Traditional recipes

Garlic Prawns recipe

Garlic Prawns recipe

  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Starters
  • Seafood starters
  • Prawn starters

Prawns are cooked in olive oil with plenty of garlic, spring onions and parsley. Served on top of pasta with a few thin shavings of Parmesan finishes this starter off beautifully.

101 people made this

IngredientsServes: 4

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 or 3 spring onions, chopped
  • 450g fresh prawns
  • Some fresh parsley, chopped
  • 40g freshly grated Parmesan cheese

MethodPrep:10min ›Cook:10min ›Ready in:20min

  1. Heat olive oil in a large frying pan. Saute garlic and spring onions briefly, making sure they don't burn or brown too much.
  2. Toss in prawns and cook until pink and opaque in the centre. Stir in parsley and heat through.
  3. Remove from heat and pour into a serving dish. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(108)

Reviews in English (75)

Lovely quick meal and if you add creme fraiche instead of parmesan it's not too fattening.-06 Jun 2012

by RogueOnion8

I made this for my friends on Superbowl Sunday. They loved it! I made only a few minor tweaks... Added 1 extra clove of garlic. Added 1 teaspoon of italian seasoning. Added 1 teaspoon of Aleppo pepper (for that extra kick).-29 Mar 2004


Recipe needs at least one more clove of garlic.Pasta water needs to be salted. I tossed it with angel hair pasta, but it needed fresh ground pepper to give it a little more umph.Next time I'll use thin spaghetti.-01 Dec 2001

Best Spanish Garlic Prawns Recipe (Gambas al Ajillo)

Spanish Garlic Prawns is a Spanish dish that is mixed with olive oil, garlic, prawns or shrimp, paprika, and lemon. This dish has low carbs and it is Keto friendly. The first time I tried this food was in a Spanish restaurant where they serve this delicious shrimp dish. That food inspired me to make my version of Gambas al Ajillo.

This food is an example of Spanish food that has a rich flavor which is nutritious and delicious. I noticed in Spanish cuisines, they have tons of unique seafood dishes. Shrimps or Prawns are one of my favorite Seafood in my life. They taste delicious and it does not have bones like Crabs or other fishes.

In this post, I will be showing you how to cook a Spanish Garlic Prawns also known as Gambas al Ajillo.

Spanish Prawns in Garlic

This post will show you how to make Spanish Prawns with garlic, which is one of our favourite tapas dishes. If you ever have the chance to visit the beautiful European country of Spain then one of the places you will undoubtedly visit are the tapas bars that serve the most wonderful food.

Tapas are appetizers or starters of Spanish cuisine and are a fantastic way to eat lots of different types of food at once!

Prawn or shrimp?

When I mention &lsquoprawns&rsquo in this recipe, as in all my other prawn recipes, you can of course also use &lsquoshrimp&rsquo as, although not exactly the same, they are pretty interchangeable. It may depend on where you are which of the two is more available, prawn or shrimp. Just try to get some nicely sized ones. The bigger the better.

I used some raw frozen jumbo king prawns for these photos, and the cool thing is when you cook them you see them turning pink as they cook. Pre-cooked prawns are already pink when they come out of the packet.

Using frozen prawns is likely to be safer than using fresh prawns (unless you know exactly how the prawns were harvested and when), as there is always a small risk of food poisoning when eating shellfish.

Spanish Shrimp Recipe

This particular recipe has a particularly important significance for my wife and I as it was the very first meal we ate together. It was in a lovely little bar in Brussels in Belgium where we had a fantastic meal with this as a starter. Sadly the bar there no longer has its restaurant, as we discovered when we went back to re-visit it a few years ago.

But really this is a very common and popular tapas dish, as the chili garlic becomes infused in the olive oil and the prawns, leaving a delicious taste which you will adore. It is a very easy recipe to make and can be ready in 10-15 minutes, especially if you use pre-cooked prawns or shrimp.

You will need some nice crusty bread to soak up the juices as you will not want the delicious oil to go to waste.

Gambas al Ajillo

We also used to order this chili garlic shrimp dish at our favourite tapas restaurant in Gouda, the Netherlands, called La Cubanita. In Spanish the meal is known as gambas al ajillo, or prawns in garlic oil.

The Spanish are renowned for their culinary expertise and really this simple recipe is super simple example: quick and easy to make, and I guarantee you will want to make it again.

At home, this is our &lsquogo-to&rsquo quick and easy lunch when we are both busy and need a quick and easy, warm and tasty snack for our lunch. Wonderful!

I hope you enjoy this fantastic garlic prawns starter. Let me know how you get on in the comments section below!

Can I use frozen shrimp or prawns?

In the states, most shrimp are sold frozen with heads off or no shells. Usually, I bought a box of frozen raw whole shrimp at Asian store. Although frozen raw shrimp does not have the same texture as fresh live shrimp, the taste is still great with stir fried chili garlic sauce.

Lemon Garlic Prawns

Weeknight cooking can be exhausting. There's so much thinking that needs to happen. Mainly, is there enough time to make this? 🤔But this garlic butter prawns recipe requires almost no planning&mdashall you need to do is pick up prawns! Meaning, it's perfect for dinner TONIGHT. It sounds too good to be true, but it's not. The whole thing can be yours in 15 minutes or less. And it's absolutely delicious. Like, mind-boggling so.

What kind of prawns should I buy?

