Seafood Pasta Salad (Shrimp Pasta Salad)

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  • A light and refreshing Seafood Pasta Salad recipe for a lunch you can enjoy all week or side dish for get togethers! This Shrimp Pasta Salad is so easy and uses just a few ingredients. It’s the ultimate summer pasta salad!

    seafood pasta salad

    It’s no secret that I love pasta salad. It is the ultimate spring and summer side dish or refreshing lunch. This Seafood Pasta Salad is a great recipe for summer get togethers like Memorial Day, the 4th of July, Labor Day and more! Cold pasta salad is also a great addition to any outdoor gathering!

    Over the years I’ve shared several easy pasta salad recipes. My ever popular Light and Easy Pasta Salad Recipe, Italian Pasta Salad, Lemon Basil Pasta Salad and Mexican Pasta Salad are always a hit.

    shrimp pasta salad

    The idea for this Shrimp Pasta Salad recipe stemmed from my insanely popular White Wine Sauce recipe. It’s light, low in calories and the perfect bed for shrimp, scallops and crab.

    I adapted it to make an easy summer pasta salad to enjoy during nice weather. In the spring and summer months get togethers are never in a shortage. I like to take an easy, standout, crowd pleasing dish that looks as pretty as it tastes.

    This Seafood Pasta Salad is quick and easy to make. It comes together in minutes and can be made in advance. It’s also easy to tote for get togethers, barbecues and beach picnics.

    how to make seafood pasta salad

    This Shrimp Pasta Salad is loaded with flavor. I like to toss it with crab meat, too! Lobster and scallops also taste amazing in this summer pasta salad. 

    It’s mixed with a white wine dressing, grated parmesan and topped with fresh parsley. It’s a Seafood Pasta Salad without mayonnaise. That means it’s great for outdoor entertaining. It keeps much better.

    You can use your favorite pasta. I love the way corkscrew (also known as cellentani) looks and holds up, but any will do! Some favorites include macaroni, bow tie and penne.

    If you want to add a little more color, use a tri-colored pasta!

    seafood pasta salad with real crab meat

    What Kind of Crab Meat Should I Use for Shrimp Pasta Salad?

    I wanted to make this Seafood Pasta Salad with real crab meat. I am always a little leery given we live smack dab in the middle of the US and it’s not always easily accessible. I’m not in favor of imitation crab or imitation anything, but you can substitute it if you wish.

    shrimp pasta salad ingredients

    My friend gave me a great tip! Use lump crab meat. It is usually located in the refrigerated section of your grocery store, near fresh seafood. She eats it straight out of the can. It’s so incredible!

    summer pasta salad with shrimp

    Tips for the Best Summer Pasta Salad

    Prepare Noodles Al Dente

    Don’t overcook your noodles, prepare them al dente. This will prevent your pasta salad from becoming mushy and toss easier. Overcooking your noodles will result in a mushier pasta salad.

    Rinse Pasta with Cold Water

    After straining noodles, rinse them with cold water. This shocks them and will help them stand up to the pasta salad dressing. Allow your pasta to cool before adding the pasta salad dressing and ingredients.

    Refrigerate Before Serving

    Let your pasta salad marinate. The best pasta salads are made in advance to allow the dressing to soak into your bow tie pasta and toppings. This makes it so flavorful!

    dressing for seafood pasta salad

    Shrimp Pasta Salad Recipe with White Wine Dressing

    This easy summer pasta salad is tossed in a white wine salad dressing. It’s the best of both worlds, or should I say all three? Seafood, pasta and salad!

    Summer is a great time to lighten up recipes. In lieu of the traditional creamy dressing that is typically used in shrimp pasta salad I use a white wine dressing. 

    The blend of olive oil, butter, white wine, salt, and red pepper is so light, yet flavorful. It’s a great recipe for those counting calories wanting a pasta salad fix. It has just 198 calories a serving (side dish portion).

    If you want to add a even more spice to this Seafood Pasta Salad recipe, use a little Old Bay.

    You can use your favorite dry white wine like a Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio. You can also use white cooking wine.

    How to Make Seafood Pasta Salad

    1. You can get the full printable recipe below but I like to break it down into more detail for those who prefer it. This shrimp pasta salad recipe comes together start to finish in 15 minutes!
    2. Boil your pasta al dente.
    3. Drain your noodles and rinse them in cold water. 
    4. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine olive oil, melted butter, white wine, crushed red pepper, salt and pepper.
    5. Add pasta, shrimp, crab meat, and parmesan. I like to layer it because fresh grated parmesan and crab meat can tend to lump together. That way it tosses evenly.
    6. Garnish with fresh parsley, green onions or crushed red pepper.
    7. Refrigerate until serving, at least 2+ hours to allow the dressing to soak into the pasta and seafood.
    pretty pasta salad
    5 from 5 votes

    Seafood Pasta Salad (Shrimp Pasta Salad)

    A light and refreshing Seafood Pasta Salad recipe for a lunch you can enjoy all week or side dish for get togethers! This Shrimp Pasta Salad is so easy and uses just a few ingredients. It's the ultimate summer pasta salad!A light and refreshing Seafood Pasta Salad recipe for a lunch you can enjoy all week or side dish for get togethers!

    Course Side Dish
    Cuisine American
    Keyword 4th of July, crab, dairy free, easy recipe, light, memorial day, mothers day, pasta salad, seafood, shrimp, summer, vegetarian
    Prep Time 5 minutes
    Cook Time 15 minutes
    Refrigerate 2 hours
    Total Time 20 minutes
    Servings 16
    Calories 198 kcal


    • 1 lb pasta
    • 1/4 c olive oil
    • 5 Tbsp butter melted
    • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper {or to taste}
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp ground pepper fresh cracked to taste
    • 1/2 c white wine {can use cooking wine}
    • 2 c shrimp
    • 6 oz lump crab meat
    • 1 c fresh grated parmesan
    • parsley or chives to garnish


    1. Prepare noodles according to instructions on the box. Drain and rinse in cold water. Set aside.
    2. In a jar, combine olive oil, butter, red pepper, salt, pepper and white wine. Shake well.
    3. Toss with pasta, shrimp, crab meat and parmesan.
    4. Garnish with chives or parsley and red pepper flakes for a little more kick.
    5. Refrigerate 2+ hours before serving to allow it to marinate.

    Recipe Notes

    Purchase lump crab meat in the refrigerated section of your grocery store, usually located near fresh seafood. 


    • Can substitute imitation crab.
    • Spice it up with Old Bay seasoning.

    Use your favorite pasta.

    Nutrition Facts
    Seafood Pasta Salad (Shrimp Pasta Salad)
    Amount Per Serving
    Calories 198 Calories from Fat 63
    % Daily Value*
    Total Fat 7g 11%
    Saturated Fat 2g 10%
    Cholesterol 54mg 18%
    Sodium 393mg 16%
    Potassium 103mg 3%
    Total Carbohydrates 21g 7%
    Protein 8g 16%
    Vitamin A 2.6%
    Vitamin C 1.7%
    Calcium 3.6%
    Iron 4.5%
    * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

    Originally published April 2018

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