Shrimp Rasta Pasta consists of softened bell peppers, tomatoes and cheesy coconut sauce that’s flavored with jerk seasoning to give it that Caribbean flair. The sauce is then tossed with fettuccine pasta and succulent shrimp.
This dish is cuisine fusion at its best, offering you a mix of Jamaican and Italian flavors and textures in just over 30 minutes!
❤️ Why you'll love this recipe
- It’s a simple Caribbean-Italian seafood pasta dish that anyone can feel confident about cooking with amazing Jamaican and Italian flavors!
- The sauce in this dish is a tasty alternative to Alfredo sauce while still providing that “comfort-food” factor.
- This vibrant and colorful dish can be adapted to suit various preferences.
This creamy and flavorful Shrimp Rasta Pasta is perfect for any midweek dinner, ready to be served in just 35 minutes!
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Note: The full list of this Jamaican rasta pasta with shrimp recipe ingredients with their amounts and options are listed in the recipe card below.
- olive oil
- raw medium-size shrimp-- cleaned and deveined
- fresh small onion
- green bell pepper( if you like SPICY add a Scotch Bonnet or jalapeños instead)
- orange bell pepper
- red bell pepper
- fresh garlic
- Jamaican jerk seasoning
- Fire roasted tomatoes (canned)- may also use diced tomatoes
- coconut milk - may use heavy cream instead
- fresh grated Parmesan cheese
- fettuccine pasta
- salt and pepper
Note: This is an overview of the instructions. The full instructions are in the recipe card below.
- Heat oil in a large pan on medium-high heat and prepare the bell peppers and onions.
- Cook the bell peppers and onion for about 5 minutes to soften them.
- Add in the jerk seasoning, garlic, salt, and pepper, and mix.
- Continue to cook for another minute, stirring throughout.
- Stir in the fire-roasted tomatoes, cooking for 5 minutes so that the tomatoes and juice are cooked down.
- In another pan or skillet, cook the shrimp and then set it aside.
- Add the coconut milk to the softened and seasoned vegetables and allow it to simmer for about 5 minutes to thicken the sauce. While the sauce is simmering, cook the fettuccine pasta.
- Stir in the Parmesan cheese and remove from heat.
- Drain the pasta and then toss in the sauce.
- Add in the cooked shrimp and serve!
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You’ll need the following items to make this recipe successfully.
- large skillet
- sharp knife
- cutting board
- pasta pot
- measuring cups
- liquid measuring cup
- measuring spoons
These are the questions we are most frequently asked about making Rasta Pasta with Shrimp Recipe.
Rasta pasta consists of vegetables such as onions, tomatoes, and bell peppers, cream (or coconut milk), pasta, and jerk seasoning. I’ve also included shrimp in my recipe but it can be omitted for a vegetarian dish.
This Caribbean-inspired rasta pasta was first invented by Chef Lorraine Washington in 1986 when she served this dish to construction workers who observed how the ingredients resembled Rasta colors! While the vibrant colors of the dish led to the name of this recipe, it’s in no way associated with Rastafarianism.
Rasta pasta is made with three simple steps. First, saute and season the vegetables in a skillet and add the cream or coconut oil with cheese to make the sauce. Next, cook the shrimp and boil the pasta separately. Finally, toss the shrimp and pasta in the sauce with vegetables.
Rasta Pasta is a Jamaican-Italian restaurant owned by Mary Neglia and Magnus Patterson in Toronto, Canada. It’s become such a hit among the Kensington market goers that a new sister bar is soon to open in the area.
- You only need to cook your pasta until it is al dente since it will continue to cook when combined in the saucepan with the other ingredients.
- You can stop the pasta from clumping by either running it under cold water or adding some olive oil to it while you are preparing the sauce, veggies, and shrimp.
- Make sure that your shrimp is adequately cleaned and deveined before seasoning and cooking. Feel free to use regular-sized shrimp, small shrimp, or even jumbo shrimp when making this dish. It’s also important that you don’t overcook the shrimp since they will cook further once combined with the veggies, pasta, and sauce in the saucepan.
- If you’ve chosen to use pre-cooked or leftover cooked shrimps, only add them to the pasta towards the end of the recipe so that they don’t become tough and rubbery.
- If the sauce becomes too thick while simmering, add in a few tablespoons of water (regular water or reserved pasta water), chicken stock, or cream (regular cream or coconut milk).
