This simple Mediterranean-style sautéed shrimp and vegetables recipe comes together in just over 20 minutes!  Zucchini, onions, and bell pepper, paired with succulent shrimp, and protein-packed chickpeas come together in just one skillet. And you'll love the bold Mediterranean flavors from spices, tangy lemon juice, and fresh herbs.

Want to cook shrimp perfectly every time? Be sure to read on for my tips, and grab suggested sides and salads too!

Mediterranean sauteed shrimp and zucchini with chickpeas, tomatoes and basil

I love cooking with shrimp because it is packed with protein, lean, low in calories, and is one of the fastest foods you can cook! Since shrimp cooks in the blink of an eye, it makes it ideal for whipping together something quick, like this healthy shrimp and vegetables dinner, any night of the week.

Shrimp is also a huge part of a Mediterranean diet because fresh fish and seafood are key sources of healthy protein and other nutrients. We aim to eat seafood about two times per week (as the Mediterranean diet recommends,) and this sautéed shrimp is an easy way to do that.

You'll love this healthy shrimp and vegetables recipe. Fresh veggies--zucchini, onions, and bell peppers--paired with succulent shrimp, and protein packed chickpeas.  And the flavors will surprise you in the best way possible--a few spices, coupled with lemon juice and a bright pop of fresh basil! So good.

And if you've ever been intimated by cooking shrimp, fear not! It's super easy to cook shrimp in the skillet, but a couple of tips make all the difference, so read on...

Sauteed shrimp and zucchini

Why this sautéed shrimp recipe works?

Three things I love about this satueed shrimp and zucchini recipe: few ingredients; one skillet; and just over 20 minutes start-to-finish!

And the biggest draw for me is just how bright and wholesome this dish is. Tender zucchini, onions, and bell peppers pack the dish with fresh veggies. Chickpeas add more protein and fiber. And the additions of warm spices (oregano, cumin, coriander, paprika), along with bright lemon juice, fresh basil, and cherry tomatoes make the dish pop with color and flavor!

And...at 234 calories per serving; less than 6 grams of good fat; and loads of fiber and protein, this shrimp and vegetables recipe makes one light and feel-good weeknight meal.

Here's what's in it in detail...

Ingredients for this Mediterranean sauteed shrimp recipe

Ingredients for shrimp and zucchini recipe

Large Shrimp (Prawns) – Prawns are like large shrimp, which are great in this recipe since they are a little bigger and heartier. They are  mild and sweet in flavor and are beautifully tender when cooked right(tips below)! However, shrimp and prawns are very similar in flavor and texture and can be used interchangeably.

Chickpeas – Chickpeas add great texture, volume, and plant-based protein to this sautéed shrimp and vegetables. They have a bit of nuttiness and a meaty texture. Using canned and drained chickpeas in this recipe keeps the meal easy-peasy.

Vegetables- Loads of beautiful veggies to bring in texture, flavor and color

  • Onions, thinly sliced
  • Bell peppers, sliced into sticks
  • Zucchini, sliced into half moons
  • Cherry tomatoes, halved

These fresh veggies are a tasty combo of flavors. Onions provide lots of sweet flavor and great depth, zucchini is tender and mild, bell peppers are packed with sweetness, and the halved cherry tomatoes at the very end give a tasty burst of freshness and make the dish feel extra light.

Garlic, spices, fresh basil, and lemon juice for sauteed shrimp recipe

Lemon Juice- lemon is the perfect blast of acidity for the dish.Lemon and shrimp are a match made in heaven. Fresh lemon juice brings even more bright flavor to the sautéed shrimp and zucchini.

Fresh Garlic and Spices – Fresh garlic cloves go well in everything, I like to mince the garlic real small to capitalize on its flavor.  The garlic is sauteed with the onions at first to kick start the flavoring process, while dried spices like oregano, coriander, cumin, and sweet paprika create depth of flavor.

Fresh Herbs – In this sautéed shrimp recipe, I used fresh basil at the very end. Do not skip this part, it really does make a difference. But, if basil is not available to you, you can use any fresh herb you like or have in the house. Fresh parsley or cilantro would go perfectly.

