The Best Creamy Shrimp Pesto Pasta

The Best Creamy Shrimp Pesto Pasta

What makes this the best creamy shrimp pesto pasta out there? It’s all about the sauce.

We swap out traditional basil pesto for our Sun-Dried Tomato and Olive Simply Pesto® Sauce for some serious Mediterranean flavor. The smoky-sweet sun-dried tomatoes and briny olives of this vibrant pesto sauce are the perfect complement to the cheesy, buttery cream sauce.

Whether you are looking for an easy dinner or a new creation for your pasta night lineup, this pesto pasta recipe is it.

What Is Shrimp Pesto Pasta?

Shrimp Pesto Pasta is a quick and easy pasta recipe made with a just a few simple, quality ingredients. The stars of the show are pasta, pesto sauce and shrimp. You can use any pesto sauce you like—from homemade pesto made with fresh basil, pine nuts and olive oil to store-bought pesto sauces in many varieties. We love DeLallo Sun-Dried Tomato & Olive Simply Pesto® Sauce in this shrimp pasta recipe.

Why You’ll Love This Spin On Shrimp Pesto Pasta

This shrimp pesto pasta recipe isn’t just delicious, but it’s also easy to make. Ready in under 30 minutes, Creamy Shrimp Pesto Pasta is an easy dinner to create with only a few key ingredients.

Not only is it easy to make, this creamy cheesy shrimp pasta is a hearty recipe that is sure to fill you up and satisfy your dinner table.

It’s a great recipe for trying out your homemade pesto, but don’t be afraid to pick up some store-bought pesto to make it a quicker meal.

The Ingredients You Will Need To Make This Shrimp Pesto Pasta

This tasty shrimp pasta recipe is as easy as it gets and it requires just a few simple, high-quality ingredients.

Olive Oil: The foundation of so many great Italian recipes begins with a great extra virgin olive oil.

Shrimp: Choose large-sized shrimp that have been peeled and deveined. Shoot for a size of 17-20 shrimp per pound. Remove the tails for a more practical meal or leave them on for the presentation.

Pasta: We love Cavatappi for this pesto shrimp pasta recipe. These springy curly tubes are the perfect noodle for capturing sauces and ingredients like pesto and shrimp. You can use a long cut of pasta like Fettuccine or Linguine, as they are great for pesto sauces and other olive-oil-based sauces.

Pesto: We love our vibrant and flavorful Sun-Dried Tomato & Olive Pesto Sauce for this seafood pasta recipe. Substitute with our Traditional Basil Pesto or a fresh basil homemade pesto, if you dig a more classic flavor.

Heavy Cream and Cheese: These creamy, buttery flavors are the perfect complement to the bold, smoky-sweet and briny flavors of the pesto sauce.

Garlic: We always choose fresh garlic over dried garlic powder. The flavor is more robust and natural.

Spices: Add some complexity to your seafood pasta dish with dried basil, paprika, red pepper flakes and salt.

How To Make Shrimp Pesto Pasta

1. Cook the pasta.

Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water.

2. Cook the shrimp.

Sauté the shrimp with olive oil and fresh minced garlic in a large skillet. Remove from the skillet and set aside.

3. Create the sauce.

Add pesto, garlic and heavy cream to the skillet. Once bubbling, remove the skillet from heat and quickly stir in seasonings and the cheeses. Simmer on low until the sauce thickens.

4. Finish the dish.

Stir in hot pasta and the cooked shrimp. Cook together to marry flavors and then serve!

Top Serving And Storage Tips

Allow leftover pasta to cool completely. Place in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days.

Creamy, cheesy pasta sauces do not always reheat well, especially in the microwave. The oils tend to separate and lose the great texture of the original sauce. We recommend warming slowly on the stovetop over low heat. Add a splash of milk to the sauce if it is too thick.

Shrimp Pesto Pasta: FAQ

Can I Use Traditional Pesto Instead?

Yes, you can use a more traditional basil-centric pesto in this pesto shrimp pasta recipe.

Can I Use Chicken Instead Of Shrimp?

Yes, you can use chicken breast for this recipe. Cut it into bite-sized pieces and sauté it until it is no longer pink inside and completely cooked through.

The Best Creamy Shrimp Pesto Pasta



Pasta Sauce:


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain, reserving ½ cup hot pasta water.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add shrimp, 3 cloves of minced garlic and salt. Cook shrimp for 2 minutes, or until they turn pink or golden brown. Flip the shrimp over and cook for 1 minute longer. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
  3. In the same skillet, add pesto and 4 cloves minced garlic. Sauté over medium heat until the garlic becomes fragrant, about 1 minute.
  4. Stir in the heavy cream and bring to a boil. Once boiling, quickly stir in the shredded cheese. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 8-10 minutes. If the sauce becomes too thick, add some of the reserved hot pasta water a little at a time to reach desired consistency.
  5. Stir in basil, red pepper and paprika. Add hot pasta and shrimp to the sauce. Cook for 2 minutes to marry flavors.
  6. Divide among bowls or serve family-style.
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Pasta, pesto, seafood, one-pot meals, quick and easy, lent and easter

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