It is with great sadness that I share a strange relationship with shrimp. It is not that I don’t like it, but suddenly, out of the blue, I get such a strong craving for it that I can’t help but wonder, “Who are you?”?

Well, when I felt that craving last week, I put together this easy, fast and tasty Blackened Shrimp Pasta, made with a homemade blackened seasoning mix, and I think it was delicious. I highly recommend this pasta if you want BIG flavor without much effort.

Really goes well with your breakfast or any meal of the day, Apronese believes you will love it, because it’s delicious and very tasty, follow the recipe below.

Is It Better to Use Fresh or Frozen Shrimp?

I always recommend you use fresh shrimp when making this recipe, but frozen shrimp just happens to be the most readily available and most cost effective option for most people.

Both types of shrimp will work for this recipe. Frozen shrimp, when placed in a colander with cool water running over it, thaws quite quickly.

Is There a Best Size Shrimp for Blackened Shrimp Pasta?

The size of shrimp is referred to by the number of shrimp per pound, which can be found on the shrimp package (mine was 25/35), which is the size of shrimp per pound.

The smaller the number, the larger the shrimp. It was available that day that I used 25/35, however I think I would have preferred 31/45 so that I could get a greater number of shrimp per bite in my pasta dish.

As much as I liked the look of the larger shrimp, I would have preferred more pieces of shrimp as I was being budget conscious and only used 1/2 lb. shrimp, but I believe more pieces would have distributed the shrimp better throughout the pasta.

How Do I Choose the Right Pasta?

In my pantry, I had angel hair pasta, so I decided to use it, but I think this dish would be equally good with just about any kind of pasta shape.

Bowtie pasta would work well, and so would penne pasta and fettuccine pasta. As the pasta is just a vehicle to deliver the wonderful spices and shrimp essence in this Blackened Shrimp Pasta, it doesn’t matter so much what shape the pasta is.

Blackened Shrimp Pasta: How Spicy Is It?

I would call this shrimp pasta “medium” spicy, but sensitivity to heat does vary from person to person, so I think you can adjust the heat to your liking. I used a homemade Cajun Seasoning Blend in this recipe, which gives you the freedom to adjust the heat to your liking.

Reduce the cayenne pepper by half if you prefer a milder spice, or add a larger amount of cayenne pepper if you prefer more spicy food.

Finished skillet full of Blackened Shrimp Pasta with lemon slices, parsley, and green onion

Blackened Shrimp Pasta

Using homemade blackening seasoning to make this quick, easy, and delicious blackened shrimp pasta with homemade blackening seasoning has enormous flavor without requiring a lot of effort.

Prep Time: 10 mins/ Cook Time: 20 mins/ Total Time: 30 mins

Servings: 4


Blackening Seasoning

  • 1 Tbsp smoked paprika ($0.30)
  • 1 tsp thyme ($0.10)
  • 1 tsp oregano ($0.10)
  • 1/2 tsp cumin ($0.05)
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper ($0.03)
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder ($0.03)
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder ($0.03)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.02)
  • Freshly cracked pepper ($0.05)

Shrimp Pasta

  • 1/2 lb peeled and deveigned shrimp ($4.31)
  • 2 Tbsp butter ($0.25)
  • 2 cloves garlic ($0.16)
  • 15 oz can petite diced tomatoes ($1.09)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.02)
  • 1/2 lb pasta ($0.50)
  • 2-3 green onions, sliced ($0.17)
  • Handful fresh parsley ($0.20)
  • 1 lemon ($0.69)


  • A small bowl should be used to combine the herbs and spices for the blackening seasoning. After washing the shrimp, drain them and pat them dry with a paper towel, sprinkle the blackening seasoning over them and stir them well to coat them.

  • In a large pot of boiling water, add the pasta and cook for seven to ten minutes, depending on the size of the pasta. Once the water has boiled, drain the pasta in a colander and reserve about one cup of the starchy pasta water.

  • It is important to mince the garlic and add it to a large skillet with the butter as they are cooking. In the meantime, heat the butter and garlic over a medium flame until it starts to foam and sizzle. When the butter and garlic are sizzling, sauté them for about one minute until they are translucent and slightly firm. When the shrimp have reached the desired opaqueness and are slightly firm, remove them from the skillet and serve immediately.

  • In the skillet, add the diced tomatoes (with their juices) and about half a cup of pasta water. Add salt to the sauce if needed (I added 1/4 teaspoon salt). Stir and cook over medium heat for 5-10 minutes, allowing the browned bits to dissolve from the bottom of the pan. Let the sauce simmer until slightly thickened. Taste the sauce and adjust the salt if necessary.

  • Return the shrimp to the skillet, stir to combine, then add the drained and cooked pasta to the skillet and toss gently with the sauce (reserve some of the pasta water if necessary, to loosen the pasta). Once the pasta is well coated, return the shrimp to the skillet to serve.

