Spicy Shrimp Pasta Salad
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Just in time for the summer cookout season! Even though social distancing prevents us from going all out for Memorial Day this year, this easy shrimp pasta salad is a zesty, delicious way to celebrate with your family.
This pasta salad comes together in just a couple minutes with pasta, cooked shrimp, mayonnaise, ranch dressing, chopped celery and green onions, and seasonings. It’s that easy and it will be your new favorite macaroni salad!
But I don’t like pasta salad…
You’ll like this one! I used to think I didn’t like pasta salad or macaroni salad but I had a salad a lot like this one that my uncle Glenn (the best cook I know) made at Thanksgiving. It was so good! I can’t say my version compares to his, but trust me, you’ll love it! Guaranteed or your money back.
Step by Step…
There almost aren’t any steps to this recipe. Once you have your ingredients ready, just toss them in a bowl and stir. It’s that simple! This is one of the easiest summer side dish recipes you’ll try! Here’s what you need to do:
- Cook and drain pasta. Boil your pasta in well-salted water, and make sure you cook your pasta so that it’s al dente. Since it’ll absorb some of the liquid once it’s mixed with everything else, you don’t want it to end up too mushy.
- Chop up your shrimp and veggies. Since we’re using cooked shrimp, getting the rest of the ingredients takes no time at all! I like to cut my shrimp into smaller pieces to distribute them more evenly, and chop my celery and green onions pretty finely.
- Toss all your ingredients in a big bowl. Get everything well coated with the mayo, ranch, lemon juice, and seasonings.
- Taste and adjust seasonings. Give it a taste and add more cajun seasoning if you like. If you’re like me, you’ll also add a little hot sauce for even more of a kick!
Give this pasta salad a try for your next picnic or barbecue, or just as an easy lunch for your family at home. You’ll be amazed how quickly it disappears! And if you’re looking for another quick appetizer, try out my lemon-pistachio white bean dip! Enjoy!
Equipment you may need
- 1 lb. small shell or elbow macaroni pasta
- 1 lb. cooked medium shrimp – peeled, deveined and tails removed; cut in half
- 3 stalks celery – finely chopped
- 4 green onions – chopped
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1/3 cup buttermilk ranch dressing
- 3 tsp cajun or creole seasoning – plus more to taste
- 2 T. fresh lemon juice
- salt & pepper – to taste (optional)
- hot sauce – optional
- Cook pasta one minute less than package directions in well salted water. Drain and place in large bowl
- Add all other ingredients to bowl and stir.
- Taste, and adjust seasonings if desired.
- Chill at least 30 minutes until ready to serve.