How to Cook Shrimp
Whether you like them grilled, poached, fried, or even cooked directly from the freezer – we’ve got all the methods you need to cook shrimp to perfection.
Oh shrimp! Shrimpy shrimp shrimp!
It’s one of the most versatile foods in the human diet.
You can grill them, poach them, fry them, even cook them in modern appliances like the Instant Pot.
But if you know the various ways in which you can cook shrimp, you can become a shrimp master and impress at every potluck you go to!
But where does one begin?
Let’s start with the first step in most shrimp recipes. Thawing them out.
How Do You Thaw Shrimp Quickly?
Thawing shrimp doesn’t have to take a long time. I have a fool proof way to thaw shrimp that people swear by.
Here are some step by step instructions:
- Place the shrimp in a bowl. It should be twice the size of the amount of shrimp you have.
- Fill the bowl with cold tap water. Keep the water running on it for about five minutes.
- The shrimp are fully thawed when they are pliable and somewhat translucent in color.
- Once they’re defrosted, they’re ready to cook.
Can You Cook Shrimp that are Still Frozen?
You don’t have to thaw out your shrimp before you cook them.
Shrimp can actually be cooked straight from their frozen state. This is my favorite way to make shrimp cocktail, or what I do when I need to throw together a quick dinner. (If you’re making shrimp cocktail, try my homemade cocktail sauce recipe!)
The end result is shrimp that come out plumper and juicier than any other method I’ve tried.
Here’s how to do it!
- Fill a 3 quart saucepan with water ¾ of the way.
- Add salt.
- If you’re using them, add the juice of a lemon along with the peel and flesh once it’s squeezed. Add peppercorns and parsley as well.
- Bring the pot to a rapid boil over high heat.
- Remove the pot from the heat until it stops boiling.
- Add the frozen shrimp and stir.
- Put the lid back on the pot and let it sit off the heat for 5-6 minutes.
- If you’re serving the shrimp cold, prepare an ice bath.
- Drain off the hot liquid and either serve immediately or transfer the shrimp to the ice bath.
- Serve as is or peel them first.
How to Cook Shrimp Perfectly
When talking about how to cook shrimp perfectly, I feel as though butter and garlic come into the equation.
You can take this basic method up a notch and use it to make shrimp scampi. It’s important to note that when making shrimp scampi, pasta is not required but that is how it’s traditionally served.
So, how do you cook perfect shrimp? Read on to find out.
- Warm olive oil and butter in a medium skillet over medium heat and swirl to mix.
- Once the butter is all melted, reduce the heat to low and add your garlic and red pepper flakes.
- Stir these together and cook for 1 minute.
- Increase the heat to medium high and add your salt and shrimp.
- Stir and cook until the shrimp are pink and opaque. This should take 2-3 minutes.
- Transfer to a plate and serve!
How Do You Cook Royal Red Shrimp?
Have you ever had royal red shrimp? They’re a lot different when it comes to cooking but they’re amazing. A lot of people think that they taste more like lobster than shrimp.
If you want to learn how to cook royal red shrimp, just follow these steps.
- Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-low heat.
- Once it’s hot, add your shrimp.
- Cook while continuously stirring. Eventually the shrimp will curl a bit and become opaque.
- Transfer to a plate immediately. Sprinkle with some salt and serve.
How Do You Poach Shrimp?
Shrimp can absolutely be poached. Cooking gently poached shrimp is considered by many to be the best way to prepare them.
Of course, as with poaching eggs, you have to have a delicate touch or you’re going to fail.
Follow these instructions and you’re sure to succeed.
- Fill a 3 quart saucepan ¾ of the way up.
- Add salt.
- If you’re using lemon, squeeze a lemon into the pot and then add the peel and flesh. You may also want to include peppercorns and parsley.
- Bring the pot to a rapid boil on high heat.
- Remove the pot from the heat and let it stop boiling.
- Add your shrimp and stir.
- Put the lid back on the saucepan and let it sit for 5 minutes. The shrimp should be opaque and pink.
- Prepare an ice bath in a large bowl.
- Drain off the hot liquid and transfer the shrimp into the ice bath.
- Let them sit there for a few minutes before serving.
How Do You Grill Shrimp?
When you hear people talking about “throwing another shrimp on the barbie,” they’re talking about grilling shrimp.
If you want to learn how to grill shrimp, we’ve got the perfect recipe for you.
Just follow these steps:
- Decide if you’re using wooden skewers. If you are, soak them in water 30 minutes before you start grilling so that they won’t burn.
- Preheat your grill to medium-high.
- Lay the shrimp out on a flat surface and pat them dry with a paper towel.
- Rub the shrimp with olive oil and sprinkle them with salt and pepper.
- Add five shrimp to each skewer.
- Lay the skewers on the grill. They should cook for 2-3 minutes per side.
- Remove from the grill and serve right away.
How Do You Deep Fry Shrimp?
Deep fried shrimp can be an amazing comfort food. If you happen to have a deep fryer, good news: you can deep fry your own shrimp.
How do you do it? By following these steps:
- After patting your shrimp dry, season them with salt, garlic powder, and pepper.
- Line up three bowls. Fill one with flour, one with eggs, and one with panko breadcrumbs.
- Coat the shrimp in flour, then dip them into the eggs, and finish in the panko.
- Heat your oil to 350°F.
- Fry your shrimp in batches. About six at a time.
- Dip in the oil for one to two minutes.
- Remove them once they’re golden brown. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate.
How Do You Roast Shrimp?
Shrimp may be smaller than a turkey or chicken, but you can still roast shrimp.
You can include your roasted shrimp in an appetizer plate, over pasta, or in a salad.
Here’s how you do it.
- Preheat your oven to 400°F.
- Combine shrimp, olive oil, salt, and pepper in a mixing bowl and toss to coat.
- Place your shrimp in one single layer onto a baking sheet.
- Place the sheet in the oven and roast until the shrimp are pink and cooked through. This should take between six and eight minutes.
- Remove the shrimp from the oven and serve.
How Do You Cook Shrimp in the Instant Pot?
All you have to do is follow these instructions.
- Stir shrimp together with butter, water, garlic, salt, and red pepper flakes in your Instant Pot.
- Make sure it’s set to sealing position and cook on high pressure for one minute.
- When that’s done, do a quick release by switching the knob to venting.
- Once the pin drops, remove the lid and retrieve your shrimp with a slotted spoon.
- Either discard the liquid in the pot or use it to make a sauce.
How Do You Cook Shrimp in an Air Fryer?
Another modern kitchen marvel, the Air Fryer is perfect for cooking shrimp.
If you want to learn how to cook shrimp in an air fryer, just follow these simple directions.
- Preheat the air fryer to 400°F.
- Toss shrimp with olive oil, garlic, salt, and red pepper flakes in a medium bowl.
- Lay the shrimp in a single layer in the air fryer basket.
- Cook for three minutes until opaque.
- Remove the basket and use a silicone spatula to transfer the shrimp to a plate.
- Use the spatula to scrape up the oil and garlic and pour it over the shrimp.
So many delicious ways to cook shrimp. Are you ready to master them all? Which method is your favorite and is there a special dish you use them for? Let us know!