Shrimp Scampi Meatballs in Garlicky Broth

Photo: Romulo Yanes
Prep Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
25 mins

For even more delicious shrimp flavor, simmer the shrimp shells in the chicken broth and then strain before adding it to the cooked garlic.


  • Coarse salt

  • ½ pound spaghetti

  • ¾ pound shrimp, peeled and deveined, roughly chopped

  • ½ cup plain dried breadcrumbs

  • ¼ teaspoon red-pepper flakes

  • ½ cup whole milk

  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest, divided, plus wedges for serving

  • ¼ pound ground white-meat chicken

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

  • 4 cups chicken broth

  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh parsley


  1. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; drain.

  2. Meanwhile, in a food processor, pulse shrimp until finely chopped. In a large bowl, combine breadcrumbs, red-pepper flakes, and 1 teaspoon salt. Stir in milk and 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest. Fold in shrimp and chicken until just combined (do not overmix).

  3. In a large pot, melt butter over medium. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add broth and 2 cups water and bring to a rapid simmer.

  4. Drop shrimp mixture by heaping tablespoons into broth. Cook meatballs at a gentle simmer until opaque throughout, about 5 minutes, turning halfway through. Divide pasta among 4 bowls and top with broth and meatballs. Combine remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon zest with parsley and sprinkle over soup. Squeeze lemon wedges over soup and serve.

Cook's Notes

Adding a little ground chicken to these meatballs prevents the shrimp from becoming tough during cooking.

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