Tips for how to cook shrimp in a skillet

Cooking shrimp in a skillet it as simple as it can get, but it is easy to overcook shrimp. A few tips do make all the difference for getting perfectly sautéed shrimp every time:

  • Cook the shrimp until just pink
    Even large shrimp cook super quickly. Overcooking shrimp is about the only way you can ruin them (they become chewy and tough.) Cook the shrimp until they turn that pinkish color, they curl in a bit, and the translucent grey color turns white. That’s it, they are done! Usually they need no more than a few minutes of cooking time. In this recipe, they will not take longer than 4-5 minutes (about 2 minutes or so per side).
  • Make Sure Your Skillet is Hot
    Making sure that your skillet is on medium-high heat will give you the best cooked shrimp. Not only will the shrimp cook quickly, but they will get a bit of a browned crust on the outside, which provides a lot of delicious flavor.

    To make sure everything is cooked properly in this recipe, you'll start by cooking the veggies first and then the shrimp separately. Here is how...

How to make sautéed shrimp with veggies

  • Season the shrimp
    Mix your combine your dried oregano, ground cumin, ground coriander, and sweet paprika in a small bowl. Pat the shrimp dry and toss it with kosher salt, black pepper, and about 1 ½ teaspoons of the spice mixture. Refrigerate for now, or if you're working quickly, set the shrimp aside.
  • Sautee the vegetables
    In a large skillet, cook the garlic and onion in a bit of extra virgin olive oil, tossing until they soften a bit, then add the zucchini, bell peppers, and chickpeas. Season with a bit of kosher salt and black pepper and the remaining spices. Toss and cook for 5 to 7 minutes until the veggies soften and char in some parts. Transfer the veggies and chickpeas to a plate for now.

    Shrimp sauteed in skillet with garlic and olive oil
  • Sautee the shrimp
    To the skillet, add a drizzle of olive oil. Add the shrimp, a little more garlic and cook over medium-high heat, tossing occasionally, until the shrimp turns pink (about 3 minutes or so, depending on the size of the shrimp.

    Sauteed vegetable and chickpeas in skillet
  • Combine the shrimp, veggies, tomatoes and fresh basil
    Add the veggies and chickpeas back to the skillet. Add the tomatoes and toss briefly. Finish with fresh lemon juice and basil. Serve!

    Final step of cooking sauteed shrimp and vegetables. Adding fresh lemon juice, tomatoes and basil

Leftovers?

You can store leftover satueed shrimp and vegetables in an airtight container for about 3 days.

How to reheat shrimp?

The best way to reheat shrimp and your leftovers is by heating a skillet over medium-high heat and giving it a quick warm through, don't keep it on the heat too long. Your goal is to warm the food, but not completely overcook your shrimp.

What to serve with sauteed shrimp?

In this sauteed shrimp recipe, we already have our protein and veggies in one skillet. You barely need to add anything else! But here are a few suggestions, if you're looking for something more to add:

Mediterranean Sauces: Drizzle a bit of tahini or add a dollop of Greek tzatziki or Baba Ganoush!

Sides: Greek lemon rice; plain orzo; or grain of your choice

Starter Salads: Greek salad; Shirazi Salad; or Tabouli

More easy shrimp recipes:

Browse top Mediterranean diet recipes. Browse all Mediterranean recipes

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4.87 from 126 votes

Mediterranean-Style Sauteed Shrimp and Zucchini

Suzy Karadsheh
Mediterranean sauteed shrimp and zucchini with chickpeas, tomatoes and basil
Prep – 10 mins
Cook – 12 mins
Total – 22 mins
Cuisine:
Mediterranean
Serves – 4 people
Course:
Entree

Ingredients
  

  • 1 ½ tablespoon dry oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1 lb large shrimp prawns, peeled, and deveined
  • 2 tablespoon Extra virgin olive oil I used Private Reserve Greek EVOO
  • ½ medium red onion thinly sliced
  • 5 garlic cloves minced and divided
  • 1 bell pepper cored and sliced into sticks
  • 1 to 2 zucchini halved length-wise, sliced into ½ moons (you can use 1 zucchini and 1 yellow squash)
  • 1 cup cooked chickpeas from canned chickpeas, drained
  • 1 ½ cups cherry tomatoes halved
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • Pinch black pepper
  • 1 large lemon juice of
  • Handful fresh basil leaves torn or sliced into ribbons (you can use a different herb, depending on what’s available to you)

