Spicy Shrimp with Zucchini Noodles

Spicy and satisfying, the Asian-style shrimp spiked with sriracha pairs well with healthy ribbons of zucchini noodles. When zucchini is abundant, it makes for a perfect summer meal. I’m obviously not a big believer in diets. My last post will attest to that. But I…

Spicy Shrimp with Zucchini Noodles

Spicy and satisfying, the Asian-style shrimp spiked with sriracha pairs well with healthy ribbons of zucchini noodles. When zucchini is abundant, it makes for a perfect summer meal.

Spicy and satisfying, the Asian-style shrimp spiked with sriracha pairs well with healthy ribbons of zucchini noodles. When zucchini is abundant, it makes for a perfect summer meal.

I’m obviously not a big believer in diets. My last post will attest to that. But I do firmly believe that life and the food we eat should be in balance. Yes, yes, I’m one of those everything in moderation and exercise is the key people. So last time I brought you an over-the-top ice cream pie — today, I have a dish for you that will tip the scales back to balance.

If I were to diet, this is what it would look like, and quite honestly, this doesn’t look so scary, does it?

People who eat spicy foods tend to eat less, not so much because of the burn, but I believe because the depth of flavor brings so much to a dish that it is satiating.

These plump shrimp sizzling in the pan have the kick of sriracha, and I placed them on a bed of zucchini “noodles” (for those of you who are gluten-free, this meal is for you). But there’s a little more in the pan that gives it extra oomph.

I have been playing around with a new product from Land O’Lakes – when I first saw it, it just seemed like genius. Butter with Olive Oil & Sea Salt. Right? Okay, not diet material, but what I love about it is that when you’re cooking, this combination makes complete sense. How many times have you started a dish with olive oil and finished it off with a wee bit of butter for extra silkiness and flavor? Using some to finish off my sautéed shrimp was just right in making a little spicy pan sauce to drizzle over my zucchini noodles.

And who knows pan sauces better than Ree Drummond? Yes, as in The Pioneer Woman. I was happy to participate in a webinar with Ree and Land O’Lakes recently – she has been playing around with the Butter with Olive Oil & Sea Salt too. I am excited to share a giveaway with Ree’s Cooking Essentials – which includes two Pioneer Woman cookbooks, some kitchen goodies and a chance to play around with LAND O LAKES® Butter with Olive Oil & Sea Salt in your own kitchen.

Come join the fun and enter the giveaway (details below). A little bit of butter makes everything better.

Ree’s Cooking Essentials Giveaway

This giveaway is officially closed. Congratulations to Rachel on being the random winner!

Ready to enter? Here’s how:

  • Please leave a comment below and feel free to share: Diets – yay or nay?
  • Entries/Comments accepted until 10 pm Pacific, Monday, 25 June, 2012.
  • One winner will be randomly selected and notified by email.
  • This contest is open to US residents only, my apologies to my international friends!

Disclosure: The author received a gift package from Land O’Lakes, including two cookbooks, a whisk, a slotted spoon, tongs and a full-value coupon redeemable for LAND O LAKES® Butter with Olive Oil & Sea Salt, for recipe development and review purposes. All opinions are my own.

Spicy Shrimp with Zucchini Noodles

Serves 4. | Prep: 20 minutes | Cook: 10 minutes

If I were to diet, this is just the type of food I would eat. Spicy and satisfying, the Asian-style shrimp spiked with sriracha pairs great with healthy ribbons of zucchini noodles. Of course, the shrimp would be fabulous on regular rice noodles, but when zucchini are so abundant this time of year, it makes for a perfect summer meal.


8 medium zucchinis
1 lb shrimp (16 pieces), peeled and deveined, tails on
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 shallot, finely sliced
2 tablespoons sriracha sauce
1/2 teaspoon fish sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
Freshly ground black pepper
1-2 tablespoons butter with olive oil and sea salt
cilantro, chopped
basil, thinly sliced (chifonnade) (optional)


Bring a medium pot full of water to a boil. Salt generously.

Using a julienne peeler or mandoline, create ribbons of zucchini noodles. Blanch the zucchini briefly in the boiling water, for about 2 minutes, until just wilted. Drain the zucchini noodles and set both the vegetables and water aside.

