Triple Chocolate Espresso Mousse Cake.
This bowl of Cajun Garlic Butter Shrimp with Creamy Pesto Pasta is THE best any night of the week winter pasta. Taking a classic pesto pasta recipe and updating it with a no-cream, creamy pesto sauce, spicy garlic shrimp, and fresh greens. Every twirl of pasta has delicious and comforting fresh flavors that melt in your mouth. This is such a cozy, creamy bowl of shrimp and pasta.
I was going to share another recipe today, but I’m so excited about this pasta that I just had to share it. Sometimes recipes take a long time to think up. Sometimes they take a long time to fully develop, but this was quick and easy. I got the idea to make a spicy, cajun-style shrimp pasta. But instead of making it super creamy and heavy, I wanted to make it with some more wholesome ingredients.
I made a few simple and easy swaps. The I added in so much color, plus some crispy, spicy shrimp, and my favorite homemade pesto pasta.
This dish comes together in minutes and it really is so delicious.
I like to start with the pasta since the shrimp cooks up so quickly. I made my favorite basil pesto. The secret is to use a little jalapeño for an unexpected but delicious spicy kick. I know it sounds odd with all these Italian flavors, but if you love a Greek goddess style dressing, you’ll love this pesto. It’s very similar.
I like to toss in some arugula in addition to the basil. This adds vibrant color, flavor, and some much needed healthy greens!
When the pesto is made, boil up your favorite cut of pasta. I really like using a longer cut…fettuccini or bucatini are my usual go-to’s. But something short-cut, like bow ties, is great with the shrimp too. You really can’t go wrong.
Add the hot pasta right back to that pot you boiled it in, then add all the pesto, and a splash of creamy coconut milk. The coconut milk helps to create a luscious sauce without adding in any cream. You don’t taste even the slightest hint of coconut!
I usually cook the shrimp while the pasta is boiling. It takes just a few minutes, so the timing is perfect.
The shrimp is pan seared in olive oil with cajun seasonings until both sides are browned. I love to make my own homemade cajun spice mix, but if you’re in a pinch, store-bought works too. Add a small pat of butter and a squeeze of lemon. They go a long way flavor-wise, especially with all the spices and garlic. Everything pairs so well together.
To serve, I usually plate the pasta, then spoon the shrimp and any sauce left in the skillet over the noodles. This gives a nice, pretty presentation! Or, you can do it like my dad and simply toss everything together. Keep it simple.
Either way, is so good. Both the shrimp and pasta have so much flavor on their own. But put them together and you create a wonderfully delicious pasta plate.
Looking for other fresh takes on pasta? Here are my favorites:
One Pot Creamy Cauliflower Mac and Cheese
Broccoli Pesto Pasta with Whipped Ricotta
Healthier Italian Wedding Soup with Lemon and Garlic
Crispy Roasted Cauliflower with Creamy Pesto Pasta
Lastly, if you make this Cajun Garlic Butter Shrimp with Creamy Pesto Pasta, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!
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Really yummy. Will definitely make this again!
Happy Friday!😁 Thanks so much for making this recipe, I am so glad to hear it turned out well for you! xx
Can’t wait to try this! can i use spinach instead of arugula
Totally, that will be great for you to use! Please let me know if you give this recipe a try, I hope you love it! xx
Made this a few months back and my husband and I loved it!!! He’s been craving pesto pasta for a while so here I am, back here for the recipe! This time I’m going to try swapping out the shrimp for some chicken breast to change it up a bit 🙂
Happy Friday!!⛄️❄️ I appreciate you making this recipe and sharing your review, so glad to hear it turned out well for you! Let me know how the chicken turns out! xT
This recipe is still a 10/10 even after swapping shrimp for grilled chicken! I have to say though, the pesto is the star of the show 🙂
Happy Wednesday!! ❄️ I appreciate you making this recipe and sharing your feedback, so glad to hear it turned out well for you! xT
Yet another amazing and simple recipe!! I used store bought pesto (Kirkland brand, my favorite) but made my own homemade pasta. The pesto with coconut milk was an amazing combo I haven’t thought of before….and I make pesto pasta a lot! So creamy without being heavy at all. And the spicy shrimp with it was an ideal combination. All the flavors without anything being overwhelming.
