Garlic Butter Shrimp and Quinoa

Garlic Butter Shrimp and Quinoa- a simple 30 minute dinner that is elegant and full of flavor. | pinchofyum.com

I’m in tender, juicy, light and buttery seafood heaven.

Because —> THIS.

But also because I’m in Washington, D.C., and after spending a weekend eating some reallyreallyreally awesome seafood, for example, shrimp (with pineapple salsa and guac), lobster (mac and cheese), and crab (cakes with caramelized brussels sprouts), I am more than ready to sign my life away and move to a more coastal location permanently. I can’t blame my nice state for its sometimes unfresh seafood, but purely based on location, Minnesota just cannot keep up with a place like this. LOBSTER FOR DAYS.

Which leads to me say this: splurge on good shrimp for this dish. Good shrimp meaning the freshest you can get your paws on in whatever area you live. For me, it means going to a really nice grocery store that’s a bit out of the way and buying it directly from the seafood counter, not frozen (although a commenter brought up a great point that sometimes frozen is best in terms of quality – it depends on the ingredient list, so check your labels – the fewer the better). I am a big believer in convenience, but this dish is really all about the shrimp so it is completely worth a little extra drive to a store with great seafood to have mouthwateringly juicy, fresh shrimp to work with here.

Garlic Butter Shrimp and Quinoa- a simple 30 minute dinner that is elegant and full of flavor. | pinchofyum.com

What you just witnessed in that photo was the important step of the drenching of the butter. Oops. I think I meant drizzling. But you know that I really meant drenching.

The shrimp in this dish (and all shrimp ever) just begs for garlic butter, and garlic butter has always been one of my favorite was to prepare seafood. And just food in general, actually. So let’s give those little shrimpies what they’re asking for and make our mouths sing for joy.

Garlic Butter Shrimp and Quinoa- a simple 30 minute dinner that is garlic butter delicious. 300 calories.. | pinchofyum.com

You know that I’ve always been a person with mixed feelings on quinoa. Being a food blogger, the peer pressure is crushing. BUT THIS TIME. It’s actually good. Like, I took one bite and said, yum, I want another bite. Now. And another. And soon it was me, a fork, and a very large pot of quinoa making ourselves cozy in the corner. So simple and so good. Onion, garlic, chili powder, and broth. Who’d’ve known?

Yep, that was just a double contraction. Be impressed.

Garlic Butter Shrimp and Quinoa- a simple 30 minute dinner that is elegant and full of flavor. | pinchofyum.com

This shrimp and quinoa is made on the stovetop but you can serve it as if it were a casserole because casserole dishes say something special about food, like I LOVE YOU.

Optional add ins include fresh parsley, lemon juice, and extra sea salt and coarsely ground black pepper. The simpler and fresher the flavors and ingredients, the better.

Serve with a green salad or some kinda vegetables. Roasted or caramelized. And welcome to my happy place.

4.8 from 19 reviews
Garlic Butter Shrimp and Quinoa
Author: 
Serves: 8
 
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ cup finely chopped onion
  • 5 teaspoons minced garlic, divided
  • 2 cups uncooked quinoa
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder, divided
  • 4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 6 tablespoons salted butter, divided
  • 1 pound raw tail-on shrimp
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • fresh parsley for serving
  • fresh lemon juice for serving
Instructions
  1. Heat the oil in a large nonstick pot over medium high heat. Add the onion and saute until softened, about 5 minutes. Add 2 teaspoons of the garlic and saute for 1 minute, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Add the uncooked quinoa and ½ teaspoon chili powder. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Saute for another 1 minute to add flavor to the quinoa. Add the broth, bring to a boil, cover and cook for 15-20 minutes. When the quinoa is done, it will be soft throughout. Fluff with a fork and toss with fresh minced parsley.
  2. While the quinoa is cooking, heat 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. When the pan is hot and the butter is melted, add the shrimp and sprinkle with the remaining ½ teaspoon chili powder directly in the pan. Season with salt and pepper and saute until no longer translucent and golden brown on the outside. Just at the end of the saute, add 1 teaspoon garlic and swirl around in the pan until the garlic is very fragrant.
  3. Melt the remaining 5 tablespoons butter with the 2 teaspoons garlic to make a sauce for drizzling (for this, crushed garlic or garlic paste would work really well but minced is also fine).
  4. Serve the quinoa and shrimp together in one dish, topping with fresh chopped parsley and lemon juice if desired. When the butter is melted and cooled slightly, drizzle over the shrimp and quinoa. Serve immediately, while still hot.

