. We also have a fabulous shrimp scampi recipe.
Watch the video to see us make this spicy seafood pasta recipe from start to finish! Look for it in the recipe card, at the bottom of this post.
Cajun Shrimp Pasta Recipe Tips
- To quickly defrost frozen seafood, place frozen shrimp in a fine-mesh sieve or colander. Place this sieve in a large bowl of cold tap water for 10 minutes.
After 10 minutes, replace the water in the bowl with new cold tap water and re-submerge the shrimp. Let shrimp sit an additional 10- 20 minutes. Now, it’s time to make your Cajun Shrimp Pasta.
Another option for defrosting frozen shrimp is to place them in a covered bowl and let them sit in the refrigerator overnight.
- Cook your shrimp with the tails on. Because the seafood shells contain flavor that seeps out during cooking, you’ll have a more robust shrimp flavor. You can remove the tails after cooking if you’d like.
- Adjust the spiciness to your liking.
The spice level in this spicy shrimp pasta recipe is customizable. I find 2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper to be on the spicy side as you would expect from a New Orleans Cajun pasta.
To customize the heat level, start with 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning then add 1-3 teaspoons more if you want it. If you don’t like heat and want this very kid-friendly, omit the cayenne pepper.
If you aren’t sure how much seasoning to use, it’s best to start with less then add more to taste at the end of cooking. Keep in mind, you can always add more heat but it is impossible to take it out afterward!
- For a creamier consistency, add reserved pasta water or heavy cream after you stir the pasta, shrimp, veggies, and sauce together until you reach the consistency you prefer. For an extra decadent pasta, add additional heavy cream.
- Use freshly shredded cheese and fresh herbs. Garnishing your individual servings of pasta with freshly grated Parmesan, lime juice, and fresh parsley enhances the flavors and takes this spicy seafood dinner to a whole new level!
Cajun Shrimp Pasta FAQ
Can you freeze a pasta recipe with shrimp?
Yes, you can freeze your leftovers if you have them. After reheating, you may notice a slight change in the texture. But, it’s possible to extend the life of your leftovers this way. Just place the leftovers in a freezer-safe container with a tightly fitting lid. Use within 6 months.
How to Devein Shrimp
If you’ve never deveined shrimp before, you will need to for this Cajun Shrimp Pasta recipe.
Once you remove the shells, make a shallow slice at the back of the shrimp. Then, carefully pull the vein out using the point of the knife.
It’s easiest to use medium uncooked shrimp that have been peeled and deveined. Buying prepared shrimp makes your job a snap because all you have to do is defrost the shrimp.
Why are my shrimp rubbery?
If your shrimp have a rubbery texture, it’s a sure sign they have been overcooked. Cook shrimp just until they have barely curled into the shape of the letter C.
If they are straight, they are undercooked. If you have cooked them until they are curled into an O, they are overcooked.
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Other Simple Shrimp Dinners
Cajun Shrimp Pasta + Video
- 1 pound medium uncooked peeled shrimp, deveined
- 2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning spice mix, divided
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, divided
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 8 ounces uncooked fettuccine pasta
- 3 tablespoon olive oil, extra virgin, divided
- 1 1/2 bell peppers, any color combo, thinly sliced, then halved
- 1/2 large red onion, sliced, then halved
- 2 tablespoon butter, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, +salt for water
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
- 1 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 14 ounce can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, well-drained
- 1 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
- Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
- fresh parsley
- lemon juice
- Add shrimp to a medium bowl and toss with 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning, 1 tablespoon lime juice, and 4 minced garlic cloves. Set aside.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add a small handful of salt and pasta. Cook until al dente, about 8-12 minutes. Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water before draining. Set aside.
- While the pasta cooks, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and bell peppers, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and cook until peppers reach desired crisp-tenderness, approximately 5 minutes. Remove to a plate.
- To the same skillet (don’t wipe it out), melt 1 tablespoon butter and one tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat. Add shrimp mixture and cook 3-4 minutes, just until shrimp are opaque and cooked through. Scrape shrimp and garlic/juices into a bowl. Set aside. After shrimp is cool enough to handle, you can chop tails off if you desire.
- To the same skillet (don’t wipe out), melt 1 tablespoon butter with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Sprinkle in flour and 1-3 teaspoons Cajun seasoning (3 teaspoons for more heat), and optional cayenne pepper (if you want it spicy) and cook, while stirring, for 2 minutes, then turn heat to low. Slowly whisk in chicken broth and heavy cream, stirring constantly until smooth. Stir in diced tomatoes.
- Turn heat to medium-high and bring the sauce to a simmer. Simmer until thickened, stirring occasionally, approximately 3-5 minutes.
- Reduce heat to low and stir in lime juice followed by Parmesan cheese until melted. Stir in the cooked shrimp, vegetables, and pasta until well coated in sauce, adding additional reserved pasta water or heavy cream if needed to reach desired consistency. Taste and season with additional salt, pepper and/or cayenne pepper to taste.
- Garnish with freshly grated Parmesan cheese, fresh parsley, and lime juice (optional).
All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.
Originally published February 2018. Updated and republished July 2020.
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Today I intended to make shrimps in a coconut-curry sauce. Not anymore. I changed the recipee since I saw and read the Cajun shrimp Pasta. Today I will make the Cajun shrimp pasta. Lucky for me I have Cajun seasoning in my refrigirator and everything needed for this recipee. I just smell and taste it already. Thank you for this recipee.
Awesome!! Enjoy and let us know how it goes!
The result: I made the Cajun shrimp pasta and it was a big succes. My husband tasted it with closed eyes. He was in heaven. I still have some for tomorrow. We had celery and carrots with it. It goes good together. I used everything written in the recipe, except the Cayenne pepper. It was a big succes!
Great recipe! I was down in NOLA for a business trip a few months ago and haven't been able to stop talking about the cajun shrimp pasta I had. I'm going to make this for my wife so she stops thinking I'm crazy!
This is a wonderful recipe, thank you for sharing. My whole family loved it!
what can I substitute for heavy cream? I am newly diagnosed dairy free.
I bought some fresh shrimp at walmart. This pasta is great ideas for the shrimp.
This is such a tasty meal, thank you so much for posting the video! My family loved it and we will definitely be having it again.
Huge hit in my house, even the kids loved it!!!! My husband says he wants this on the weekly rotation!