- For a gluten-free dish, use gluten-free pasta.
- I’ve used fettuccine pasta for this shrimp rasta pasta recipe but feel free to use your favorite pasta instead. Penne, rigatoni, or ziti are great alternatives since they’re easy to toss in the sauce.
- Salmon or prawns can be used instead of shrimp. In fact, you could also experiment with chicken!
- Make this dish vegetarian by leaving out any animal protein and adding in extra vegetables such as mushrooms, zucchini, or eggplant.
- You can use regular cream instead of coconut milk if you like.
- This dish can be made vegan by omitting shrimp and parmesan cheese. Nutritional yeast can be mixed in to add a cheesy flavor.
- Adjust the spice level of this dish by including some paprika, cayenne pepper, or sliced jalapenos mixed in with the bell peppers.
- The canned fire-roasted tomatoes can be replaced with canned diced tomatoes or Ro-Tel tomatoes.
Shrimp Rasta Pasta can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in a skillet, adding in some water, chicken stock, or cream should the stored pasta have soaked up a lot of sauce during storage.
You could also freeze this dish for up to 1 month, but I prefer to eat seafood as soon as possible.
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📞 Chiacchierata (chat)
Shrimp rasta pasta always gets me excited, especially since I don’t have to choose between Jamaican and Italian cuisine! The combination of flavors from these flavor profiles is a match made in culinary heaven!
If you’re looking for an extremely flavorful dish that you can make with simple ingredients and in just over 30 minutes, then I highly recommend my shrimp rasta pasta - I get rave reviews from the family all the time!
And another shrimp pasta recipe that gets rave reviews at our house is the vegetable loaded Shrimp Pasta Primavera recipe. A light lemony vinaigrette is all that the dish needs for an absolutely fantastic dinner.
And if you're in the mood to travel down memory lane, you have to make this family favorite, Classic Chop Suey. The ingredients are very basic and the condiments are simple ones you have in your pantry.
Tutti a tavolo, è pronto!
What's new? Check out my All Our Way Store on Amazon. We'll be adding more items we love and use or wish we had to make cooking fun and easy.
📝 Recipe Card
Shrimp Rasta Pasta is a creamy and spicy pasta dish with succulent shrimp and sauteed vegetables. The jerk seasoning provides that classic Caribbean flavor while the Alfredo-like sauce and pasta offer an Italian twist.
This seafood pasta recipe is incredibly comforting and can be made in just 35 minutes!
If you love this recipe please give it 5 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.
Shrimp Rasta Pasta
For the Jerk Shrimp
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound raw shrimp medium-size peeled and deveined
- 1½ Tablespoon Jamaican jerk seasoning
- salt and pepper to taste
For the Rasta Pasta
- 2 Tablespoons Olive oil
- 1 Onion small, chopped.
- 1 Green bell pepper sliced, may use jalapeños, habañero, or Scotch bonnet for heat.
- 1 Red bell pepper sliced.
- 1 Orange bell pepper sliced.
- 3 Cloves garlic chopped.
- 1½ Tablespoon Jamaican jerk seasoning
- Salt and Pepper to your taste.
- 14 ounces Fire roasted tomatoes you may also use canned diced tomatoes.
- 1 cup Coconut milk may use heavy cream instead but you won't get that traditional coconut flavor
- 1 cup Parmesan cheese freshly grated - may use more as needed.
- 8 ounces Fettuccine pasta may use another pasta if desired.
For the Jerk Shrimp:
- Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat.
- Season the shrimp with the Jamaican jerk seasonings, salt and pepper.
- Add the shrimp to the pan and cook until the shrimp turns pink, about 2 minutes. Remove from the pan and set aside.
For the Rasta Pasta
- Heat 2 Tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan on medium high heat and add the onion and peppers. Cook them for about 4 minutes to soften.
- Add the garlic and 1 Tablespoon Jamaican jerk seasoning with the salt and pepper to your taste. Cook and stirring for 1 minutes.
- Stir in the tomatoes. Cook for 5 minutes to cook down the tomatoes and juice.
- Add the coconut milk and simmer for 5 minutes to thicken up the sauce. If it gets too thick add a few tablespoons of water, chicken stock, or cream.
- Stir in the Shrimp and Parmesan cheese and remove from heat.
- While the Rasta Pasta is simmering, cook the fettuccine pasta according to the package directions. Drain and toss with the sauce.