Shrimp Paella

By Angelika Hanna

I loved Paella when I lived in Spain. There are different varieties of Paella, the most popular one is the Seafood Paella. It is made with shrimps, crabs, clams and mussels. Then, there is the chicken Paella and the combo of chicken and seafood Paella. In North America, I have seen recipes where they add scallops.

Since not everybody in my family likes all the different seafood, I made my Paella with shrimps only and a lot of vegetables. Easy. Simple. Delicious.


Prep Time: 10 min + 10 min rest time

Cook Time: 45 min

Total Time: 1 h 5 min

Yield: 3-4 servings

Cuisine: Spanish-inspired/North American/Canadian

Author: Angelika Hanna / Zest4Food


  • 2 1/2 cups chicken broth (1 cube for 2-3 cups of water)
  • ½ teaspoon Spanish saffron
  • Extra virgin cold-pressed olive oil
  • 1 large cooking onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced (optional)
  • 1 red Bell pepper, seeded, diced
  • 1 green pepper, seeded, diced
  • 1 hot pepper, chopped
  • A pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 cup Arborio rice
  • Jumbo shrimps, frozen, cooked, deveined
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. In a medium saucepan, heat the chicken broth and saffron until it simmers.
  2. In a large frying pan with lid, heat some olive oil over medium-high heat.
  3. Sauté the onion until translucent, about 5 min. 
  4. Add the peppers and cook for 3-4 min, adjusting the heat so vegetables soften but do not brown. 
  5. Add the garlic and crushed red pepper flakes, cooking for an additional 1 min, until fragrant. 
  6. Stir in the diced tomatoes, tomato paste and 1/2 cup of hot chicken broth and simmer for 5 min, stirring occasionally. 
  7. In a bowl with cold water, defrost the shrimps for about 10-15 min. When completely defrosted, rinse with cold water through a sieve. Pad dry with paper towels.
  8. Check the veggie mixture for seasoning and add Kosher salt and black pepper to taste.
  9. Add the rice and stir until the grains are evenly coated with the veggie mixture. 
  10. Slowly add the remaining chicken broth, stirring until veggie/rice mixture and broth are integrated. 
  11. Simmer uncovered for about 15 min. Do NOT stir the rice at this point. 
  12. Place the dried shrimps in a bowl. Toss with olive oil, Kosher salt, and black pepper.
  13. Distribute the coated shrimps in circles on top of your rice/veggie mixture. Not to worry if the shrimps are not fully covered by broth. 
  14. Cook for another 15 min or until the broth has been absorbed.
  15. Remove the frying pan from heat, cover the pan with aluminum foil first, then the lid, and rest for 10 min.


3 thoughts on “Shrimp Paella

  1. This makes me think of my trip to Spain 20 years ago on a high school study abroad trip. Paella was one of my favorite restaurant dishes and it had such a delicate and delicious, but hearty way about it.

    Liked by 1 person

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