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healthy shrimp recipes

 

Today’s recipe is a 20-minute entrée: Sautéed Lemon Garlic Shrimp with Parsley. It’s super simple, paleo and gluten-free!

 

In keeping with the fast recipe I have today, I also have a fast post. All I wanted to say is remember a while back how I went on and on about sugars and the boiling point of water and water evaporation? Wait, before your eyes glaze over, I won’t go into that again, but I will say that the stuff I said in that post totally comes into play when you make this lemon garlic shrimp recipe.

TIPS ON HOW TO COOK SHRIMP

If you don’t feel like re-reading that post, here is the one paragraph takeaway and how it applies to today’s shrimp recipe. To brown the shrimp and keep them from releasing all their juice into the pan, you’ll want to make sure you heat up your pan before you add the shrimp. You can even add a shrimp to test if the oil is hot. If you do and it doesn’t really sizzle sizzle sizzle, then you should wait a minute before adding the rest of the shrimp. You also don’t want to overcrowd the pan. So make sure you use a 10-inch skillet, not an 8- or 9-inch.

If you do those two things your shrimp will sauté, turn lightly golden, retain all their sweet shrimpy juicy goodness. Not only that, but the garlic will also taste better because it is fried and not boiled. You’ll be rewarded with sweet, plump and lightly golden sautéed shrimp in massive amounts of garlic and parsley with a bit of bright lemon flavor to make the whole thing come alive.

To choose the best shrimp make sure you check here first. Check to see if your shrimp is labeled STP (or STPP) free. While the FDA recognizes Sodium Tripolyphosphate as generally recognized as safe, the use of it to preserve moisture content in seafood  dramatically increases the sodium content. Not only that, but I’ve also found that seafood that’s treated with it will not achieve a good sear.

Shrimp is the most popular seafood in the US. To learn more about it, this article from EatingWell about shrimp farming is a good one.

 

HOW TO MAKE THIS LEMON GARLIC SHRIMP

Once you’ve cooked the shrimp using the tips I just shared with you, push them to one side and tilt the pan slightly so the oil pools on the other side. Add the minced garlic to the oil and fry until it just turns brown (don’t cook it any longer, or else the garlic will burn and turn extremely bitter). Then, mix the shrimp and garlic together until the shrimp is fully coated. Spread the shrimp out so it’s evenly covering the pan and squeeze the lemon juice on top. Sprinkle with parsley and pepper, then remove the shrimp from the heat.

You can enjoy this shrimp in garlic sauce as is, or serve it atop pasta like I did. This lemon garlic shrimp would also taste divine alongside rice (regular or cauliflower rice would pair nicely here) or on a hearty salad. If possible, enjoy this shrimp right away or eat it cold later on. Reheated shrimp has a tendency to turn a bit rubbery, so I’d avoid reheating this shrimp if I were you.

 

Garlic Butter Shrimp

This garlic butter shrimp has HUGE flavor in under 10 minutes! A fast and easy dinner for weeknights or entertaining, it will become your go-to.

Here’s your new go-to shrimp recipe: garlic butter shrimp! The shrimp come out impossibly juicy with the best garlic flavor. The sauce it just the right amount of buttery: deliciously savory but moderate enough to be a healthy dinner idea. The best part? It takes under 10 minutes to make. Yep, that’s pretty unheard of in dinnertime territory. Alex and I have devoted our expertise to easy healthy dinner recipes, and this one tops the list. And it works for both weeknights or entertaining. And it’s kid friendly (our son loves it). Really, what can’t this recipe do?

What’s in a garlic butter shrimp recipe?

The great thing about shrimp is: it tastes incredible when prepared simply! There’s not much you need to add to make shrimp taste like a million bucks. Here’s all that you need for this garlic butter shrimp recipe:

  • Large shrimp: It can be fresh or frozen, peeled or unpeeled. It’s nice to buy deveined so you don’t have to bother with that step.
  • Garlic: Only use fresh garlic: no dried here!
  • Butter: Salted butter is perfect; unsalted works in a pinch.
  • Lemon: A few lemon wedges are key to get the perfect flavor: don’t skimp here!
  • Fresh cilantro or parsley, optional: It looks beautiful for a garnish!

Skip the garnishes (lemon and parsley) and it’s an easy 3 ingredient recipe!

This shrimp cooks in 3 to 4 minutes!

The biggest mistake home cooks make with shrimp? Overcooking it. Overcooked shrimp is tough and rubbery, and it can go from perfect to overdone in just a minute. Pay close attention while you’re cooking the shrimp so you remove it from the heat at just the right time. Here are a few pointers:

  1. If using frozen shrimp, thaw it completely (see the section below). Pat the shrimp dry and mix it with the garlic and salt.
  2. Melt the butter in a large skillet. Add the shrimp and cook for 1 to 2 minutes per side on medium high heat (3 to 4 minutes total). Remove it from the heat as soon as it turns opaque.
  3. Spritz with fresh lemon juice and serve immediately!

