Spicy Spanish Garlic Shrimp

‘Gambas Pil Pil’ can be found in any Spanish restaurant and can be eaten as a tapa or as a main dish, served with crusty bread. The smell of fried garlic coupled with pimienton lures people in to Spanish restaurants every time. It’s so easy to make and one my favourite recipes to make for friends at home.

Preparation time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes.

Ingredients (serves 2 people)

  • 18-20 raw shrimp
  • 4-5 garlic cloves sliced
  • 1/2 tsp spicy ‘pimienton’ (if you don’t have this use chili powder)
  • 4-5 whole dried ‘guindillas’ (dried red chillies)
  • 1/2 tsp or paprika
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Garnish with parsley (optional)


  1. Cook the garlic alongside the dried red chilies in the olive oil on gentle heat for a minute or so, until tender (don’t let them burn).
  2. Add the spicy pimienton and paprika then mix.
  3. Increase the heat to medium, add the raw shrimp and fry for  a couple of minutes on each side (until they turn dark pink).
  4. Your dish should be sizzling like the photo below.
  5. Add salt and pepper, as well as more olive oil if needed.
  6. Garnish with parsley and eat while hot. Serve with crusty bread.


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