Shrimp & Spicy Tomatoes over Polenta is the perfect date night dinner for two! With a handful of key ingredients this meal is easily executable and it will absolutely “Wow” the special person you make it for.
This dish is such a visual stunner and it definitely gives off that I-worked-so-hard in the kitchen vibe! Luckily, it comes together in just about 40-45 minutes. It’s romantic, flavorful and in my husbands words, “It’s pretty to look at!”
So the next time you’re looking to really impress your loved one, get in the kitchen and give this recipe a try. It’s perfect for Valentine’s Day or even a fun date night in.
Just serve alongside a light and crisp bottle of white wine and you’re all set.
Ingredient Notes For This Shrimp & Spicy Tomatoes over Polenta:
- Shrimp – Be sure to buy peeled and deveined. It just makes prep that much easier and faster. (I personally don’t like to devein my own shrimp. It’s kind of gross, lol).
- Red Pepper Flakes – This ingredient isn’t necessary but it is fun to add if you like a bit of spice.
- Basil – I love adding fresh herbs as much as possible to my recipes. So definitely use fresh basil here because it rounds out the rich flavor of the polenta nicely.
- Polenta – I love to use this Polenta, aka “Corn Grits” by Bob’s Red Mill®. It is such a good brand!
- Butter & Milk – I swear by these two dairy-free brands. They are the best I have come across, hands down. Miyoko’s and Oatly are so well made that you can’t tell they are plant based.
Little side note: Hypothetically this recipe serves 3-4. In all honesty though, it served the two of us very comfortably, and we only had a small serving of leftovers.
And, for more date night dinner ideas, please give these a try:
- Braised Short Ribs with Cranberries (Slow Cooker)
- Decadent Chocolate-Cherry Chia Pudding
- Apple-Plum Pork Chops with Herbs
- Honey-Thyme Roasted Strawberry Crostini
Shrimp & Spicy Tomatoes over Polenta
- 1 lb. Wild Raw Extra Large Argentine Red Shrimp, peeled, deveined and tail-off
- 3 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Freshly Ground Black Pepper, to taste
- Salt, to taste
- Crushed Red Pepper Flakes, a pinch
- 1 pint Nature Sweet Cherubs Tomatoes, halved
- 1 14.5 oz can Swanson Chicken Broth, low sodium
- Fresh Basil, julienned
- 4 cups Water
- 1 cup Bob’s Red Mill Corn Grits, aka Polenta
- 1 tsp Kosher Salt, plus more to taste
- 1 tbsp Miyoko's Creamery European Style Cultured Vegan Butter, unsalted
- 1/2 cup Parmigiano Reggiano, freshly grated, or Vegan Parm
- 1/4 cup The Original Oatly Oat Milk, or milk of choice
- Bring 4 cups water and 1 tsp salt to a boil in a medium size pot. Gradually whisk in the polenta at a steady stream, whisking constantly to prevent lumps. Whisk until it thickens; about 1-2 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to low and simmer gently, stirring frequently, for about 20 minutes until the cornmeal is thick and loses its raw flavor. (Don't ignore or the mixture will stick to the bottom of the pan).
- When the polenta is done, remove from the heat and add the butter and Parmigiano Reggiano and stir to combine. Add more salt to taste, if needed. To finish it off, add some milk to give it even more creaminess. Cover and set aside until ready to serve.
- In a large skillet over medium heat, add 1 tbsp EVOO and 1 minced garlic clove. Once it becomes aromatic, add the shrimp, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook for a couple of minutes per side, until pink and curled. Remove to a plate and gently cover with foil.
- To the same skillet, add 1 more tbsp EVOO, the remaining garlic, tomatoes and red pepper flakes. Let cook for 3-5 minutes until soft. Add the chicken broth, more salt and pepper to taste and simmer for about 10 minutes or so. (The tomato sauce will thicken and reduce in quantity).
- Add the shrimp and basil and stir to combine.
- Equally divide the polenta among your bowls and top with the shrimp and tomato mixture. Add some additional basil on top and serve immediately.
- Shrimp: 1 lb. feeds 4, about 7 shrimp per person
- Polenta: During the cook time, make sure to check the flavors often. You want to make sure it loses that raw cornmeal flavor. Also at the end, if the polenta becomes too thick, just add a bit more milk to help loosen it up.
- Serves: 3-4 people.
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