In a saute pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook until just translucent. Add shrimp, sriracha sauce, fish sauce, sugar, and a little black pepper, to taste. Stirring frequently, cook until the shrimp is just cooked through and pink, about 3 minutes. At the tail end of the cooking process, stir in about 1/2 cup of the reserved water to create a sauce, as well as the butter. Serve the shrimp on a bed of zucchini noodles, and drizzle with the pan sauce. Garnish with cilantro and basil (if desired), and enjoy!

Shrimp adapted from Martha Stewart’s Stir-Fried Shrimp.


  1. Laura (Tutti Dolci)

    I love this pairing of spicy shrimp with zucchini ribbons – delicious and healthy! I’m with you – I’m an “everything in moderation” eater and I *do* eat dessert daily so I balance that out with lean proteins and fresh produce throughout the day.

  2. Cindy C.

    This looks great – I love zucchini “noodles.” As for diets, I say nay! Diets imply temporary changes and temporary results. Healthy eating is a lasting lifestyle choice.

  3. Brooke D

    I prefer not to diet, but to eat healthy foods & enjoy goodies in moderation. This recipe looks yummy!!

  4. Jo Ann H.

    This looks wonderful!!! I am always looking for ways to use those millions of zucchini in my garden. As far as diets, I think I have tried them all. Now I just eat “real” food and stay far away from fast foods. I have cut out sugar, but once in a while I will splurge and eat dessert.

  5. Jessica N.

    Diet, no, but finding and cooking healthy meals and/or healthier versions and options super YES!!

  6. Alessandra

    It must be a shrimp kind of day. I like your views on dieting I feel the same way, I love to enjoy my food because it’s healthier options and good fresh flavours.

  7. Jennifer s

    Move more, eat less when needed. Portion control as much as possible, sounds easy, but I always seem to want more than one portion!

  8. Steve

    Looks incredible!! Having shrimp tonight. Diet,,, yes currently going as Paleo as possible but not a 100%. Lost 70 lbs since last July but as you said, exercise the is the key. CrossFit 3 to 4 times a week!

    Great looking recipe!


  9. Yashica

    definitely NAY to dieting! I’d rather eat what I wanted and then jjust exercise…

  10. Sandra's Easy Cooking

    Well depending what kind of diet! I like to detox every once in a while and go into raw mode for a week, but I agree with you on daily bases moderation, balance and exercise is the key to healthy lifestyle!
    Your dish today look fantastic! Very tempting as always…you are teasing my stomach!:)

  11. Jen Laceda @ Tartine and Apron Strings

    I’m sad :( Not open to Canadians? :( Anyway, how do I cut the zucchini into spaghetti strands? Is there a special tool? Ugh, speaking of diets, I should be on one! I still have at least 15 to 20 pounds (ideally) to lose…Yikes!

  12. Amy L

    Diets don’t work for me, so when I want to lose weight, I increase the amount of exercise I do, which, in turn, makes me want to eat healthier. I guess it’s because I don’t want to “waste” the hard work I’m doing for my body, by eating too much.

  13. Melissa C.

    I don’t participate in diets, but I have seen them work for some people.

  14. Rachel @ The Henway

    Oh yum! Those noodles look great! I am all for diets, as long as its not your whole life. I diet when I need to, and just watch what I eat the rest of the time.

  15. Amy in Austin

    Diets nay, changing your lifestyle, yes. (ie-making vegetables most of your diet, cutting out processed junk and making ice cream a special occasion treat.) It’s the only way for weight loss to be permanent.

  16. Patty

    Diet or no diet I would enjoy this spicy shrimp dish for dinner, looks like you’ve done some very nice experimenting here;-)

  17. sue anderson

    NAY to the trauma of dieting. Everything in moderation is the way to go.


  18. Libbi

    I don’t know about the word “diet” at all. It’s supposed to describe the way that we eat, not a short term of deprivation. So I have issues with it.

    I follow a paleo diet with some treats and alterations for what makes my body feel good. But it’s my lifestyle food decision. It’s not short term. So yeah. I’m opposed to something that feels like deprivation, but love food that makes me feel great.

  19. Riley

    I have more zucchini than I know what to do with. This looks delicious, so I’ll have to try it out!

  20. Kesha

    I say NAY to diets! For me, I think everything in moderation is key to being successful!

  21. Vishakha

    Those zucchini strips are cool! Never had it before. Nice creation! The prawns just make it more desirable.

