Speedy Spicy Shrimp Pasta

When you're in a rush and want to impress, this shrimp pasta recipe has got your number!

Credit: Catherine Roscoe Barr

Whip up this delicious shrimp pasta in a flash

This shrimp pasta dish is ridiculously easy to make, tastes amazing and looks really impressive

Real shaved parmesan is definitely an indulgence worth splurging on! I generally make enough dinner so that there are leftovers for lunch, but this is one meal that doesn’t really keep (unless you add raw shrimp to your leftover pasta and sauce so the shrimp cooks when you reheat it for lunch – I admit that I haven’t actually tried this yet but it seems like an idea that would work).

All of the ingredients required are things that are easy to keep around, so it’s a great dish to make when you’re tired, starving and haven’t been exemplary at keeping your fridge stocked. I often use dried garlic and onion if I’m in a real rush, but if you have more time, it’s always better with the real deal.

Depending on how you feel and what you have on hand you can make it really garlicky or really spicy or really whatever. It’s fun to experiment with different flavours – my recipes generally never taste the same twice.

I love this satisfying meal with a smooth red like the Finca Los Primos Malbec from Argentina.


  • 2 doz raw shrimp, fresh or frozen (I always keep a bag of frozen shrimp on hand)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ onion minced
  • ¼ tsp chili flakes (or cayenne pepper)
  • 1 jar pasta sauce
  • 2 serv whole wheat spaghetti (or whatever pasta you have around)
  • 5 cups water


  1. In a large sauce pan, cook spaghetti according to package instructions.
  2. In a medium saucepan, heat oil over medium-low heat and add onion and garlic. Cook until onion is translucent, stirring often so the garlic doesn’t burn. Add chili flakes, stirring well to combine.
  3. Add pasta sauce to onion and garlic and bring to boil, stirring often. Add lid and reduce heat to low.
  4. When you’re about to drain pasta, add shrimp to sauce and replace lid, cooking for about 2 minutes or until shrimp is pink.
  5. Drain pasta and serve immediately with freshly shaved Parmesan.


Catherine Roscoe Barr, BSc Neuroscience, is a Vancouver-based writer, editor, and fitness professional. Before settling on the west coast she lived in Sydney, Toronto, Oregon, Montana, and practically everywhere in Alberta. She can be found jogging with her adorable dog, dining with her fabulous husband or voraciously reading anywhere comfy.