Nutrition Shrimp

 

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Comments

  1. Whoa! That look so amazing! I’m not a huge shrimp fan but even this looks delicious. I’m thinking the whole family would enjoy this dish!

  2. I am totally with you on quinoa! I kinda like it, but I feel like i need to make all the things with quinoa, due to everyone wanting to eat it! I love shrimp soooooo much times 100, and this looks fantastic! I can’t wait to try quinoa that I actually lurveeee. And I know this will be it because, well, that butter. Dying!

  3. I love shrimp and you are so right about it begging for garlic butter! I haven’t fallen in love with quinoa yet, but it sounds like this dish could be the one to change my mind.

  4. The quinoa totally cancels out all the butter, right? This dish looks beautiful and fresh!

  5. Mmmm! One of the only recipes my mom has passed down to me (she doesn’t cook) is for shrimp scampi, also drenched in butter sauce! Am looking forward to trying your version. :)

  6. Have you tried quinoa for breakfast? My favorite way to eat quinoa is actually as a morning cereal! I love it with apples, walnuts, and brown sugar all cooked together in almond milk. I don’t like oatmeal, so it’s kind of like a substitute.

    P.S. Thanks for planning my dinner tonight!!

  7. I just wanted to say that I LOVE you. I’ve made maybe 90% of the recipes and you post and your seriously the BEST thing to ever happen to me…. no really.
    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  8. These photos are beautiful! My husband loves shrimp, and you’re right, it’s hard to find good quality here. I bought some raw frozen shrimp yesterday because that seems to turn out a little better than the cooked frozen, but it still looked a little sad.

  9. That looks ammaaazzziinnggggg! Fantastic, amazing, awesome recipe. Bookmarking and trying for sure :)

    Happy Blogging!
    Happy Valley Chow

  10. This looks awesome! I have to admit, I’ve been on a quinoa kick lately. I’m blaming the whole “it’s the New Year, let’s get healthy” mindset. But I’m still a big fan regardless. And gosh, I love shrimp. And butter. Just looking at this dish makes me happy.

  11. this looks so delicious! pure genius =) thanks for sharing! love the pics

  12. That looks so delicious. The photos are amazing. We are eating frozen shrimps here in KS too. Sometimes, they got some fresh ones from the Asian store (hmmm, maybe it is not fresh but thawed), anyway, we are going home to the Philippines this June and my husband and I are already imagining how to eat our shrimps, squid and crabs. We will surely binge to make up for the 13 years years of not eating fresh seafoods. We are excited. This will be a good recipe for that. I am not sure though, if there is quinoa in the PI. Have you seen quinoa there?

  13. Your past few meals sound incredible! And this dish – wow – it looks phenomenal! That butter?! YUM! You are so right – splurging on good seafood is so important in dishes like this. It just tastes so much better!

  14. Oh, great – I just logged on to print off a different recipe of yours and ran into this. I happen to have all ingredients for both recipes on hand and am now lost in “it’s almost five o’clock and I can’t decide what to make for dinner” limbo! Agh!!

  15. These photos are so bright and colourful! I actually really like quinoa, or certainly more than rice or couscous as it seems to have more flavour and ‘bite’ but have never tried anything like this with it before. Will have to give it a go altho my hubby can’t eat prawns so will have to come up with an alternative … chicken maybe? (always a safe option!)

  16. Oh, for the love of BJ, that looks gorg!! My oh my! ;)

  17. I love the way this looks and am obsessed with that butter drenching photo!!

  18. This looks delicious! Your best bet for the shrimp is still to drive to a quality seafood store, but actually buy frozen. Check the label to make sure the only ingredient listed is shrimp; lesser quality brands often have a preservative added. Fresh shrimp in stores has been frozen once already, then defrosted for sale-possibly more than once. The good frozen brands in the bag are flash frozen almost immediately after being caught. It’s not as convenient since you have to defrost, but the quality is usually more consistent! Love your blog! Thanks for the recipe.

  19. Looks very, very yummy!!!

  20. Mmm yum! I LOVE everything about this recipe. I shall make it tomorrow whilst snowed in. And I apologize in advance for how DC handles snow, compared to how I imagine MN deals with it. We simply don’t handle it well. Hope you enjoy your time in our city!

  21. They look amazing! I’d imagine you use good BUTTER for this too. What kind do you use? I’m so thankful the ocean is just miles away from me. I love fresh fresh seafood.

  22. Not sure which I’m more impressed by: the double contraction or the shrimp! My fiance is a huge fan of garlic, shrimp and butter, and I love quinoa, so basically I need to make this ASAP. Thanks for sharing!

