Simple Shrimp Scampi Paella

Simple Shrimp Scampi Paella Sarah Crowder / Katie Workman /
Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 40 mins
Total: 55 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
264 Calories
5g Fat
36g Carbs
19g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 264
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 5g 7%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 113mg 38%
Sodium 629mg 27%
Total Carbohydrate 36g 13%
Dietary Fiber 5g 17%
Protein 19g
Calcium 94mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Shrimp Scampi is an Italian dish, shrimp sautéed in a garlicky butter sauce, often with some white wine and parsley added. Paella is a Spanish rice dish, that might include various vegetables, meat, or seafood. Using frozen shrimp scampi marries these two delicious classic dishes into a hybrid all its own, and makes an easy weeknight meal that looks quite impressive, to say the least. Here's a recipe for easy scampi sauce.


  • 2 packages frozen Shrimp Scampi (12-ounce packages)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 1 red bell pepper (chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon
  • garlic (minced)
  • 1 1/2 cups long-grain rice
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (14.5-ounce can)
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
  • Pepper (freshly ground) to taste
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup large pimento stuffed green olives (quartered)
  • 1 tablespoon parsley (minced) to serve

Steps to Make It

  1. In a large skillet or sauté pan (if you have a paella pan, by all means, use it!), cook the shrimp over medium-high heat until the butter sauce has melted and the shrimp is almost cooked through, about 4 minutes in all – they will finish cooking in the rest of the dish. Removed them with the sauce to a bowl and set aside.

  2. Return the pan to the heat and add the oil to the pan.  Add the onion and peppers and cook, stirring frequently, until golden, about 3 minutes, then stir in the garlic and the rice, and stir occasionally for another minute until the grains of rice are well coated with the oil and vegetables.

  3. Stir in the diced tomatoes with their juice, the broth, and saffron, and bring to a simmer, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Simmer gently over medium-low heat, partially covered, until the rice is just barely cooked, and the liquid is almost absorbed about 20 minutes. Place a plate over the bowl to prevent the shrimp from falling into the pan, and pour the sauce from the shrimp into the pan, stirring to mix with the rice and vegetables. Simmer for another 5 minutes until the liquid is almost completely absorbed. Season with pepper. Stir in the partially cooked shrimp, the peas, and the olives. 

  4. Cover the pan, and continue to cook over medium-low heat for another 3 minutes until the shrimp and peas are cooked, and the liquid is absorbed. Sprinkle over the parsley, garnish with saffron threads and serve hot, straight from the pan.

Recipe Tips

  • Keep the Shrimp Scampi and the peas frozen until ready to prepare
  • Saffron is a very expensive spice, made from the stamens of crocuses, and very labor intensive to harvest, but you only need a very small amount to add terrific flavor and color to this dish
  • Use 1/2 teaspoon of smoked paprika instead of or along with the saffron for a different, slightly smoky flavor
  • Warn everyone at the table that the pan is hot! But serving the paella straight from the pan is really pretty and dramatic