This post may contain affiliate links, read my disclosure policy for details.

This Spicy Shrimp Scampi features perfectly cooked shrimp in a garlic-infused, spicy sauce over pasta. Ready in under 30 minutes, it’s an easy yet impressive dish that adds a fiery kick to your meal rotation.

Shrimp sauteed in a spicy sauce in a skillet.
Want to save this recipe?
Just enter your email and get it sent to your inbox! Plus you’ll get new recipes from us every week!
Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

How can you improve on the classic shrimp scampi with the garlic buttery and savory shrimp? Add a twist with Gochujang sauce, cilantro, and a burst of lemon flavor. This spicy shrimp scampi has a kick that makes it mouth-watering and delicious.

Why You’ll Love This Scampi Recipe

  • It’s flavorful. So many different tastes combine for the sauce including tangy lemon, fresh cilantro, and savory garlic. 
  • Quick and Easy: It’s a simple recipe that can be prepared in under 30 minutes, perfect for busy weeknights.
  • Versatility: Shrimp scampi pairs well with pasta, rice, or crusty bread, making it a versatile meal option.

Spicy Shrimp Scampi Ingredients

Ingredients needed for spicy shrimp scampi.
  • Shrimp: Use peeled and deveined shrimp. It’s your choice if you want tails on or off. 
  • Cooking fats: Cooking the shrimp in olive oil and then starting the sauce with unsalted butter adds richness to the dish.
  • Gochujang sauce: This fermented chili paste is usually found by the hot sauces or on the Asian aisle of your grocery store. If you can’t find it, use a chili sauce like sriracha or garlic chili sauce and a pinch of sugar.
  • Herbs and spices: Salt and pepper enhance all of the flavors. Garlic and cilantro add freshness and flavor to the sauce.
  • Liquid: Use low-sodium chicken broth or a seafood stock for a twist. Fresh lemon juice adds a little brightness to the sauce. 

Ingredient Substitutions and Variations

  • Pasta: Toss with angel hair or linguine pasta to make it a more filling dish.
  • Shrimp: Substitute with scallops or chicken for a different protein.
  • Vegetables: Add spinach or cherry tomatoes for extra nutrients.

How To Make Spicy Shrimp Scampi

Raw shrimp seasoned with salt and pepper.
Step 1: Prepare the shrimp. Pat the shrimp dry and season them with salt and pepper.
Shrimp sauteed in a skillet.
Step 2: Cook the shrimp. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat and cook the shrimp for 4-5 minutes until pink. Set the shrimp aside. 
Garlic is sauteed in a skillet.
Step 3: Saute butter and garlic. Melt the butter and cook the minced garlic for 2-3 minutes. 
Ingredients for spicy gochujang shrimp sauce.
Step 4: Build the sauce. Add the Gochujang sauce and cilantro.
Spicy shrimp sauce.
Step 5: Finish the Sauce. Add broth then bring the sauce to a simmer. 
Toss shrimp in the spicy sauce.
Step 6: Combine the sauce and shrimp. Add the lemon juice and shrimp and simmer for 4-5 minutes to thicken and bring the flavors together. 
A spoon picks up a piece of spicy shrimp form a skillet.
Step 7: Garnish and enjoy. Serve over angel hair pasta topped with more chopped cilantro and lemon wedges.

Tips to Make the Best Shrimp Scampi

  • Sear the Shrimp: Cook shrimp just until they turn pink and opaque to avoid a rubbery texture.
  • Control the Spice: Start with a smaller amount of red pepper flakes, then adjust to your taste.
  • Use Fresh Ingredients: Fresh garlic and lemon juice enhance the overall flavor profile.
  • Combine While Warm: If serving with pasta, toss the pasta with the sauce while still warm to help absorb the flavors.

What to Serve with Spicy Shrimp Scampi

This dish pairs wonderfully with:

  • Garlic Bread: Complements the flavors and adds a satisfying crunch.
  • Green Salad: A simple salad with vinaigrette balances the richness of the pasta.
  • Roasted Vegetables: A medley of veggies make great side option for this recipe.

Storing and Reheating

Storing: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

To reheat: Reheat in a skillet over medium heat for 3-4 minutes or in the microwave for 1-2 until heated through. Add a splash of chicken broth if the sauce is too thick.

