We LOVE anything tropical and these coconut shrimp are no exception! We use a simple dredge of flour, eggs, and finish the shrimp off by coating them in a mixture of panko crumbs and sweetened flakey coconut. Give the shrimp a light fry and the result is delicious, crunchy, restaurant quality coconut shrimp! These tropical coated golden shrimp make for a delicious snack, main course, or appetizer for a party. We really love how they can be fancy or casual, just depending on how you serve them.
Our recipe for coconut shrimp is unique because you really only need a few ingredients; shrimp, flour, eggs, coconut, panko crumbs, and vegetable oil. 6 ingredients total- 7 if you include the Thai Chili sauce (we will talk about dipping sauces shortly!). Start off by using deveined, deshelled and tail removed shrimp. Fresh or frozen will work. If frozen, thaw shrimp completely by running under cool water in a colander for about 5-7 minutes.
Blot shrimp with a paper towel to remove excess moisture, and set up an assembly line of flour, well mixed eggs, and a finally a mixture of coconut and panko crumbs. Dip them in flour, then eggs, then coconut mixture and set on a large plate. It is easiest to get this step all done at once so you can fry them equally. Plus…you can clean up your coconut shrimp assembly station, and cleaning as you go is my only way of cooking. Kind of a neat freak.
Moving on to cooking the shrimp; add about 1 1/2 inches of vegetable oil to a shallow pan. Fry each coconut covered shrimp for about 1-2 minutes, or until the shrimp is fully pink underneath and the coconut is golden brown. Place the cooked coconut shrimp on a paper towel lined plate to absorb any extra oil.
Have questions about coconut shrimp? Let’s answer them!
- What kind of shrimp should I use?
- We use frozen, deshelled, deveined, tail off shrimp.
- I’m using frozen shrimp. How do I thaw them?
- Thaw shrimp completely by running under cool water in a colander for about 5-7 minutes. Don’t use warm or hot water as it will start to cook the shrimp and they will become tough.
- Where can I buy shrimp?
- Plenty of places! Walmart, Costco, Safeway, Kroger…You can pretty much find frozen shrimp in any frozen grocery aisle and fresh shrimp in the fresh seafood department.
- What kind of coconut do you use?
- We use Baker’s brand sweetened coconut flakes, but any brand will do. You can find coconut flakes in the baking aisle of your local grocery store.
- Can I use unsweetened coconut?
- Sure can! Bob’s Red Mill is great for unsweetened coconut flakes.
- Can I make these ahead of time?
- Yes- you can prep them ahead of time (every step except for frying) but they really taste best when they are fresh out of the frying pan.
- Can I bake these instead of fry them?
- You can definitely bake these if frying is not your thing. They won’t be as golden colored but they will still taste great. Bake them at 425 degrees for 7-8 minutes on each side.
- How can I make these gluten free?
- Use almond flour both in place of the flour and panko crumbs.
- What other sauces can I serve these coconut shrimp with?
- Soy Sauce
- Ponzu Sauce
- Tartar Sauce
- Cocktail Sauce
- Honey Mustard Sauce
- How do I serve these coconut shrimp as an appetizer?
- Line them up on a platter and serve with the sauce of your choice! They are finger foods, but I you want to serve with a cute toothpick, we love these bamboo ones!
- How do I serve coconut shrimp as a main course?
- What other recipes with coconut do you recommend?
- What other recipes with shrimp do you recommend?
Enjoy these delicious coconut shrimp delicacies and as always- let us know what you think in the comments below! If you make one of our recipes, be sure to tag us with #LaughingSpatula or @LaughingSpatula on Instagram!
- 1 lb shrimp (deveined, deshelled, tails off) fresh or frozen & thawed work
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- 1/2 cup flour
- 3/4 cup sweetened coconut flakes
- 3/4 cup panko crumbs
- 1 tsp salt/pepper
- 2 cups vegetable oil
- Set up an assembly station with the following, each in separate bowls.1- Flour2- Beaten Eggs3- Combined mixture of panko crumbs, salt, pepper and coconut flakes.
- Blot shrimp with paper towel to remove excess moisture, then dip each piece of shrimp in flour, then egg mixture, then generously coat with panko crumb/coconut flake mixture. Set shrimp aside.
- Pour vegetable oil into pan at least 2 inches deep and heat on medium high. Fry 5-6 at a time as to not overcrowd the pan. Fry for 1-2 minutes or until shrimp is pink and coconut is golden.
- Place shrimp on a paper towel lined plate to absorb extra oil. Let cool for 2-5 minutes and serve with sauce of your choice.
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