What to serve with garlic butter shrimp?

Of course, just making garlic butter shrimp doesn’t make a meal in itself. But whip up a whole grain or a veggie to go alongside, and it’s dinner! Here’s what we’d suggest serving it with:

  • Couscous: Couscous cooks in just 5 minutes. Try this Quick Shrimp Couscous.
  • Rice: Try White Rice, Brown Rice, Instant Pot White Rice, or Instant Pot Brown Rice.
  • Quinoa: Try Basic Quinoa or Pesto Quinoa.
  • 10-Minute Sides: Try Peas with Lemon (5 minutes!), Simple Sauteed Broccoli, Best Steamed Broccoli, Sauteed Spinach, Sauteed Asparagus, Lemony Steamed Green Beans, or Easy Arugula Salad.

Love garlic? Try more Great Garlic Recipes!

Fresh vs. frozen shrimp: which is better?

Is there a preference between fresh vs frozen shrimp? Here’s what you need to know:

  • Both fresh and frozen shrimp work! A myth about fish is that “fresh is best,” but frozen isn’t necessarily lower quality. In fact, it might be higher.
  • Explanation: As soon as an animal dies it begins to decompose; freezing suspends this process. If a fish is frozen when it was caught and stays frozen until it gets to your kitchen, it will be higher quality than a raw fish that has taken a week to get to your plate.

How to thaw frozen shrimp

How to thaw frozen shrimp? There are a few different options:

  • Day before: If you think ahead, simply place the frozen shrimp in the refrigerator overnight.
  • Day of: Place the frozen shrimp into a large bowl with very cold water. Stir the bowl every 5 minutes to break up clumps of shrimp that freeze together. The shrimp should be defrosted in about 15 minutes.

Looking to buy sustainable shrimp?

It’s hard to figure out how to buy sustainable fish at the grocery store. Here are a few pointers when you’re out shopping:

  • Look for wild-caught fish if possible. If you live in the US, look for US caught. 90% of the seafood eaten in the US is imported. Imported seafood runs the risk of being overfished, caught under unfair labor practices, or farmed in environmentally harmful ways.
  • How your fish is caught matters. Look for hook and line as one example of a sustainable gear type. Bottom trawling is considered the most destructive and least sustainable method.

This garlic butter shrimp recipe is…

Gluten-free and pescatarian. For dairy-free, use vegan butter.

 

Honey Garlic Shrimp

This honey garlic shrimp is so irresistible, you’ll want to eat it every night! A sweet savory glaze covers succulent shrimp, and it’s done in 10 minutes.

Every now and then a recipe comes along that knocks our socks off. And so it was with this Honey Garlic Shrimp recipe! There’s nothing like the sweet savory combination of honey garlic glaze and juicy shrimp. The best part? It takes 10 minutes to make. This one is hits all the comforting, satisfying dinner notes with a lightning fast prep speed. It’s hard to find those recipes with that elusive trifecta of healthy, easy and delicious: and this one has it in spades.

The secrets behind honey garlic shrimp…in 10 minutes!

There’s no marinating time needed with this honey garlic shrimp. It’s the ultimate fast and easy dinner idea…in just 10 minutes! One note: make sure to thaw the shrimp if you’re using frozen; this isn’t included in the timing. Here are a few of the secrets to this kitchen magic trick (or jump to the recipe below):

  • Mix the shrimp with minced garlic, onion powder & salt. This allows maximum coverage of the seasoning on the shrimp first.
  • Mix together a quick sauce. Honey, soy sauce, and vinegar is all you need and it’s absolute perfection!
  • Sauté 1 to 2 minutes per side. To learn about the perfect sear, to Perfect Sautéed Shrimp.
  • Turn off the heat and add the sauce! Removing the heat is important so the sauce doesn’t evaporate when it hits the hot pan.

The best shrimp to buy

When you’re shopping for shrimp, there are so many options at the store these days. If you’re making this honey garlic shrimp, here’s what we’d recommend:

  • Find medium shrimp (or large). Medium is nice because you get more bites! But either work. Medium is also labeled as 41 to 50 count, and Large as 31 to 40 count (which indicates how many shrimp there are per pound).
  • Use tail on or peeled. For this recipe we like tail on because it looks beautiful. But you do have to remove the tails with your hands as you eat them! So peeled is great too.
  • Fresh or frozen. Both are essentially the same freshness because most shrimp are immediately flash frozen. Just make sure to thaw the shrimp in advance.
  • Wild caught. Look for wild caught: it’s the most sustainable!

How to thaw shrimp

What’s the best way to thaw shrimp? The easiest way is the night before! But if you’re like us and rarely think ahead: there’s a method too. Here’s the best way to thaw shrimp for this honey garlic shrimp recipe:

  • Day before: Place the frozen shrimp in the refrigerator overnight.
  • Day of: Place the frozen shrimp in a large bowl with very cold water. Stir the bowl every 5 minutes to break up clumps of shrimp that freeze together. The shrimp should defrost in about 15 minutes. Make sure to pat it dry before using!

