‘Tis the time for slurpy, creamy, slightly spicy (but still fine for the kids!) sauce.
I’m getting hungry just looking at these photos and remembering how epic this PANTRY MEAL turned out to be last week.
That’s right – this meal came about because I had no idea what to cook for Sunday night dinner. I remembered the shrimp I had bought and frozen last month and, well, we always have spaghetti handy because kids. We are huge fans of anything Cajun over here (remember this recipe?!) but since having kids we are definitely going easy on the spicy food. I actually think I have lost some of my spice tolerance! It’s now been eight years since we hosted our amazing hot sauce exchange holiday party and in that time, I have become quite a wuss. Kids, man.
Anyway, I developed this recipe to be a little tame on the spice front but to still have so much wonderful flavor that we all know and love from any Cajun pasta dish! It was a huge hit with and I plan to make it again soon!
I love simple pasta dinners like this. Throw everything in the skillet, gather the kiddos to the table, pour some wine and slurp a little cream sauce. 😉 The only thing is that you really do need to eat this right when it’s done. It doesn’t heat up that great and for that reason, this is a weekend meal for me since I tend to do all my weeknight cooking in the afternoon during naptime and then reheat at dinner. It’s my little mom hack for surviving the witching hour.
Let me know what you think when you make this! Scallops would be a nice substitution for the shrimp if you feel like changing it up. Or, if you’re vegetarian (or allergic to shellfish), just leave out the protein entirely. It still will be delicious!
- 14 oz dry spaghetti
- 1 lb raw shrimp deveined and tails removed
- 1 whole red bell pepper small diced
- 1 whole shallot minced
- 2/3 cup canned diced tomatoes
- 2 1/2 tsp cajun seasoning
- 3/4 cup cream
- leftover pasta cooking water as needed
- 2 tbsp olive oil
Cook the spaghetti in boiling, salted water. Drain, reserving about a third of a cup of the cooking water. Set aside.
In a large skillet over medium high heat, add 1 tbsp olive oil. Once hot, add the shrimp. Sprinkle with 2 tsp cajun seasoning and saute briefly until just cooked through - about 2-3 minutes. Remove to a plate and keep warm.
Add the remaining tbsp of oil to the pan as well as the shallot and red pepper. Saute until soft then add the diced tomatoes and cream. Stir in the remaining 1/2 tsp cajun seasoning.
Let sauce simmer for a couple minutes to thicken and then add your pasta and shrimp back in. Taste and season as needed. If sauce seems dry, add a splash of your cooking water.