Looking for an easy dinner? This delicious shrimp pasta is made with freshly grated mozzarella cheese to make a creamy and flavorful sauce. Pair with low carb noodles, and you have a complete and delicious dinner!
This dish has no shortage of minced garlic cloves, basil, tomatoes, shallots, freshly grated mozzarella cheese and heavy cream to make a luscious, creamy dish in one skillet. You can easily use your favorite noodle or noodle substitute to make this dish completely gluten free and keto friendly.
Feel free to skip to the recipe card if you're ready to get right into it. We do cover common questions, tips, and tricks in the body of this post to keep reading if you're wondering something!
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Let's Make It:
Cook The Pasta and Shrimp:
For the pasta: Cook your pasta according the package. If using zucchini noodles, you can prepare them and set them aside for later. You may want to reserve some cooked pasta water in case you need to thin the sauce later.
For the shrimp: Heat the skillet over medium heat. In a bowl, toss the shrimp with dry seasonings like kosher salt, black pepper, red pepper flakes, Italian seasoning and smoked paprika. Add olive oil to the skillet, and cook the shrimp until pink. About 1 minute on each side. Don't over crowd the pan. When shrimp are finished cooking, set aside on a plate.
Create The Sauce Base:
Add more olive oil, along with shallots and tomatoes with a pinch of salt to the skillet. Cook until beginning to soften, then add in white wine. Allow wine to simmer for a few minutes until the tomatoes break down further. We like to mash them with a spoon.
Add fresh garlic, fresh basil, lemon juice and zest, and the dry seasonings. Cook until garlic is fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Add the Cream and Cheese:
Add in your heavy cream, along with the shredded mozzarella cheese, slowly, stirring constantly until the cheese melts completely and the sauce turns nice and creamy.
Finishing the Creamy Mozzarella Shrimp Pasta:
After the sauce is nice and smooth, add back the pasta, followed by the shrimp. Garnish with basil and dig in!
Tips For The Best Creamy Sauce:
- Don't use fresh mozzarella cheese to make the sauce! It doesn't work, trust us, we've tried it. It was a sad realization when we found out that fresh mozzarella cheese doesn't melt well. This is also how you know that I don't have formal training, and a lot to learn. You can trust that our recipes are tested to perfection!
- The best cheeses to use when making creamy sauces are always going to be hand shredded. Pre-shredded low-moisture, part skim mozzarella might work, but we haven't tried it yet ourselves. I'll be sure to give it a try and update the instructions when we try it.
- Save about a cup reserved cooked pasta water. This might come in handy later to thin the sauce. Depending on the pasta you use, there might be some starches in it that will help the structure of the sauce as well.
- Always cook the mixture over low-heat. Since we are working with heavy cream (or half and half) and cheese, you don't want to curdle it. Low heat will ensure that the sauce won't burn and stick to the bottom of the pan, or get too hot and ruin the sauce!
- We also add about one cup mozzarella cheese to the sauce at a time, and stir a lot to ensure it's getting mixed in evenly while it melts.
Best Seasonings To Use:
When it comes to dried seasonings, you really want to season to taste. We like red pepper flakes, salt and pepper, Italian seasoning, and smoked paprika. A pinch of cayenne pepper.
We used fresh tomatoes for this dish. You could use sun dried tomatoes instead. Often, people take the seasoned olive oil from the tomatoes jar, which adds some great extra flavor. You could of course just use regular olive oil like we did.
For the basil, we prefer using fresh basil. It's so delicious! You could use dried basil instead. We also used fresh garlic cloves minced up. Fresh garlic is hard to beat, but garlic powder (about 1 tablespoon) works as well.
Can I Use Gluten Free Pasta?
Yes, you definitely can! We used a low carb pasta that isn't gluten free, but any gluten free pasta of your choosing will work. Gluten free brown rice pasta, chickpea pasta, shirataki noodles, zucchini noodles, spaghetti squash, you name it.
The best thing about this creamy shrimp pasta recipe is that it can fit a variety of different diets easily, since the creamy mozzarella sauce itself is totally gluten free, and low carb.
More Recipes To Try:
- Steak and Seafood Skillet with Creamy Parmesan Sauce
- Caramelized Shallot Pasta with Shrimp (Low Carb)
- Keto Maple BBQ Glazed Shrimp
- Cajun Shrimp Sausage and Peppers Skillet
Need more ideas? Be sure to check out this massive list of over 85+ low carb and keto friendly recipes on our site!
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Until Next Time,
Briana & Chamere
Creamy Mozzarella Shrimp Pasta (Low Carb)
For the shrimp:
- 2 pounds shrimp, peeled and deveined (can leave tails on or off according to your preference)
- 1 teaspoons kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
For the mozzarella sauce:
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 ounces shallots, sliced thin
- 10 ounces cherry tomatoes
- 7 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 ounce fresh basil, cut into ribbons
- 1.5 teaspoons kosher salt (or to taste)
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 whole lemon juice and zest
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 1.5 cups heavy whipping cream
- 16 ounces freshly shredded mozzarella cheese low moisture part skim (DO NOT use fresh mozzarella, it won't melt!)
- Cook the pasta according the package. If using zucchini noodles, you can prepare them and set them aside for later. You may want to reserve some cooked pasta water in case you need to thin the sauce later.
- Heat the skillet over medium heat. In a bowl, toss the shrimp with dry seasonings, salt and pepper. Add olive oil to the skillet, and cook the shrimp until pink. About 1 minute on each side. Don’t over crowd the pan. When shrimp are finished cooking, set aside on a plate.
- Add more olive oil, along with shallots and tomatoes with a pinch of salt to the skillet. Cook until beginning to soften, then add in white wine. Allow wine to simmer for a few minutes until the tomatoes break down further, mash with a wooden spoon. Add fresh garlic, fresh basil, lemon juice and zest, and the dry seasonings. Cook until garlic is fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add in your heavy cream, along with the shredded mozzarella cheese, slowly, stirring constantly until the cheese melts completely and the sauce turns nice and creamy. fter the sauce is nice and smooth, add back the pasta, followed by the shrimp. Garnish with basil and dig in!
- Store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Reheat by gently simmering on the stovetop to warm through.
- Please note, the pasta we used is NOT included in the nutrition facts, as low carb pasta substitutes vary widely. For 2 ounces of Great Low Carb Pasta, it is roughly 7 grams of net carbs, for reference.
- Other good pasta substitutes would be zucchini noodles, spaghetti squash noodles, or shirataki noodles.
- Please do not use fresh mozzarella for this pasta. Trust us, we've tried it! You have to use low moisture, part skim mozzarella cheese. We bought and shredded our own, (it came as blocks) and we're not sure if pre-shredded would do quite the same thing. Freshly shredded mozzarella will turn into a lovely sauce, we know this for sure!
- You could substitute dry white wine for seafood stock, or chicken stock.
- Shallots can be substituted for yellow onions.
- All seasonings are to taste and optional.
- Half and half can be substituted for heavy cream, but the sauce will be thinner.