  • There are a couple of ways to prepare the green onions: Slice them and chop the parsley leaves. Sprinkle them over top. Serve with some sliced lemons that can be squeezed over it.

The cayenne pepper used in this recipe has a very high heat, so for a less spicy pasta, choose 1/8 tsp.


Serving: 1 Serving ・ Calories: 356.3 kcal ・ Carbohydrates: 49.93 g ・ Protein: 20.35 g ・ Fat: 7.9 g ・ Sodium: 839.38 mg ・ Fiber: 3.7 g

The nutritional values shown here are only estimates. Please see our nutrition disclaimer.

Front view of a bowl of Blackened Shrimp Pasta

Blackened Shrimp Pasta Recipe – Step by Step Photos

Homemade Blackening Seasoning

Make the blackening seasoning. The blackening seasoning is made by mixing together 1 tablespoon of smoked paprika, 1 tablespoon of thyme, 1 tablespoon of oregano, 1/2 teaspoon cumin, 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/4 teaspoon onion powder, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and about 20 cranks of a pepper mill, all in a small bowl.).

Fresh Shrimp

The shrimp should be washed thoroughly under cool water, peeled and deveined, then let them drain, then pat them dry with a piece of paper towel (this helps the seasoning stick to the shrimp).

I used the 25/35 size shrimp, but I think the 31/45 size shrimp would work better. Smaller pieces mean that the pasta will have more pieces throughout.

Seasoned Shrimp

It is best to pour the prepared seasoning over the shrimp and stir them until they are well coated with the seasoning.

Boil Pasta

When the pasta is ready, bring a pot of boiling water to the top. Once the water has reached a boil, add 1/2 cup of pasta and cook until tender.

Reserve about 1 cup of the starchy water before draining. This dish is best served with angel hair pasta, but you could use just about any shape for this dish.

I find that it is very useful to break apart long pastas before cooking, such as spaghetti or angel hair, since it makes it so easy to stir in large quantities, such as shrimp or diced tomatoes, in the dish.

Butter and Garlic

If you are doing the shrimp and sauce at the same time that the pasta is cooking, mince the two cloves of garlic and add it to a large skillet with 2 tablespoons of butter.

This recipe is very authentic as you have to use butter to get that blackened flavor. For approximately a minute, sauté the butter and garlic over medium heat until it is foaming and sizzling, then finish cooking for about one minute, until the raw garlic flavor has been fully absorbed.

Blackened Shrimp in the skillet

Once the shrimp have become opaque and slightly firm, continue to sauté until they are cooked thoroughly. Shrimp cook very fast, so you should only have to cook these shrimp for approximately 3 to 5 minutes, depending on the size.

Whenever you cook shrimp, it is crucial to ensure that it does not overcook because the longer you let it sit on the heat, the more proteins contract, and the more rubbery and firm the shrimp become. Therefore, as soon as the shrimp turn opaque and firm up, remove them from the skillet.

Browned Seasoning

As a result, I have all these yummy browned butter drippings and seasonings sticking to the skillet. I have decided we need to remove that flavor, so I am deglazing the skillet.

Petite Cut Tomatoes

I would recommend adding about a half cup of starchy pasta water to a small can of petite diced tomatoes and 1 15oz. can of petite diced tomatoes.

Stir to dissolve all the good stuff that is removed from the skillet. In addition to this, fire roasted diced tomatoes would be fantastic, but I do not know if they are made in a petite dice, so the tomato pieces will be larger than usual.

Deglaze Pan with tomatoes

The sauce should simmer for about five minutes for the sauce to reduce and thicken. Once the sauce has thickened and reduced, taste it and add a bit more salt if needed (I used 1/4 teaspoon).

Combine Pasta and Sauce

I think it would be best to add the cooked and drained pasta to the skillet and toss until the pasta is coated with the sauce and its a bit looser. If necessary, add a bit more of the reserved pasta water to loosen the pasta (but do not add a lot or you will thin out the sauce too much).

Add Shrimp back to skillet

As a last step, return the cooked shrimp to the skillet and stir the meat sauce and pasta together to make sure everything is combined properly.

Parsley Green Onions and Lemon

Take 2 green onions and slice them thinly, chop a handful of parsley leaves, and slice a lemon thinly as well.

Add Parsley Onion and Lemon to shrimp pasta

The pasta can be served together with lemon slices and parsley sprinkled on top, with the green onions and parsley sprinkled over it. 

Blackened Shrimp Pasta in a bowl seen from above

What a mouth-watering dish of Blackened Shrimp Pasta that is! I’m not kidding around with that stuff.

Side view of Blackened Shrimp Pasta in the skillet

How do you guys see this black shrimp pasta, but Apronese is already fascinated. The dish goes well with all the meals of the day that you can make and invite your family.

Share your recipe with more people in the comments.