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Lemon Garlic Shrimp

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a skillet of shrimp and lemon slices garnished with parsley
Experience this lemon garlic shrimp, where each bite brings you a blend of zesty lemon and savory garlic.
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Table of Contents
  1. Lemon Garlic Shrimp Ingredients
  2. Lemon Garlic Butter Shrimp Substitutions and Additions
  3. How To Make This Lemon Garlic Shrimp Recipe
  4. How To Serve Garlic Lemon Shrimp
  5. When to Serve Lemon Garlic Butter Shrimp
  6. Lemon Garlic Shrimp Recipe Storage Tips
  7. Why This is the Best Recipe for Lemon Shrimp
  8. Frequently Asked Questions
  9. More Recipes You’ll Love
  10. JUMP TO RECIPE
  11. More Popular Favorite Recipes

Plump, succulent shrimp are smothered in a lemon-infused garlic sauce to create this mouthwatering lemon garlic shrimp recipe. Perfectly balanced and incredibly delicious, it’s a must-try dish.

a skillet of shrimp and lemon slices garnished with parsley

Lemon Garlic Shrimp Ingredients

ingredients to make lemon garlic shrimp
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Juicy shrimp provides a delicate seafood flavor that pairs perfectly with the lemon and garlic elements of this simple dish. 

The lemon adds refreshing citrusy brightness, while the minced fresh garlic contributes depth and richness, infusing the buttery sauce with its aromatic qualities.

Everyone will be pleased to see this easy garlic shrimp on the dinner table!

You’ll need these simple ingredients:

  • 1 pound of extra large shrimp (21-25 count) shrimp, peeled and deveined with tails remaining intact
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon of black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons of unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of minced garlic cloves
  • ⅛-¼ teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes (amount adjusted to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon of lemon zest
  • 3 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
  • 1½ tablespoons of fresh parsley, chopped (plus additional for garnish)

Optional For Serving:

  • ½ pound of spaghetti noodles that have been cooked and drained according to package directions

PRO TIP:

If you buy shrimp that has not been pre-peeled & deveined, you will need to do so yourself. 

You can also buy your shrimp fresh from the seafood section of your grocery store. You can often ask the person at the counter to peel, devein, and keep the tail intact for you. 

Lemon Garlic Butter Shrimp Substitutions and Additions

This lemon garlic butter shrimp recipe is an easy weeknight meal that is full of fresh ingredients and so much flavor.

There are many easy customizations you make:

SHRIMP: Fresh shrimp is best in this dish. I like to use the large shrimp for this recipe, but you can certainly use what you have available. You will need one pound of uncooked shrimp in total.

Be mindful that if you use small shrimp, medium shrimp, or jumbo shrimp, then you will need to adjust your cooking times accordingly. 

If you’re in a time crunch, you could even use pre-cooked shrimp and just make the lemon garlic butter sauce.

SEAFOOD: If you prefer a different type of seafood, you can try this recipe with scallops or even chunks of firm white fish like cod. 

Adjust the cooking time accordingly to ensure they are properly cooked.

RED PEPPER FLAKES: I suggest only adding an eighth of a teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes if you like to have just a little heat in your sauce. 

If you enjoy more heat, then you can add additional red pepper flakes according to your taste preferences.

FOR SERVING: Turn this into lemon garlic shrimp pasta! Instead of spaghetti, you can serve your lemon garlic shrimp over other pasta varieties like linguine, fettuccine, or angel hair pasta. Gluten-free pasta is a great alternative as well.

You could also serve it over white rice, fried rice, lemon rice, jasmine rice, or brown rice.

Consider serving it over zucchini noodles or cauliflower rice for a low-carb option.

VEGETABLES: You can add fresh veggies like green beans, snow peas, or red peppers to this easy dinner. It would also be delicious served with steamed broccoli.

How To Make This Lemon Garlic Shrimp Recipe

The beauty of this delicious dinner is that cooking shrimp only takes a few minutes from start to finish. You’ll cook them with garlic and butter, then add the lemon before serving.

OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS

If you buy your shrimp in bulk, in the frozen food section, you will need to defrost the shrimp according to the package directions before using it in the recipe.

STEP ONE: Place the raw shrimp onto a large plate and pat dry very well with a paper towel. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper.

shrimp seasoned with salt and pepper on a plate

STEP TWO: Add butter and olive oil to a large skillet (12-inch) on medium-high heat. Once the butter is melted, add the minced garlic and crushed red pepper flakes. 

Cook the garlic for 30 seconds to one minute or just until the garlic becomes fragrant.

butter, olive oil, minced garlic, and crushed red pepper flakes added to a skillet

STEP THREE: Add the shrimp to the hot skillet in a single layer and cook for two to three minutes or just until the first side becomes pink. 

Flip all the shrimp over and cook for another two to three minutes on the second side or just until fully pink and cooked through.

shrimp cooked on a hot skillet

STEP FOUR: Turn off the heat to the skillet and add the lemon zest, lemon juice, and chopped fresh parsley. 

Toss the shrimp to thoroughly coat them in the lemon garlic butter sauce before plating and serving.

PRO TIP:

One large lemon should yield enough zest and juice for this recipe. Be sure to rinse the lemon under cold water and remove any waxy residue from the outer surface before testing.

Remember to zest the lemon before slicing and squeezing the juice from it. 

lemon zest, lemon juice, and chopped fresh parsley added to the skillet of shrimp

How To Serve Garlic Lemon Shrimp

Serve your lemon garlic shrimp topped with parmesan cheese as the star of the meal. It’s ideal alongside a crisp tomato cucumber salad and crusty bread.

For an appetizer at your next dinner party, arrange the shrimp on a platter with toothpicks and offer a side of lemon garlic sauce for dipping.

Incorporate the shrimp into a seafood pasta dish by mixing it with al dente pasta and additional lemon garlic sauce. A Caesar salad and garlic bread will complete the meal perfectly.

Pair your lemon garlic shrimp with a glass of chilled white wine or a citrusy cocktail like a classic screwdriver for a refreshing combination.

Our Cajun shrimp and coconut shrimp are two more dishes that are some of our favorites.

When to Serve Lemon Garlic Butter Shrimp

WEEKNIGHT DINNER: Lemon garlic shrimp is a quick and easy recipe perfect for busy weeknights. 

DATE NIGHT: Impress your date with this elegant yet approachable dish. 

POTLUCK: Contribute a batch of lemon garlic shrimp to your next potluck. Its unique flavors and easy serving make it a standout addition to any gathering.

SUMMER BBQ: Surprise your guests with a seafood twist at your summer BBQ. Lemon garlic shrimp adds a burst of freshness to your outdoor feast.

COCKTAIL PARTY: For a sophisticated appetizer at your cocktail party, serve bite-sized lemon garlic shrimp with toothpicks and watch them disappear in no time.

Lemon Garlic Shrimp Recipe Storage Tips

If you are planning ahead or have leftovers to store, have a look at our handy tips.

MAKE AHEAD: Lemon garlic shrimp can be prepared ahead by cooking the shrimp and making the lemon garlic sauce separately. 

Store them in airtight containers in the fridge for up to a day. Reheat and combine when ready to serve.

IN THE FRIDGE: If you have leftovers of this garlicky shrimp, store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to two days. 

Reheat gently in a skillet on medium-low heat until warmed through.

IN THE FREEZER: While it’s best enjoyed freshly made, you can freeze cooked lemon garlic shrimp in an airtight container for up to one month. 

Thaw in the fridge overnight before reheating.

REHEATING: To reheat, gently warm the shrimp in a skillet on medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until heated through. 

Alternatively, microwave in 30-second increments, being careful not to overcook.

Why This is the Best Recipe for Lemon Shrimp

QUICK AND EASY: This recipe comes together in under 20 minutes, making it perfect for busy weeknights when you want a tasty meal without the hassle.

BURST OF FLAVOR: The combination of zesty lemon and rich garlic creates a flavor profile that’s both refreshing and satisfying.

