Everyone needs a good, versatile sauce/marinade in their back pocket to pull together quick lunches and dinners, and this arugula chimichurri is a great one to have on hand. Especially with summer BBQs about to be in full swing. It is versatile beyond belief, quick/easy to make and a fun variation to the typical chimichurri. It packs a punch with fiber and nutrients that not only does the body good but delivers big flavor! In this recipe, the arugula chimichurri acts double duty as a marinade for our shrimp and a salad dressing for our arugula salad. It looks nice and fancy enough to serve at a dinner party, too. What is not to love? Let me show you how easy it is to get this dish on the table. You can add in any protein of choice, but for the quickest meal, I choose shrimp.
Makes 4 servings || Hands-on prep time: 30 minutes || Cook time: <10 minutes
For the Arugula Chimichurri:
2 cups arugula, packed and chopped finely
2 Tablespoons, chopped parsley
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
zest and juice from 1 lemon
1 tsp salt
For the salad:
1 ½ pound shrimp, shells removed and deveined ( I used jumbo local Key West shrimp)
4 cups of arugula
Prepare chimichurri in one of two ways: put all ingredients in a food processor and blitz until uniformly chopped and combined OR chop the first 4 ingredients by hand, put in a medium bowl, and then whisk in the remaining sauce ingredients.
Take ¼ cup of the sauce and put that in another bowl with the cleaned and deveined shrimp. Allow marinating for at least 30 minutes. **I tend to marinate them for about an hour, but since there is an acid in the form of lemon juice and vinegar in the marinade I don't marinate for too long as you don't want it to get spongy or chewy.
Meanwhile, prepare the grill for direct-heat cooking over medium heat.
Once the grill is heated, allow excess marinade to drip off of shrimp, then place on grill. Allow to cook for 2-3 minutes then flipping once, and cooking for an additional 2-3 minutes ( cook time depends on the size of the shrimp); once cooked set aside.
In a large bowl toss arugula with 2 tablespoons of remaining chimichurri until all leaves are coated. Place on the plate and add shrimp to the top. Drizzle the plate with additional chimichurri to garnish.
Serve and enjoy!
Tips & Tricks
I always make a batch of a sauce even if I won't use it all at once so you always have a quick condiment whenever you need it. This recipe is a perfect example of that.
This chimichurri works well as a marinade or finishing sauce for virtually any meat or vegetable. It is super versatile and multi-purpose: it can be a marinade, dip, spread, sauce, or condiment. With a few tweaks, try it with anything from grilled chicken, fish, vegetable, steak to eggs to dip for vegetables.
The sauce can be made ahead of time so you can always have it on hand
It freezes well, just thaw it out overnight in the fridge and you are good to go! You can also freeze in an ice cube tray for more portioned-out sizes.
Ways to use the arugula chimichurri sauce it throughout your week:
Add 2 tablespoons to a container of plain yogurt for a dip, add in a little more lemon juice or play with it as you please. This also makes a delicious creamy salad dressing!
mix into whole fat yogurt to put on top grilled chicken or put over tacos or a taco bowl (siggis brand is my favorite and if you are dairy free culina is amazing)
Scramble or fry up an egg or two and mix in as much as you please to add a flavor bomb to your breakfast.
Stir it into rice or drizzle on top of roasted potatoes
Marinate other proteins to put over salads for later in the week.
Mix into mayo to put on sandwiches or burgers.
Toss with grilled vegetables.
Would be delicious as the sauce to a fresh tomato and burrata panzanella salad.
Did you enjoy this recipe? Share on Pinterest or tag me on instagram @cookbakenourish and hashtag #cookbakenourish so I can see. I love to see what you cook up in your kitchen!
Also, curious where I got the beautiful dining set? Check out Tampa Bay Interiors - they always have the cutest stuff and are my go to for unique dinnerware ALWAYS. Local to me, but they ship!