Sea Stick Scampi: An Easy, Frugal Take on Seafood Scampi

Sea Stick Scampi starred as last night's frugal main dish. With leftover pasta, this one comes together in a jiff. It's one of my favorite ways to use imitation crab legs. Two extra benefits – it's pretty and clean-up is a breeze.

Here's my version of thrifty scampi:

Peel and chop a small onion. Start sauteing it in a little butter.

Peel and chop a couple cloves of garlic and add them to the pan. Stir.

Add a layer of cooked pasta. For the two of us, I used about three cups. Gently toss it to mix it together.

Sprinkle on some frozen peas and carrots. I probably used about half a cup. Gently toss again.

Take a package of imitation crab legs and slice them into pieces half an inch to an inch long. I used an 8 oz. package. Add them to the pan. Once again, gently toss to mix.

Season with salt and pepper. Add a couple shakes of red pepper flakes.

Give it a final toss and check to see that it is hot all the way through.

I served this with pickled beets, fresh nectarines, and mugs of cold milk.


Imitation crab legs are sometimes called fake crab, krab, surimi, or sea sticks.

I recommend using the refrigerated or frozen ones. We had a can of imitation crab legs and the meat was mushy – only the cats liked it.

I made Sea Stick Scampi because I had the sea sticks on hand and because they are inexpensive. The pieces of fake crab, which are often used in seafood salad, work even better as you don't need to bother to slice them. Substitute shrimp, real crab meat, scallops, or other fish if you prefer.

This works best with small to medium size pasta. I had Mexican fideo, so that's what I used last night. Broken spaghetti works just as well.

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