Recipe: Freezer-to-Oven Shrimp Scampi

Recipe: Freezer-to-Oven Shrimp Scampi

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Christine Gallary
Sep 28, 2016
(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

With just a few sheets of aluminum foil, you can assemble frozen shrimp into ready-to-roast packets that go from the freezer and to a plate of buttery, lemony shrimp scampi after just 20 minutes in the oven. Quick-cooking angel hair pasta soaks in the delicious sauce and turns the scampi into an easy pasta dinner.

(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

Stick with Frozen Shrimp

Frozen shrimp are the name of the game in this recipe. Most shrimp are frozen quickly after being caught and arrive frozen in grocery stores. The stores in turn thaw the shrimp and sell them in the seafood cases. I prefer buying still-frozen shrimp since I can control when they're thawed so they're at their freshest.

(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

Assembling Shrimp Scampi Packages

I put frozen shrimp on a double layer of foil (to make sure all the delicious juices stay in), then top them with the classic scampi ingredients of butter, garlic, and lemon slices. These shrimp packets can stay in the freezer for up to 2 months.

When it's scampi time, white wine is drizzled into the packets, and then they're roasted in a hot oven for 20 minutes. The scampi is then ready to be tossed with parsley and angel hair pasta, which cooks in only two minutes, or you can just skip the pasta and serve it with crusty bread instead.

This dish was a hit at my last dinner party, and I spent just a few minutes at the stove cooking the pasta and only had to clean the pasta pot!

Freezer-to-Oven Shrimp Scampi

Serves 4 to 6

1 pound frozen, uncooked large peeled and cleaned shrimp (21 to 25 count)
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
1 medium lemon, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
Freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup dry white wine
1 pound dry angel hair pasta
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed

Tear 4 (16-inch-long) sheets of aluminum foil. Stack 1 sheet on top of a second sheet, then repeat with the last 2 sheets. Divide the frozen shrimp evenly onto the 2 stacks of foil, leaving a 4-inch border on each side and a 3-inch border on top and bottom.

Place 2 pieces of butter on top of each pile of shrimp. Divide the lemon slices and garlic over the shrimp, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Fold the sides of the foil over the shrimp, then fold the top and bottom of the foil over the shrimp. Make sure the shrimp are completely covered in foil.

Stack the packets on top of each other and slide them into a gallon-sized zip-top freezer bag. Press out as much air as possible and seal the bag. Freeze for up to 2 months.

When ready to serve, arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 475°F.

Remove the shrimp packets from the freezer and place seam-side up and side-by-side on a rimmed baking sheet. Open up the foil packets just enough to pour the wine into the pockets, pour in the wine, then close the packets back up.

Roast until the shrimp are just cooked through, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil over medium-high heat.

Remove the shrimp from the oven and set aside. Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook until al dente, about 2 minutes. Reserve 1 cup of the pasta water, then drain the pasta and return it to the pot.

Carefully open the shrimp packets, being careful not to spill the liquid inside. Carefully tip everything in the packet, including all the liquid, into the pot of pasta. Add 1/2 cup of the pasta water, parsley, and 1 teaspoon of salt; season with pepper; and toss until everything is combined, adding more pasta water a tablespoon at a time to reach the desired sauce consistency. Taste and season with more salt and pepper as needed.

Recipe Notes

  • Storage: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
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