This recipe for Spaghetti and Shrimp with Spicy Pesto didn’t start out with pepper flakes. It never even occurred to me to pair pepper flakes with pesto. However, when I was sautéing the zucchini and shrimp I forgot I wasn’t making a butter sauce and sprinkled in the spice. One of those “aha moments” – spicy pesto is delicious!
Sauté zucchini, shrimp and crushed red pepper flakes in olive; add pesto and combine, stir in cooked spaghetti and a little pasta water, if need to thin the sauce. Garnish with cherry tomatoes. Click here for the Classic Pesto recipe.
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Spaghetti and Shrimp with Spicy Pesto
Spice things up with this spaghetti and shrimp dish with spicy pesto!
- Prep Time: 25 mins
- Cook Time: 12 mins
- Total Time: 37 mins
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- Category: Pasta
- 1 pound spaghetti
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium zucchini cut in quarters lengthwise and then in ½-inch cubes
- ½ teaspoon coarse salt
- 1 pound large shrimp (16–20 count), peeled and deveined
- 1/8 teaspoon crushed pepper flakes
- 1 cup pesto sauce
- pasta water, as needed
- Sliced cherry tomatoes
- Cook the spaghetti according to the package instructions. Reserve ½ cup of the pasta liquid before draining.
- In the meantime, heat the oil in a large skillet over high heat.
- Stir in the zucchini and salt and cook stirring occasionally for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the shrimp and crushed pepper flakes, cook stirring occasionally until shrimp are pink and firm – about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the pesto sauce and ¼ cup of the reserved pasta liquid. Stir to loosen. Add the pasta, stir to combine and add as much pasta liquid as need to coat the spaghetti evenly.