Instructions
 

  • In a small bowl, combine the spices (oregano, cumin, coriander, and paprika.)
  • Pat shrimp dry and season with kosher salt and 1 ½ teaspoon of the spice mixture. Set aside briefly or refrigerate till later. (Reserve the remaining spice mixture for the vegetables.)
  • In a large cast iron skillet, heat 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and ½ the amount of garlic and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, tossing regularly till fragrant (do not allow the garlic to burn.)
  • Add zucchini, bell peppers, and chickpeas. Season with salt and pepper and the remaining spice mixture. Toss to combine. If needed, raise the heat just a bit and cook the veggies until tender, tossing regularly (about 5 to 7 minutes.)
  • Transfer the veggies to a large plate for now. Return the skillet to the heat and add a little bit of extra virgin olive oil. Add the seasoned shrimp and remaining garlic. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until shrimp is totally pink (about 4 to 5 minutes).
  • Add the cooked vegetables back to the skillet with the shrimp. Add cherry tomatoes and lemon juice. Give everything a good toss. Finish with the fresh basil.

Video

Notes

  • Cook's Tip: Do not overcook the shrimp. Even large shrimp cooks very quickly, so watch carefully, and once it turns from grey to pink in the thickest part, your shrimp is ready.  Depending on the size of your shrimp and how many you have in the pan, this will usually take 4 to 5 minutes.
  • Visit our 0nline shop to browse our selection of extra virgin olive oils (including Private Reserve Greek EVOO) and our all-natural spices, including cumin, coriander, and paprika.

Nutrition

Calories: 298.7kcalCarbohydrates: 23.9gProtein: 29.3gFat: 10.4gSaturated Fat: 1.4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2.2gMonounsaturated Fat: 5.6gCholesterol: 285.8mgSodium: 455mgPotassium: 642.9mgFiber: 6.9gSugar: 7.2gVitamin A: 1483.1IUVitamin C: 81.4mgCalcium: 257.6mgIron: 5.8mg
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I'm Suzy; born and bred right on the shores of the Mediterranean. I'm all about easy, healthy recipes with big Mediterranean flavors. Three values guide my cooking: eat with the seasons; use whole foods; and above all, share! So happy you're here...
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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Made this last night and it was so delicious and filling. Even better, the leftovers make a fantastic salad the next day. I just added some spinach, artichoke hearts and feta cheese, along with a dollop of olive oil.

  2. 5 stars
    This dish was very delicious! It was easy to make and all the ingredients were at hand. My family loved it! Thank you for another great meal.

  3. 5 stars
    This was delicious! I was going to make it for my dad but then I saw the April recipe for Mediterranean Shrimp, very similar. Is that just a slight variation or a different flavor?
    P.S. I love all your dishes!

      1. 5 stars
        Yes! I made the Shrimp and peppers tonight - very different but so delicious! Everyone loved it. Thank you Suzy! ⚘

  4. 4 stars
    Made this tonight with a cast iron skillet on the grill. It was easy and very flavorful. My husband, who is very picky, enjoyed it enough to have more than one helping. Will definitely make again.

  5. 5 stars
    Great recipe, as are so many others you have. I sure wish you had a save feature for a recipe box of some sort. I don't have a printer and really don't know how to save recipes anywhere else, but this and so many others I want to have on repeat. Even writing them down would be hard as I have no space to keep papers. But this was really tasty! Love all your recipes.

    1. Thank you for the feedback, Catherine. We have been looking into this. Unfortunately, we haven't found quite the right tool for our blog, yet. We'll keep trying.

    2. 5 stars
      I save recipes by emailing them to myself using 'share' under 'file.' Then it's a simple matter of putting them into a file!

  6. 5 stars
    Suzy , this was absolutely amazing! My goodness so many magical flavors to amaze the taste buds. I’ll be making this again and again . My Wife is still talking about it . Had to let you know how much we loved it . Now to pick another one of your wonderful recipes to make . Once again, outstanding.

  7. This recipe looks divine, and I will definitely have to try it soon.
    I have a question about something you said in the introduction, and which I've also seen on other pages talking about the Mediterranean Diet. You noted that you and your family eat seafood "twice a week" and said that was what the guidelines for this way of eating described.
    And yet, every piece of literature I've seen about this way of eating says we should have fish and seafood AT LEAST twice per week, meaning that more than twice is fine.
    I'm finding this confusing because according to the pyramid for the Mediterranean Diet, we are supposed to have poultry, dairy, eggs, cheese, and red meats even fewer times per week, and that really starts to limit variety, right? LOL
    I can totally see having fish and seafood for most evening meals and some lunches, which would be about 4-7 times per week.
    I'm just trying to figure this all out to make it work for me and my husband (it's just the two of us).
    Anyway, thank you so much for this great blog, I'm enjoying playing with these recipes a lot.

