Warm, hearty, and just plain delicious, this easy homemade shrimp Alfredo recipe is one pasta dish you won’t soon forget.
And believe it or not, it’s insanely easy to make.
It features a luxurious sauce with just the right amount of salty cheese to balance the sweet seafood.
And every bite is rich and creamy.
Better yet, you can have this shrimp Alfredo recipe on the table in under 30 minutes!
Homemade Shrimp Fettuccine Alfredo
Fettuccine Alfredo is a classic Italian dish most people have tried at least once.
But as delicious as it is, it’s seriously lacking in the protein department.
That’s where shrimp Alfredo comes in!
It’s got the same chewy noodles and lusciously rich sauce. There’s just meaty shrimp in the mix, too!
Of course, this is very much an Americanized version of Alfredo sauce. So expect lots of cream, garlic, and cheese!
(In Europe, Alfredo is just butter and Parmesan.)
You’ll only need eight ingredients to make this fast and easy recipe. They are:
- Fettuccine – Use regular, whole wheat, gluten-free, or any other variety that suits you. Or use another type of pasta if you prefer, like penne.
- Butter – Use salted butter if you can. Otherwise, add a pinch of salt right at the end.
- Heavy Whipping Cream – For a luxurious and creamy sauce.
- Shrimp – Save yourself some trouble and purchase cooked shrimp that’s already peeled and deveined. It’ll save a ton of time. Also, stick to medium-large shrimp to avoid overcooking it.
- Parmesan Cheese – Conversely, don’t go for convenience with the Parmesan. Instead, buy a block and grate it yourself by hand. The flavor is yummier, and the cheese melts better, too.
- Garlic – Freshly minced garlic is also the way to go. It provides the boldest, most robust flavor profile.
- Pepper – You won’t need much pepper – just 1/4 of a teaspoon for a hint of peppery goodness.
- Parsley – Fresh parsley makes a nice garnish for this dish. Plus, it adds some color to an otherwise beige plate.
How to Make Shrimp Alfredo
Making this decadent dish is easy. It requires three main steps, which I’ll outline here:
1. Prepare the ingredients.
I like to chop, grate, peel, and prep as much as possible before starting a recipe. That way, I know if I’m missing anything right off the bat.
So, grate the Parmesan, cube the butter, and mince the garlic and parsley.
Also, pat the shrimp dry and get the pasta cooking per the instructions on the package.
2. Make the sauce.
Add the butter and heavy cream to a skillet and bring them to a boil over medium heat.
Reduce the heat to low and simmer for about three minutes, stirring the entire time.
Then, add the cooked shrimp, cheese, garlic, and pepper. Mix until everything is well coated, and the shrimp are hot.
Add the butter to the skillet and heat on medium until melted. Then, add uncooked shrimp (seasoned with salt and pepper) and cook for about 1-2 minutes on either side.
Remove the shrimp from the pan, then add the cream and follow the instructions as written above.
3. Combine the pasta and the sauce.
Drain the fettuccine and add it to the sauce (right in the skillet).
Toss to coat, then divide into serving bowls and sprinkle parsley over each serving.
Recipe Tips and Variations
Here are a few tips and variations to keep in mind:
- Use fresh shrimp. It tastes better and has the best texture, in my opinion. It’s also the best option if you want to cook it from raw and add spices.
- Thaw frozen shrimp and pat dry. If you use frozen shrimp, be sure to thaw it properly and pat it dry to get rid of any excess moisture.
- Use cornstarch and water to thicken the sauce. Mix one tablespoon each of cornstarch and water into a smooth slurry. Then, add the mixture to the sauce to thicken it.
- Add extra cream or milk to thin out the sauce. Don’t go overboard, though! Just a splash should do the trick.
- Serve shrimp Alfredo immediately. The longer the Alfredo sauce sits, the clumpier it gets. And if you reheat it, you risk overcooking the shrimp.
- Experiment with seasonings, such as Cajun spice. Add red pepper flakes or a dash of cayenne to the sauce. Or season the shrimp before adding it to the sauce. I like lime pepper!
- Add scallops and crab meat for a heartier seafood variation. Sear the scallops before adding them to the sauce. Or cook them in a separate pan and serve on top.
- Add some broccoli or asparagus for a bit of extra color. Many veggies will work, though, such as peas, corn, onions, and even tomatoes.
What to Serve with Shrimp Alfredo Pasta
Shrimp Alfredo is a rich, hearty meal all by itself. So it doesn’t necessarily need any side items to make it a meal.
Still, it pairs nicely with:
- A light salad
- Buttery garlic breadsticks
- Roasted veggies
- Creamed spinach
- Sautéed mushrooms
As for wine pairings, I love Pinot Grigio. Its crisp, slightly acidic taste really complements the cheesiness of the dish.
How to Store and Reheat
Unfortunately, this dish doesn’t freeze well. I never like to freeze cooked shrimp, and the sauce doesn’t hold up well when thawed.
You can store it in the fridge for up to 3 days, though. Simply transfer your leftovers to an airtight container, then pop them in the refrigerator.
To reheat the leftovers, return them to a skillet.
Warm them over low heat, and add a dash of milk to help unclump and thin the sauce. You may have to toss them again once they’re warm.
More Shrimp Recipes You’ll Love
Honey Walnut Shrimp
Creamy Shrimp Newburg
Red Lobster Shrimp Scampi
Bang Bang Shrimp
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