Cilantro-Lime Shrimp Scampi


Although "scampi" are technically langoustines, in the United States the term has come to describe the famous dish of shrimp cooked with butter, garlic, and white wine. Here, the use of tequila, cilantro, and fresh lime juice offer a bold twist on the classic. Tender cilantro stems mellow slightly after a quick sauté, accenting the fresh cilantro leaves used to finish this dish. Serve it with a torn baguette to sop up the juices.

Active Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
20 mins


  • ¼ cup unsalted butter

  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro stems plus 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves, divided

  • 4 large garlic cloves, finely chopped

  • 1 crushed chile de árbol or 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

  • 3 tablespoons (1 1/2 ounces) tequila blanco

  • 1 ½ pounds peeled and deveined raw large shrimp, tail-on

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste

  • ¾ teaspoon black pepper

  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice

  • Torn baguette, for serving


  1. Heat butter and oil in a large skillet over medium-high, stirring often, until butter is melted. Add cilantro stems, garlic, and chile. Cook, stirring constantly, until very fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove skillet from heat, and turn off heat.

  2. Carefully add tequila to skillet. Return to heat over medium-high; cook, stirring occasionally, until liquid has evaporated, about 1 minute. Add shrimp, salt, and black pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until shrimp are opaque and cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in lime juice and cilantro leaves. Season with salt to taste. Serve immediately with torn baguette.

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