Light and Crispy Fried Shrimp

An overhead shot of a batch of fried shrimp with cocktail sauce and lemon wedges

Classic Fried Shrimp is breaded with panko and lightly fried to crispy perfection. Served with lemon wedges and cocktail sauce, this crunchy crustacean can be served as an appetizer or main course.


  • 1 pound large or jumbo shrimp peeled and deveined tails on or off (your choice)
  • 2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup Panko crumbs
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • Vegetable oil
  • Salt
  • Fresh minced parsley for garnish if desired


  1. Place shrimp in a large bowl and sprinkle shrimp with Old Bay seasoning and stir to coat.
  2. Set up breading station using three shallow dishes (like a pie pan): In the first dish pour in ¾ cup of flour. In the second dish, whisk together eggs with 1 tablespoon of water. In the third dish, combine Panko breadcrumbs with ½ cup of flour. Coat shrimp in flour (shake off excess), then egg (let excess drip off), then Panko/flour mixture, pressing breadcrumbs lightly into shrimp to coat. Arrange shrimp in a single layer on a plate until all are coated and ready to fry.
  3. Pour about an inch of vegetable oil in a heavy bottom dutch oven or skillet with high sides and over medium heat; about 5-10 minutes. You can test with a meat thermometer that should register between 350-400 degrees, or drop in a few breadcrumbs to see if it sizzles.
  4. Line a large plate with several layers of paper towels.
  5. Fry shrimp in a single layer (you may need to fry several batches), 1-2 minutes per batch or until breading is golden in color. The amount of time will depend on how hot the oil is - don’t overcook or the shrimp will become chewy. Use a metal strainer to remove shrimp from the oil and transfer to a paper towel lined plate.
  6. Sprinkle salt lightly over the shrimp and serve with cocktail sauce and lemon wedges.

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