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Lemon Pepper Shrimp Scampi

Lemon Pepper Shrimp Scampi – You can not get any easier than this shrimp scampi recipe.  Ready in minutes, perfect dinner for any night of the week or even for entertaining!

One of my son’s all-time favorite foods is shrimp. So, of course, I’ve become somewhat of an expert on frying, baking, and sautéing it. Shrimp is such an easy ingredient to buy in bulk, store in the freezer, and whip up in minutes. 

I cook with it so often that I’ve compiled an entire round-up of Shrimp Dinner Ideas for when I need an easy, healthy, and delicious meal on the table in no time. But out of all the flavor possibilities, we always return to this buttery, zesty, fresh lemon pepper taste. It’s a classic for a reason!

lemon pepper shrimp in a pan

My Lemon Garlic Shrimp recipe is such a hit that I use it as the basis for my Lemon Shrimp and Grits and now this Lemon Pepper Shrimp Scampi. It’s such a versatile standby in my kitchen.

Why This Recipe Works

  • Already peeled and deveined shrimp cuts down the prep time for a meal that’s as easy as it gets.
  • Fresh lemon, cracked black pepper, and crushed red pepper provide bright, punchy flavors to the dish.
  • In total, this recipe only takes 15 minutes. It’s a quick and effortless meal you can throw together and still feel good about serving.

What You’ll Need

  • Butter – Salted or unsalted butter works in this recipe. If you’re using salted, you might want to skip the additional salt depending on your preferences.
  • Garlic – When the garlic flavor is the star of the show, fresh is best. Skip the pre-minced, dried, or powdered stuff and use freshly grated or minced cloves.
  • Shrimp – Purchase peeled and deveined shrimp for convenience. Or, grab the kind in the shell for some savings if you’re willing to put in the prep work.
  • Salt
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • Lemon – You’ll be using lemon juice and zest, so pick one with an unblemished, attractive exterior.
  • Black Pepper – Fresh cracked black pepper will have the best flavor. However, if you only have ground black pepper, you can use that too.
lemon pepper shrimp in a bowl

How To Make Lemon Pepper Shrimp Scampi

  1. Season and start cooking the shrimp. Pat the shellfish dry and sprinkle it with salt. Add butter to a large skillet over medium heat. Once the butter has melted, add the shrimp. 
  2. Sauté shrimp with salt and garlic. Incorporate these ingredients and sauté for about 2-3 minutes until the shrimp is almost cooked through. 
  3. Add lemon juice, lemon zest, and pepper to the pan. Stir all the ingredients together and cook until the shrimp is finished cooking.
  4. Serve immediately. This dish is best served piping hot from the stove.

Recipe Tips

  • Perfectly cooked shrimp will take on a curly C shape and be uniformly pink. The shrimp should take only 1-2 minutes on each side to cook fully. Overcooked shrimp will be a matte white or gray and form a tightly wound O shape. 
  • If you have the time and want even more flavor, you can marinate the shrimp before cooking it. Add the shrimp, garlic, seasoning salt, red pepper flakes, and some olive oil to a Ziploc bag or airtight container and toss to coat. Allow the mixture to marinate for about 20 minutes. Then, add the contents to a large preheated skillet with butter and continue as instructed.
  • If you want more butter sauce, add more butter and garlic to the pan once you remove the cooked shrimp. Allow to cook for 20 seconds, then incorporate about ⅓ cup of white wine and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Cut the heat and add the shrimp back into the skillet. Toss the sauce, shrimp, and a pat of cold butter in the skillet and watch as the bright, zesty, and velvety sauce comes together.
lemon pepper shrimp in a bowl
What is the best wine to serve with Lemon Pepper Shrimp Scampi?

Reach for a bright, citrusy, and perfectly chilled white wine to highlight the dish’s flavors. Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, a Sparkling White, or Verdejo are favorites. A buttery Chardonnay can also be a great pairing that will emphasize the dish’s decadence.

What pasta pairs best with Lemon Pepper Shrimp Scampi?

The butter sauce for this recipe has a thin consistency, so pick a pasta shape that can hold onto as much sauce as possible. Angel Hair, Vermicelli, or thin Spaghetti noodles will carry on the light effect of the dish and deliver buttery goodness with every bite.

What do you do with leftover shrimp?

Shrimp is one of those foods that doesn’t reheat the best. I works, and you can definitely eat it leftover, but it gets a little more rubbery in texture. You can store in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 days. But for absolute best results just make what you can enjoy the day it is cooked.

How To Serve

This Lemon Pepper Shrimp Scampi is flavorful enough to garnish with parsley and serve over pasta as is. Pair it with a crisp glass of white wine, and you’re set. It’s the most straightforward no-recipe serving suggestion that you can always fall back on. 

However, here are some easy and complimentary side dishes that you can whip up when you have the time or want to impress. 

  • Rosemary FocacciaThis fluffy, herby bread is scrumptious on its own. But it’s even better when used to soak up any remaining lemon pepper scampi sauce on your plate.
  • Air Fryer Garlic BreadFor when you want a crispy, crusty bread to pair with your Shrimp Scampi, but without any of the preplanning or fuss. 
  • Roasted Asparagus Simple, fresh, and quick. Serve some roasted asparagus on the side for a healthy side that’s even more delicious when smothered in butter sauce.
close up lemon shrimp scampi

More Delicious Seafood Recipes To try

Yield: 4

Lemon Pepper Shrimp Scampi

Lemon Pepper Shrimp Scampi - You can not get any easier than this shrimp scampi recipe. Ready in minutes, perfect dinner for any night of the week or even for entertaining!

Lemon Pepper Shrimp Scampi - You can not get any easier than this shrimp scampi recipe. Ready in minutes, perfect dinner for any night of the week or even for entertaining!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes


  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 lemon, juiced and zested
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


  1. In a large skillet melt the butter. Sprinkle shrimp with salt. Add salt and garlic to the pan, saute for 2-3 minutes, until the shrimp is mostly cooked.
  2. Add lemon juice, zest, and pepper. Stir and cook until the shrimp is completely cooked.
  3. Remove from pan and serve immediately.


Adapted from Cooking Light Served with Creamy Ozro

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 236Total Fat 6gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 3gCholesterol 367mgSodium 1780mgCarbohydrates 5gFiber 0gSugar 0gProtein 39g

Nutrition Disclaimer: All information presented on this site is intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information shared on should only be used as a general guideline.

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Erin S
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katerina @

Wednesday 25th of January 2023

This is such an amazing dish!! I am so excited to try it!

Allyson Zea

Wednesday 25th of January 2023

This was absolutely the best dinner! Thank you for the easy recipe!


Wednesday 25th of January 2023

This lemon shrimp recipe is soooo addicting!

Sandra | A Dash of Sanity

Wednesday 25th of January 2023

I definitely want to try it! Looks so good!


Wednesday 25th of January 2023

This will be my new favorite dish! I love shrimp so much!

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