This Cajun Shrimp Linguine is decadent and filled with juicy shrimp, flavorful cajun spice and a creamy cheesy sauce! It will become your favorite fast weeknight pasta meal. Prepped in just 30 minutes, you can have this incredible dish on the table for your family in no time! If you love this, you will love this Shrimp Scampi and Grits, Cajun Lobster Mac and Cheese, and Cajun Jambalaya Pasta!
Perfect Cajun Shrimp Linguine On The Dinner Table In Minutes!
For those of you in warmer climates, let me tell you about my current condition. For the past few days, Chicago has been bitterly cold; I’m talking below freezing. It’s the kind of cold that makes your toes go numb and bones go achey. Man, I cannot wait to get back to Dallas.
I’m making the most of my situation by pulling up my fuzzy socks and getting to work in the kitchen. Comfort food is beyond necessary: chili, mac, cookies and so much more. This week’s obsession is this Cajun Shrimp Linguine; it’s cheesy, smooth, spicy and full of tender, juicy shrimp. Have I pulled you in yet?
WHAT IS CAJUN SEASONING?
Take a minute to look in your spice drawer, I’ll wait. Do you have Cajun seasoning in there? If the answer is no, you are doing something seriously wrong. I have a Cajun Spice Recipe here that you can keep stored in your pantry for whenever you are in a pinch!
Cajun Seasoning was born in Louisiana: the home of Cajun cooking. Similar to Jerk, this blend is made from a variety of spices to make a smoky, spicy and balanced seasoning. Just a few slings of the measuring spoons makes for a zesty, Southern-inspired jar of savory deliciousness.
- Black Pepper
- White Pepper
- Mustard Powder
- Dried Thyme
- Garlic Powder
All of these pantry-staple spices are the keys to a well-balanced and flavorful Cajun blend. There are many store-bought varieties available, but they tend to be heavy of the salt and lacking in heat. Instead, take 5 minutes to make this Cajun Seasoning Recipe, and create your newest pantry staple. You won’t regret it!
PASTA COOKING 101
We’ve all made our fair share of boxed pasta because let’s be honest, it’s so easy. Having made my fair share, I’ve nailed my pasta game. With just a few simple steps you can too be pasta Queen (or King).
Use a Large Pot
If possible, it’s best to use an 8-quart stock pot. Just a little extra space helps to keep your pasta sticking and breaking.
Heavily Salt the Water
Don’t be afraid of salt! I’d suggest using 2-3 tablespoons of coarse salt; sea-water salty means an incredible flavor boost.
Pasta has a nasty habit of clumping. Stir the pot at least 3-4 times while cooking to keep those strands swirling wild and free!
Test Before It’s “Ready”
The packaging to your pasta of choice will have a suggested cooking time. But, you should keep in mind that it is “suggested”. Test your pasta about 2 minutes before the given time by removing a strand from the water and chomping down.
Personally, I like my pasta to have a soft exterior with a slight springy bounce. If you have a different preference, go for it!
Finish off your pasta by draining, tossing into the sauce and serving piping hot. It’s that simple!
HOW TO MAKE SHRIMP LINGUINE
There are few other things in my life that I love more than a bowl of creamy, decadent pasta. With this recipe, comfort food is taken to a whole new level. With the help of a few essential ingredients, you’ve got the makings for a new family favorite!
Most recipes use chicken or beef stock but, I absolutely love a full-bodied seafood stock. Its addition boosts flavor, accentuates the shrimp and makes for a stand-out dish.
The use of heavy cream in this recipe is delicious, but it can be a little overpowering. To counteract that, I added a bit of lemon juice. Just a few squeezes adds a brightness that lifts up the entire dish. Acidity is the perfect way to lighten up anything that’s outwardly a bit heavy.
Parmesan is pungent, nutty, fruity and slightly bitter. I love how parmesan adds in a cheesy indulgence without being overwhelming or too heavy.
Similarly to the lemon juice, basil helps to lighten and brighten this pasta. Basil is sweet, fragrant and herby; it’s perfect way to create another layer of flavor. Just a few sprigs lifts up the sauce like none other.
HOW TO STORE AND REHEAT SEAFOOD PASTA
If you have enough restraint to not eat every last bite of this recipe, I commend you. Leftovers are rare but more than welcome.
I prefer storing leftover shrimp linguine in lidded glass containers; they don’t absorb smell or taste the way plastic might. Refrigerate your pasta within two hours of serving; seafood goes bad quickly. Once stored, your pasta will last 2-3 days.
When ready to reheat, place the pasta in a sauce pan and turn on a low heat. Watch carefully, stir often and add water if your sauce begins to dry out.
Avoid the microwave! Using a microwave will dry out the pasta and make for rubbery shrimp. Just don’t do it.
More PASTA, PLEASE!
We all need that weeknight pasta dinner to get us through the week. Try out a few of Grandbaby Cakes’ best pasta recipes and find your go-to!
Cajun Shrimp Linguine
- 2 tbsp salted butter
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lb shrimp peeled and deveined
- 2 1/2 tsp cajun seasoning divided
- 1 1/2 tbsp minced garlic
- 1/4 cup seafood stock
- 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1/4 cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese plus more for garnish
- 1/3 cup fresh finely chopped parsley plus more for garnish
- 1 tsp fresh finely chopped basil
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- black pepper to taste
- 1/4 lb angel hair pasta, cooked up to 1/2 lb
- Add butter and olive oil to cast iron skillet over medium high heat.
- While butter and oil heat, toss shrimp with 2 tsp of cajun seasoning making sure it is completely coated.
- Add seasoned shrimp to cast iron skillet and cook for about 2 minutes on each side then remove shrimp from the pan and set aside.
- Next add garlic and cook for just 2 minutes.
- Then add seafood stock, heavy cream, parmesan cheese, parsley, basil, onion powder, remaining ½ teaspoon of cajun seasoning and black pepper to taste.
- Bring to a boil and allow sauce to thicken for just a few minutes.
- Once thickened, lower heat to medium low and then toss in small amounts of linguine tossing as you go along. Don’t add too much pasta since you want there to be a fair amount of sauce and the pasta not to be dry. (I only use about a ¼ of the package but use as much as you prefer).
- Add pasta on top then sprinkle with additional parmesan, cajun seasoning and parsley for garnish and serve.