Garlic Butter Shrimp and Quinoa Recipe - Pinch of Yum
Our recipes, your inbox. Sign up

Garlic Butter Shrimp and Quinoa

56 reviews / 4.7 average

I’m in tender, juicy, light and buttery seafood heaven. Because —> THIS. Garlic Butter Shrimp and Quinoa.

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 with drizzle in a baking dish.

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 on a white plate.

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 in a white baking dish.

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.

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
A picture of Garlic Butter Shrimp and Quinoa

Garlic Butter Shrimp and Quinoa


This Garlic Butter Shrimp and Quinoa is ready in 30 minutes and is full of garlic butter flavor. One of my favorite ways to do shrimp!


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 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


  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 1/2 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 1/2 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.
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 45 mins
  • Category: Dinner
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: quinoa and shrimp, shrimp recipe, shrimp casserole

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

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star


  1. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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!

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo

      Looks yummy. Would like to make it for a dinner party this weekend. Can you suggest how elements of it can be made ahead of time so I’m not trying to prepare right before dinner?

  2. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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.

  3. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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. 🙂

  4. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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!!

  5. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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!

  6. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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.

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo

      Yes, raw is definitely better. I bought this batch fresh at Byerly’s – it was way better than the frozen stuff I bought at Rainbow.

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo

        Try brining your shrimp for about 10-15 mins, depending on. Size of shrimp in a salt/sugar solution. Will firm the flesh and improve texture. Can add seasonings to the brine. Dont over do or will go.mushy.

  7. Pinch of Yum Logo

    That looks ammaaazzziinnggggg! Fantastic, amazing, awesome recipe. Bookmarking and trying for sure 🙂

    Happy Blogging!

  8. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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.

  9. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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?

  10. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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!

  11. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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!!

  12. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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!)

  13. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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.

  14. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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!

  15. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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.

  16. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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!

  17. Pinch of Yum Logo

    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!