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This Mediterranean Couscous with Shrimp recipe is loaded full of flavor, and it makes a healthy and easy one-pot weeknight meal. Every mouthful from the soft couscous to the warm shrimp and the zesty tomato mixture is delicious and nutritious!
This Mediterranean Couscous recipe is from Skinnytaste One and Done cookbook. I love that the recipe is approachable, easy to make and clean up, and loaded with flavor! The author, Gina, says that “This recipe is super easy and crazy good! Perfect for the summer, it’s made with Israeli couscous (the larger, more pearl-like variety), shrimp, and fresh tomatoes as the star of the dish. The warm couscous softens the feta cheese, making it just irresistible.”
why you’ll love this shrimp couscous salad recipe
- Bright flavors. The feta and tomatoes really brighten up this dish, and the capers add a nice flavor dimension.
- It’s healthy but filling. This dish is a great example of how healthy and filling can go hand in hand! The couscous is a whole grain, the shrimp is a lean protein, and there are plenty of vegetables. You’ll be satisfied after eating this but not weighed down.
- It’s versatile. The Mediterranean couscous recipe can easily be made vegetarian by omitting the shrimp, or you could use chicken instead. You can add in additional veggies if you’d like, or keep it as is.
- Meal-prep friendly. This dish reheats well and can be made ahead of time, making it great for meal prep.
Ingredients to make Mediterranean shrimp bowl
- Shrimp: You can use fresh or frozen shrimp for this recipe. If using frozen, make sure to thaw the shrimp before cooking. I like to buy shrimp that has been deveined and shelled to save time, but you can also buy it with the shell on and devein it yourself if desired.
- Couscous: Use pearl (also called Israeli) couscous for this recipe, but you could also use regular couscous. Pearl couscous is slightly larger in size and has a more firm texture, but both work well in this recipe.
- Vegetables: You just need cherry tomatoes, capers and Kalamata olives. You could also add in some red onion, cucumber, or peppers.
- Feta cheese: Feta cheese is a must in this recipe! It adds so much flavor and creaminess. I would not recommend omitting it or substituting it with another cheese.
- Lemon: Fresh lemon juice adds a great zing in this recipe, but you could also use bottled lemon juice.
- Vegetable broth: You’ll need the broth to cook the couscous, but you could also use water or chicken broth.
- Olive oil: I like to use a good quality olive oil in this recipe.
- Fresh garlic: I use fresh garlic in this recipe, but you could also use garlic powder.
How to Make Mediterranean Couscous
Although this recipe does require a little bit of prep work, it’s actually very easy to make and comes together super quick!
- Heat a large deep skillet and add the shrimp.
- Cook until opaque and the tail of the shrimp curls.
- In the same pan used to cook the shrimp, add the broth to deglaze the pan. Then add the couscous to the hot broth, stir, and cover.
- Cook until all the liquid is absorbed. Fluff with a fork.
Combine Salad Ingredients
- Combine the tomatoes, olives, feta, capers, and black pepper in a large bowl.
- Gently fold all the ingredients together.
- Add the shrimp.
- Add the cooked couscous to the bowl of the shrimp and tomato mixture.
- Add the lemon juice.
- Mix all the ingredients together until everything is well combined.
Tips for making shrimp anD couscous
- Chop the tomatoes and olives instead of leaving whole. That way, every bite of the Mediterranean couscous has a little bit of all the ingredients included.
- Don’t wipe down the pan after cooking the shrimp. That’s because the couscous will go right in there afterward and cook with all the juices from the shrimp to add more flavor to the recipe.
- Make sure to cook couscous properly without too much liquid. Cooking couscous is like cooking quinoa or rice, but the grain-to-water mixture is slightly different (you’ll need less water!). Check the package instructions for your couscous and grab my tips for how to cook three types of couscous
- Don’t overcook the shrimp. While it may be tempting to leave your shrimp in the pan for an additional minute or two to make sure they’re cooked through, resist the urge! Overcooked shrimp are rubbery and not as enjoyable to eat.
popular substitutions & additions
- Switch out the protein. While shrimp is complements the other ingredients so well, this recipe would also be great with chicken or salmon.
