Shrimp Scampi

By Jeri Mobley-Arias
August 25, 2020 | Updated on May 18, 2023

Shrimp scampi is a quick and easy meal made of juicy shrimp tossed in a delicious garlic, wine, and butter sauce. Have a filling meal on the dinner table in less than 30 minutes when you prepare homemade shrimp scampi with a side like pasta, steamed rice, or salad, along with your favorite bread.

For more shrimp recipes, try my Honey Walnut Shrimp, Shrimp and Asparagus Stir Fry or Shrimp Fra Diavolo recipe, next!

shrimp-scampi

This content contains affiliate links which helps WhisperofYum.com to provide free recipes. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Thank you for support of the blog, Whisper of Yum!

Creamy shrimp scampi is guaranteed to please 100% of the time. Tender shrimp tossed in a savory homemade sauce with butter, garlic, white wine, and a burst of bright, lemon flavor; you can’t go wrong.

Why This Recipe Works

  • Better than the Restaurant – Skip the wait times at the Olive Garden or Red Lobster and make the best shrimp scampi recipe right from home!
  • Easy to Make – It’s great for a low-commitment dinner with a major ‘WOW’ factor.
  • Versatile – Whether you serve it as an appetizer or the main course, everyone will be satisfied.
homemade-shrimp-scampi

What is traditional scampi?

Scampi is a traditional Italian dish made with small crustaceans like prawns and langoustine, known as “scampi.” Today, scampi is usually made with shrimp hence the name “shrimp scampi.” Scampi is plural for “scampo”.

Tools You’ll Need

Ingredients You Will Need for Shrimp Scampi

  • Shrimp – Use high-quality, deveined shrimp. If using frozen shrimp, thaw before cooking. Keeping the shells is optional but I highly recommend keeping the tail on. (See below for my explanation.)
  • Shallots and Garlic – This aromatic provides flavor and fragrance. I prefer fresh garlic over minced garlic Finely chop it in order to get all that garlicky flavor.
  • Butter – That buttery flavor shines through, creating a luscious sauce.
  • Olive oil – The flavor of the oil comes through in this recipe, so go for quality olive oil.
  • Dry white wine – Sauvignon blanc and pinot grigio are my top choices. It adds an unmatched depth of flavor. Don’t worry, you won’t taste the alcohol because it evaporates as the sauce simmers.
  • Seasoning – I keep it simple with black pepper, kosher salt, and red chili flakes for a kick of heat.
  • Lemon juice – That citrus flavor enhances the other seasonings.
  • Flat leaf parsley – This adds some herby flavor and a pop of color. Use it finely chopped.
shrimp-garlic-scampi

The Shell or No-Shell Conundrum

Each time I make a shrimp dish, I’m invariably faced with the dichotomy of using shelled or unshelled shrimp. For the most part, it’s an easy decision for me (shelled, of course!).

Growing up, my momma was keen on leaving the head, shell, and tail intact for ultimate flavor (but trust, she always deveined). There’s a distinct difference in taste as well as eating experience when your fingers are steadily working to capture the piece of goodness that’s encased in its body armor.

As a lover of everything that emcompasses the vast “food umbrella”–spices, cooking techniques, varied ingredients and flavors–I’m all about maximizing the flavor of foods through ingredients, yes, but also techniques.

In the same breath, I’m also one for efficiency and ease, hence, for this recipe, preserving only the tails on the shrimp. I feel like I had to share that because my momma would be giving me a heavy side-eye had she known just the tails were left on the shrimp.

simple-shrimp-marinade

How To Make Shrimp Scampi

What I most love about this recipe is how easy it is to make. Short on time? Make shrimp scampi. Want something that requires low commitment and yields a high flavor return? Make shrimp scampi. You get where I’m going here.

Marinate the Shrimp

Add shrimp, grated garlic, kosher salt, and olive oil in a medium bowl. Mix to combine, then set aside for 25-30 minutes to allow the shrimp to marinate.

Once the shrimp are ready to cook, add ½ tablespoons olive oil to a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add shrimp and cook for 1 minute on each side, then transfer to a bowl. Cover with foil to keep warm.

Make Shrimp Shrimp Scampi Sauce

In the same skillet, over medium-high heat, add olive oil and 2½ tablespoons butter. Once the butter melts, add shallots and garlic. Sauté for 3-4 minutes and take care to not brown the aromatics, adjusting the heat, if necessary.

Add red chili flakes and wine. Bring sauce to a soft boil and cook until wine reduces; about 3-4 minutes.

Return Shrimp to the Skillet

Return shrimp to the skillet shrimp and cook for 2 minutes–careful to not overcook shrimp. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and stir in parsley lemon zest, and lemon juice.

Serve immediately with crusty bread.

shrimp-scampi-sauce

Tips and Tricks

  • Frozen shrimp tends to be fresher than the thawed-out shrimp in the seafood section at the grocery store. Just make sure the shrimp is wild-caught or sustainably farmed.
  • Remember to reserve a little pasta water. Sometimes, it’s needed to thin out a thick or dry sauce.
  • Have your side dishes ready to go! This entree cooks super fast.

