Tomato Garlic Pasta with Grilled Shrimp

AKA, a heavenly Sunday summer pasta dinner!

Sunday pasta is a tradition that is hard to quit even in the hot summer months. Although we don’t do it every week (even in the winter, I’ll admit it), there is nothing better to me than simmering a pasta sauce for hours and hours.

The entire kitchen (or apartment in our case) gets filled with the most delicious garlic-y, tomato-y, crushed red peppery smell – it practically forces us to eat dinner at 3 pm because we just don’t want to wait any longer.

It’s downright glorious!

But since it’s summer, I didn’t want to make a sauce that needed a full day of simmering to get to its fullest flavor, because ya know – we have other things to do too.

(Plans that don’t include counting down the hours until Game of Thrones…no no, we didn’t do that or anything.)

Anywho! So this sauce is almost like an abbreviated version of a full-blown Sunday simmer. I opted to make it creamier than I normally would, because I think it works really well with the grilled shrimp. Plus, it helps cut out some of that cooking time.

Of course, you can let it sit for as long as you’d like, but know that you don’t have to, it will taste delicious regardless!

And now that I’ve just professed my love for pasta sauce…

Grilled lemony garlic shrimp!

Ever since we got a double-sided griddle, we can’t stop using it. Since we live in apartment complex we’re not allowed to have a grill on our porch, so there are only a couple of community ones – and honestly, it’s more work than I’d like to lug everything out there. So the griddle gives us almost all the same results without having to fight over the community space.

The shrimp is super easy with a simple lemon garlic baste, and the flavors go perfectly with the sauce! Lighter than our normal Sunday pasta, but still filling and so satisfying.

Sooo, you think it’s ok then if we want to make it on a Monday? Yes, yes it is.

5.0 from 2 reviews
Tomato Garlic Pasta with Grilled Shrimp
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 4
  • 12 ounces spaghetti noodles
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ cup chopped onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced or crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • Salt & pepper, to taste
For the shrimp:
  • Wooden skewers, soaked in water for 10 minutes before using
  • 1 pound fresh medium shrimp, peeled and deveined (you can leave the tail on or remove it!)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Juice and zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add diced onion and cook 3-4 minutes, until soft. Stir in the garlic and cook another minute, then add in the tomatoes. Season with the fresh basil, parsley, oregano, red pepper flakes & salt and pepper. Bring to a soft boil, then reduce heat and let simmer 10-15 minutes before cooking pasta. Then add the cream to the sauce and let simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is the consistency you like. Taste and adjust seasoning (I usually season with a little more salt and pepper and a heavy pinch of red pepper flake!).
  2. Heat grill to medium heat, spray with nonstick cooking spray if you need to.
  3. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook pasta according to package directions.
  4. While the pasta is cooking, in a small bowl, whisk together the shrimp baste: olive oil, lemon juice and zest, garlic, oregano, red pepper flakes & salt and pepper. Thread the shrimp onto the wooden skewers, and liberally brush both sides of the shrimp with the olive oil mix. Place the skewers onto the grill, and cook about 2 minutes per side, until opaque and cooked through. Remove with tongs and set aside.
  5. Once the pasta is done cooking, use a slotted spot to add it to the sauce, and toss well. Reserve ¼ cup of the pasta water, and if your sauce is too thick - add a little bit of the water to thin it out. Top the pasta with the shrimp, and serve immediately!
  6. Remove to cooked shrimp from the skewers using a fork. You can either mix them in with the pasta or place them on top. Serve immediately.

4 thoughts on “Tomato Garlic Pasta with Grilled Shrimp

  1. While I do love long simmering sauces, a quick one like this is pretty awesome too! Love that it’s healthy, but kinda indulgent and totally satisfying too! Those garlic/lemon shrimp sound fantastic, Michelle! Quick enough for a week day dinner or special enough for Sunday dinner 🙂 Do you know that I’ve never watched Game of Thrones? Where have I been? I may just have to jump on that train 😉

  2. Loving your tradition of Sunday pasta! My husband gets random craving for pasta with tomato sauce pretty often so I’m always looks for new ways to switch it up. And this looks PERFECT!! Loving those shrimp and the fact that the sauce is quick and garlicky is a total plus! LOVE it, girlie! Cheers!
    P.s. yaaaaaaas to GOT! It’s the only time I get excited to hear about winter. bahahaha. <3

  3. I could eat this meal every month of the year! We can’t have a grill either so I might have to get on the double-sided griddle. Would really make a difference here. ALL THE GARLICCCC AND SKEWERSSSSS

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