Thanks for another winner!! 🍲
Happy Friday!!⛄️ Thanks so much for making this dish and sharing your review, so glad to hear it was a hit! xx
What type of nuts do you prefer to use?
Totally up to you, but pine nuts, walnuts, and pecans are all great options! Please let me know if you have any other questions! xx
Made this for dinner and it was so easy and SO good. Angel hair is my favorite pasta so I used that! Accidentally put all the garlic in the pesto ? But so, so delicious. Highly recommend!
Amazing! I love to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks for making it:) xTieghan
I can’t say enough great things about this recipe. Easy to follow, quick turnaround and standout flavors. I used nutritional yeast in the pesto and you’d never know it was DF because of how creamy and cheesy it was. This will absolutely be in our rotation!
I am so glad to hear that this recipe was tasty for you and appreciate you giving it a try! xxT
Made this tonight for my husband with crusty garlic bread! So good and so easy!! The Cajun seasoning on the shrimp mixed with the creamy pesto was a great combo. Can’t wait to eat the leftovers tomorrow!
Happy Sunday! I am so glad to hear this recipe was enjoyed, thanks a bunch for making it:) ?
This is the second time I have made this dish I made it with chicken and shrimp the only thing I do different because my son has a nut allergy I use toasted raw pumpkin seeds if you have allergies out there give them a try it’s a great substitute!!
Fantastic!! I love to hear that this recipe was a hit, thanks for trying it out! Thanks for sharing what works well for you! xTieghan
Really loved this!!!!! Wasn’t sure about pesto & cajun flavors but it worked really well. I’ll definitely make this again 🙂
Thanks so much for your comment! I am thrilled to hear that this recipe was a winner, thanks so much for making it! xTieghan
So easy and soooo good! Really enjoyed it!
Awesome!! Thanks a bunch for trying this recipe, I love to hear that it was a hit! Have the best weekend!? xxTieghan
This was incredibly delicious! And my partner was raving about it today, the day after! Good thing we have leftovers. I love all the flavors, but they were even better together!
First, my necessary adjustments. Couldn’t find arugula, went with all basil pesto, extra pine nuts, and subbed Asiago for Parmesan. Also I am gluten free (thank you Tiegan for always acknowledging us) so I used GF fettuccini.
I made it easier by starting the night ahead making the pesto and storing it with a layer of olive oil on top overnight in the fridge. Then it came together in a snap. Really, really delicious. I was told it was 100 ? “restaurant quality,” and I agree.
Wonderful!! Thanks a lot for trying this recipe out, I love to hear that it was a hit! Thanks for sharing what worked well for you. Have a great weekend:) xx
Wow!! This is one of our all time favorites from you!
I’ve made this recipe 5+ times in the past 2 months, which is not typical of me, as I like to switch it up.
The pesto is insanely flavorful and pairs so nicely with the shrimp.
I’ve been making my own Cajun seasoning, too, which has been fun 🙂
Thanks a bunch!
Thanks so much for giving this recipe a go and sharing your feedback!! I love to hear that you have been enjoying it! xTieghan
Wowza! This is going to be a family favorite on repeat. So yummy!
Happy Friday!! Thanks so much for trying this recipe out, I love to hear that it was enjoyed!! xx
Wow! The flavors! I used my favorite jarred pesto and blended in the jalepeno. Delish!
Thanks so much Kathy!!
Was so delicious and fresh tasting. The sauce was amazing! My boyfriend thought it could use a little more kick. It would pair with nicely with white wine!
Happy Sunday!! So glad to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks so much for making it!! ? xx