This Shrimp and Chorizo pasta is a quick and easy mid-week meal - you can have this dish on the table in just 10 minutes.
The key to this dish is the fried chorizo sausage which, when fried gives up its deliciously spicy oil. This oil is used to cook the shrimp, garlic and coat the pasta, creating an instant simple sauce without the need for cream or tomatoes.
Serve with a side salad for a delicious pasta dinner.
Watch how to Make Shrimp Chorizo Pasta (video)
What is Chorizo Sausage?
Chorizo sausage is a fatty pork sausage originating from Spain. It has a wonderful rich red color and is often flavoured with garlic, chili and pimentón, which is the Spanish name for dried and smoked, red peppers.
Is Chorizo sausage raw?
It can be, there are two types of Chorizo sausage, one is raw and one is cured or semi-cured.
This is raw like a standard sausage, that is flavored with chili and garlic, it is made with fresh ground pork (and sometimes beef) and is sold in the fresh sausage section of the grocery store near the breakfast links.
This is made with cured or semi-cured chopped pork and is seasoned predominantly with smoky pimentón (dried and smoked red peppers). You can find Spanish chorizo in the cured meats section of most grocery stores.
Is Chorizo spicy?
Chorizo sausages vary is their level of spiciness. Mexican chorizo tends to be spicer than Spanish chorizo.
What chorizo sausage to use?
The type of chorizo sausage you pick will depend on how it is going to be cooked. For dishes where the chorizo is crumbled then pick a Mexican chorizo, whilst dishes that say to slice the sausage you want to pick a Spanish style sausage.
This Shrimp Chorizo Pasta dish will work with either type of chorizo sausage!
As you can see from the photo above I use a spanish style sausage, I find it slices up well and keeps it shape during cooking.
If all you can find are the Mexican style sausages, this dish will still work perfectly well. Try to buy one in a casing so you can slice the sausage and the continue with the recipe as normal.
What size shrimps are best for shrimp pasta?
I like to use large shrimp for this shrimp chorizo pasta. They are small enough that you can eat them easily with the pasta, but meaty enough to feel substantial.
If you prefer you could buy the extra large or drop down to medium large or even medium.
When buying shrimp it is much better to buy by the count as each vendor will have a different idea of what extra large/large/medium should be. I suggest large shrimp, meaning a 31/35 count per pound, as this works out at around 8 shrimp per serving.
|Size||Count Per Pound|
Which pasta to choose for Shrimp Chorizo Pasta?
Traditionally the choice of pasta is based on the sauce that accompanies it.
For light oil based sauces (like this shrimp chorizo pasta) the italians would choose a long thin pasta like spaghetti, linguine, angel hair or fusilli lunghi.
Spaghetti works perfectly for this recipe!
However this dish isn't completely traditional (as it uses Spanish chorizo!) so if you aren't a fan of the long pastas then feel free to pick a smaller shape, ideally you want something that isn't tubular, like farfelle (bowtie).
What to have with Shrimp Chorizo Pasta
Side: This reich and flavor packed pasta recipe is wonderful served with a simple green salad with a citrus dressing. Alternatively some asparagus or green beans make a great side dish here. Bread is optional, but it does taste amazing when used to mop up the paprikary garlicy oil that remains when the last strand of pasta has been swirled into your mouth!
Wine: The wonderfully rich chorizo here carries so much paprika and garlic that you want to pair this with something light yet juicy. For those loving a red then a light Rioja or a Beaujolais are the perfect choice. And for the white lovers a chilled Verdejo or Viognier would be perfect. Me, I tend to go for a chilled dry rosé and get the best of both worlds!
For more delicious pasta recipes give these a try:
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- See ALL 40+ PASTA RECIPES
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Shrimp Chorizo Pasta
- 14 oz long pasta - see note 1
- 2 chorizo sausages - see note 2
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 lb raw shrimp (peeled and tails removed) - see note 3
- 2 cloves garlic (crushed/grated)
- ½ tsp paprika
- ¼-1/2 tsp red chili flakes - optional
- Salt and pepper
- Fresh parsley - for garnish
- Bring a large pan of water to a boil, then salt it generously.
- Add the pasta and set a timer for 1 minutes less than the suggested cooking time. When draining the pasta reserving ½ cup (125ml) of the cooking liquid.
- Whilst the pasta is cooking, cut the chorizo into thick disks.
- Heat the oil in a large frying pan over high heat. Add the chorizo and fry for 5 minutes turning often until golden and crispy.
- Remove the chorizo from the frying pan, keeping the oil behind.
- Add the shrimp and cook for 2 minute, then add in the paprika (chili flakes if using) and crushed garlic and cook for another minute.
- Add a ¼ cup of the pasta cooking liquid and bring the sauce to a simmer.
- Add the drained pasta and toss to coat the pasta well in the oily sauce.
- Add more cooking liquid if needed.
- Taste for seasoning and then serve garnished with parsley.
- A long pasta like spaghetti, linguine, angel hair or fusilli lunghi works perfectly for this recipe! However if you aren't a fan of the long pastas then feel free to pick a smaller shape, ideally you want something that isn't tubular, like farfelle (bowtie).
- Ideally you want to use a cured or semi-cured spanish style chorizo sausage as they slice up well and keeps it shape during cooking. But if all you can find are the Mexican style sausages, this dish will still work perfectly well. Try to buy one in a casing so you can slice the sausage and the continue with the recipe as normal.
- I like to use large shrimp for this dish, they are small enough that you can eat them easily with the pasta, but meaty enough to feel substantial.
If you prefer you could buy the extra large or drop down to medium large or even medium. When buying shrimp it is much better to buy by the count as each vendor will have a different idea of what extra large/large/medium should be. I suggest large shrimp, meaning a 31/35 count per pound, as this works out at around 8 shrimp per serving.