Bursting with Mediterranean flavor, Shrimp Saganaki is a simple dish you’ll make again and again! Succulent shrimp are combined with tomatoes, olives, and feta and baked until bubbly. Serve with warm pitas, orzo, or rice pilaf for a complete and delicious meal!

Shrimp saganaki in cast iron pan.


I have always loved Greek food, but it wasn’t until recently that I made Shrimp Saganaki and knew I had to share the recipe with you immediately.

I make it as a main course for my family, but it also makes a tasty appetizer!

If you love Mediterranean ingredients like olives, feta, and tomatoes, this shrimp saganaki recipe is for you!

Recipe Ingredients

All ingredients for this recipe are shown in the pic below and special notes are made in this bulleted list to assist you.

Ingredients shown: parsley, lemons, onion, cherry tomatoes, garlic, feta, oregano, kalamata olives, chili flakes, olive oil, shrimp, canned tomatoes, honey, wine, and baking soda.
  • Shrimp. Use U26 or larger shrimp. To save time buy shrimp that are already peeled and deveined. As with most of my shrimp recipes, I brine them for 10-15 minutes using a combo of salt and baking soda because I find it helps the shrimp stay plump.
  • Feta. If possible, use a block of brined feta cheese for the best possible results.
  • Tomatoes. You can use all canned tomatoes (28-ounce can) or split it up with ha;f canned/half cherry tomatoes which makes the dish look amazing!
  • Wine. You can use Ouzo for more authentic results but Pernod or dry white wine is also completely fine. If using dry white wine, use double the amount.

See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.

How to make it

Each number corresponds to the numbered written steps below.

  1. Dry off 2 pounds of extra large (U26 or larger) shrimp with paper towels and place in a large bowl along with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda, 1 teaspoon of Diamond Crystal kosher salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes. Mix well and let the shrimp sit for 10-15 minutes. (Photo #1)
  2. While the shrimp are brining, dice 1 medium onion and slice 8 cloves of garlic. Slice 12 ounces of cherry tomatoes in half, mince 1/4 tablespoon of flat-leaf Italian parsley, and slice 1 large lemon into wedges and set aside. Heat a large cast iron or stainless steel pan (or other oven-safe pan) to a touch higher than medium heat and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Once the oil shimmers and is hot, add the shrimp and cook for just 30 seconds per side, then remove the shrimp and place on a plate that’s tented with foil. Cook the shrimp in batches to prevent overcrowding the pan. (Photo #2)
Shrimp saganaki recipe collage group one showing shrimp in bowl, searing shrimp, and sauteing onions and garlic.
  1. Set the oven rack to the second highest level and preheat the broiler. Place the same pan back on the burner over medium heat and add 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil and the onion. Cook the onion until soft, about 7 minutes, then add the garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes or until fragrant. (Photo #3)
  2. Add 1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes and cook for 30 seconds more. (Photo #4)
  3. Add 1/4 cup of Ouzo or a 1/2 cup dry white wine and bring to a boil. (Photo #5)
  4. Once the Ouzo has mostly evaporated, add 1 14-ounce can of diced tomatoes and the halved cherry tomatoes and bring the sauce to a lively simmer. Add 1 tablespoon of honey and 2 teaspoons of dried Greek oregano and simmer the sauce until some of the liquid evaporates, about 5-10 minutes. Taste test the sauce and season with salt and pepper if needed, but don’t go heavy on the salt since feta and olives will be added in the next step and both are quite salty. (Photo #6)
Recipe collage two showing deglazing pan with wine, making sauce, adding shrimp and feta to the pan, and the broiled finished dish.
  1. Add the shrimp back to the pan and top with 3/4 cup of crumbled feta and 1/3 cup of pitted kalamata olives. (Photo #7)
  2. Place the pan in the oven and broil for about 6 minutes or until the shrimp are cooked through and the cheese has browned and melted a bit. Remove from the oven and top with the fresh parsley. Spoon the shrimp and sauce onto plates and serve with lemon wedges and warm pita to mop up the outrageously delicious sauce. Enjoy! (Photo #8)

Top tips

  • Shrimp. I am asked all the time where I find fresh shrimp. The answer is, I don’t! Almost all shrimp purchased in the US is previously frozen. That “fresh” shrimp at the fish counter has most likely been previously frozen. Costco has great prices on frozen shrimp, so if you have a membership I suggest buying it there. For Shrimp Saganaki I recommend using large or extra large shrimp, U26 or larger.
  • Salt. Since olives and feta are both salty, be careful when adding any additional salt.
  • The pan. Be sure to use a pan that is oven safe. The beauty of shrimp saganaki is that it’s cooked in one pan, then popped under the broiler to finish and allow the feta to melt and form a creamy and delicious sauce.

Shrimp saganki on white plate with lemon wedge and parsley garnish.

More Mediterranean recipes

If the flavors in shrimp saganaki get your taste buds going, you’ll love these other recipes too!

If you’ve enjoyed this Shrimp Saganaki Recipe or any recipe on this site, give it a 5-star rating and tell us about it in the comments below.

