Peel ‘n eat shrimp are the ultimate appetizer—flavorful, easy to make and fun to eat. This recipe for smoky peel ‘n eat shrimp comes together in 10 minutes.
Why We Love this Recipe
First and foremost, for the amount of “wow factor” these have, they’re awfully easy to make. Plus, they’re a blast to eat and make a great stand in for chicken wings at any game watch or summer hang.
- 1 pound extra-jumbo shell-on shrimp (16/20): not sure how to look for these? Check out this shrimp size chart. Make sure you buy shrimp that still have their shell intact! Fresh or frozen shrimp work here. Just thaw the shrimp prior to cooking if frozen.
- Unsalted butter: just a couple tablespoons. If you have salted butter, that’s fine.
- 1 fresh lime
- Mayonnaise: I love avocado oil mayo from Sir Kensigntons, but olive oil mayo or regular mayo are also great.
- Greek yogurt: whole milk is best for texture and flavor.
- Canned chipotles in adobo sauce: you can find these in the same area as the enchilada sauce and chiles. You only need on chipotle for this recipe, so store the rest in an airtight container in the fridge or freeze portions in ice cube trays in the freezer for another use. Use leftover chipotles in this recipe for Tempeh Tacos.
- Ground coriander
- Smoked paprika
- Kosher salt
- Cayenne pepper
How to Cook Peel and Eat Shrimp
This method for cooking peel and eat shrimp is simple and straightforward.
- Rinse the shrimp under cold water.
- Add the shrimp to a large nonstick skillet.
- Place the skillet over medium heat and cover. Cook until the shrimp are nearly cooked through, this should take about 3 minutes.
- Remove the lid and toss in the butter, spices, lime zest, and salt. Toss to coat and continue to cook until the shrimp turn pink and firm, about 1 minute more.
- Serve the shrimp warm.
How to Serve Peel and Eat Shrimp
Eating peel ‘n eat shrimp is messy so I recommend serving them with quite a few napkins and an extra bowl for the shells. You can also dump the shrimp out on a table covered with a large piece or brown paper (like a seafood boil). It’s festive and makes for easy clean up.
Peel ‘n eat shrimp are a great game day or summer BBQ appetizer when served with a creamy dipping sauce. They also make a great dinner when served with a quick slaw and healthy cornbread. It’s like the seafood shack, just better!
Variations on this Recipe
Swap the spices out for lemon zest, minced fresh garlic and parsley. Serve the shrimp with my favorite Lemon Garlic Butter Sauce.
Instead of the mexican-inspired spices, opt for dill, garlic and capers. Finish the shrimp with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Serve with homemade tartar sauce.
Toss the shrimp with Old Bay seasoning (instead of the spice blend listed in the recipe) and serve with cocktail sauce.
More Shrimp Recipes to Try
- If you like lobster rolls, then you’ll love this Shrimp Roll recipe. It’s truly the best shrimp roll recipe out there!
- Our Cajun Shrimp is the perfect 15-minute weeknight dinner or go-to appetizer when guests drop by.
- This modern take on Shrimp Fra Diavolo is absolutely delicious. Topped with dollops of chili crisp and fresh cilantro, it’s unlike any fra diavolo you’ve had and in the best possible way!
- Looking for another shrimp sandwich? Try these Shrimp Burgers complete with an herby tartar sauce.
- Shrimp tacos are also a must—check out these Cilantro Lime Shrimp Tacos as well as these Tacos Gobernador which feature shrimp poached in a fresh tomato sauce then piled onto crisp cheesy tortillas with avocado and romaine.
- Creamy Shrimp Bisque is the perfect date-night dinner while Peel ‘n Eat Shrimp are a go-to party appetizer or holiday starter.
Smoky Peel and Eat Shrimp + Chipotle Dipping Sauce
Chipotle Dipping Sauce
- ¼ cup whole milk Greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil or olive oil mayo
- 1 small chipotle in adobo, minced
- 1 lime, zest and juiced
- kosher salt
Peel 'n Eat Shrimp
- 1 pound extra-jumbo (16/20) shell-on shrimp rinsed
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon grated lime zest
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
Chipotle Dipping Sauce
- Whisk together, yogurt, mayonnaise, chipotle, and 1 teaspoon lime juice; season with salt to taste.
Peel 'n Eat Shrimp
- Add shrimp to a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Cover and cook until shrimp are nearly cooked through and pink, 3–4 minutes.
- Uncover and add butter, coriander, 1 teaspoon lime zest, smoked paprika, ½ teaspoon kosher salt and cayenne; stir to coat. Cook, stirring constantly, until shrimp are cooked through, about 1 minute more. Transfer shrimp to a serving bowl.
- Serve shrimp with sauce on side.
Note: this recipe is based off of a recipe I originally developed for Sir Kensington’s.