  23. This sounds incredible!! Gorgeous photos too! Oh and I just made lobster mac today. So freaking delicious!

  24. Oh my goodness! Seriously, I said that aloud when I read the title and saw that first picture! This looks in-freakin’-credible. I’ve been lucky to always live on the coasts (NJ and now San Dieg0), so fresh seafood has never been a struggle to find. That just means no excuses on my part not to make this!

  25. Looks too good. I am great fan of shrimp and am bookmarking this one.

  26. This popped up on my IG feed last night just as my hubs and I were getting in to bed, I can’t tell you how much we were both craving this at half past midnight lol! It is now on our menu for tomorrow and I can not wait! :)

  27. Bookmarked!! I’m certainly going to make this as soon as I can get my hands on some shrimp.

  28. Your photos capture the yum factor so well!

  29. Great Post and I couldn’t agree more!! Ever since we moved from Chicago to the Boston area, it’s been fish or Lobster at least 4 days a week. (Last night was local shrimp and muscle green curry)

    Nothing beats fresh, local ingredients.

    PS: Quinoa, Ground Turkey, Chili Powder, Garlic, caramelized onions and a little cinnamon all mixed in a big bowl = Awesomeness.

  30. I adore quinoa and especially quinoa pasta (quinoa and rice, no corn). I can’t wait to try this recipe. Last time I cooked quinoa with a stock it came out mushy. Maybe I overcooked. Better results with plain water. Anxious to try again and not overcook it.

  31. Yum I saw this on your instagram and had to check it out, looks amazing!

  32. This looks lovely! I’m curious – do you eat the shrimp tails or do you pull them off? I always find it so finnicky to pull the tails off of a dish I’m eating, but I’ve heard that some people just eat the tails. If you do pull them off, what’s your strategy?

    • We pull the tails off. :) I often cook with tail removed for practicality (not having to stop every five seconds to pull off the tail) but tail-on looks better for photos!

  33. Another great recipe it looks amazing! Now that my husband likes quinoa so much I can definatly do this recipe for him. Thanks!

  34. Mouth is officially watering. How could it not with that butter shot?? Looks delicious!

  35. Looks amazing, Lindsay! I’m adding this to my list of your recipes to try. :)

  36. I made this last night and it was SO good! My husband told me to repeat it whenever I wanted to. :) Question though, is it important to get the shrimp with the tails on? It’s just so annoying to have to pull it out! I’d love to just scoop up some of that quinoa and shrimp goodness all in one bite!

  37. This looks amazing. Pinning and making soon! :)

  38. I never thought I would say this but I am really excited about quinoa. My kids love shrimp so this dish is a welcome addition to our family menu. Also, being from Maryland and living in Montreal, Canada I miss all of the seafood from back home so any excuse works for me!!

  39. Oh man Lindsay… You have acquired a knack for posting the MOST mouthwatering photos of food that I’m deathly allergic too! First the mushroom sandwiches, now the juicy shrimp… Please oh please don’t post any recipes with water chestnuts or lobster next because I will seriously cave and try them and end up stuck in bed for an entire week with hives and stomach cramps.

    Although from all of your photographs, it might be worth it… ;)

  40. Such a beautiful and easy weeknight dish! I love all the ingredients in this dish, so I’m saving to make sometime in the near future!

  41. I need this in my life asap! Looks amazing!

  42. Yum, you had me at shrimp & butter. You can never have enough good seafood recipes.

  43. This looks so good. I am trying to add more seafood to our diet on a regular basis and shrimp is the easiest way to do that. I am going to be making this soon. I don’t mind quinoa but it isn’t my husbands favorite. The butter will help!

  44. Oh My Goodness!!! This is definitely going on a must try list!! Thanks so much for sharing! I’m a huge fan of butter myself. It just tends to make things taste AMAZING!
    You take such beautiful pictures. I just started a blog and I am reading everything I can find on your site about photography!! Thanks so much!

  45. Nom! Is all that I can say. I made this last night for my fiancé’s birthday and splurged on the extra big and juicy shrimps. Needless to say this is awesome. I’m also one that does not really not what on earth to do with Quinoa ( or how to say it), but garlic butter drenched is amazing! We had quite a bit of quinoa left over and so I chucked it in a salad today and got that nice garlic butter kick again. Good work Lindsay!

  46. I think I gained few pounds just by looking at this blog… Can’t wait till tomorrow morn ing to start trying the recipes out

  47. This looks delicious, I can’t wait to try it!!! Does it really serve 8 people? So only about 2 large shrimp per serving? I just want to confirm, the nutritional information is based on 1/8 of the recipe? Seems like a really small portion :-(

    • Hm, that does seem small when you put it that way, but when I divided it out we definitely had 8 full servings with more than just 2 pieces of shrimp per serving. Maybe try 6 servings? Or if you need it to feed a crowd just increase the amounts and use a bigger pan.

