This easy, delicious, spicy shrimp and sausage pasta red sauce is inspired by both Cajun and Mexican cuisine. It has a deep and complex flavor from smoked paprika, smoked Andouille sausages and chipotle pepper in adobo sauce. The Andouille sausage is hearty and smoky and the shrimp add great contrast with their light, sea-salty flavor. And the recipe comes together in just 30 minutes!
If you like Cajun-inspired food you might also enjoy this Cajun marinade for chicken!
Ingredient notes and substitutions:
- Andouille is a smoked sausage made from pork meat and it adds great flavor to this pasta sauce. (It's also delicious in soups, such as this sweet potato Andouille soup or even by itself with this sausage dipping sauce.) You can get Andouille either raw or pre-cooked and I recommend pre-cooked sausage for this recipe.
- You can use any size shrimp that you like and cut it into bite-sized chunks. I recommend to get uncooked shrimp for best flavor.
- If jalapeno pepper is not available you can substitute ¼ green bell pepper instead.
- Both the sausage and the shrimp are cut into bite-sized pieces in this recipe so you get either meat or seafood in every bite. And because there is shrimp and sausage in this sauce you don't get the same thing in every bite. That adds a lot of complexity and makes for a really satisfying meal. (That is also why this shrimp and chorizo combination works really well!)
How to make it:
See full ingredients & instructions in the recipe card below!
Step 1. Cook the pasta. Meanwhile, prep vegetables, sausage and shrimp.
Step 2. Brown sausage and shrimp.
Step 3. Saute vegetables.
Step 4. Add spices, tomato and chicken broth.
Step 5. Add sausage and shrimp back to the sauce, then bring to a simmer.
Step 6. Stir in cream.
How spicy is this sauce?
This sauce is quite spicy. The chipotle chili, the adobo sauce and the smoked hot paprika powder all pack quite a bit of heat.
How to serve the sauce:
Serve the sauce with long- or short-cut pasta. You can also serve it with rice. It tastes delicious that way as well.
For another delicious meaty tomato sauce also check out this chorizo and bacon pasta recipe!
How to store leftovers:
You can store the sauce in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 day. Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop. (Don't store the sauce along with pasta because the pasta will soak the moisture out of the sauce and dry it out.)
About chipotle pepper in adobo sauce:
Chipotle peppers start as jalapeno peppers that are left to ripen on the vine until they turn red in color. Then they are dried, smoked, cooked and canned in a tomato-based sauce to make chipotle peppers in adobo sauce.
The pepper and the sauce add a great smoky and spicy flavor and because both are wet, they keep sauces nicely "saucy."
Transfer the remaining contents of the can into a small glass jar and keep in the fridge for up to about a month. (Don't store in a plastic container because it will stain.) You can use the remaining chipotle pepper in this spicy cilantro salad dressing or this chipotle mayo sauce for shrimp tacos.
More delicious red sauces for pasta:
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Full Printable Recipe
Shrimp and Sausage Pasta Red Sauce
- measuring cups and spoons
- knife and cutting board
- garlic press (optional)
- nonstick pan or cast iron pan
- slotted spoon
- wooden spoon
- 8 ounces uncooked pasta*
- 3 ounces raw shrimp**, thawed, peeled and deveined
- 6 ounces pre-cooked smoked Andouille sausage
- 1 large jalapeno pepper***
- ¼ of a medium-sized yellow onion (about 2 ounces)
- 1 garlic clove
- 2 teaspoons mild olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon smoked hot paprika powder
- ½ cup chicken broth
- 1 cup canned crushed tomatoes (about 9 ounces)
- 1 teaspoon finely diced canned chipotle pepper (from a can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce)
- 1 teaspoon canned adobo sauce (from the can of chipotle peppers)
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- fresh thyme as garnish (optional)
- Cook the pasta to desired doneness, then drain, cover and set aside.
- While the pasta cooks, prepare the meat and the vegetables: Cut shrimp into bite-sized chunks. Cut sausage into half moon pieces. Remove ribs and seeds from jalapeno pepper, then finely dice jalapeno pepper and onion. Mince or press garlic clove. Set aside.
- Heat the oil in a nonstick pan, then cook the shrimp and the sausage until the shrimp are cooked and the sausage is starting to brown (about 4 minutes). Transfer to a bowl using a slotted spoon.
- Add onion and jalapeno pepper to the pan and saute until starting to soften (about 3 minutes). (There should be enough fat in the pan from the previous step, so you don't need to add any.)
- Add the garlic and cook until fragrant (about 30 seconds).
- Stir in the paprika powder, then the chicken broth, canned crushed tomato, chipotle pepper, adobo sauce, thyme and tomato paste.
- Add the shrimp and sausage back in and bring to a simmer. Turn the heat off, stir in the cream and serve with the pasta. Sprinkle with fresh thyme (optional).
Nutrition Information (Estimated):
Nutrition values provided on this website are generated from a nutrition database and are estimates only. The accuracy of the nutrition information for any recipe on this website is not guaranteed. Nutrition values can vary quite a lot depending on which brands are used.