Classic, crispy fried shrimp is so much easier to make at home than you think. Just a few, simple pantry ingredients to create this fried shrimp batter, and you’ll know how to make fried shrimp in a cinch!
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Or serve up this fried shrimp recipe as an appetizer with some of our other favorite easy appetizer recipes that we have here on the blog.
Fried Shrimp Recipe
I don’t know about you but sometimes I find making fried foods at home kind of intimidating. There’s the whole dredging process and the sometimes messy, frying of the food.
But I’m here to tell you, this recipe couldn’t be any easier.
How to Fry Shrimp
The ingredient list for this fried shrimp recipe is small and basic. It uses things like:
- Buttermilk (or regular milk)
- …and a handful of basic pantry spices.
Nothing to be afraid of here.
How do you make crispy fried shrimp?
The mixture of flour and cornmeal adds such a delicious crust to the shrimp. The cornmeal adds a crazy crunch and the flour adds its own wonderful crispiness too.
A good amount of onion powder, garlic powder, kosher salt and a nice sprinkle of cayenne pepper in the batter also bring lots of flavor and interest.
Fried Shrimp Batter
I’ll be honest. I don’t love when my hands get goopy and dirty.
So I want to share a little tip with you when it comes to the battering that will keep your hands so much cleaner and make the process much easier.
How do you make batter for deep frying shrimp?
First, when you set up your little breading station you’ll want two pie plates or cake pans ideally. You can use bowls if necessary but the wide, shallow shape of pie or cake pans makes the process much easier.
One cake pan will have the liquid ingredients, in this case, an egg and buttermilk. The second pan will hold the dry ingredients, flour, cornmeal and spices for a major flavor punch.
Egg Wash + Flour/Cornmeal Batter
The shrimp all get dipped into the liquid mixture first and here’s the key.
TIP: Use one hand (I usually use my left since I move through the process left to right) to put coat the shrimp in the egg mixture. Pick up the shrimp with the wet hand and place it in the flour mixture. Now use your other hand to gently coat the shrimp.
Because you aren’t going back and forth with both hands they aren’t getting goopy and gross. One hand will have egg and one hand flour but not a big lumpy mess.
It’s not anything revolutionary but it makes a big difference in the mess level of battering and frying.
How to pan fry shrimp…
Once the shrimp are all nicely coated, to the oil they go. You can fill a rimmed skillet with a few inches of oil or you can use a deep fryer if you have one. Either option will work well and fry those shrimp up super quick. We’re talking 3 minutes quick.
So the whole process from start to finish is about 15 to 20 minutes. Restaurant quality fried shrimp at home in less than 20 minutes. I call that winning.
Dipping Sauce Recipe for Shrimp
If you’re looking for a super simple and really tasty dip for this shrimp, I have a two-ingredient option that may just blow your mind.
Mayo and sweet chili sauce mix up to a creamy, spicy, slightly sweet sauce that really compliments the crispy, tender fried shrimp.
Quick Fried Shrimp
Roll up your sleeves, break out your cake pans and get to dredging. You’re less than 30 minutes away from crispy fried shrimp at home tonight.
- Canola oil for frying
- 24 ounces large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup buttermilk (or milk)
- 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 2 tsp. garlic powder
- 2 tsp. onion powder
- 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 3/4 cup mayo
- 1/2 cup sweet chili sauce
- Heat 1/2-inch of oil in a large, heavy-bottomed skillet over medium heat. Line a large plate with a paper towel, set aside.
- In a cake pan or pie plate whisk together eggs and buttermilk. Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt and pepper.
- In another cake pan, mix together the flour, cornmeal, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and cayenne pepper.
- Add shrimp to the egg mixture and coat well. A few at a time, add the shrimp to the flour and coat completely. Place on a clean plate while you bread the remaining shrimp.
- Add shrimp to skillet making sure not to overcrowd the pan. Fry for 3 minutes, until crispy and golden brown. Drain on prepared plate. Continue until all shrimp is fried.
- Mix mayo and sweet chili sauce in a bowl for dipping.
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