  48. This looks good, can you tell me what the serving size is.

  49. Yes!! I’m so happy when I find amazing recipes that I have all the ingredients for here in Paraguay! Even if I have to settle for frozen shrimp too…we are land-locked!

  50. This was amazing. We toasted the quinoa first (adds a nutty flavor) and used half the amnt of quinoa. Otherwise, followed the recipe – DELICIOUS. Kids loved it, too!

  51. Karen Collier says:

    This was crazy salty!! I like everything about it but that part. If I make it again, I will not season with salt until the very end.

  52. Justyna says:

    The meal was just delicious! I added some habanero mango jam I found in the fridge and it brought the thing to a whole new level.

  53. Going to make but will substitute butter or coconut oil.

  54. Hi Lindsey!

    So I am new to the whole healthy eating…and to COOKING for that matter and stumbled upon your blog. Pretty pictures and I love the commentary behind your recipes! However, when I seen this one, I HAD to make it and make it I did THE VERY SAME NIGHT! lol I was really nervous initially because I have never made or eaten quinoa in my life…but this BLEW MY SOCKS OFF! So incredibly yummy…and I didn’t feel bad about getting a second helping either! The fresh squeezed lemon juice mixed with the garlic butter at the end was HEAVEN! I’m going to start putting lemon juice and garlic butter on everything now! The quinoa was seasoned so good, I could’ve just eaten as is.

    Thanks so much for the recipe…I look forward to trying them ALL!

    Amber :)

  55. “…and buying it directly from the seafood counter, not frozen…” Having worked in the seafood industry for many years in Baltimore I can tell you that it would be extremely unlikely that the shrimp you’re buying from the seafood counter have never been frozen. Even when working at a seafood stand in one of Baltimore’s many farmers markets, we only sold “fresh” shrimp once or twice a year. The vast majority of the time 5 lb. blocks of frozen shrimp are thawed and put out in the case to sell. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with Individually Quick Frozen (IQF) shrimp, I eat them often and in great quantities. However, just be aware that the shrimp you’re buying out of the case are rarely, if ever, truly never frozen. Thanks for the great recipe though.

    • Thank you Steve! So true. I’m always looking and learning how to get the freshest ingredients which can be a challenge in MN. I bought some cheap frozen packaged shrimp the other day that were just icky – stinky, bad, yuck. So I tend to trust the seafood counter fish at the nicer grocery store more than the budget stuff in the freezer section. Maybe misworded on my part – but I totally agree with you!

  56. Made this for dinner Sunday night. First time even trying quinoa. It was absolutely delicious! Will be adding this to my repertoire for sure!

  57. Can I make this with precooked frozen shrimp? I live in MI and it’s very difficult to find fresh shrimp without paying an arm and a leg. However; I find Trader Joe’s frozen shrimp to be of very good quality (or at least I think!) If I just add the shrimp towards the end so it doesn’t over cook, do you think it would still turn out? Great looking recipe that I’d love to try next week! :)

    • Yes! I would still toss it around in the skillet (briefly) with the garlic and butter for more flavor, and add it to the quinoa at the end like you said.

  58. Getting ready to make this for dinner myself, had to go with frozen, cooked shrimp. Turns out it’s hard to find fresh shrimp in Kentucky, who’d’ve guessed?! Anyways, I got sucked into the quinoa thing by my health obsessed husband. Check out creamy Buffalo chicken quinoa, that’s what got me on board the bandwagon. What isn’t good with Buffalo sauce?

  59. This recipe was delicious!!! Thank you so much for sharing it. Our family has recently gone gluten free due to a health issue. We had never tried quinoa before and were slightly nervous to do so but I must say I was very pleasantly surprised! I will definitely be making this recipe again!

  60. Delicious! Made this tonight on a whim. I used a tri-color quinoa that I just purchased and my quinoa had a crunchy texture. Has anyone ever experimented with the different colors and found differences. I might go back to the regular light quinoa.

    In any case, we are dairy free SO, I used half coconut oil and half ghee. Turned out wonderful!! I was also nervous if the chili powder would make it spicy but I can tell you, it didn’t at all! It just added a nice flavor! I did take off the tails before I cooked them (wanted the shells and tails to make fish broth!) and it was also easier to eat for the kids.

