Incredibly easy to execute recipe for shrimp cream sauce! Serve it over a variety of proteins, pasta, spaghetti squash, rice or even baked potatoes.
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Read on for relevant tips and step-by-step pictures and video (2 mins)
Multi-Purpose Creamy Shrimp Sauce
As far as pan-sauces are concerned this one is particularly well-suited to have in your arsenal, for several reasons:
- it is multi-purpose
- it requires minimal work on your part
- it comes together quickly – you can prepare it while your main dish is cooking
- can be flavored to suit your individual taste, beyond the basic version we suggest in the recipe
So whether you will be using this creamy shrimp sauce for fish, pasta, steak, lobster tails, baked potatoes or simply to drizzle over rice – it is one you are likely to commit to memory and place on regular rotation in your culinary conquests.
NOTE: This is suave, stable, flavor loaded cream sauce with small shrimp as a key ingredient to it (peeled, tails removed). If you are looking for a cream sauce for shrimp then use one of these recipes:
Lemon Cream Sauce,
Spinach Cream Sauce,
or make this Beer Shrimp Scampi.
You Will Need
- Olive oil and garlic. To form the flavorful base of the sauce. We recommend extra virgin.
- White wine. It really adds an elegant depth to the sauce, very complimentary to seafood in general and shrimp in particular. A great substitute from the beer domain is saison ale. If you want to go alcohol free use chicken or seafood stock instead. Alternatively, use chicken base (see notes below on how).
- Heavy cream. Do not attempt to make this sauce with regular cream or half and half – you need the fat content of heavy cream which is what gives the sauce its stability.
- Shrimp. Buy small cooked, tails-off, peeled and deveined shrimp (it will save you from a lot of extra work). You can select the precise size according to your preference but anything in the 50-65 per lb range will work just great.
- Seasonings and herbs. We like to use paprika to season the shrimp just before its added to the sauce – it has a mild, earthy flavor but also gives the sauce a bit of a color. You can use turmeric of cayenne (if interested in a bit of heat), or another favorite of ours – Old Bay seasoning. Salt and pepper – the sauce needs a generous seasoning before proclaimed ready to serve (unless you did use Old Bay). Thyme or parsley to add a fresh herbal touch in the end.
- A good quality sauté pan. We recommend one that is heavy bottomed and non-stick – it will make preparing this sauce a breeze.
TIP: It is very helpful to keep one of the ‘wine in a box’ brands of white wine in your pantry or a cooler – to cook with. We typically have a dedicated box of chablis handy.
- Prep. Thaw the shrimp and pat dry. Mince the garlic.
- Make the base. Sauté the garlic in the olive oil just until softened and fragrant and deglaze with the wine. Let the wine reduce until it has a syrupy consistency and add the heavy cream.
- Reduce, add shrimp and season. Simmer the sauce until it thickens to your liking. Season the shrimp with the paprika and slide them into the sauce, season liberally with salt and pepper and add the fresh thyme or parsley. The shrimp only needs to warm through and the sauce is ready to serve.
TIP: If using chicken or seafood stock instead of white wine or saison, reduce it by about 2/3 of the original volume. Alternatively, you can simply add the cream to the sauted garlic and then stir a couple of teaspoons of chicken base into the cream before you let it reduce. If you do the latter be careful when seasoning the sauce – chicken base is often very salty.
Ways to Serve
- Pasta. The wider the noodles, the better – coated with this tasty sauce even the most unpretentious al dente bowl of pasta becomes a delicacy.
- Fish or seafood. White fish fillets such as cod (as shown in this post) or pan-seared salmon are prime candidates for a ladle of shrimp cream sauce. So are baked lobster tails and seared sea scallops.
- Steak. Grilled or pan-seared steaks will welcome it in a surf ‘n’ turf rendition.
- Baked potatoes or rice. Smothered in creamy shrimp goodness even the plainest of sides will acquire an over the top appetizing appeal.
Other Recipes You Might Like
Fried Pasta Primavera
White Asparagus with Easy Hollandaise
Cream Sauce Recipe Collection
Oven Baked Cod Fillets
Shrimp Cream Sauce for Fish, Steak, Pasta & Baked Potato
A multi-purpose creamy shrimp sauce to serve over fish, lobster, steak, baked potatoes, pasta, rice and more. Made with cooked, peeled, tails-off small to medium shrimp, it is a breeze to prepare and can be seasoned to suit your preferences. Use heavy cream only. This sauce is very stable and will not break if reheated. Reheat over gentle heat or briefly in the microwave.
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup white wine*
- 8 oz cooked small shrimp (tails-off, peeled and deveined, thawed)**
- 1 tsp paprika***
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
- salt and pepper (as needed)
- 3-4 sprigs fresh thyme or parsley
1. Heat a non-stick sauté pan over medium heat and add the olive oil, then the minced garlic. Sauté the garlic just until fragrant and softened, do not allow it to burn.
2. Add the white wine, stir and allow to reduce until it reaches a syrupy consistency. Add the heavy cream, stir and allow to simmer until it thickens.
3. Pat dry the thawed shrimp and season them with the paprika. When the cream has thickened enough to your liking, slide them into the sauce and move them around so they can warm through. Season with salt and pepper as needed (most likely liberally). Add the thyme or parsley, give a final gentle stir and the sauce is ready to serve.
*you can substitute with a beer like saison, or you can use seafood or chicken stock instead. Reduce to about 1/3 of original volume. Alternatively, you can use chicken base - in this case add the heavy cream as soon as the garlic is fragrant, then stir the chicken base into it and allow it to reduce.
**using pre-cooked small shrimp makes it far easier on you considering that you won't have to peel devein and remove the tails. About 50 to 65 count per lb. is an ideal size.
***feel free to use turmeric or Old Bay seasoning instead. If using Old Bay be careful when seasoning with salt and pepper later on.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 419Total Fat: 37gSaturated Fat: 21gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 220mgSodium: 637mgCarbohydrates: 5gFiber: 0gSugar: 3gProtein: 16g
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