Tender shrimp are tossed with olive oil and lemon juice, skewered, and then grilled to juicy perfection. Serve alongside a flavorful arugula pesto aioli for dipping. This easy dish can be served as an appetizer or as a main dish over a green salad or alongside a bowl of soup.
I’ve been all about quick and easy meals lately. It seems the days just keep going by faster and faster. Plus, when you’ve got a food blog you spend a lot of time on the photos, recipes, content, etc. Needless to say, the quicker I can get the actual cooking part done, the better!
Shrimp are one of my favorite things to make when I need a quick meal. They take minutes to cook and if you’re using frozen they thaw super fast too. Shrimp are also really versatile – you can serve them as an appetizer, main dish, on a salad, tossed in pasta, and they pair well with so many different flavors.
I’ve been really obsessing over arugula pesto lately, as you probably know from the last post. It just so happens that it goes really well with grilled shrimp!
I decided to mix the pesto into a healthy homemade mayonnaise to make an aioli dipping sauce. This stuff is so good that I could eat it by the spoonful. I did, actually. The mayonnaise recipe I use is from my friend, Natalie – it’s the easiest and tastiest mayo ever! Seriously, you only need 3 ingredients, a mason jar, and an immersion blender. It takes seconds to make!
You can easily use store-bought mayo if you don’t want to make your own, but the homemade is just too good (and easy) to pass up! As for the pesto, you can use basil pesto if you’ve got that hanging around. I highly recommend the arugula pesto as I think it adds a bit more zing to aioli and pairs perfectly with the shrimp.
To make arugula pesto, follow my recipe for perfect pesto and swap out the basil for arugula.
These shrimp skewers can be served as an appetizer for movie night or a dinner party. You can also enjoy them with a side of veggies, on top of a salad or alongside soup. I had a few of these skewers with my pesto vegetable soup and it was delicious.
Even my self-proclaimed shrimp hater of a fiancé enjoyed these. When he saw what we were having he said “I usually only like to eat about 3 shrimp before I’ve had enough”. Well, he ate way more than 3! So, if you’re looking for a quick meal or appetizer I urge you to make this recipe!
Oh, and I should mention the aioli can be used for a lot of different things – in chicken salad, thin it out with a little water and use it as a salad dressing, with grilled salmon or chicken… get creative!
- 1 Pound Fresh or Frozen Shrimp (about 20-25 shrimp), peeled and deveined
- 1 Tablespoon Extra Light Olive Oil
- 1 Lemon, juiced
- Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- ¼ Cup Homemade Mayonnaise*, or store bought
- 2 Tablespoons Arugula Pesto
- 1 Tablespoon Water
- Toss the shrimp with the olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Set aside for 10 minutes.
- While the shrimp are marinating, make the aioli. Mix together the mayo, pesto, and water until very smooth.
- Heat a grill pan over high heat (or an outdoor grill). Skewer the shrimp onto wooden skewers (make sure to soak them if you’re using an outdoor grill) – 5 shrimp per skewer.
- Grill the shrimp for 2 minutes per side or until opaque throughout.
- Serve the shrimp alongside the aioli for dipping.
- The homemade mayonnaise recipe is paleo and Whole30. To make the rest of the recipe paleo and Whole30 compliant, omit the cheese in the pesto!
Erin @ Miss Scrambled Egg says
When I’m hosting a get together with co-workers, I like to have easy appetizers ready for munching. A lot of the people I work with are gluten-free, so I like to include snacks that are available for their needs as well. Thank you for this recipe!
Erin @ Miss Scrambled Egg recently posted…Herby Garlic Beer Bread
That’s so nice of you to accommodate your gluten-free guests! I’m sure the appreciate it 🙂 Thanks, Erin!
Jessica | A Happy Food Dance says
Mmmm! Love shrimp and pesto – never tried and pesto aioli though. Such a good idea!
Jessica | A Happy Food Dance recently posted…roasted strawberry hand pies
Thanks Jessica! It’s SO good I’ve been eating it by the spoonful!
Natalie @ Tastes Lovely says
Keri! I am so happy you liked my mayo recipe! Ok, isn’t that recipe so easy it’s kind of joke? And the mayo is so good! I don’t think I’ll ever buy store bought again. You just made my day! Oh, and so did this shrimp. I love shrimp skewers. Makes it so easy to cook a bunch at once and flip them. Can’t wait to cover them in your arugula pesto aioli. Yum!
Natalie @ Tastes Lovely recently posted…Slow Cooker Irish Guinness Beef Stew
Easiest thing ever, Natalie! I made homemade mayo once a long time ago in a blender, but it had way more ingredients, made a mess, and didn’t really emulsify. I was in shock at how quick your recipe was! I don’t think I’ll ever cook shrimp off of a skewer again since it makes it so easy to flip them. And the aioli is to die for.. I’ve been putting it on anything and everything I can think of!
Coty and Mariah |Quirks and Twists| says
I just made adobe marinated shrimp last night and came across this recipe today. Definitely trying it the next time I have shrimp! Sounds delicious!
Adobe marinated shrimp sounds delicious! You’ll love this recipe – it’s so quick and the aioli is SO good! 🙂
I’m always interested in new ways to cook shrimp. I love these skewers and how versatile the arugula pesto aioli is. Your pics are gorgeous too!
Rachelle recently posted…Banana Chocolate Chip Whoopie Pies
I’ve been putting the aioli on anything and everything! Thank you for the compliment, Rachelle 🙂
Savita @ ChefDeHome says
Keri, I specially love the arugula pesto aioli! gorgeous color and I bet it tastes delicious! yumm!
Thanks Savita! It does taste delicious 😉
Mariah @ Mariah's Pleasing Plates says
I am a big shrimp lover! Gorgeous pictures Keri! Pinned!
Me too Mariah! Thank you!! 🙂
Gayle @ Pumpkin 'N Spice says
These shrimp skewers are so creative, Keri! I love that you added a pesto sauce to this dish. Sounds delicious!
Gayle @ Pumpkin ‘N Spice recently posted…Chocolate Covered Potato Chips
Thank you Gayle! The pesto goes SO well the shrimp.
Medha @ Whisk & Shout says
So colorful! Seriously lovely photos and looooove that aioli 🙂
Thank you Medha!
Maya @ Treats and Eats says
Quick and easy sounds just about perfect, especially if you end up making something that looks as delicious as this! I’ve never made homemade mayo, but now I’m definitely going to have to try it!
Maya @ Treats and Eats recently posted…Homemade Gravlax
Oh that homemade mayo is seriously amazing! You’ll love it, Maya!
Kelsey @ Snacking Squirrel says
oh man these look tasty!
Thank you Kelsey!
Annie @ The Garlic Diaries says
These look so fresh and yummy, Keri! Arugula is one of my favorite things ever. I know for a fact I would love this recipe. Can’t wait to try!
Annie @ The Garlic Diaries recently posted…Baked Egg Rolls
Thank you Annie! I’m obsessed with arugula and it does soooo well with shrimp! Let me know how you like it 🙂
Kelley @ Chef Savvy says
Beautiful appetizer! I love the combination of shrimp and pesto. I will be making this at my next get together!
Thanks Kelley! It is a great combo. It will be perfect at your next get together – let me know what you think! 🙂
Shelby @ Go Eat and Repeat says
I am such a sucker for shrimp! I mean, how can you beat them? Plus they are a pretty healthy meal option!
Shelby @ Go Eat and Repeat recently posted…Slowcooker Corn Chowder
Me too, Shelby! You can do so much with shrimp – I just love it!