Spain on a Fork > All Recipes > Tapas > Spicy Spanish Garlic Shrimp Recipe – Gambas al Pil Pil
All Recipes, Tapas / April 7, 2018

Spicy Spanish Garlic Shrimp Recipe – Gambas al Pil Pil

This Spicy Spanish Garlic Shrimp Recipe, known as Gambas al Pil Pil in Spain, is a great way to easily serve up shrimp. Each spicy garlic shrimp is loaded with Spanish flavor and the entire dish is done in under 20 minutes. These shrimp are usually served as a tapa (appetizer), but you can certainly serve them up next to a roasted pepper and goat cheese salad and some grilled sweet potatoes for a complete meal.

Spicy Spanish Garlic Shrimp Recipe
If your looking for a dish that takes the beloved shrimp to the next level, this Spicy Spanish Garlic Shrimp Recipe is your go-to recipe. Best enjoyed with a crunchy baguette to mop up all the spicy garlicky sauce 🙂 .

Spicy Spanish Garlic Shrimp Recipe
So, this Spicy Spanish Garlic Shrimp Recipe is called Gambas al Pil Pil in Spain, what does ¨al pil pil¨ actually mean? Well, pil pil is a sauce made of extra virgin olive oil, garlic, smoked paprika and Spanish peppers. Once all the ingredients are sizzling in the pan you add the shrimp, which cook in the pil pil sauce.

Spicy Spanish Garlic Shrimp Recipe
I used Spanish peppers in this recipe, which are not to spicy, but you can use any type of peppers that you like. Check out the video below on how to make this Spicy Spanish Garlic Shrimp Recipe or print out the recipe card below. Salud!

Watch the Video Below on How to Make this Spicy Spanish Garlic Shrimp Recipe

5 from 1 vote

Spicy Spanish Garlic Shrimp Recipe - Gambas al pil pil

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 2
Author Albert Bevia @ Spain on a Fork


  • -1/4 cup extra virgin Spanish olive oil
  • -3 cloves of garlic
  • -1 guindilla spanish red pepper
  • -1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • -15 jumbo raw shrimp
  • sea salt
  • black pepper
  • fresh parsley


  1. Thinly slice 3 cloves of garlic, cut off the stem of 1 Spanish pepper (or any other type of pepper that you like), cut it in half and deseed it with a spoon, then cut it into thin slices
  2. Season 15 raw jumbo shrimp (peeled and deveined) with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  3. Heat a small non-stick frying pan with a medium-high heat and add a 1/4 cup of extra virgin Spanish olive oil, once the oil get´s hot add the sliced garlics and sliced peppers, mix with the oil, after about 1 minute add 1/2 teaspoon of smoked paprika and mix everything together, then add the shrimp in a single layer, after cooking the shrimp for 1 1/2 minutes flip them and cook for another 1 1/2 minutes
  4. Transfer everything in the pan to a shallow bowl and sprinkle with some freshly chopped parsley
  5. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

If you need any of the above ingredients to make this recipe, you can purchase them through this Amazon Affiliate Link Shop for Ingredients and get them delivered right to your door!


  1. Ted Brooks

    5 stars
    I used a jalapeno pepper and used cilantro rather than parsley on top. Loved it! A great taste. Thanks for sharing.

    16 . Apr . 2024
    • Spain on a Fork

      Sounds great! Glad you enjoyed it 🙂 Much love

      17 . Apr . 2024
  2. Michael

    Hola Albert. I’m new to your channel – I found it by accident, so decided to try one of your recipes. I chose garlic gambas and it was so simple to make but OMG, it packed so much flavour. Garcia’s.

    25 . May . 2022
    • Spain on a Fork

      So happy to hear that!! Thanks for the comment 🙂 Much love

      25 . May . 2022
  3. Ben Alexander

    Do you use sweet smoked paprika or hot smoked paprika?

    07 . Jun . 2021
    • Spain on a Fork

      I used sweet smoked paprika in this recipe, but you can totally use hot smoked paprika 🙂 much love

      07 . Jun . 2021
  4. Silvia @ Garden in the Kitchen

    OMG so simple yet so flavorful and delicious. I can never resist a shrimp dish, and when you add the spicy factor, it would be impossible to resist. Thanks for sharing!

    18 . Apr . 2018
    • Spain on a Fork

      Thank you for the comment Silvia 🙂

      18 . Apr . 2018

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