5 Ingredient Pan Fried Prawns and Peppers

This is an easy recipe for how to pan fry prawns. Serve these pan fried prawns and peppers as a starter or use a simple trick to turn it into the best chilli garlic prawn pasta!

pan fried prawns and peppers in a stainless steel pan.

About the recipe

Looking for an easy, healthy prawn recipe? These low-calorie pan-fried prawns will be the answer.

Garlic, lemon and prawns simply make a great dish together. This easy prawn appetizer requires just 5 basic pantry ingredients.

With a small trick (explained below) you can transform it into garlic prawn pasta, a quick and easy dinner.

Since prawns are naturally bursting with flavor, you don’t need much seasoning. We saw that in recipes like jhinga masala. Less is more when it comes to cooking prawns.

Like most of my seafood recipes, they cook very fast. Easy to cook and soooo delicious to eat!

Have you ever felt that some of the easiest recipes are the best? I get it. Absolutely. Golden fried prawns, tandoori prawns and tomato chilli prawn pasta are great examples.

If you love seafood, you might also want to try my other appetizer recipes like no-potato fish cakes or baked salmon kebabs that are so easy to make.

Or try these healthy fish recipes like Panko-crusted baked cod or spicy baked fish with mustard.

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The 5 main ingredients

Garlic, chili powder, lemon juice, onions, and bell peppers. That’s it, guys. (For those of you peeking at the pictures, oil and salt don’t count!) Judge for yourselves when you read the recipe card below.

And let your dream come true when you cook and eat those delicious spicy, zesty, juicy pan fried prawns.

How to pan-fry prawns and peppers- step by step

Toss together the prawns, diced peppers and onions with chopped garlic, chili powder, lemon juice and salt. Saute the seasoned prawns, peppers and onions in oil for about 6 minutes, ensuring that you flip the prawns and cook them on both sides. Garnish with finely chopped cilantro.

5 Ingredients and 6 simple steps. It can’t get EASIER than this. Can it?

The only catch in cooking prawns here is the peeling part if you buy fresh prawns. (The tails can be removed if you prefer the shrimps that way.) If you can get hold of frozen or fresh peeled prawns, you are a winner!

What do you eat pan-fried prawns with?

How to make chilli garlic prawn pasta or rice

You can make a quick dinner out of these . Great way to use up leftovers, too. (If you have anything left!)

  1. Cook 1 cup of rice/ pasta for 3-4 servings. (For pasta, toss cooked pasta with 2 teaspoons olive oil.) For low-carb options, use quinoa or cauliflower rice.
  2. Transfer the pan fried prawns and peppers to a bowl. In the same pan, heat 2 teaspoons olive oil with 1/4 cup of vegetable or chicken stock. Bring it to a boil.
  3. Add cooked rice/ pasta and prawns. Mix well.
  4. Add a handful of any herb or a combination of herbs: cilantro, thyme, oregano or parsley.
  5. Turn off the flame. Enjoy!
pan-fried prawns and peppers in a stainless steel pan and served on a plate and on toothpicks.

Recipe tips

  • This recipe takes less than 10 minutes to cook. Easy peasy, but you also have to take care not to overcook the prawns. Nobody likes overcooked rubbery prawns. Also, the bell peppers and onions should turn out crunchy.
  • The key is to use a wide pan, stir on medium-high heat and cook for no more than 6 to 7 minutes.
  • Give this recipe a Thai spin by adding a couple of spoonfuls of Thai green curry paste while pan-frying the prawns.

Common questions about pan fried prawns and peppers

Are prawns/ shrimps healthy?

Prawns/shrimps are a great source of protein, low in calories and saturated fat, rich in omega-3 fatty acids, selenium, vitamin B12, calcium and vitamin E. Hence, they promote heart health, brain function, growth and development and reduce inflammation, risk of illnesses like cancer, arthritis and dementia.
Though shrimps are high in cholesterol, it doesn’t have a negative impact on heart health since they are rich in antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids. (source)

How do you defrost prawns quickly?

