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A classic combination of seafood and pasta, Angel Hair Pasta with Shrimp, Tomatoes and Fresh Basil makes for a simple, but elegant dinner with incredible flavors! It’s an easy-fancy meal that is just as perfect to impress somebody special as it is to satisfy a hungry family on a weeknight when you need to get dinner on the table in under 30 minutes.
Around our house, we love, love, love to eat pasta! And shrimp. However, I have never put the two together before, even though I know it’s a totally classic pairing!
Everybody at our house devoured this dinner. The girls absolutely loved the angel hair pasta and I was sneaking every last shrimp from the pan because it tasted so wonderful in the fresh, robust but light sauce made from the fresh tomatoes and basil.
I’m all about an incredible sauce over perfectly cooked pasta (remember this roasted red pepper sauce over fettuccine?) and angel hair pairs perfectly with a lighter, brighter sauce like the one created here, by ever so slightly cooking down chopped plum tomatoes with a little olive oil, garlic and red pepper flakes for just a bit of kick, then adding in fresh basil for classic Italian flavors that still allow the pasta and shrimp to shine through. It’s amazing, I tell you.
Pasta is something we always have on hand in the pantry, in multiple varieties. It’s just so flexible and fits every season, and honestly, what kid doesn’t love eating pasta for dinner? It’s a no-fail option for me as an experienced home cook.
When it comes to actually prepping and cooking dinner, I love to have my girls help me in the kitchen. But some days we are all just feeling a little too done for that, so I will let the girls watch a show while I get dinner ready by myself.
It’s kind of a ridiculous thing to measure time in terms of PBS Kids shows like Peg Plus Cat or Wild Kratts, but I can tell you from experience that this is a one episode recipe, which is a win in my book, since we try to keep screen time to a minimum around here.
To make your angel hair pasta with shrimp, tomatoes and fresh basil, the first thing to do is get your water boiling for your pasta. I always prep the rest of my ingredients while that is happening so I can start the sauce while the pasta is cooking.
When a recipe calls for chopped, fresh basil, I always do a chiffonade, which is where you stack your basil leaves, roll them up into a cigar, then slice into thin strips.
It’s great for presentation because it makes such pretty, bright green ribbons of basil and it’s easy to do as long as you have a good, sharp knife. Basil bruises really easily and you can crush the edges if you knife isn’t sharp.
The plum (also known as Roma) tomatoes get deseeded (just slice them in half and run your finger inside the membrane to push out the seeds) and then roughly diced.
And other than mincing your garlic and boiling your pasta, that’s all the prep there is to this dish!
I always just use the deveined frozen shrimp that I can get in the freezer section at the store because it is just so convenient and I can keep a bag or two of it in the freezer.
Shrimp is a great solution for a weeknight dinner because it cooks so fast! In fact, the biggest thing with shrimp is to be careful not to overcook it or it will turn rubbery and tough. It really only needs a few minutes to turn from grey to pink and then it’s done!
I mean, isn’t this just a gorgeous plate of angel hair pasta with shrimp?! You can add a little freshly grated Parmesan cheese over the top if you like.
More Pasta Recipes You’ll Love
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- BLT Pasta Salad
- Chicken Spaghetti Casserole
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Angel Hair Pasta with Shrimp, Tomatoes and Fresh Basil
- 8 ounces Golden Grain® angel hair pasta
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 7 cloves minced garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 7 medium plum tomatoes seeded and diced
- 1/2 cup dry white wine or chicken broth
- 1 pound medium shrimp peeled and deveined
- 1 Tablespoon butter
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- Cook the pasta according to the package directions, just until al dente, then drain and set aside.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the minced garlic and red pepper flakes and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly to prevent the garlic from burning.
- Add the diced tomatoes, salt, pepper, and white wine or chicken broth (I just used the broth). Bring everything to a simmer, stirring occasionally.
- Add the shrimp to the skillet and cook, stirring frequently, for 3 to 4 minutes or until the shrimp turns pink and are done. Be sure not to overcook the shrimp though or they will be tough and rubbery.
- Add butter and basil, and stir until the butter melts. Toss the shrimp, tomato and basil mixture with the cooked pasta, and serve immediately.