Making baked shrimp scampi at home is probably much easier than you think. This quick and simple recipe uses common ingredients like garlic, butter, breadcrumbs, lemon juice, and oregano. In fact, it's so easy that it makes a great main dish for a busy weeknight, with dinner ready in an hour or less.
Though it's written for jumbo shrimp, feel free to use your favorite size of shrimp. Simply compare weights to keep the recipe proportions correct. If you want to double the recipe, use a larger pan.
- 1/3 cup butter (melted)
- 5 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 cup breadcrumbs (fresh, dense crumbs or panko)
- 1 teaspoon oregano (dried, crushed)
- 1 pound shrimp (jumbo, peeled, cleaned, and deveined)
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice (approximately 1 lemon)
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese (freshly grated)
- Optional: salt
- Garnish: chopped fresh parsley
- Preheat the oven to 425 F.
- Select a casserole dish capable of holding the shrimp in one close layer and grease with 1 tablespoon of butter.
- Melt 1/3 cup butter in a small saucepan over low heat.
- Add the garlic and gently saute until the garlic softens but does not brown. Do not overcook the garlic or it will become bitter. Set aside to cool.
- Place half of the breadcrumbs in an even layer in the bottom of the casserole.
- Sprinkle with the oregano.
- Place the shrimp in the casserole in a single layer.
- Squeeze lemon juice over shrimp, then top with remaining breadcrumbs.
- Drizzle the cooled garlic butter evenly over the top.
- Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and salt, if desired.
- Bake for 25 minutes, or until the top is golden brown. If the top is not golden brown after 25 minutes, your oven temperature may be slightly off. In this case, place the casserole under the broiler for a couple of minutes—watch it carefully—until it reaches the appropriate doneness.
- Garnish with chopped fresh parsley to serve.
- Artisan bread (whether purchased or homemade), as opposed to regular white bread, is best for the breadcrumbs. This is because it has a dense crumb, which gives the dish a better result. One to two slices pulsed in a food processor should be plenty.
- Take care not to overcook the shrimp or they will become tough and chewy. You can use a smaller shrimp, but you might need to reduce the cooking time slightly so you do not overcook them.
Complete the Meal With Sides
Shrimp scampi is the perfect main dish for a great variety of sides. You can add as many courses to the meal as you like and any of these side dishes would make an excellent accompaniment.
Serve up pasta on the side, either a traditional pesto pasta or one lightly dressed in olive oil, parsley flakes, basil, and garlic. Small red potatoes roasted and covered with melted butter, salt, and pepper also satisfy the need for some filling starch.
It's also nice to serve a low-key green salad of arugula or spinach tossed with vinaigrette dressing.
Likewise, steamed fresh green beans or asparagus make a healthy side of veggies. Italian bread dipped in olive oil or garlic toast can finish up this easy menu.