You should thaw frozen prawns by quickly rinsing a few times with tap water or soaking in tap water for about 10 to 15 minutes until they reach room temperature.
Using hot water to thaw will cook the prawns on the outside. So when you cook them for the recipe, they either get overcooked and turn rubbery, or the insides will still be undercooked.
Leaving frozen prawns to thaw naturally (on the kitchen counter) will make them go limp and mushy.

What is the healthiest way to eat prawns?

Using olive oil makes this one of the low-calorie prawn recipes with less than 150 calories per serving. Since prawns have a high cholesterol content, the nutrition levels can be balanced by avoiding saturated fats like butter.

How long can you marinate prawns in lemon juice?

Prawns don’t need much time to marinate. Citrus marinade actually “cooks” the prawns (as in Ceviche). So the ideal marinating time would be about 5 to 10 minutes. Anything more than that, the prawns tend to turn out mushy when cooked. That’s the reason for adding lemon juice in the end, after tossing the rest of the ingredients in this recipe.

More seafood recipes

pan fried prawns and peppers in a stainless steel pan.

5 Ingredient Pan Fried Prawns Recipe

This is an easy recipe for how to pan fry prawns. Serve these prawns and peppers as a starter or use a simple trick to turn it into the best chilli garlic prawn pasta!
Author: Sheeba
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 7 minutes
Total Time 17 minutes
Course Appetizer, dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Asian, Indian
Servings 3
Calories 146 kcal


  • 300 grams prawns peeled and deveined (note 1)
  • bell peppers 1/2 cup each of green and red, diced
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 5 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • salt to taste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • cilantro a handful, finely chopped for garnish
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice


Scroll back to find detailed recipe photos!


  • Clean and devein the prawns, leaving the tail intact. (If using frozen ones thaw them according to note1). Pat dry with paper towels.
  • Toss the prawns, diced onions and bell peppers with chopped garlic, chili powder and salt. Add lemon juice and mix well.
  • Heat olive oil in a pan and add the seasoned prawns, onions and bell peppers. Saute on medium -high heat for 6 to 7 minutes, flipping and turning in between. Ensure that you flip all the prawns so they cook on both sides.
    Remove from heat and garnish with cilantro.



  • Using frozen prawns: Thaw them by washing the prawns a few times with tap water until they reach room temperature, or soaking in tap water (room temperature) for 20 minutes.
  • How to cook the prawns: Use a large pan to avoid overcrowding. Make sure you quickly flip all the prawns to sear them on both sides.
  • How long to cook the prawns: Stick to the timings specified in the recipe. The prawns should not be overcooked. Transfer to a serving plate as soon as you turn off the flame, to ensure that the prawns don’t get cooked in the residual heat. 
  • Serving suggestions: Serve these pan fried prawns as bite-sized appetizers or as topping on bruschetta or as a main dish with pasta/rice.
How to make chilli garlic prawn pasta out of these garlic prawns (or with leftovers):
  • Cook 1 cup of pasta/rice for 3 servings. (For pasta, toss cooked and drained pasta with 2 teaspoons olive oil.)
  • Transfer the cooked garlic prawns to a bowl. Add 2 teaspoons of olive oil and 1/4 cup of vegetable or chicken stock to the saute pan. Optionally, add 1/2 teaspoon chilli powder for more heat. Bring it to a boil.
  • Add cooked rice/ pasta and garlic shrimps. Mix well. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
  • Add a handful of any herb or a combination of herbs: cilantro, thyme, oregano or parsley. 
  • Turn off the flame and serve. 
The nutrition facts are for pan fried prawns only.
5 Ingredient Pan Fried Prawns and Peppers

★★★★★Did you try this recipe? Please give a star rating in the comments below ★★★★★

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Author profile photo

Hi! I’m Sheeba, welcome to Go Healthy ever after!

I have a passion for cooking delicious nourishing food that’s easy to cook with fresh natural ingredients free from additives or preservatives. The easy healthy recipes you find here will inspire you to cook with creativity.

This post was originally published in 2017. It has been updated with new photos and tips to give you a great experience.

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6 thoughts on “5 Ingredient Pan Fried Prawns and Peppers”

  1. 3 stars
    Nice recipe. Never tried prawns with garlic as the center piece ingredient. Will give it a bold try soon. Haha. Thank you for bringing interesting variations.

4 from 2 votes

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