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Camarones Al Ajillo Recipe

Camarones Al Ajillo

This Camarones Al Ajillo Recipe is going to take you step by step into garlic shrimp perfection.

Camarones Al Ajillo is a dish born and perfected in Spain. You could find this dish on almost any tapas restaurant you visit, and we would hope that you order it each time. It’s hard to resist. Perfectly sauteed shrimp with a buttery garlic sauce. All it’s missing is the bread for dipping.

The recipe only calls for a few ingredients, but each ingredient brings something to the table (pardon the pun). In this dish, each ingredient from the butter to the parsley plays an important role.

Ani says, ‘When my Alita Lily taught me this recipe I remember her saying, “Everything in this dish is a star. There are no supporting actors.” Even the parsley serves as more than the typical garnish. This recipe has an obscene amount of garlic, lemon and oil, but cooked right, it’s the perfect sauce.

Seriously, it’s an obscene amount of garlic. You may even be telling yourself you are going to use less, but we urge you to give it a try this way. The only time a dish will taste like it has too much garlic is when the garlic is not cooked well. Here we are going to be cooking the garlic down enough so that it loses its kick and only brings its delicious flavor.

The original dish of Camarones Al Ajillo comes from Spain, but for most Cuban kitchens, shrimp and lobster are interchangeable. So if you want to use lobster tails, because you are feeling it, you can substitute 4 lobster tails, cut lengthwise, and follow the instructions.


You can serve it with other tapas like Chorizitos y Cidra or Bacon Wrapped Dates or make it a meal with The Perfect White Rice or try something similar but different with this Cauliflower Rice with Shrimp

Camarones Al Ajillo

Recipe by Abuelas Cuban CounterCourse: EntreeCuisine: Spanish, CubanDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time




  • 3 pounds of large raw shrimp, peeled, deveined with tails on.

  • 1/2 cup, extra virgin olive oil

  • Juice of 2 lemons

  • 1 teaspoon of salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon of red pepper flakes

  • 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter

  • 12 cloves of garlic, sliced thinly

  • 1 cup parsley, very finely chopped

  • Salt and pepper

  • Hot sauce, optional


  • In a large skillet over low heat add olive oil, red pepper flakes and garlic. Cook for about 3 -5 minutes. Cook the garlic slow so it softens but doesn’t burn.
  • Raise the heat to medium/high and add the shrimp. Cook for 5 minutes. Then flip and add the lemon juice and butter. Cook for another 6-8 minutes.
  • When the tails slightly curl and the flesh turns white opaque and pink, the shrimp are ready. Add the parsley and a dash of hot sauce just before serving.
  • Check for salt and spice then serve.