Tuesday, April 19, 2011


Shrimp, naturally gluten free, high in protein, and low fat (although high cholesterol) may just be one of Mother Nature's best gifts to us. And, when they go on sale around $5/lb, they're not too bad on the wallet either. Regardless of whether we want to eat junk food, comfort food, or healthy, low-calorie diet food, shrimp is always a good bet to have in the freezer. Bonus: When stored in an airtight freezer bag, it defrosts quickly and easily in a cold water bath.

Typically, we like to keep 1-2 lbs of frozen, raw med-large shrimp in the freezer. I also buy the small, pre-cooked salad shrimp when Price Chopper has them on BOGO specials, because they're pretty versatile and can be used in a lot of dishes.

Looking for some ideas of how to use shrimp? Here are a few, ranging from super-healthy to super-unhealthy (but incredibly yummy). If you have a favorite way to serve shrimp, please share in the comments!

  • Shrimp cocktail. One of the easiest shrimp dishes to make, cold boiled shrimp dipped in cocktail sauce is incredibly yummy, and so good that it's easy to forget it's not that bad for you. 
  • Grilled shrimp skewers, basted with fat free Italian dressing. Serve with grilled veggies (I usually do portabella mushrooms, white mushrooms, red peppers, Vidalia onions and yellow squash), basted in the same dressing. 
  • Buffalo shrimp. I dredge raw shrimp in egg whites, gluten free Bisquick, and repeat. I then pan fry them in a bit of olive oil until they're fully cooked and golden brown - when they're done, I pour warmed-up Frank's Red Hot Buffalo sauce over them and serve them as an appetizer - spear with fancy toothpicks and eat (these work best with medium shrimp). 
  • Sauteed shrimp with basil over angel-hair pasta. 
  • Shrimp summer rolls. Rice paper, lettuce, and vermicelli. I haven't quite gotten this recipe down yet, but I use the salad shrimp for it. 
  • Jambalaya - shrimp, andouille sausage, chicken, veggies, lots of cayenne pepper, and rice. I use the recipe from America's Test Kitchen.  
  • Shrimp fried rice. I add egg, and whatever veggies I have on hand. Usually something like peas, carrots, onion, mushroom, etc. Salad shrimp can easily be used here in a pinch.
  • Shrimp alfredo over penne pasta. I use Classico alfredo sauce, and my special finish is to top with a bit of mozzarella/cheddar cheese (just a tiny bit) and sprinkle liberally with black and cayenne peppers. 
  • Coconut shrimp. Serve with a sweet and sour dipping sauce.
  • Shrimp dip. Canned or salad shrimp with cream cheese, a bit of soy sauce, and scallions. Mix together. Good "plain" on rice crackers or rolled up in rice paper wrappers and deep fried, served with a sweet and sour dipping sauce. 

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