Food + Wine

Shrimp, Roasted

I’ve been peeling and eating shrimp since I was a tiny, able child.  I’m pretty damn good at it too.  Traditionally when you’re having peel ‘n eat shrimp, the shrimp has been either steamed or boiled.  Most fish houses steam theirs, as it’s the easiest way for them to cook a lot of shrimp at once.  But I would say most households that are going to cook them, do so by boiling them in a big pot.  A lot of times you’re boiling it with smoked sausages, big chunks of potato and corn on the cob for a ‘shrimp boil’ or ‘frogmore stew’ as it’s sometimes called.  And if you’re doing it right, you’re boiling it in beer.

That’s how I’ve always prepared my shrimp for peeling and eating.  Always.

Until now.

First, let me explain the genesis of this idea.

(And no, I’m not cocky enough to think I invented this method.)

I’ve been recovering from the flu.

(Yeah, that flu.)

It’s been a terrible couple of weeks inside of my body, but I’m on the mend and the past couple of nights I have been able to be around my family again, out of quarantine, and cooking again.  But my energy level is still low, I’m not even remotely close to 100%, so I’m moving on the slow side.

(Me at the grocery store yesterday was undoubtedly comical to those around me.  I couldn’t remember where things were, found myself wandering aimlessly…

I retraced the same footsteps about 65 times.

I smelled an avocado.)

So, I’m on full shortcut mode over here.  And you all know my shortcuts are never going to compromise flavor, texture, or any of the good stuff.

And ya’ll, I just didn’t want to deal with a big ole pot of boiling water.  I didn’t wanna fill the pot.  Didn’t wanna stir the pot.  Didn’t wanna empty the pot.  Didn’t wanna clean the pot.  So I slapped down some parchment paper onto a baking sheet, threw on my shrimp, seasoned them, then roasted them.

In less than 10 minutes, we were peeling shrimp on the floor at the coffee table.

It was so good.  So easy.  And I will never be boiling my shrimp again.

Flavor yours however you’d like, just like when I shared my Broiled Salmon recipe, (another ‘shortcut’ that doesn’t compromise anything), it’s more about the method than the actual recipe.  But anytime you need shrimp for peeling, do it this way.  And I really don’t recommend peeling shrimp before cooking them unless you absolutely have to and the recipe needs it… in which case, I would think you’re doing some sautéing anyway 😉

So next time you come across some killer local shrimp like I did and want an easy and delicious way to make those babies shine… do yourself a favor and roast ’em.

You’re welcome.



  • Cover a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Lay your shrimp in an even layer.
  • Season liberally with old bay seasoning to coat.  Remember you’re seasoning the shells now, so you can lay it on pretty heavy.
  • Add the zest of 1 lime evenly over the shrimp.
  • Reserve the lime.
  • Toss, make sure all sides of the shrimp are evenly coated.  Add more seasoning if necessary.
  • Place in a preheated 400 degree oven on the center rack.
  • Roast for 8-10 minutes, or until the shrimp is firm and pink.


There is hardly a greater culinary sin than an overcooked shrimp.

Note that the ones pictured above are large, 16-20 shrimp.  Smaller shrimp will cook in less time.

Also, shrimp continues to cook after you remove it from the heat, so keep that in mind.

  • Squeeze your reserved lime over the shrimp, or slice it and serve wedges along with the shrimp for your guests to do it themselves.
  • Serve with cocktail sauce.  I prefer mine pretty much half ketchup half horseradish 😉

Lay out some newspaper or butchers paper and set out a roll of paper towels.

Have the beer ice cold and ready.

You really don’t need a whole lot else for an amazing time.

Thanks for reading, y’all! Enjoy your weekend.  Stay well. x

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