Squid Ink Spaghetti with Shrimp and Fennel

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Squid Ink Spaghetti with Shrimp and Fennel

Spaghetti with Shrimp is a pretty classic combination and to be honest I have not strayed to far from the pretty traditional protocols of a dish that is already a real winner. But lets face it, I like to tinker and add my own slant to dishes so along side the garlic, chili and lemon notes that you would expect to find in and good spaghetti with shrimp dish I have added some fennel because I love the subtle aniseed flavour it brings to sea food.

Then some rather fab looking and delicious black pasta. The colour comes from squid ink, stop pulling that face, I can see you!

Squid ink has a really subtle flavour of the sea but in pasta I thing it brings a wonderful silkiness to the texture and is one of the reasons I love to cook with it. Texture is hugely important for me when it comes to food, there are some foods I genuinely dislike for texture alone, bananas, avocado, olives and aubergine all make my ‘ikky’ list because the texture of them makes me shudder.

Oddly I do not mind the flavour of any of them if you can manage to isolate them from the horrible ‘mouth feel’.


Squid Ink Spaghetti with Shrimp and Fennel

Oh look, I wondered off on a different path again.

I’ve been cooking with this stuff for a long old time but have yet to put a recipe here because it is a real pain in the ass to take a picture of and because pictures are kinda important in doing when it comes to people seeing your food and thinking, yum. I have been determined to share this Squid Ink Spaghetti with Shrimp and Fennel recipe for a while so we have been eating it all the time so I can come up with a way of photographing it.

If you liked this recipe, you should like this one too!  Skillet Goats Cheese Stuffed Pasta Shells

Life is so very hard I know, but hey it takes 20 minutes to make start to finish, looks a million dollars and tastes fantastic, of course you can swap out the squid ink pasta for regular pasta but I urge you to hunt some down and give it a try. It’s awesome!

5 from 5 votes
Squid Ink Spaghetti with Shrimp and Fennel
Squid Ink Spaghetti With Shrimp
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
20 mins

Bring a bit of bling to your spaghetti with shrimp by adding some squid ink pasta and the classics chili, garlic and lemon juice.

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 2
Calories: 346 kcal
Author: Brian Jones
  • 1 Bulb Fennel Sliced finely top to tail I used a mandolin with a 1.5mm slicing attachment
  • 250 g Frozen Shrimp Defrosted
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp Cooking Oil Neutral
  • 130 g Squid Ink Spaghetti
  • 1 Garlic Clove Finely sliced
  • 1 Tsp Chili Flakes
  • 1 Lemon We will only need the zest and juice of half of the lemon
  • Salt
  1. Bring a large pan of salted water to a rolling boil.
  2. Whilst the water is boiling check through the shrimp and remove any veins and ensure they are dry before adding half the chili flakes, half the lemon zest, the garlic and one tablespoon of the oil and set aside.
  3. Add the pasta to the pan and cook as per the instructions, should take around 8 minutes.
  4. Heat the remaining oil in a frying pan over a high heat and cook off the fennel for 2-3 minutes, flipping over half way through the cooking time, the remove from the pan and set aside.
  5. Now add the garlic and shrimp to the frying pan with the marinade and cook over a high heat for 3-4 minutes.
  6. 30 seconds before finishing add in the lemon juice.
  7. You should now be ready to drain the pasta, drain and add in the shrimp and associated sauce and mix together along with a pinch of coarse sea salt.
  8. Return the fennel to the pan and bring back to temperature with the remaining chili flakes.
  9. Serve the fennel with the pasta and top with the shrimp and a drizzle of any sauce and the remaining lemon rind and if you have any some fennel fronds.
Bring a bit of bling to your spaghetti with shrimp by adding some squid ink pasta and the classics chili, garlic and lemon juice.



  1. Elizabeth @ SugarHero.com December 9, 2016 at 7:59 am - Reply

    I’ve never had squid ink pasta, and I confess I’ve been a little intimidated by it. But I think it is absolutely gorgeous, and your description of it makes it sound really good and approachable! I think I need to screw up my courage and try it out. 🙂

    • Brian Jones December 9, 2016 at 8:35 am - Reply

      Thanks Elizabeth… I think we can all be like that with new foods, but it is just pasta with a subtle flavour and a slightly different texture, I love it and it is always a fab talking point.

  2. Luci {Luci's Morsels} December 9, 2016 at 8:34 am - Reply

    This squid ink pasta looks amazing!! I’ve only ever tried it in Spain but I loved it! I can’t wait to try to recreate this at home.

    Luci’s Morsels | fashion. food. frivolity.

    • Brian Jones December 9, 2016 at 8:50 am - Reply

      It is really very simple classic dish so should not be difficult 🙂

  3. Nicola @ Happy Healthy Motivated December 9, 2016 at 9:07 am - Reply

    I’ve never tried squid ink pasta before, but I’ve always wanted to! Love how you’ve kept the flavors simple, but added your own awesome twist – as always!

    • Brian Jones December 9, 2016 at 12:48 pm - Reply

      Food is there to be tweaked… Squid ink pasta is always great adds a bit of drama and a slightly different flavour and texture which I love, but it is subtle 🙂

  4. Helen @ Fuss Free Flavours December 9, 2016 at 10:23 am - Reply

    I love that you could see me pulling the face! Sorry, but I was. But you had me at fennel, which I love. Crazy looking pasta, which I will believe tastes good. Nice combination of flavours going on with your dish.

    • Brian Jones December 9, 2016 at 12:49 pm - Reply

      Heheheheeee, I knew there would be some… My wife case in point when I introduced her to it years ago, as with most instant reactions to food ideas it was unfounded 😀

  5. peter @feedyoursoultoo December 9, 2016 at 2:05 pm - Reply

    Brian, totally loving this recipe. Squid ink pasta just looks so cool!!!

  6. Ronda Uhlenhake December 4, 2017 at 3:54 pm - Reply

    Eager to try this. I had the ink squid pasta with lobster years ago at Biaggi’s in Bloomington, IL.
    It was so delicious and I’d love to have their recipe.

    • Brian Jones December 4, 2017 at 8:18 pm - Reply

      I wish I could get my hands on lobster, shrimp is a rarity here in landlocked Hungary, particularly out in the sticks… I hope you give it a try some time soon, I love this recipe.

  7. Emily Hill January 25, 2018 at 8:39 am - Reply

    I’ve had squid ink pasta before while in Italy. It’s so cool!

  8. Natalie January 25, 2018 at 8:49 am - Reply

    I never had squid ink spaghetti before, but it looks delicious and interesting with the added shrimps. Your pictures are mouthwatering! ♥

  9. Marie January 25, 2018 at 9:31 am - Reply

    I’ve never tried squid ink pasta before because I wasn’t sure whether I would like the flavour. I’m happy to read that it has a subtle flavour and a lovely texture. The photos are gorgeous!

    • Brian Jones January 25, 2018 at 2:04 pm - Reply

      The flavour is very subtle indeed it is definitely there but one of those ‘difficult to put your finger on’ things 😉

  10. Dannii January 25, 2018 at 12:14 pm - Reply

    I have tried squid ink spaghetti in restaurants and I love it, but I have never made it myself. This looks really easy, so definitely something to try.

    • Brian Jones January 25, 2018 at 2:07 pm - Reply

      It certainly is simple, just like any other pasta really although if you over cook it hen it is particularly soggy but cook it right then it is glorious.

  11. Katherine Hackworthy January 25, 2018 at 1:07 pm - Reply

    This squid ink pasta recipe looks delicious and definitely a must try! This recipe is simple but filled with rich flavors!

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