Freezing: Freeze the cooked shrimp scampi in a freezer-safe container for up to 2 months.  Thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating. 

Alternative Cooking Methods

Here are alternative cooking methods for this recipe:

  1. Grilled Shrimp Scampi: Marinate shrimp in olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, and red pepper flakes. Grill on medium heat for 2-3 minutes per side until cooked through. Serve with a drizzle of the marinade.
  2. Baked Shrimp Scampi: Arrange shrimp in a baking dish with butter, garlic, lemon juice, and spices. Bake at 400°F (200°C) for 10-12 minutes until shrimp are opaque. Serve over pasta or rice.
  3. Air Fryer Shrimp Scampi: Toss shrimp with olive oil, garlic, and seasonings. Air fry at 375°F (190°C) for 6-8 minutes, shaking halfway through. Serve with lemon wedges and fresh parsley.
  4. Instant Pot Shrimp Scampi: Sauté garlic in the Instant Pot, add shrimp, lemon juice, and seasonings. Cook on high pressure for 1 minute, then quick release. Serve with pasta or crusty bread.
Shrimp scampi with spicy sauce in a skillet with bread and lemon slices.

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of pasta serves best with this recipe?

Linguine or angel hair are classic choices, but any long pasta will do.

Can I make it less spicy?

Gochujang sauce can be quite spicy. To lower the heat level, reduce the amount of Gochujang sauce or use milder sweet chili sauce. 

What can I use instead of cilantro?

If you don’t like cilantro, you can substitute parsley or basil for a different flavor profile. 

Can I substitute the gochujang sauce?

If you don’t have Gochujang sauce, you can use Sriracha, chili garlic sauce, or a combination of chili paste and a little honey for a similar sweet-spicy flavor.

How can I thicken the sauce?

Add a touch of cornstarch slurry or simmer a bit longer to reduce.

Spicy shrimp scampi pasta on a white plate.

More Quick Seafood Dinner Recipes

This Spicy Shrimp Scampi Pasta is a must-try for seafood lovers. With its quick preparation and bold flavors, it’s sure to become a staple in your kitchen. Serve it with a side of garlic bread and a fresh salad for a complete meal that’s both satisfying and delicious.

If you try this recipe or any of my other recipes, please leave a star rating in the comment section below because I love hearing from my readers. Also follow me at Cookin’ With Mima on FACEBOOK |INSTAGRAM |PINTEREST for all of my latest social posts and recipes.

5 from 8 votes

Spicy Shrimp Scampi

Succulent shrimp, sweet and spicy Gochujang sauce, and tangy lemon combine for a flavorful twist on shrimp scampi that’s ready in just 45 minutes.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 Servings


  • 2 lb large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons Gochujang sauce
  • cup chopped cilantro
  • ½ cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • Lemon wedges, to garnish


  • Pat dry the shrimp with a kitchen towel and season them with salt and pepper.
  • Meanwhile, heat a large skillet with oil over medium heat. Once the oil is heated, add the shrimp and cook for 4-5 minutes until the shrimp turns pink. Transfer the cooked shrimp to a plate and set aside.
  • In the same skillet, add the butter. Once the butter is melted, add the minced garlic and sauté for 2-3 minutes. Then, add the Gochujang sauce and chopped cilantro.
  • Stir in the chicken broth and deglaze the skillet, allowing the broth to simmer for a couple of minutes.
  • Add the lemon juice and transfer the shrimp back to the skillet. Let it simmer for 4-5 minutes.
  • Finally, sprinkle some freshly chopped cilantro, garnish with lemon wedges, and serve the spicy shrimp scampi while it is still warm, along with angel hair pasta


  • Sear the Shrimp: Cook shrimp just until they turn pink and opaque to avoid a rubbery texture.
  • Control the Spice: Start with a smaller amount of red pepper flakes, then adjust to your taste.
  • Use Fresh Ingredients: Fresh garlic and lemon juice enhance the overall flavor profile.
  • Combine While Warm: If serving with pasta, toss the pasta with the sauce while still warm to help absorb the flavors.


Calories: 295kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 301mg | Sodium: 1.587mg | Potassium: 347mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 691IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 137mg | Iron: 1mg
Like this recipe? Rate and comment below!
5 from 8 votes (3 ratings without comment)

Leave a comment

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

Recipe Rating