The BEST Shrimp Piccata (Quick + Easy Recipe!!!)

This easy recipe for Shrimp Piccata makes a delicious appetizer, or serve the piccata over pasta for an easy dinner. Shrimp are tossed in a lemon, garlic, butter sauce flecked with capers. Made in just 30-minutes!

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I’m a huge fan of Piccata – for two reasons really. First, it’s super easy and quick to make and, second, everyone loves it! Chicken Piccata and Pork Piccata are both on regular rotation at our house, but today I thought I’d try something different. Shrimp Piccata!

But then I got to thinking… What’s the difference between Shrimp Piccata and Shrimp Scampi? What really makes this dish unique?

Overhead close up of shrimp piccata flecked with capers.

Scampi vs. Piccata

Shrimp Scampi has sauteed shrimp that are tossed in white wine, garlic sauce with some flecks of red pepper flakes.

This Shrimp Piccata recipe is a bit different.

Like I do with my Chicken Piccata, I’m first dredging my shrimp in flour to give them a nice crispy coating, and then I add in a hefty dose of lemon juice and briny capers at the end.

That piccata sauce has so much flavor! It’s tangy, buttery, and briny.

I pretty much lick the skillet clean every time I make it. I honestly can’t get enough of it…

Ingredients needed

  • Shrimp – Choose the size of your choice; shrimp usually come in colossal, jumbo, extra large, large, medium, small, and miniature. I used large (16-20 count) shrimp for this recipe and removed the peel and vein before boiling (watch this video to learn how to peel and devein shrimp) but kept the tails in place. Pro tip: If you’re using a larger variety of shrimp, always remove the vein (AKA the shrimp’s digestive track) first as it can have a gritty texture and ruin the flavor.
  • Flour – the flour helps to make the shrimp crispy and thickens the sauce
  • Olive Oil
  • Butter
  • Garlic
  • Dry White Wine – dry vermouth also works
  • Lemon Juice – to add that yummy tang!
  • Chicken Broth – or try swapping in this homemade bone broth or shellfish stock
  • Capers – so briny + delicious
  • Parsley
  • Salt + Black Pepper – to taste
  • Angel Hair Pasta – for serving, or any favorite pasta or rice
Hand spooning piccata sauce over shrimp.

How to make it

  • Toss shrimp in flour mixture until coated.
  • If you’re serving your shrimp piccata with pasta, now’s the time to bring that water to a boil.
  • Heat oil in a large skillet.
  • Add shrimp and cook until pink. Set aside. Tip: Here’s how to tell when shrimp are done.
  • Melt butter and add garlic.
  • Add wine, lemon juice + broth. Cook until slightly reduced, about 5 minutes.
  • Whisk in the remaining butter, capers + parsley.
  • Stir in shrimp and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  • I like to garnish my finished dish wth some lemon slices and extra parsley.
  • Enjoy!

One word of caution when you’re making the sauce. Be sure not to overcook your garlic or it can become bitter. It helps to let your skillet cool down a bit after frying up the shrimp. You don’t want the skillet scorching hot. Instead, now you want your skillet heated to medium.

Also, don’t let the slices of garlic cook for any longer than the 30 seconds called for. They turn golden in an instant. Once they’ve reached that color, immediately add in the white wine, chicken stock and lemon juice and watch it sizzle away and reduce until that magical consistency is reached.

Recipe FAQs

What does piccata mean in cooking?

In Italian, Piccata translates to piquant or piquancy, which means tart or zesty. This sauce is delicious tart with the addition of lemon juice and zesty with the fresh garlic and parsley.

How long do you cook shrimp?

This depends on the size of the shrimp you use, but they likely won’t need to be sauteed for longer than 4 minutes. The large shrimp I used here only took 3-4 minutes to cook.

How do you know when shrimp are done?

You’ll know the shrimp are cooked when they turn from gray and translucent to a light pink color.

Can you use pre-cooked shrimp?

