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top down shot of creamy shrimp in a bowl

Creamy Shrimp Penne Pasta With Red Pepper Sauce

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Created by Mariam E.
This Creamy Shrimp Penne Pasta With Red Pepper Sauce recipe is very simple and a perfect filling meal for the family during weekdays or even busy weekends.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Entree
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 servings


  • 1.5 lbs raw shrimp
  • 8 oz. penne pasta uncooked
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsps. olive oil
  • 1 cup pasta water
  • 1 small onion finely diced
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 4 oz roasted red bell pepper pureed
  • 1 tsp. salt +sprinkle a dash on the shrimp
  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. black pepper + sprinkle on shrimp
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 2 tbsps. fresh basil chopper
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 tsp. chili flakes optional


  • Chop and prep all the ingredients to begin.
  • Process the roasted red bell pepper in a food processor to make it into puree sauce.
  • Dice the onions into super small pieces. Cook the pasta and reserve 1 cup of pasta water.
  • Prep the shrimps by marinating with some lemon juice, black pepper and salt.
  • Heat a skillet with 1 tbsp. of olive oil and cook the shrimps until they are almost fully cooked. About 5 minutes. Remove the shrimps and place in a bowl.
  • In the same skillet, place another tablespoon of olive oil and sauté the onions until they are translucent in color.
  • Add in the black pepper, cream cheese, garlic powder, paprika, the processed red pepper and salt. Add 1 cup of pasta water and 1/2 cup of heavy cream. Mix everything together while breaking up the cream cheese and let the sauce simmer on low for a few minutes to obtain a creamy sauce.
  • Add in the cooked pasta, shrimp and 2 tbsps. freshly chopped basil. Cook everything together for 5 minutes so the pasta absorbs the sauce (while covered).
  • Remove the skillet from heat and grate some fresh parmesan cheese on top before serving.


  • I buy the roasted peppers packed in oil from the grocery stores but feel free to grill yours. 
  • Pat your shrimp, to remove excess water, this allows the seasoning and marinade to stick better.
  • Make sure to add your pasta to boiling water.
  • Once you drop the pasta in the water, stir immediately to avoid sticking.
  • No penne, no problem! You can use whatever pasta you have to hand.
  • Drain your pasta enough to remove most of the water, but don’t let drained pasta sit and dry off. As pasta cools, the starches will firm up and the noodles will stick together.
  • Be sure to reserve some pasta water! This really is the secret to a luscious and full bodied sauce.
  • Shrimps cook quickly so keep an eye on them, when they turn opaque pink and form a 'C' shape they are done.
  • Be sure to taste and season the sauce as you go.
  • Fell free to add or omit the chili flakes, depending on the heat levels you want.
  • Top with grated Parmesan and fresh basil.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 669kcal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 47.1g | Fat: 30.8g | Saturated Fat: 14.8g | Sodium: 972.9mg | Sugar: 6.4g
Tried this recipe?Rate the recipe below and mention @cookinwithmima and tag #cookinwithmima so I can see your recreations.