Ways to serve honey garlic shrimp

All you need are a side dish or two to make honey garlic shrimp into a healthy whole food dinner that everyone will love. Our favorite picks? Rice and broccoli. Every time we make it, everyone around the table raves. Even our 4 year old inhales it! This is one of those recipes I could eat at least 6 out of 7 days of the week and be happy. Here are a few side dish ideas:

  • Broccoli: Whip up pan fried broccoli in a separate pan! Or use the same pan after you cook the shrimp.
  • Rice: Go to white rice or brown rice. (Or try lentil rice, rice made from lentils: it cooks even faster!)
  • Veggie sauté: Pair with these ultimate sauteed veggies.
  • Edamame: Try Easy Edamame or 5-Minute Shelled Edamame.
  • Stir Fry: Pair with this Cauliflower Stir Fry for a stunning meal.

This honey garlic shrimp recipe is…

Pescatarian, gluten-free and dairy free (with olive oil).

 

Shrimp and Broccoli

This ultra flavorful shrimp and broccoli comes together in minutes for a fast and easy healthy dinner! Serve with rice or over noodles.

Looking for a healthy and easy weeknight meal? Try this shrimp and broccoli! The pair are cooked with soy sauce and and rice vinegar until bright and savory. The contrast of the crisp tender broccoli against the juicy shrimp is really something. Serve it with rice or noodles to make it a complete meal that comes together quickly! Depending on what you serve it with, dinner can be on the table in just 20 minutes! Alex and I love serving this one, and our son Larson is a huge shrimp fan. Here’s how to make it!

What’s in this shrimp and broccoli?

Big flavor comes from just a few ingredients here! This recipe uses Asian-style flavors to make a savory, complex sauce. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Large shrimp: It can be fresh or frozen, peeled or unpeeled. Tail on shrimp is the prettiest, but you’ll have to remove the tails when eating (which can be logistically challenging!).
  • Broccoli
  • White onion
  • Rice vinegar
  • Soy sauce
  • Chili garlic sauce: Optional, but it brings big flavor and a bit of heat
  • Sesame oil: For cooking (not toasted)

This recipe comes together so quickly! You’ll saute the broccoli and onion over medium high heat for 5 to 6 minutes, then add the shrimp for 3 to 4 minutes. Then, you’ll pour over the sauce of vinegar, soy sauce and chili garlic sauce and cook 1 minute more. Dinner is done!

Option 1: Shrimp & broccoli with noodles!

The fastest serving suggestion for shrimp and broccoli is using Rice Noodles or Soba Noodles. Many rice noodle packages don’t even require cooking: just pouring boiling water over the noodles! Many rice noodles are gluten-free as well (check the package). Soba noodles are also a great choice; they’re buckwheat noodles that are cooked on the stove like traditional pasta. Try our Quick Soba Noodles!

Either way, flavor them a little after cooking! Toss the cooked noodles with sesame oil and some salt so they’re flavored a little before serving. The shrimp does have a bit of sauce left over you can spoon over as well.

Option 2: Shrimp & broccoli with rice!

Another great option for this Asian-style shrimp and broccoli is serving with rice! In both cases, make sure to start the rice before you begin to cook the shrimp. Here’s what to know about rice types:

  • Brown rice (about 35 minutes). Brown rice is more nutrient dense than white rice, so Alex and I love to choose it when we have the time. Using our Quick Brown Rice method you can make it faster than most (most recipes take about 1 hour). Or try our Instant Pot Brown Rice — it takes the same amount of time.
  • White rice (about 20 minutes). White rice cooks quicker! Try our White Rice method or Instant Pot White Rice.

How to thaw frozen shrimp

Using frozen shrimp for this shrimp and broccoli recipe? There are a few different options for how to thaw shrimp, depending on when you’re planning to make the recipe:

  • Day before: If you think ahead, simply place the frozen shrimp in the refrigerator overnight.
  • Day of: Place the frozen shrimp into a large bowl with very cold water. Stir the bowl every 5 minutes to break up clumps of shrimp that freeze together. The shrimp should be defrosted in about 15 minutes.

What to look for when buying shrimp

Is there a preference between fresh vs frozen shrimp? What about buying sustainable fish? Here’s what you need to know when you’re at the grocery buying shrimp:

  • Fresh vs frozen. A myth about fish is that “fresh is best,” but frozen isn’t necessarily lower quality. In fact, it might be higher! If a fish is frozen when it was caught and stays frozen until it gets to you, it will be higher quality than a raw fish that takes a week to get to your shopping cart.
  • Look for wild-caught or US caught. Wild caught is preferable if you can find it. If you live in the US, look for US caught. Imported seafood runs the risk of being overfished, caught under unfair labor practices, or farmed in environmentally harmful ways.
  • Look for hook and line as one example of a sustainable type of fishing gear. Bottom trawling is considered the most destructive and least sustainable method.

This shrimp and broccoli recipe is…

Gluten-free, dairy-free and pescatarian.

 

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