Yes! However, when using pre-cooked shrimp, you want to cook them for just 30 seconds per side so they don’t get overcooked.

What is the difference between scampi and piccata?

Scampi sauce is made white wine, garlic sauce and red pepper flakes. Piccata is also made with white wine but it leaves out the pepper flakes and adds in lemon juice and briny capers.

Can I make it without alcohol?

Yes! Simply omit the white wine. It will still be delicious without it, though you may want to add in a little extra lemon juice at the end to account for the tartness that the wine would provide.

Skillet filled with shrimp piccata.

How to make ahead & store

Shrimp Piccata is best eaten right away. However, if you have leftovers, they will keep in the refrigerator stored in an airtight container for a couple days. To reheat, warm the shrimp gently on the stove with the sauce or a splash of chicken stock.

What to serve with it

You can also serve these shrimp as an appetizer. For a low-key get together, serve them straight out of the skillet with some serving forks or sturdy toothpicks.

But, the most important accompaniment (as always) is the wine!

To go alongside the shrimp with capers, I chose a Sauvignon Blanc. Its bright citrus and herbal notes paired perfectly with the lemon and parsley in the piccata sauce.

Wine pairings

  • Chardonnay has hints of butter and citrus that pair amazingly well with this dish.
  • Sauvignon Blanc has bright citrus and herbal notes that pair perfectly with the lemon and parsley in the piccata sauce.
  • Pinot Grigio and Pinot Blanc are a nice match with their crisp minerality and citrus notes.
  • For something unexpected, and budget friendly, try a Vinho Verde.
Skillet filled with shrimp piccata.

More piccata recipes

More seafood recipes

Did you make this Shrimp Piccata recipe?

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Skillet filled with shrimp piccata on pink backdrop.

Shrimp Piccata Recipe

This easy recipe for Shrimp Piccata is delicious. Shrimp tossed in a lemon-garlic, butter sauce flecked with capers. Made in just 30-minutes!
5 from 16 votes
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4


  • 1 lb medium or large shrimp (tails on, cleaned and deveined )
  • 3 Tbsp flour
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 cloves garlic thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup dry vermouth or white wine
  • 3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 2 Tbsp capers (drained)
  • 2 Tbsp minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • Angel hair pasta (cooked, for serving (optional) )


  • Combine flour and a pinch of salt and pepper in a shallow dish. Toss shrimp in flour mixture until coated. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet on medium. Add shrimp and cook 2 or 3 minutes, turn and cook 1 more minute. Remove shrimp to plate.
  • Melt 1 Tbs. of the butter in the pan. Add the garlic and cook until golden brown, about 30 seconds. Add the wine, lemon juice and broth, increase the heat to medium-high and cook until the liquid is slightly reduced, about 5 minutes.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the remaining 1 Tbsp. butter, the capers and parsley. Stir in shrimp and season with salt and pepper, to taste.


Shrimp Piccata is best eaten right away. However, if you have leftovers, they will keep in the refrigerator stored in an airtight container for a couple days. To reheat, warm the shrimp gently on the stove with the sauce or a splash of chicken stock.
Did you make this recipe?Mention @platingsandpairings or tag #platingsandpairings!


Calories: 278kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 301mg | Sodium: 1110mg | Potassium: 147mg | Vitamin A: 175IU | Vitamin C: 11.6mg | Calcium: 170mg | Iron: 2.9mg

This post was originally published in 2017. It was updated in 2023 to add new information. The shrimp picatta recipe remains the same. Enjoy!

10 thoughts on “The BEST Shrimp Piccata (Quick + Easy Recipe!!!)”

  1. 5 stars
    This was so good! Super easy and fast dinner I could get on the table even after an 11 hour work day! Love the Dreaming Tree wines! Thanks for the recipe.

  2. 5 stars
    Delicious!! My husband asked for something with shrimp, garlic and capers, and I found your recipe and what a find it was! I made it exactly as written and I found it to be perfect. Thanks for sharing!


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