    Next time maybe I will even put it in a pretty dish like your picture. I just served it up right from the stove to a dish! I was too eager to eat it!! :)

  61. Denise Gonzalez says:

    I wasn’t able to try the quinoa portion as my daughter is very apprehensive about new things, so I prepared the recipe with rice instead and everyone loved it. I kept hearing between bites “this is delicious ma”. Not wanting my to leave my youngest out at UCSB out of the fun I sent her pictures. She was not amused- apparently college cafeteria fare does not live up to your delicious shrimp!

    Thanks for making me a star in my own kitchen!

  62. I made your exact recipe last month, and it was outstanding! It was my very first time trying Quinoa, and it made me LOVE it! Today I am making it again, but I had my husband pick up the few ingredients we didn’t have in the house, and he came back with frozen cooked tail-on shrimps. My guess is that the shrimps are going to be uber chewy (just the way I hate it). But we shall see. I tried not to over-cook the pre-cooked frozen shrimps. Also, we don’t have salted butter, so I’m opting for the unsalted tonight. Probably will still be fabulous. Wonderful recipe though!

  63. All I had in the frig was, garlic, shrimp, and some eggplant, tomatoes and onions. And some quinoa. So I searched online for quinoa vegetables and shrimp and you came up. What a great discovery. Now I have somewhere to go to for ideas! Thank you! Gonna try this tonight but will saute the eggplant too.

  64. Just found this while planning out some meals and looking for something new. It looks amazing! One question…do the tails get left on? I’ve never eaten a shrimp dish where tails were still on the shrimp.

  65. I made this tonight for myself and my husband. It was absolutely delicious! No complaints in this house it was perfect. I will definitely be saving recipe. Thank you!

  66. Do you have to devein the shrimp?

  67. I made this tonight with ingredients on hand – it was delicious! My usually picky husband came back for seconds. :) I like quinoa and am slowly trying to replace starches in some family faves with it, so this was a great new addition to the quinoa collection. Thanks for sharing!

  68. This was delish!! Saturday is seafood day in our house and I am always looking for new ideas for my three picky daughters. It was our very first introduction to quinoa and it was a hit! Like Colleen B above, I took the tails off the shrimp to make it easier for the kids to eat so mine definitely wasn’t as pretty as yours, but still delicious. Thanks for a great intro to quinoa – I think it will help the kiddos be more receptive to it in the future in other dishes, even when it’s not drenched … er, I mean drizzled … in garlic butter!

  69. How do I say this? YUMMY!!! My whole family loved it, even my 5 year old!! Thank you for such a great recipe.

  70. Just made this! Was intending on making orzo but I didn’t have orzo. Came upon this recipe and it’s excellent! I added about 2 cups of spinach to this.

  71. Amazing… made this last night and everyone LOVED it… Only change I made, added some plum tomatoes and a cup of spinach. Per my niece “finally quinoa is edible” LOL. Next time I will use low sodium broth; was just a little salty for me.

    Now trolling the blog for other recipes.. many thanks :)

  72. Must try this tonight! I feel you on the land locked state. The Twin Cities seafood scene would be unbearable if not for Coastal Seafoods!

  73. Think I could make this ahead if time and reheat?

  74. My first attempt at a quinoa recipe several years ago was a miserable failure, and I have avoided it until now.This was my second attempt, and a true triumph! I had a guest for dinner who raved about it. Yum for sure, but way more than just a pinch! Thanks so much for this recipe!

  75. All the recipes on your site look delicious! My daughter and I made this one and the whole family loved it. Quinoa is our new favorite ingredient. We can’t wait to try another of your recipes. Thanks for sharing and we’ll be sharing with all our friends and family.

  76. This is so good!

    I made it tonight for family dinner (my family, my in-laws, a family friend), and everyone loved it, including the 1 and 4 year olds.

    My only complaint is that it’s not enough shrimp. I upped the shrimp (dumped a bit more than half of a 2-pound bag out), and still had leftovers of considerably more quinoa than necessary for the shrimp left. :)

    For the full recipe I’d probably use at least 1.5 pounds of shrimp. For my family of four, I’ll halve the recipe (or put half the quinoa away for another meal) and use the full pound.

    BTW – I think the frozen, raw, tail-on, 31-40 count shrimp at Costco is amazing. It’s a great price (maybe $14 for 2 pounds?) and delicious! If you have access to Costco, try it!

  77. Gabriela Wilson says:

    Thank you Lindsey for such a great recipe!
    Made it early in the day and I couldn’t stop ‘tasting it’ until it was almost half gone.
    For our taste, I agree with Jennifer to double the shrimp. We also used a 2 lb bag of shrimp from Costco.
    Will look up your other recipes too! This one is an absolute keeper!!!

  78. Holy moly. Just made this and INHALED it! Definitely adding this to our recipe book. Thanks again for another amazing recipe!

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