We recommend using king prawns for this recipe. You should also buy the prawns peeled and deveined if you can, too. It helps ensure that the dinner process is as quick and easy as possible.

How long do I cook the prawns?

Prawns cook super quickly! They only need a few minutes. Once they turn pink and opaque, it's ready to eat. If you cook it for too long, they'll become rubbery.

How hot should the pan be?

For this recipe, we're not looking for a char. A large pan over medium heat is the way to go. If you're not able to fit the prawns in a single layer in your pan, work in batches to make sure everything cooks evenly.

Do I need to use wine?

If you have a leftover bottle of Chardonnay in your fridge, this is the perfect way to use it up. If you don't have any around, use water or chicken stock instead. Or buy a cheap bottle and use lemon garlic prawns as your excuse to drink.

Is it spicy?

There's a little kick from the chilli flakes, but it's a spice level that most people can handle.

Garlic Prawns Recipe

Garlic prawns served in tapas bars and restaurants all over Spain are usually called Gambas al Ajillo. Visitors to Madrid should make a point of ordering this classic dish in Casa del Abuelo (Calle Victoria, 12). This famous tapas bar remains largely unchanged since it began serving sizzling dishes of garlic prawns back in 1906. In the south of Spain, garlic prawns are often called Gambas al Pil Pil which is a very similar dish to Gambas al Ajillo but uses paprika in its sauce.

Whole, dried cayenne peppers would typically be used in this recipe but if you can’t get them then you can use a little cayenne or chilli powder. The quantity you use of either of these ingredients simply depends on how spicy you want the dish to be. Gambas al Pil Pil would typically be cooked in an earthenware dish sitting directly on a gas flame, however, when this isn’t possible it can simply be prepared in a hot frying pan.


Serves 4 people as a tapa

  • 20 or 24 peeled prawns
  • 4 – 6 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
  • 2 – 4 dried whole cayenne peppers, leave whole or roughly chopped.
  • Extra Virgin Olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of sweet paprika powder
  • Salt
  • Parsley (optional)

Cooking Method

Put enough olive oil in your earthenware dish or frying pan to make sure the bottom is well covered and put it onto a medium heat.

Once the oil is hot add the cayenne peppers and once they start sizzling add the garlic, paprika, a little salt and fry for 2 or 3 minutes.

Turn the heat up to ensure that the prawns are going into hot oil, add the prawns and fry for 3 or 4 minutes until the prawns become pink. You can sprinkle a little chopped parsley over the prawns at this stage if you like.

Serve with some crusty bread which you will want to dip into the delicious sauce. It’s debatable whether the prawns or the sauce are the best part of this dish.

Hint: Make sure the dish that you use is not too small and that the oil lies quite low in the dish or it will spill over the edge when you add the prawns.

What you need for Garlic Prawns

Here’s what you need. The key ingredient here that makes all the difference is white wine. Wine adds complexity and depth of flavour to this otherwise simple dish.

Use any white wine you have. Dry white wine is best but even sweet ones work great. Rose and Champagne are also terrific!

To begin making the Butter Garlic Prawns recipe, sprinkle some salt over the cleaned prawns and keep them aside.

Heat up a skillet or a flat surface pan and add olive oil + butter into it. Olive oil saves the butter from burning.

Once the butter gets melted, then add chopped garlic into it. Keep it cooking still you start getting the aroma of garlic.

Next, add the seasoned prawns into it and cook for 2-3 minutes on low heat.

Now add red chilli flakes, rock salt and black pepper powder into the prawns and mix everything properly.

Now cover the pan and cook for another 3 to 4 minutes. Check if prawns have cooked properly.

Once prawns are ready, check the salt and turn off the stove. Add the lemon juice into the prawns and give it a good mix again. Garnish it with fresh coriander leaves and serve.

Serve Butter Garlic Prawns as a side dish along with Prawn Coconut Curry and Rice for a weekday meal.

Seafood Seasoning Substitutes

This recipe uses seafood seasoning to give it some of the flavour. This is not the most essential ingredient, however it does add to the delicious taste.

Any supermarket seafood seasoning blend is fine to use.

You can also make your own version at home. The key ingredients are typical salt or celery salt, paprika, nutmeg and pepper.

If you plan to make this recipe often and would rather a homemade seafood seasoning, you can make up a larger batch for use in future.

Here are some seafood seasoning recipes to try:

Alternatively, simply add a little of your favourite seasonings and spice mixes from home if you want to add some unique flavours.

Lasooni Jhinga Recipe: How To Make Garlic Prawns

Lasooni jhinga is a very popular dish in the seafood menu of any restaurant. It's a favourite dish of any seafood lover. We usually don't try such a dish at home, as we think it's tough to make it, plus it involves a lot of procedures and cooking expertise.

However, Chef Mohammad Mustak has given us a very easy-to-make version of this recipe at home. This recipe needs a lot of time in marination to make the meat tender. Do try it out and surprise your family with the delicious recipe of Lasooni Jhinga or garlic prawns.

Recipe By: Chef Mohammad Mustak

1. Clean the tiger prawns properly.

2. Take a bowl and add garlic paste, salt, mustard oil & seasoning and prawns in the same. Mix it properly.

3. Now, marinate the prawns with the garam masala.

4. Keep it in the refrigerator for an hour.

5. Mix the rest of the garlic crush, salt, red chilli with the curd.

6. Remove the prawns from the refrigerator and coat them with the curd marinade.