    1. Hi, Mindy. There are really not exactly set quantities in eating the Mediterranean way... just guidelines. The focus is more on the overall pattern of eating. My family typically eats seafood twice a week, sometimes more, sometimes less. It really depends on what suits you, and what your healthcare professional recommends. If you search our recipes archive page you'll find a lot of variety listed by category for breakfast, entrees, seafood, meat & poultry, etc. Hope that helps!

  8. I feel dopey writing this on a site so dedicated to fresh fresh FRESH, but...does anyone ever use frozen shrimp instead of fresh? Just wondering because Costco sells frozen shrimp that isn't as pricey as our local supermarket. If I defrost it and wipe off the moisture with a paper towel before using, would it turn out pretty well? I do love shrimp (in restaurants) but I never make it at home because I can't bring myself to spend $20+ a pound on a protein. Any opinions on this? (And if you do use frozen shrimp, what is the best way to defrost it: under cold running water, or just leave it on the counter?)

    1. Hi, Lori! Frozen shrimp is totally fine to use. To defrost, I usually place in the refrigerator overnight, or empty the package into a colander and run COLD water over the shrimp until they are completely thawed.

      1. 5 stars
        Suzy, thanks for the reassurance that frozen shrimp is fine, and for your defrosting tips. But before you'd answered I went home and discovered that I had all the ingredients for this dish, except shrimp--so I subbed diced chicken thighs instead. You really are a mistress of spices! It was so flavorful. Served it with your Greek Lemon Rice. It made for a wonderful meal that I will repeat...with shrimp OR chicken!

  9. 5 stars
    Wow! This was delicious! I had everything on hand and it was a wonderful recipe to use all the beautiful fresh produce and herbs. My husband commented three times during dinner how tasty it was...thank you! I served it over orzo.

  10. 5 stars
    Made this tonight. Just finished eating it and was DELICIOUS. My hubby is going back for seconds as I write this. I love your recipes. Thanks for bringing freshness and goodness back into our lives.

  11. 5 stars
    Made this tonight in a limited kitchen since were not home. My spice mixture was S & P, paprika, cumin, oregano and red pepper flakes. The veggies were garlic, red onion, zucchini, spinach and cherry tomatoes. The chickpeas were added. Great dinner with a lot of flavor. I’d back off on the amount Of cumin but I had to eyeball everything and could not measure.

  12. This is a great recipe! I made this tonight for my family. Had brown rice on the side and used Italian spices because I didn’t have oregano. Everyone had seconds! Will definitely be making this again!

  13. I added mushrooms instead of chickpeas because that’s what I had. Came out perfectly! Excellent recipe!

    1. Hi Sue, any skillet will work for this recipe, but I prefer cast iron because it holds and distributes heat evenly which is idea for skillet recipes.

  14. 5 stars
    I was looking for something different to make with shrimp and came across this recipe. It is so, so good! My husband declared it a keeper, and he's not a big fan of zucchini. The spice combination is what really makes this dish. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

  15. Hi, thank you for a wonderful recipe! I always find myself reaching for that zucchini whenever I have shrimp - the combination along with lemony flavour and basil fragrance is definitely delicious!

    Unfortunately, for some reason my garlic and onions werent sauteed but rather like steaming. They didnt turn brown and I think it might be the virgin olive oil. Did anyone have that as well? I added sunflower oil and then veggies, but they were like stir-fry rather than roasted or sauteed. Shrimps were fine but when I mixed veggies back in , zucchini started releasing the juice. So, i feel like the dish turned out to be more watery than I’d expect but taste and smell is still good. Any tips to avoid this in the future?

    Thank you

    1. Hi there. Thanks for sharing! I have not had the issue you mention with this dish before. Actually, quality extra virgin olive oil should absolutely saute the veggies well at the right temperature (you may have to adjust the heat depending on what your stove is like, and of course the right EVOO is essential to begin with.) The zucchini should have released its juices the first time when it was cooked with salt and seasonings, so that once it is added back, it is a matter of warming up. I do use a cast iron skillet, which is another way to ensure everything is cooked evenly

  16. 5 stars
    Thank you so much for this incredible recipe! It was so incredible. I added a dollop of greek yogurt on top and a sprinkle of extra paprika and it was divine.