Variations

Baked Shrimp Scampi. If you like your shrimp a little crispy, consider baking it instead of sauteeing it on the stove. Toss together all the ingredients, coat it with some breadcrumbs, then place it in a preheated oven to 425°F. Bake it for 10-12 minutes.

Shrimp Scampi Without Wine. Replace it with chicken stock or more lemon juice.

Add Cheese. Grate some freshly shredded parmesan cheese over the fully cooked shrimp.

how-to-make-shrimp-scampi

What to Serve with Shrimp Scampi

Whenever I make this dish, I keep it simple and have a bowl of shrimp scampi with toasted sourdough bread and no utensils. I enjoy gently removing the tails, and scooping them with a wedge of bread, capturing bits of garlic, parsley, and sauce–the perfect bite every time!

Shrimp scampi goes well with:

  • Pasta. Shrimp scampi is the classic choice. I suggest linguine, angel hair pasta, and fettuccine, or try a fun shape like orzo.
  • Steamed rice. Pour the sauce and shrimp over a bed of rice.
  • Veggies. Keep this meal cute and keto with steamed vegetables like asparagus or broccoli.
  • Crusty sourdough bread. Sourdough bread–specifically, sesame sourdough bread from a local LA bakery: Bub and Grandma’s is my favorite pairing as it doubles as a great vessel to sop up all the juices–a major yum factor!
  • More Seafood! Shrimp and scallop scampi are double the deliciousness and only adds a couple of minutes to the cook time.
how-to-make-shrimp-scampi-process

Frequently Asked Questions

What is shrimp scampi sauce made of?

Shrimp scampi sauce consists of butter, garlic, and white wine.

Do you marinate shrimp for scampi?

For this recipe, yes. Marinating the shrimp tremendously ups the flavor, taking your shrimp scampi game to the next level. While waiting for the shrimp to marinate, prepare the shallots, garlic, and parsley!

What’s the difference between shrimp scampi and shrimp alfredo?

These dishes are similar but shrimp alfredo includes heavy cream and parmesan cheese.

How should I store leftovers?

Shrimp scampi is best served fresh but can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. When you want to reheat, warm it on the stove over medium heat. Using the microwave may overcook the shrimp, making it tough.

easy-shrimp-scampi

Looking for More Shrimp Recipes

Loving this Recipe?

There’s a reason this Shrimp Scampi recipe is loved by all! Leave a comment below and share your love for this recipe on Instagram and Pinterest. We love to see you get down in the kitchen. Thank you for supporting Whisper of Yum and happy eating!

shrimp-scampi

Shrimp Scampi

Shrimp scampi is a quick and easy meal made of juicy shrimp tossed in a delicious garlic, wine, and butter sauce. Have a filling meal on the dinner table in less than 30 minutes when you prepare homemade shrimp scampi with a side like pasta, steamed rice, or salad, along with your favorite bread.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Marinate 1 hour 25 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 2 people
Author Jeri Mobley-Arias
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American, Italian

Ingredients

For the Shrimp

  • pounds 16/20 count shrimp, deveined, shelled (optional)
  • ½ tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt, Diamond Crystal, or to taste
  • 3 large cloves garlic, finely grated

For the Scampi Sauce

  • tablespoons olive oil
  • tablespoons salted butter, divided
  • cup shallots, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup garlic, finely chopped
  • cup dry white wine, I use Sauvignon Blanc
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper or to taste
  • ½ teaspoon red chili flakes, adjust to desired spice level
  • ½ lemon zested
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoons flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

To Serve

  • Steamed rice
  • Orzo
  • Crusty bread

Instructions

  • Add shrimp, grated garlic, kosher salt, and olive oil in a medium bowl. Mix to combine, then set aside for 25-30 minutes to allow the shrimp to marinate.
  • Once shrimp are ready to cook, add ½ tablespoons olive oil to a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add shrimp and cook for 1 minute on each side, then transfer to a bowl. Cover with foil to keep warm.
  • In the same skillet, over medium-high heat, add olive oil and 2½ tablespoons butter. Once the butter melts, add shallots and garlic. Sauté for 3-4 minutes and take care to not brown the aromatics, adjusting the heat, if necessary.
  • Add red chili flakes and wine. Bring sauce to a soft boil and cook until wine reduces; about 3-4 minutes.
  • Return shrimp to the skillet shrimp and cook for 2 minutes–careful to not overcook shrimp. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and stir in parsley lemon zest, and lemon juice.
  • Serve immediately with crusty bread or rice.
Keywords easy shrimp scampi, homemade shrimp scampi, how to make shrimp scampi, shrimp pasta recipes, shrimp scampi, shrimp scampi recipe, shrimp scampi sauce, what is scampi
Did you make this recipe?Leave a comment below and tag @whisperofyum on Instagram and hashtag it #whisperofyum!
shrimp-scampi

PIN THIS
RECIPE

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




jeri-mobley

Hey, I'm Jeri!

At Whisper of Yum, we explore ALL cuisines - comfort foods, classics, elevated originals. If you love food like me, I invite you to settle in to this place, where swoon-worthy food is attainable + inspo for your next meal awaits.

Recent Yum