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Easy Garlic and Lemon Shrimp

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Extra large shrimp cook with garlic and lemon for this Easy Garlic and Lemon Shrimp that’s perfect for a special low-carb meal!

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Easy Garlic and Lemon Shrimp shown on heavy cooking pan

I grew up in a family where my father loved shrimp and my mother hated them, and it was a sign of how much my mom loved my dad that periodically she would heat up a big pot of oil and make deep-fried shrimp for Dad and the other family members who liked it. I was always daddy’s girl so I loved everything my father ate, including shrimp of any kind, rare steak, Roquefort dressing on salad, and even onion sandwiches!

When you splurge on big shrimp like these (called prawns in many places) there are so many good ways to cook them, but I loved this Easy Low-Carb Garlic and Lemon Shrimp that features shrimp cooked quickly with minced fresh garlic and then served with lemon juice and lemon zest added at the very end.

The inspiring recipe sauteed the shrimp in 3 tablespoons of melted butter, which no doubt would taste fantastic; use that if you prefer. I used one tablespoon of butter along with two tablespoons of olive oil in the version I made; choose the ratio of butter to olive oil that you prefer, but do cook carefully if you use all butter because butter burns more easily than olive oil.

What ingredients do you need?

(This is ONLY a list of ingredients for the recipe; please scroll down for complete printable recipe. Or if you use the JUMP TO RECIPE link at the top of the page, it will take you directly to the complete recipe.)

  • jumbo shrimp
  • Olive Oil (affiliate link)
  • butter
  • finely minced fresh garlic, or use Minced Garlic (affiliate link) if fresh garlic is just not happening at your house
  • fresh-squeezed lemon juice, (You could use fresh-frozen lemon juice in a pinch)
  • fresh lemon zest (probably optional, but recommended)
  • sea salt

What size shrimp did we use?

In the U.S. shrimp are sold labeled with a number that means how many shrimp makes up a pound. For this recipe we used 21-25 size shrimp. But if you use a size that’s slightly smaller than the jumbo shrimp we used, just reduce the cooking time slightly and the shrimp will still be delicious.

Some tips for making Garlic and Lemon Shrimp turn out perfectly:

Shrimp is so delicious when it’s perfectly cooked. But the most common mistake people make is overcooking the shrimp. Your shrimp will be most flavorful if you turn off the heat the second the shrimp start to turn pink, and let the heat from the pan finish cooking them. And for this recipe, using freshly-minced garlic and not skimping on the fresh lemon zest and fresh-squeezed lemon juice will add amazing flavor to the shrimp.

Want lots more ideas for low-carb shrimp dinners?

If you’re a big shrimp fan like I am, you might want to look at my round-up of Low-Carb and Keto Shrimp Dinners for lots more tasty ideas!

Easy Garlic and Lemon Shrimp process shots collage

How to Make Easy Garlic and Lemon Shrimp:

(This is ONLY a summary of the steps for the recipe; please scroll down for complete printable recipe. Or if you use the JUMP TO RECIPE link at the top of the page, it will take you directly to the complete recipe.)

  1. I used 21-25 count shrimp, which was perfect for this recipe.  Let the shrimp thaw overnight in the refrigerator the day before you’re going to cook them.  (Buy pre-peeled shrimp or peel them when they’ve thawed.)
  2. Zest and juice the lemon and mince the garlic so it’s ready when you start to cook the shrimp.
  3. Heat the olive oil and melt the butter over medium-high heat. I used a pan that could be used to serve the shrimp.
  4. When the oil/butter is hot, add the shrimp in a single layer and cook until they just start to look pink on the edges.  This won’t take more than 1-2 minutes.
  5. Turn all the shrimp over and add the garlic. Continue to cook until Low-Carb Garlic and Lemon Shrimp are done, not more than 3-4 minutes more.
  6. Turn off heat as soon as the shrimp are barely turning pink and not quite firm and add the lemon juice, lemon zest, and a tiny bit of salt if desired.
  7. Serve Low-Carb Garlic and Lemon Shrimp hot and wait for compliments.

Easy Garlic and Lemon Shrimp cropped image of shrimp in pan

Ten More Tasty Recipes for Shrimp Fans:


  • 1 lb. jumbo shrimp, thawed if frozen (see notes)
  • 2 T olive oil (see notes)
  • 1 T butter
  • 2 T finely minced garlic
  • 2 T fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 T lemon zest (or a little less if you’re not that fond of lemon zest)
  • sea salt to taste (I did not use much salt)


  1. If using frozen shrimp thaw them over night in the refrigerator.  Drain shrimp and pat dry.
  2. Zest one large lemon and then squeeze the juice, to yield at least 2 T juice and close to 1 T lemon zest. 
  3. Finely mince garlic cloves to make 2 T minced garlic.
  4. Heat the oil over medium high heat and then melt the butter, using a large heavy pan.  (I used a pan that was nice enough to serve the shrimp from, which helps keep them hot.) 
  5. Add the shrimp in a single layer and cook just until they start to turn pink at the edges, not more than 1-2 minutes.
  6. Turn shrimp over quickly and add the minced garlic. Continue to cook until shrimp are barely firm and slightly pink, probably not more than 3-4 minutes more.  (Don’t overcook; the shrimp will continue to cook a little in the hot pan.)
  7. Turn off heat and add the lemon juice, lemon zest, and salt as desired and stir to coat shrimp.  Serve immediately.


I used 21-25 per pound size, which was good for this recipe.  Buy pre-peeled shrimp or peel them when they have thawed.

Use the ratio of butter and olive oil you prefer, but be careful if you use all or mostly butter as it burns more easily than olive oil.

Recipe adapted slightly from Giant Garlic Shrimp in Sunset Magazine Best Recipes 2012, but I could not find the recipe online.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving:
Calories: 229Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 3gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 247mgSodium: 1243mgCarbohydrates: 4gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 26g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.

Did you make this recipe?

Did you make this recipe? Please leave a star rating (under the PRINT button in the recipe) or share a photo of your results on Instagram! THANKS!

Easy Low-Carb Garlic and Lemon Shrimp found on KalynsKitchen.com

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Shrimp are a wonderful ingredient for low-carb or Keto diets, and these Low-Carb Garlic and Lemon Shrimp are also perfect for any phase of the South Beach Diet. South Beach would recommend olive oil over butter in this recipe. Some types of low-carb diet plans would probably use all butter; take your choice on that.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Seafood Recipes 0r Quick Recipes to find more recipes like this one.Use the Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest, on Facebook, on Instagram, on TikTok, or on YouTube to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

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