This genius shrimp and spaghetti deserves a spot on your spring dinner rotation


Shrimp and spaghetti is a dinner celebration staple in my southern kitchen, primarily all around this time of calendar year. The sauce in my spin of this ease and comfort vintage has a freshness that is welcome following the heavier comfort and ease food items of winter season, to which the shrimp offers the ideal enhance.

I wasn’t at any time specified a hand-composed recipe for shrimp and spaghetti. I was told how to make it in good detail, and I later on wrote down what I remembered. While I experienced a superior memory again then and possibly penned the instructions fairly well, I wasn’t specified correct amounts for any of the elements. 

As the many years went by, I developed a perception of how much of this and how a lot of that goes into this dish. The reality, having said that, is that my recipe can take care of some improvisations. As lengthy as stick to the simple bones, you can use what you have on hand in conditions of tomatoes and tomato sauce.

Similar: Travel south to the “Seafood Capital of Alabama” with these delectable, punchy pickled shrimp

This recipe for shrimp and spaghetti delivers me back again to the stage in my daily life when I started branching out and attempting new cuisines like Indian and Thai foodstuff and sushi. Up to that level, I in essence ate what I grew up feeding on.

The exhilaration of mastering how to cook factors that I didn’t develop up eating designed me far more confident in the kitchen, and I preferred to share my newfound enthusiasm with absolutely everyone. In advance of extended, Sunday brunches and everyday meal parties for family members and close friends experienced come to be a detail at my home. In actuality, I served this shrimp and spaghetti when I hosted my initially get-together, complete with Chianti in individuals little basket-wrapped bottles.

Want more excellent meals writing and recipes? Subscribe to Salon Food’s newsletter.

I am not saying that I at any time imagined of shrimp as exotic or even as one thing diverse from the norm. I’m from the South, so I grew up having shrimp and seafood at dwelling. But we did not have shrimp at my property like they have shrimp down on the Bayou. Don’t get me incorrect: My mother rocked a shrimp boil, but she in no way would have dreamed of placing shrimp in spaghetti.

You will not want just about anything more than a very simple green salad and crusty bread to make this food experience total. Whichever you serve on the facet, I assure you might be likely to like my shrimp and spaghetti. 


The elements

Tomatoes and tomato sauce 

I was informed to use 2 cans of tomato sauce and 1 can of tomatoes. There are so several tomato sauces to select from in modern grocery stores — just get to for what you like. In my latest batch of shrimp and spaghetti, I added a fancy jar of pizza sauce — it was scrumptious. I also experienced a few of gorgeous sizzling-home-developed tomatoes on hand, so I incorporated them, as nicely. The most critical matter is to adhere to the exact 2:1 ratio of sauce to tomatoes.


Use tiny to medium, wild-caught shrimp that are peeled and deveined. The only dance you have to learn for this recipe is when to add your spaghetti and shrimp to the sauce.

It differs so much from man or woman to person as to when the shrimp are beautifully cooked. The truth of the matter is the shrimp will continue on to prepare dinner a little bit even following you get rid of this dish from the warmth. Really don’t be fearful. Only style the shrimp when you consider they are performed and slash the warmth as shortly as you’re satisfied. 

Another matter I learned from my time in Bayou La Batre is to soak your peeled and deveined shrimp in milk though you might be chopping and making ready almost everything for this dish (or any shrimp dish, for that issue). Make it possible for them to soak for about an hour, if probable. The milk usually takes any “funky” style out of the shrimp.


Experience free to use whatever form of spaghetti you want, no matter whether that signifies standard or gluten- or grain-free. But do attain for spaghetti relatively than a thicker linguine or a thinner angel hair pasta. You want the noodles to soak up the taste of the sauce and however keep up. 

Cook your spaghetti just to the issue of al dente due to the fact the pasta will prepare dinner a little bit extra as soon as you insert it to the sauce. Lastly, only briefly rinse your cooked noodles. You never want them to neat the sauce as well substantially when mixed. 


As with quite a few shrimp dishes, celery is significant in this recipe. Nevertheless it is comprehensively cooked with no any discernible crunch, it provides a bright, added layer of taste to an otherwise extra typical pink sauce.

Use a sharp knife when you chop the celery to protect against “strings.” With a little bit of treatment, you can avoid this from occurring. 


Most of the time, I have fresh new herbs in my kitchen. I reach for individuals, but it can be not a big offer if you use dried types. I commonly use far more than what is named for (as I do with the garlic). Use having said that much you drive. (Bear in mind: You can constantly add far more, but you can’t subtract.)


Recipe: Gulf Coast Shrimp and Spaghetti 


  • 1 massive bell pepper (any color), seeded and chopped
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1-4 cloves garlic, chopped high-quality
  • 2 cans tomato sauce
  • 1 can tomatoes
  • 1-2 teaspoons sugar 
  • 2 lbs . little to medium wild-caught shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • Refreshing basil 
  • Fresh new parsley
  • Olive oil (or oil of choice) to sauté onions, peppers and celery
  • Salt and pepper, to style
  • Optional: parmesan and purple pepper flakes



  1. Sauté the onions in 1-2 tablespoons of oil above small warmth right until extremely comfortable and typically translucent. Add the bell pepper and celery and continue on cooking until eventually they’re tender and the onions are a bit browned.

  2. Include the cans of tomato sauce and tomatoes, 1 teaspoon of sugar, the chopped garlic and some of the herbs.

  3. Simmer extremely minimal for 30 minutes.*

    *If you also prepare dinner on a gas stove, you might will need to flip off the fireplace a several minutes below and there to prevent scorching your sauce as it simmers. (It truly is best to allow your sauce prepare dinner long and sluggish so the flavors have time to arrive alongside one another.)

  4. Modify the seasonings (herbs and sugar), plus salt and pepper to taste. 

  5. While the sauce is simmering, cook the spaghetti (in accordance to the instructions on the package), rinse briefly and set apart.

  6. In a colander, rinse the shrimp and established apart.

  7. Increase the spaghetti and shrimp to the sauce. Cook dinner incredibly very low till the shrimp are finished.

  8. To provide, increase a significant sprinkling of parmesan, some red pepper flakes for warmth and a drizzle of the very best olive oil you have.

Cook’s Notes

Start out with 1 teaspoon of sugar. If your sauce is as well acidic/bitter, incorporate a small little bit more. I’ve never had to incorporate more than 2 heaping teaspoons of sugar, but change to taste as wanted.

The rule of thumb for serving shrimp is 1/2 pound per person, but said rule truly will not utilize below. This is a hearty dish — you can easily provide 6 men and women with 2 lbs of shrimp.

If you might be using new herbs, help save some to add soon after serving.

Far more recipes from Bibi’s Southern kitchen area to attempt: 

Salon Food writes about things we believe you will like. Salon has affiliate partnerships, so we may well get a share of the income from your acquire.

Leave a Reply

Next Post

The Lake House on Canandaigua adds Steve Eakins, John Bard

CANANDAIGUA, NY — Both worked in neighborhood kitchens and rose to leading positions in kitchens in the wonderful-eating cities of New York Town and Austin, Texas.  And now they’re plying their craft at The Lake Residence on Canandaigua’s Rose Tavern, Sand Bar, Library Bar and the seasonal Pool Bar as new executive chef […]