black squid pasta with green olives and shrimp

Shrimp and Green Olive Pasta

Last Updated on July 25, 2023

Green olives and shrimp pair so well together. The pink seafood and briny green fruit have beautiful color contrast, and the acidity in green olives brings out the shrimp’s gentle flavors.

Furthermore, the textures of the two ingredients are more alike than they seem, especially when quickly sauteed.

This recipe is quick to prep and cook, and all the elements can be ready to go for a ready-in-minutes dinner party entree. Just have the lemons juiced, boiling water ready, and skillet set up to wow guests. The dish can be served plated or from a giant platter or bowl, and easily doubled or even tripled in quantity. 

olives and shrimp with black pasta

Shrimp and Green Olive Pasta

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Protein: Fish / Seafood
Cut: Wild Gulf Shrimp
Course: Main Course
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 2 people


  • 8 ounces ButcherBox wild-caught raw shrimp defrosted
  • 1 lemon
  • 4 cloves garlic peeled and minced
  • cup pitted green olives such as Castelvetrano
  • kosher salt to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 8 ounces long pasta like spaghetti or linguine—black squid ink pasta is dramatic but not necessary 🙂
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 ounce vermouth or sweet white wine or non-alcoholic verjus
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • fresh parsley or soft herbs for garnish optional
  • chili flakes optional


  • Zest and juice lemon into a small bowl. Add ¼ of minced garlic and a pinch of salt. Set aside. Roughly chop green olives. Pat shrimp dry and season with salt and pepper on all sides.
  • Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta until al dente. Drain and set aside, reserving ½ cup pasta water.
  • Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in remaining garlic and then add shrimp and olives, cooking for one minute per side until the flesh is pink in color. Don’t worry if it’s not completely cooked through. Add vermouth to the pan and cook, stirring, scraping any bits off the bottom of the pan. Let it bubble a minute, then lower heat.
  • Stir in pasta, lemon mixture, and butter. Toss until thoroughly coated. If the sauce seems too thick, add in pasta water by the splash. Taste and adjust seasoning, then garnish with fresh herbs and chili flakes, if desired.
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Melissa is a writer and recipe developer living in Brooklyn.  She contributes to several national publications including the New York Times, New York Magazine, Marie Claire, Conde Nast Traveler, WSJ Magazine, Real Simple, Time Out, Thrillist, Eater, Glamour and many more.