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Shrimp Saganaki

5 from 5 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 40 minutes
Servings: 4
Shrimp Saganaki is a Greek dish that combines succulent shrimp, kalamata olives, tomatoes, and feta and is bursting with wonderful Mediterranean flavor!

Ingredients 

For the shrimp

  • 2 pounds extra large shrimp U26 or larger
  • 1/4 cup olive oil divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon Diamond Crystal Kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

Completing the dish

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 8 cloves garlic sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup Ouzo or 1/2 cup of dry white wine
  • 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 12 ounces cherry tomatoes halved
  • 2 teaspoons dried Greek oregano
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 3/4 cup feta plus more for serving
  • 1/3 cup kalamata olives pitted
  • 1/4 tablespoon flat-leaf Italian parsley minced
  • 1 large lemon cut into wedges, for serving
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions 

For the shrimp

  • Dry off the shrimp with paper towels. Mix the shrimp with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, baking soda, crushed red pepper flakes, and salt. Let the shrimp sit for at least 10 minutes before searing in next step.
  • Heat a large cast iron or stainless steel pan (needs to be oven safe) with the remaining olive oil to a touch higher than medium heat. Once shimmering, add the shrimp and cook for only 30 seconds per side. Work in batches to not overcrowd the shrimp. Place the seared shrimp in a plate and tent with foil.

Completing the shrimp saganaki

  • Set the oven rack to the second highest level and preheat the broiler.
  • Heat the same pan to medium heat and add the olive oil and onion. Cook the onion until soft (about 7 minutes) then add the garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes or until fragrant.
  • Add the crushed red pepper flakes and cook for 30 seconds, then add the ouzo or white wine and bring to a boil. Once the wine mostly evaporates, add the tomatoes and bring the sauce to a lively simmer. Add the oregano and honey and continue to simmer the sauce to evaporate some of the liquid (about 5-10 minutes). Taste test the sauce and season with salt and pepper if required. Don't go heavy on the salt though, because a lot of feta and olives are about to get added!
  • Add the shrimp to the sauce and top with the feta cheese and kalamata olives.  Broil for ~6 minutes or until the shrimp are cooked through and the cheese has melted.
  • Remove shrimp from the oven and top with the parsley. Spoon the shrimp and sauce onto plates and serve with lemon wedges and pita bread to mop up all of the delicious sauce. Enjoy!

Notes

  • Only sear the shrimp for 30 seconds per side since they will finish cooking in the broiler.
  • Pernod can be subbed for Ouzo in the same proportions.  Use double the amount of dry white wine (1/2 cup instead of a 1/4 cup)  if not using Ouzo or Pernod.
  • Because feta and kalamata olives are very salty, go easy on seasoning the sauce with extra salt.
  • Leftovers can be saved in the fridge for up to 3 days and can be reheated in the microwave, though this dish is best eaten right away.

Nutrition

Calories: 599kcal | Protein: 62.4g | Fat: 21.9g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 509mg | Sodium: 1373mg | Potassium: 2119mg | Fiber: 9.2g | Sugar: 24.7g | Calcium: 389mg | Iron: 3mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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10 Comments

  1. Arlene Youngman says:

    5 stars
    Shrimp Saganaki is absolutely delicious! Very easy recipe. Does not disappoint 😊 enjoy following you on instagram and it’s great how you include your family.

  2. Jennifer Bauchler says:

    5 stars
    Made this recipe for my family and they loved it. Thank you for your delicious recipes.

  3. annmarie says:

    can you make it without the cheese? or do you recommend a different one instead of Feta? PS: is there a video to go with this?
    Thanks again for ALL you share and do.

    1. Tara says:

      Hi Annmarie, saganaki by definition is a Greek dish consisting of just cheese, so shrimp saganaki is a riff on that. Of course you can make it without the cheese, but it’s meant to be made with cheese. Jim will do a video for this one but he hasn’t filmed it yet. We hope you enjoy!

      1. James H. Longstreet says:

        I made this last night and it was nothing short of fantastic. Since there’s only two of us I made a 1/2 recipe. I used white wine, since that was what I had. Although it’s likely even better with ouzo, more authentic, we were more than satisfied with our results. The sauce is is amazing! A perfect accompaniment to the loaf of No-Knead Sesame Bread I made earlier in the day.

        1. Gail says:

          5 stars
          I made your Shrimp Saganaki tonight. I followed the recipe as written and it was amazing. My husband hasn’t stopped complimenting our dinner. Thank you!

  4. Wendi says:

    5 stars
    Your instructions were spot on, and made it real easy to make this recipe. Absolutely love it and I love that it’s not too saucy.

    1. Tara says:

      We’re so happy you enjoyed it, Wendi!

  5. Ann Keys says:

    This recipe looks particularly good to me (as do all of your recipes). This is definitely a keeper!

    Thanks James and Tara!

  6. Marie says:

    5 stars
    Always delicious recipes. Very clear instructions too, which is important to me. Thank you for sharing them.