This spicy cajun shrimp pasta recipe is a healthier version of classic cajun shrimp pasta, but it is just as delicious! Plus, it is ready in under 30 minutes, which makes it a great quick and healthy weeknight dinner.
This Cajun shrimp pastarecipe is great for anyone who loves spicy dishes! It combines delicious pasta with spicy cajun shrimp, nutritious vegetables and a creamy tomato sauce. Add some grated parmesan on top and you’ll have a tasty and healthy pasta dish that is ready in no time! And if you don’t like spicy dishes, you can easily modify the recipe to make it less spicy.
The ingredients for this spicy cajun shrimp pasta recipe are very simple. Here is what you’ll need:
- Pasta: You can use the type of pasta you like, but I recommend and love using whole-wheat linguine or fettuccine for this dish. The long noodles just go super well with the sauce and other ingredients in this recipe.
- Shrimp: Just use regular peeled and deveined shrimp for making this recipe. I also recommend taking the tail off, but you can leave it on while cooking.
- Spices: This spicy cajun shrimp pasta recipe calls for cajun seasoning and chili powder. If you use a sodium-reduced version of cajun seasoning, check if you need to add some more salt to the shrimp. I do not use any additional salt in the recipe as most cajun seasonings are already high in sodium.
- Vegetables: Cherry tomatoes and baby spinach make this dish extra delicious and healthy. But feel free to add more or use other vegetables.
- Garlic and chile pepper: These two ingredients are a must for making a spicy and flavorful pasta sauce. If you prefer a less spicy version of cajun shrimp pasta, skip the chile pepper.
- Sauce: The sauce is made with tomato passata and a small amount of half and half or heavy cream. I usually create dairy-free recipes, but I feel like heavy cream or half and half is a must for making delicious and creamy cajun shrimp pasta.
- Parmesan cheese (optional): You don’t necessarily need parmesan cheese, but it always tastes great with pasta. So feel free to add some!
How to make healthy cajun shrimp pasta
Preparing healthy cajun shrimp pasta is super easy and very simple. Here are the steps for making this incredibly delicious pasta dish:
- Cook the pasta. Cook the pasta according to package instructions, strain and set aside.
- Marinade and sear the shrimps. First, marinade the shrimp with olive oil and the cajun seasoning. Then, sear the shrimp in a preheated pan over medium-high heat from both sides until they are cooked through. Take them out of the pan and set aside.
- Make the sauce. To make the sauce, add some olive oil to the pan and reduce to medium-low heat. Sauté the cherry tomatoes, garlic and chile pepper until the tomatoes start to soften. Then, add the tomato passata, heavy cream/half and half, chili powder, and salt and pepper. Heat up the sauce, then add the baby spinach and let everything cook until the spinach wilts.
- Combine. Now you can combine things. Add the pasta and shrimps to the sauce and mix until everything is combined. Enjoy!
You can modify this recipe in many different ways! Here are some ideas for you:
- Pasta: If you prefer another type of pasta, feel free to use it instead of linguine or fettuccine! And if you want to make this recipe gluten-free, simply use your favorite gluten-free pasta.
- Veggies: You can definitely substitute or use additional vegetables for making healthy cajun shrimp pasta. You could use red bell pepper or mushrooms as they go well with this recipe.
- Heat level: Even though this is a spicy cajun shrimp pasta recipe, you can definitely make it less spicy. Just skip the chile pepper. And if you think it isn’t spicy enough, add some cayenne pepper.
More easy and delicious pasta recipes
If you are a pasta lover, try out one of the following recipes. They are all very simple, healthy and delicious.
- Pesto Spaghetti Salad
- Rigatoni Bolognese
- Zucchini Noodles with Garlic Shrimp
- Zucchini Lasagna
- Baked Feta Pasta with Shrimp
Spicy Cajun Shrimp Pasta
- 5.5 oz pasta of choice
- 1 teaspoon avocado oil
- 0.5 lb shrimp deveined, cleaned and tail removed
- 1 tablespoon cajun seasoning
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil half for the shrimp marinade, half for the sauce
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- ½ - 1 chile pepper minced
- 1 cup tomato passata or tomato sauce
- ¼ cup half and half or heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 handfuls baby spinach
- parmesan cheese (optional) for garnish
- Cook the pasta according to package instructions. When the pasta is cooked, strain and set aside.
- Preheat the avocado oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add the shrimps, cajun seasoning and olive oil to a small bowl and mix. Sear the shrimps from both sides, until they are cooked through. Transfer the shrimps to a plate and set aside.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the olive oil, cherry tomatoes, garlic and chile pepper to the pan and sauté until the tomatoes start to soften.
- Add the tomato passata, half and half, chili powder, and salt and pepper to the pan. Heat up the sauce, then add the spinach and let the sauce cook until the spinach wilts. Add more salt and pepper if needed.
- Next, add the pasta and shrimps to the pan and mix everything. Garnish with parmesan (optional) and serve.
- Pasta: I used whole-wheat linguine to make this recipe, but you can use any type of pasta! If you want this recipe to be gluten-free, use your favorite gluten-free pasta.
- Heat level: Feel free to skip the chile pepper if the chili powder makes this dish already spicy enough for you. If the dish is not spicy enough for your taste, add some cayenne pepper.
- Shrimps: I prefer to use large shrimps as they tend to be juicier. But you can use any type of shrimps you like. Just check the cook time, so you don't sear the shrimps for too long.