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Spicy Garlic Shrimp with Orzo

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Spicy Garlic Shrimp with Orzo is a 30 minute meal nice enough for date night in, and quick enough for a healthy weeknight dinner. 

spicy garlic shrimp

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Spicy Garlic Shrimp with Orzo is such a delicious and easy meal! It’s a meal that I specifically developed for my meal plan group because I’m always looking for easy and health meals (obviously!) but I’m also always looking to add more seafood into our meal plans. We have a seafood (usually fish or shrimp) meal once a week for a few reasons.

One is that most of us don’t eat the recommended amount of seafood (one meal per week) and also because I think that seafood is one of those foods that can be a bit overwhelming, especially when you are just starting to cook.

spicy garlic shrimp

Another reason I like including fish and seafood into my meal plans on a regular basis is that it cooks SO quickly! Raw shrimp literally takes a few minutes to cook, making it an easy and fast protein addition to just about any meal.

What makes this spicy garlic shrimp with orzo so tasty? Garlic, butter, and lemon of course! It’s a classic combo and for good reason, it’s delicious! Garlic sizzling in butter has got to be one of my favorite kitchen scents. Then add in a squeeze of lemon and toss it all with a pasta like orzo and it’s a meal that’s delicious enough for date night in but totally easy enough for a weeknight dinner, especially when served with broiled asparagus.

Spicy Garlic Shrimp with Orzo
Spicy Garlic Shrimp with Orzo

How do you make spicy garlic shrimp?

  1. Prep ingredients.
  2. Cook pasta.
  3. Cook the spicy garlic shrimp.
  4. Toss it all together.
  5. Pour yourself a glass of crisp white wine. You deserve it. 😉
Spicy Garlic Shrimp with Orzo

What’s the best shrimp to use for spicy garlic shrimp?

There are many shrimp options out there. Raw vs cooked; tail vs no tail; shell vs no shell and so on. But I have a pretty specific recommendation for this spicy garlic shrimp recipe. When you’re using shrimp in a pasta or curry or something where you’ll be eating it with a fork, I like to use raw shrimp, peeled, no tail. The peel and tail certainly add flavor, but it’s also annoying to eat around them if you’re eating something like pasta. So again, it’s raw. Peeled. No tail.

Spicy Garlic Shrimp with Orzo

Other Easy Pasta Recipes:

Don’t forget to tag me (@myeverydaytable or #myeverydaytable) when you make this Spicy Garlic Shrimp with Orzo. I LOVE to see your creations! 


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Spicy Garlic Shrimp with Orzo

Spicy Garlic Shrimp with Orzo

  • Author: Emily
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stove
  • Cuisine: American
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Spicy Garlic Shrimp with Orzo is a 30 minute meal nice enough for date night in, and quick enough for a healthy weeknight dinner.


  • 16 oz. raw shrimp
  • 12 oz. asparagus
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 cup chopped parsley (about 1 oz.)
  • 5 Tbsp. butter, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups orzo pasta
  • 1 tsp. + 1/8 tsp. salt, divided
  • 1/41/2 tsp. red pepper flakes*
  • parmesan cheese for serving


  1. Prepare ingredients:
    Thaw shrimp if necessary.
    Wash asparagus and snap off woody ends.
    Mince garlic.
    Cut lemon in half.
    Chop parsley.
  2. Start boiling water for orzo. Cook according to package instructions, adding 1 tsp. salt to pot of water.
  3. Microwave asparagus for 2 minutes.
  4. Heat large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 Tbsp. of the butter to pan and when it sizzles, add the asparagus. Cook for 1-2 minutes, until done according to your preference.
  5. Set asparagus aside and heat same pan again over medium-high heat. Add remaining butter to pan and when it sizzles, add garlic and red pepper flakes to pan. Cook for 1 minute, and add shrimp to pan. Cook for about 2-3 minutes, until shrimp is cooked through and white. (If your shrimp isn’t raw, you just need to heat it, about 2 minutes.)
  6. Add drained orzo, lemon juice, and chopped parsley to shrimp. Toss together until combined. Salt to taste and serve with parmesan if desired. Serve with asparagus.


  • Get your kids involved! They can: help snap ends off of asparagus, sprinkle their portion with parmesan.
  • Red pepper flakes: because we are cooking the pepper in with butter, the heat permeates the sauce. If you don’t like spice, add 1/8-1/4 tsp. You can always add more at the end.

Keywords: shrimp, pasta, easy dinner

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