- Make it vegan. Omit the shrimp and feta to make this a vegan dish. You could also add in additional veggies like cucumber, peppers, or red onion.
- Add in additional seasonings. Try adding in some additional spices like paprika, and oregano if you’d like.
- Make it spicy. If you like things spicy, you could add in some crushed red pepper flakes or a diced jalapeño pepper.
how to store & reheat shrimp couscous
This recipe can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge.
When you’re ready to eat, simply reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop until heated through. You may need to add a splash of water or broth to the couscous when reheating, as it will absorb some of the liquid when stored in the fridge.
how long will shrimp and couscous last in the fridge?
This shrimp bowl will last 4-5 days in the fridge.
Can i freeze this Mediterranean shrimp bowl?
I do not recommend freezing this recipe as the couscous will become mushy when thawed, and the shrimp will most likely end up rubbery.
Frequently asked questions
Couscous originates from Morocco and it is made from semolina, the hard part of the grain of wheat or barley. Although the granules look like grains, couscous is actually tiny ground pasta made from a type of wheat called semolina. It is made by rubbing semolina and it’s traditionally hand rolled.
Israeli couscous is one of the three popular types of couscous. It is also a type of pasta, but is made up of larger granules about the size of small pearls, hence it’s other common name pearl couscous. Because of the toasting process, pearl couscous has a nuttier flavor and chewy bite.
There are a couple of things that can cause couscous to come out mushy:
You used too much water. When cooking couscous, make sure to use the proper ratio of water to couscous. Too much water will result in mushy couscous.
You overcooked the couscous. Couscous only needs to be cooked for about 5 minutes. Any longer and it will become mushy.
I love how easy it is to prep and cook this delicious one-pot meal! It’s so full of fresh flavors and healthy ingredients!
More Mediterranean recipes:
- Couscous Salad
- Skillet Chicken with Couscous
- Bulgur Pilaf
- Tabbouleh Salad
- Mediterranean Cauliflower Pitas
- Grilled Shrimp with Herb Yogurt Sauce
- Ground Beef and Rice
- Shirazi Salad
- Lebanese Cabbage Salad
- Fattoush Salad
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This Mediterranean Couscous with Shrimp recipe was originally published on November 8, 2018. The recipe has not been modified but the post now includes new step-by-step photos for how to make the couscous and shrimp.
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes halved
- ⅓ cup kalamata olives sliced pitted
- ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1 tablespoon capers drained
- ¼ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 pound large shrimp peeled and deveined
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 2 cups vegetable broth low sodium
- 1 ½ cups pearl couscous
- Juice of ½ lemon
- 2 tablespoons chopped parsley for garnish
- In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes, olives, feta, capers and black pepper.
- Sprinkle the salt over the shrimp. Heat a large deep skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add the oil, then the shrimp, and cook until opaque, 2 ½ minutes per side, stirring in the garlic for the last minute. Transfer to the bowl on top of the tomato mixture.
- Add the broth to the skillet, increase the heat to high, and bring to a boil. Add the couscous, stir, cover and reduce the heat to medium. Cook until all the liquid is absorbed, 10-12 minutes. Fluff with a fork and add to the bowl of the shrimp and tomato mixture.
- Add the lemon juice and toss well. Garnish with fresh parsley and serve immediately.
- Instead of couscous, you can use quinoa or orzo pasta
- You can replace the feta cheese with another cheese. Goat cheese works really well with this recipe.
- If you’re not a fan of one of the vegetables like tomatoes, olive or capers, you can leave them out or replace them with other favorites.
Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.
This recipe is from the Skinnytaste One and Done cookbook.