  22. Nelly Rodriguez

    Yay. Not in a YAY! kinda way, but yes, sometimes I need to go on them. I just gorge on avocados and hearty soups. Salads never seem to fill me up!

  23. Christine

    I’m a big proponent of lifestyle changes, so no dieting for me. I’m really excited about trying this dish, it’s perfect for the upcoming bumper crop of summer squash.

  24. Donna

    Yay. I like to replace my favorite comfort foods into healthy version. For example, when baking, i like to replace oil with apple sauce. It’s healthier and SO moist!

  25. Holly

    I never go on diets or count calories. I just try to fill up on as many veggies as possible, drink plenty of water, exercise often, and minimize sweets. I also love green smoothies to start the day.

  26. Carolsue

    I love spicy food — but do I eat less than those who don’t eat spicy food. I don’t think so. But as far as diets go, some diets are better than others. Ones that require you to eat only certain foods won’t work because you aren’t going to stick to those certain foods forever. Better to to one that allows most all foods in moderation.

  27. YC Lee

    I know that diets work for some people, but not me. It comes down to making wise choices about what I decide to put into my body. My mantra: Choose life! At this moment, this dish speaks life to me…thanks, Liren!

  28. Tami

    This dish looks delicious. I might even be able to get the picky teens to try this one!!

  29. Audrey

    When I think of “diet”, I think of the foods I am in the habit of eating. “Diet” in the popular sense usually means a temporary way of eating — but if it’s temporary, it won’t last. The way we eat must be sustainable and extreme forms of dieting aren’t sustainable, just a quick-fix that won’t last. BTW, I’ve been making zucchini noodles for weeks myself!

  30. Christine

    Diets–mostly nay. I believe more in watching what I eat, eating in moderation, and indulging every once in a while. But I have followed the Curves Complete diet in the past and had great success. Now I loosely base my eating off of it.

  31. lea davenport

    I love my little shredder, but never thought of using zucchini as a base…..Bet pairing it with the shrimp is a great mix.

    Dieting? When I do, I eat 6 very small meals a day, drink a gallon of water and celebrate the sensation of hunger. It works. Oh, and vitamins.

  32. Nicole

    I’m going to make this for my parents tonight. My dad was told he needed to change his diet and i think he would really like this!

  33. LaLaLucy

    Everything you eat is a “diet” but as far as weight loss diets, or fad health diets I am NOT on board. In extreme health situations they can be necessary, but if you just live your life in moderation (yes, that word again), there should be no need to deprive yourself of anything. I think people should just eat foods that are closer to nature (whole foods) instead of canned and frozen and boxed and powdered junk and we would all be a lot better off.

  34. Lindsey

    This pasta looks divine- can’t wait to try it!
    My take on diets? Mindful eating is best- just being aware of what you’re putting in your mouth makes a whole lot of difference in the long run.

  35. Julie

    Your recipe looks soooooooooooooo good thanks for the giveaway…I try to watch my portions not always sucessful though

  36. Suzanne

    What a wonderful looking dish, I love the idea of noodles made out of zucchini. I say nay on the diet and I totally agree with you, exercise is key and moderation! I

  37. Priscilla | ShesCookin

    I’m a firm believer in balance, moderation, and exercise – but, having just returned from Paris, I confess to savoring more than a moderate amount of cheese, butter, duck confit, and paté :) Now it’s time to kick up the exercise and balance all that out with dishes like this!

  38. Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts

    Love this meal – the shrimp look perfect! I am on the fence with diets. I say I am on a diet sometimes, but that is really just eating in moderation. I never follow a strict plan or do the fad diets – they are just crazy and I don’t see how they could work :)

  39. Theresa

    Diets may give me a Jump start and some motivation, but moderation is the way to stay healthy for the long run. Can’t wait to try zucchini noodles !

  40. Donna

    This is a wonderful offering for a quick, healthy meal for ANYONE…child/adult…dieter or those who do not!….Question…I am wondering if a “spiralizer” type tool would be a good choice for these…or is the mandoline preferable? So wish I had a julienne component to my food processor that cut as fine as your beautifully presented courgette “noodles”…Also…do you recommend a specific shrimp caliber/type/variety?..Thanks for any enlightenment!

  41. Simon

    This dish looks absolutely gorgeous. A perfect example of what i always stood by. Simplicity is the best.

    Great blog;)

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