Pasta with Shrimp and Cherry Tomatoes is made with garlic and spicy red pepper flakes. The cherry tomato sauce comes together quickly and is no-fuss. A simple and delicious weeknight dinner that is ready in 20 minutes!
Really, it’s that fast! You probably have many of the ingredients on hand to make the sauce.
There are some dishes I just let nonna (AKA, my mom) cook when she comes by to visit. There is no need for me to go in the kitchen and start to make something she taught me how to make.
Because no matter what I do, something is always going to be wrong, and then we’ll end up arguing. Then I’ll tell her to just make it because, honestly, she makes it better than me!
For example, just starting the recipe would be an immediate argument. Because I would add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil to the pan. And she would want to add a 1/2 cup. Which is what she did for this sauce.
Also, the garlic! I would skimp and she would be generous. But all that olive oil and garlic is what makes this sauce irresistible! Let’s not forget the hot pepper! You could use hot pepper flakes or Calabrian hot pepper that you can find in so many markets now (they sell it in a jar).
Look at her gorgeous sauce! It truly is as delicious as it looks! Dig in!
Back to the quantity of olive oil…I know, it seems like a lot. But nonna explains, “That’s the base for this sauce, and if you don’t add enough oil, it will be dry!” And she’s right! Don’t argue with nonna! So do what nonna said, and use enough olive oil.
Isn’t that how it always is with an Italian nonna. So this pasta came together with my one of my birthday gifts! This wasn’t my actual birthday meal, but the pasta was one of the gifts I received from my daughter’s boyfriend, my other “son”.
He was so sweet and gave me food items. One of the gifts was this black and white bow tie (farfalle) pasta. The black part is made with squid ink and it was being sold in packaging to be made for Halloween. I knew I had to make it with some sort of seafood or just a simple garlic, oil and spicy cherry tomato sauce.
Shrimp is what I had on hand, and that is what was cooked up to go with the pasta! In walked nonna right at the time I was about to make the sauce. And I left the kitchen and let her do her thing!
She is usually the meatball queen in a gorgeous Sunday sauce. But this is one of her signature sauces that doesn’t have a recipe written down (like so many pasta dishes).
Fresh or frozen shrimp for spicy shrimp pasta with cherry tomatoes?
Fresh or frozen is just fine! Just make sure they are raw! And whether you’re
What ingredients are in pasta with shrimp and cherry tomatoes?
Really simple ingredients make the most delectable pasta sauce. Full recipe is below.
- shrimp-fresh or frozen works fine, but make sure it’s raw (not cooked)
- pasta-I used a farfalle (bow tie)but spaghetti works great too
- extra-virgin olive oil-the better the quality olive oil, the better the flavor of this simple sauce
- onion-sweet onion, white or red works fine (or even shallot)
- garlic-use as much or as little you like (or leave out, if you can’t digest it)
- red pepper flakes-make it as spicy or mild, to your taste
- cherry tomatoes-or grape tomatoes
- white wine-use a wine you would drink, it will make the flavor even better
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- fresh Italian parsley-fresh is better than dry for this recipe
Tips to make the best spicy garlic shrimp and burst tomato pasta:
- You could use cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes.
- Be sure that you do not over cook the pasta. A nice al dente (to the tooth)makes all the difference!
- Use whichever pasta shape you love. We used the farfalle (bow tie), but most of the times this sauce is made with spaghetti. Thin spaghetti works fine, too!
- Fresh Italian parsley is the best parsley to use (dried would not be best for this recipe)
Crusty garlic bread! Every since I was a little girl, nonna made this sauce and her famous garli cbread. Yes, you can use pieces of the bread to dip in the sauce (there will be some extra sauce just for that!).
How to store this spicy shrimp pasta?
Once the pasta has cooled down, place the leftovers in an airtight container or a zipped lock freezer bag in the refrigerator. This pasta will stay fresh for up to 3 days. I would not suggest freezing the leftovers.
Some other delicious Italian pasta dishes to enjoy:
- Caramelized Shallot Pasta
- Vegan Cheese Sauce Pasta
- Pumpkin and Turkey Pasta
- Pasta with Ricotta and Peas
Pasta with Shrimp and Cherry Tomatoes
- 1 pound raw shrimp peeled and deveined (fresh or frozen)
- 8 ounces pasta
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil plus more for drizzling
- 1 small onion chopped
- 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes sliced in half
- 1/2 cup white wine
- sea salt to taste
- freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 3 Tablespoons fresh Italian parsley plus more for garnish
- Drain the shrimp (if you’re using fresh or you’re defrosting frozen shrimp, you’ll need to drain); set aside.
- In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the pasta to al dente (follow the cooking time on the package, but check before the time is up to make sure it’s not overcooking).
- While the pasta is cooking, in a separate sauce pan on medium-high heat, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
- Add the onions and cook until translucent.
- Add in the garlic, red pepper flakes (if you’re making it spicy)and oregano to the oil. Cook the garlic for 1 minute, stirring constantly, and add in the tomatoes (the garlic should be a light golden color, not browned). When the tomatoes start to soften, smash some of them with your spoon.
- Add in the rest of the olive oil.
- Add in the white wine (sub the wine with broth if you prefer). Stir and let it simmer. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Stir in 1-2 tablespoons of the chopped Italian parsley. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the shrimp to the pan and stir. Leave them cooking on each side for about 2 minutes (depending on how big your shrimp are). Turn the shrimp over an cook another 2-3 minutes on the other side (you’ll want them pink and firm, but not overcooked and tough).
- Drain pasta and add directly to the pan with the shrimp and tomatoes. Stir it all together.
- Add some more chopped parsley, red pepper flakes, and a drizzle of olive oil. Serve immediately.