How to Make The Best Lemon Shrimp Scampi… A Timeless Classic:

classic lemon shrimp scampi

True confessions… I love shrimp scampi! It’s simple, it’s beautiful and it is decadent without sitting heavy on your stomach. It looks fancy and special in its presentation, but is actually quite quick and easy to prepare. Nothing says springtime like lemons and parsley. Here’s to sunshine and yummy food cooked for the people we love!

The ingredients for lemon shrimp scampi are enough to make you swoon… you had me at sautéing shallots and garlic in butter. The love only deepens with the addition of olive oil, fresh lemon and white wine. I like mine with a little kick, but if you prefer, you can omit the red pepper flakes.

The light and velvety lemon butter sauce beautifully coats the shrimp and pasta in this timeless scampi recipe. I could eat this all day long. And maybe even eat the leftovers for breakfast… yes, that has happened. More than once!

You can easily substitute the pasta for either rice or a sautéed vegetable like zucchini. There are also great dairy free substitutes for both butter and parmesan available in most grocery stores. If you are looking for a fun springy dish for entertaining that feels special but is easy to execute, this is your guy. Or make it for yourself on a random Tuesday night and eat the whole pan. I have never done that. Maybe.

lemon shrimp scampi recipe

Shrimp Scampi Ingredients:

  • 1 pound linguini
  • 4 Tb butter
  • 4 Tb olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 large shallot, finely diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, finely sliced
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley leaves, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 20 large shrimp, peeled and deveined with tail on
  • Large pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Finely dice the shallot. Peel and finely slice the cloves of garlic. Finely chop the fresh parsley leaves. Zest the lemon. Cut lemon in half and juice it and set aside. Generously season the thawed shrimp with salt and pepper and set aside.
  2. For the pasta, put a large pot of salted water on the stove and bring to a boil. Once it has come to a boil, add the dry linguini, and cook to el dente per package instructions. It is important to slightly undercook the pasta. Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water.
  3. Meanwhile, as you prepare the pasta, melt 2 Tb butter and 2 Tb olive oil over in a large sauce pan over medium high heat. Sauté the shallots, garlic and red pepper flakes. Add more flakes if you prefer your dish to have more heat. Continue to sauté for 3-4 minutes until shallot is translucent. Add shrimp to the pan and cook until the shrimp have turned pink in color, about 2-3 minutes. Remove shrimp from the pan and set aside. Cover with foil to keep warm.
  4. Add the wine and lemon juice to pan and cook until sauce is bubbling. You may need to increase the heat slightly to bubble. If you like an extra lemony sauce, also add the lemon zest to the pan. Once bubbling, add 2 Tb butter and 2 Tb olive oil. When the butter has melted, lower the heat to medium and return the shrimp back to the pan along with the cooked pasta, reserved pasta cooking water and the chopped parsley leaves. Toss well in pan completely coating the shrimp and linguini together. Taste and season with more salt and pepper if needed.
  5. Transfer pan contents onto a large platter or large pasta bowl. Drizzle top with more olive oil. Garnish with parmesan cheese, red pepper flakes and the remaining parsley. I like to serve this dish alongside an simple arugula salad and warm loaf of artisan bread. Enjoy!


I hope you enjoy this delicious classic summer dish!