Dinner time can be a challenge and far too often we have to pick between good food and food that is easy to cook, fast food and food that tastes good. This simple pasta recipe takes only minutes to put together and it’s tasty and healthy too! You can’t beat that.
I used to be really good about menu planning but unfortunately I’ve gotten out of the habit so when 5:00 rolls around, we’re starving and digging through the kitchen for anything that can be thrown together fast.
My kids have been begging for shrimp lately but as a main dish, shrimp isn’t usually that filling so I decided to try something new. We love the bags of pre-cooked tail off shrimp from Costco because they can be cooked quickly and without the hassle of cutting the tails off. I usually cook them in butter and garlic and my kids eat them like they are candy. For this easy family dinner, I adapted my usual shrimp preparation and turned it into a tasty pasta dish.
Shrimp – preferably pre-cooked and thawed
Broccoli – To save on prep time I like the bags of pre-cut broccoli. I usually trim off the ends just a bit because they do tend to get dry.
Whole Grain Pasta – Any variety will do.
Boil water and cook your pasta according to the directions on the package. I leave my pasta a bit more on the firm side so that it doesn’t get soggy when I reheat it the next day.
A few minutes before your pasta is finished cooking, throw in the cut broccoli. This saves you from having an extra pan to clean. You only want to cook the broccoli for a minute or two so it stays nice and crisp.
Drain your pasta and broccoli and set aside.
While the pasta is cooking, melt about 4 T. of butter in a large pan. You can use olive oil instead or a combination of the two if you want a healthier option. I love the taste of the butter and the shrimp though so I’d at least use a little butter for flavoring. Mix in as much garlic as you’d like. We’re big on garlic so I usually use 10-12 cloves. Mix the garlic with the butter to form a paste.
Toss the pre-cooked shrimp into the hot butter and garlic mixture and cook for 3-5 minutes until heated through. The garlic butter will be the sauce for your pasta so if it’s cooked down too much add some more butter or olive oil.
Sprinkle in pepper to taste. We used black pepper but white pepper would be delicious in this as well.
Pour the garlic butter sauce and shrimp over the noodles and broccoli and mix well.
My kids LOVED this and each of them had at least seconds so it will probably be added to our list of regular meals.
I didn’t have high hopes for this as leftovers simply because shrimp doesn’t always reheat well but we heated this up the next day and it was just fine.