CROWD-PLEASER: Lemon garlic shrimp has broad appeal, making it a favorite among both seafood lovers and those new to cooking with shrimp. 

RESTAURANT QUALITY: With this recipe, you can achieve restaurant-quality flavors in the comfort of your own home, impressing your guests and loved ones with ease.

shrimp and lemon slices garnished with parsley on a serving tray

Lemon garlic shrimp is a dish that combines the zesty freshness of lemon with the rich warmth of garlic, resulting in a burst of flavor that’s quick to make and loved by all. It’s the perfect go-to option for any occasion.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use frozen shrimp for this recipe?

You can use frozen shrimp in this simple recipe, but make sure to thaw them according to the package directions before cooking.

Can I freeze leftovers?

You can freeze cooked lemon garlic shrimp, but the texture may change slightly upon thawing. It’s best enjoyed fresh.

Can I use smaller shrimp for this recipe?

You can use smaller shrimp, but adjust the cooking time to ensure they are cooked through.

What’s the best way to thaw frozen shrimp?

The safest way to thaw frozen shrimp is in the refrigerator overnight. Alternatively, you can place them in a sealed plastic bag and submerge them in cold water.

Can I use pre-minced garlic from a jar?

While fresh minced garlic is preferred, you can use pre-minced garlic if you’re in a hurry, but the flavor may be slightly different.

Can I make lemon garlic shrimp ahead of time?

You can prepare the shrimp and garlic lemon butter sauce separately ahead of time and combine them when ready to serve.

Can I make this dish without butter?

You can substitute the butter with additional olive oil if you prefer a dairy-free version.

Is this recipe spicy?

You can control the spice level by adjusting the amount of crushed red pepper flakes. It can be as mild or as spicy as you like.

Can I use a different type of pasta?

Absolutely! You can use your favorite pasta variety or opt for a low-carb option like zucchini noodles.

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a skillet of shrimp and lemon slices garnished with parsley

Lemon Garlic Shrimp

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Experience this lemon garlic shrimp, where each bite brings you a blend of zesty lemon and savory garlic.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Total Time 18 minutes
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound extra large shrimp (21-25 count shrimp, peeled, deveined with tails remaining intact)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • ⅛ to ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, amount adjusted to taste
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 3 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped (plus additional for garnish)

Optional For Serving

  • ½ pound spaghetti noodles, that have been cooked and drained according to package directions

Instructions
 

  • Place the raw shrimp onto a large plate and pat dry very well with a paper towel. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper.
  • Add butter and olive oil to a large (12-inch) skillet on medium-high heat. Once the butter is melted, add the minced garlic and crushed red pepper flakes. Cook the garlic for 30 seconds to 1 minute or just until the garlic becomes fragrant.
  • Add the shrimp to the skillet in a single layer, and cook for 2-3 minutes or just until the first side becomes pink. Flip all the shrimp over and cook for another 2-3 minutes on the second side or just until fully pink and cooked through.
  • Turn off the heat to the skillet and add the lemon zest, lemon juice, and chopped fresh parsley. Toss the shrimp to thoroughly coat them in the lemon garlic sauce before plating and serving.

Notes

  • If you buy shrimp that has not been pre-peeled & deveined, you will need to do so yourself. You can also buy your shrimp fresh from the seafood section of your grocery store and can often ask the person at the counter to peel, devein, and keep the tail intact for you.
  • If you buy your shrimp in bulk, in the frozen food section, you will need to defrost the shrimp according to the package directions before using it in the recipe.
  • One large lemon should yield enough zest and juice for this recipe. Be sure to rinse the lemon under cold water and remove any waxy residue from the outer surface before zesting. Remember to zest the lemon before slicing and squeezing the juice from it.

Nutrition

Calories: 435kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 165mg | Sodium: 940mg | Potassium: 289mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 613IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 84mg | Iron: 1mg
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This recipe was developed, tested, cooked and photographed by the Spaceships Kitchen. From our dinner table to yours, we hope you think it's out of this world!

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