How to Cook Royal Red Shrimp

Royal Red Shrimp are found deep in the ocean and are red when raw. They’re sweeter than regular shrimp with a flavor and texture more like lobster. Learn how to cook Royal Reds here.

Royal Red Shrimp are found deep in the ocean and are red when raw. They're sweeter than regular shrimp with a flavor and texture more like lobster. Learn how to cook Royal Reds here. 

When I spotted some Royal Red Shrimp at my grocery store recently, I had to snap them up. They’re really unique. They’re found 430 fathoms deep (that’s like half a mile) and are difficult, and thus not super-profitable, for fishermen to catch. They have a sweeter and more buttery flavor than other shrimp, a bit like lobster even. The coolest thing is that they’re pink even before you cook them. See:

Royal Red Shrimp

Because they’re already pink, you can’t use the usual method for determining if they’re cooked or not. Normally, shrimp turn pink when they’re cooked and that’s a great indicator of their doneness. Instead, you have to watch for Royal Reds to turn more opaque and to curl up a bit. In the pan below, they’ve been cooking for about a minute. You can see that some of them have started curling and getting opaque while some are still a bit more jiggly. But if you’re wondering, yes, these shrimp are keto like the ones you normally buy in the store.

Cooking shrimp


I melted 2 tablespoons of butter over medium-low heat. Then I added 1 pound of the peeled and deveined Royal Reds (note that domestic shrimp like these are rarely sold already peeled and deveined so you’ll probably need to do this yourself. Check out this great video for that over here,but note that the Royal Reds’ veins are not always black. Sometimes they’re more red, pink or coral.

I stirred the shrimp as they cooked. This kind of shrimp cooks more quickly than regular ones. These took only 2-3 minutes at the low temperature. As soon as they were all cooked, I immediately transferred them to a plate so that the heat from the pan wouldn’t keep cooking them. I’ve read that Royal Reds are not at all good if over-cooked and didn’t want to take the chance.

What else do you need to do? I added a sprinkle of salt and served them up. Isn’t it great to taste something new in its purest way? Just butter and salt on these babies. I hope you find them at a store near you and that you love them as much as I do. Can’t find them? Well, I guess you better get over to the Space Coast pronto!!



How to Cook Royal Red Shrimp

  • Author: Allie McDonald
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6


Royal Red Shrimp are found deep in the ocean and are red when raw. They’re sweeter than regular shrimp with a flavor and texture more like lobster. Learn how to cook Royal Reds here.


  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into a few pieces
  • 1 lb. (40-50 count) Royal Red Shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • A pinch of salt


  1. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-low heat.
  2. When hot, add the shrimp.
  3. Cook stirring continuously until they have all curled a bit and are opaque.
  4. Immediately transfer to a plate. Sprinkle with salt and serve.
This post originally appeared in October 2016 and was revised and republished in October 2018.



How to Cook Royal Red Shrimp

23 responses to “How to Cook Royal Red Shrimp”

  1. Marmie says:

    Meijer carries them.

  2. Kayla says:

    Was soooooo goood definitely taste great pure with out adding flavors 

  3. Jean says:

    Everything I read appeared to be true about the red shrimp; color, taste etc.however after cleaning and poaching, the water became red and the shrimp pink. Not sure what to think.

  4. mary ellen says:

    This info seems really odd to me… the only Royal Reds I have ever had and I buy them fairly regularly, are great big… the size of jumbo gulf shrimp. I get about 13 to a pound.

    • Christine Pittman says:

      I get my Royal Reds when in season in Florida from a fishmonger down by the ocean a few times during the season. They aren’t huge shrimp but are very red, even when raw. I’m not sure why our experiences with this type of shrimp have been different.

  5. hthloeb says:

    I bought Wild Red Shrimp at H-Mart in Doraville, Ga, which is outside Atlanta. They are normally 6.99 a pound, but on sale today for $6.81for a little over a pound.

  6. Rosemary says:

    I buy these Argentinan Red Shrimp at Trader’s Joes. I like them b/c they are really cleaned and deveined. I cook them and have them with Angel Hair pasta with garlic and oil. Oh So good and very digestible. One bag is about $10.00 now but rally worth it.

  7. Joe says:

    How does one know if s hrimp are farm raised in any color ?

    • Christine Pittman says:

      I think you have to go by the labels at the store. As to the royal red shrimp, I don’t think anyone farm-raises them so if you get your hands on them, they’re bound to be wild caught.

  8. Amelia hribal says:

    Omaha steaks has them. They’re on sale now for $19.99 per 16 oz.

  9. Jeff Aldridge says:

    I get Royal Reds from a supplier in Florida.  He imports them from Argentina where they caught in the deep water of the South Atlantic.  I love them prepared stove-top with butter and Paul Prudome’s blackening seasoning.(available on Amazon)

  10. Barbara J Evans says:

    Just bought my first ones. The Bucher steamed one for me in the store. 20 seconds. Oh, so good. Cannot wait to do mine and put in my salad today.

  11. Jim Mollis says:

    Royal Reds: The BEST EVER! :-)

  12. Barbara A Rowe says:

    Royal Reds are completely different from Pink Gulf shrimp, They are found farther out and a lot deeper than any of the other shrimp found in the Gulf. My understanding is they are found mainly out in the upper Atlantic and VERY deep.

  13. Kim loveless says:

    Just bought a few pounds for Xmas and had to try them out.
    I coooked in shell and dipped in drawn butter.  Yum!  I got mine from a local fisherman who makes the trips often. 

  14. Sandy says:

    These shrimp are called “Florida pinks” caught in the Gulf and only (as far as I know) available in Florida. They are s–o much better than regular shrimp!! You can usually find them in any fish market, especially in Southwest Florida.

  15. Armand says:

    I bought a 2 lb bag from a grocery nearby. 
    I will blanch then peel and devein then flour and
     stir fry. 

  16. Wayne says:

    Simply out-of-this-world UNIQUE flavor!
    I found mine (frozen) at a ‘second chance’ grocery store (where they sell “salvage” products although these were special ordered from a distributor who had a surplus. I can’t imagine them tasting any better fresh – ‘If they wuz any better, I don’t think I could stood it!’
    Terrific blog. Kudos!

  17. Seafood Sally says:

    Getting ready to cook my first Royal Red Shrimp dinner!!

  18. Nutmeg Nanny says:

    I’m not sure I have seen these shrimp in the store but I would totally love to try them. I sorta love that they are pink already. It make them cute :) 

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