An easy recipe for crispy Coconut Shrimp. Battered in panko and lots of shredded coconut, these shrimp are deep-fried until crispy and golden brown.

Coconut shrimp are easy enough to make, but even easier to mess up.

The breading can easily be too sweet or too soggy or overwhelm the shrimp entirely. Or, the shrimp can be too small, too rubbery, or even fishy-tasting.

By using excellent shrimp and my easy breading recipe, you’ll be able to navigate your way to succulent, mouth-watering Coconut Shrimp every time.

Coconut shrimp being dipped into sauce.

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How do you buy frozen shrimp?

First, select the best possible shrimp you can find. I recommend wild-caught Argentinian shrimp (raw, peeled and deveined). I love the 16/20 count size (which means 16 to 20 shrimp per pound, around 1 ounce per shrimp).

I like to start with raw shrimp because they cook quickly without getting overly tough and rubbery. But, I will take the shortcut and buy shrimp that are already peeled and deveined.

A bag of wild caught shrimp.

How do you make coconut shrimp?

Once you’ve thawed your shrimp, make a 3-bowl breading station.

  • Bowl 1: Flour, salt, and pepper
  • Bowl 2: Lightly beaten egg
  • Bowl 3: Shredded coconut and panko

I like to use a combination of shredded coconut and panko because it ensures a crunchier topping and evens out the sweetness of the coconut.

Once you’ve breaded your shrimp, simply drop in a deep fryer for about 4 minutes total. The shrimp cook quickly and you just want everything browned and crunchy.

Coconut shrimp on a white plate.

Dipping sauce for coconut shrimp

I tried several dipping sauces for coconut shrimp. The grossest one by far was chili sauce and mayonnaise… luckily I the spicy apricot sauce you see in the pictures. The recipe is below.

Coconut shrimp on a white plate.

An easy recipe for crispy Coconut Shrimp. Battered in panko and lots of shredded coconut, these shrimp are deep-fried until crispy and golden brown.

Coconut Shrimp

An easy recipe for crispy Coconut Shrimp. Battered in panko and lots of shredded coconut, these shrimp are deep-fried until crispy and golden brown.
5 from 16 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Servings 6 servings
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Calories 275

Ingredients 

For the apricot sauce:

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha
  • 1 tablespoon Thai sweet chili sauce

For the coconut shrimp:

  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 3/4 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 pound jumbo raw shrimp thawed, peeled, and deveined
  • 2 cups canola oil for frying

Instructions 

  • To make the dipping sauce, in a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, Sriracha, and Thai sweet chili sauce. Chill until serving time.
  • In a shallow dish, add flour and salt and pepper to taste (I like ½ teaspoon and ¼ teaspoon pepper). In a second shallow dish, add eggs and beat lightly. In a third shallow dish, combine panko and coconut. Stir to combine.
  • Working with one shrimp at a time, dredge in flour and shake off excess. Dip in eggs and tap gently on side of dish to remove excess. Add to panko-coconut mixture and press gently until crumbs adhere. Transfer to a large plate and repeat with remaining shrimp (shrimp can be wrapped in plastic and refrigerated for up to 2 hours).
  • Line rimmed baking sheet or large plate with 3 layers of paper towels. In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, heat canola oil until shimmering. Add shrimp in batches and fry until deep golden brown and cooked through, about 2 to 3 minutes per side (the shrimp should reach 120 degrees on an internal thermometer).
  • Drain shrimp well on paper towels. Repeat with remaining shrimp and serve with sauce.

Notes

Leftover coconut shrimp keeps well in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Fried coconut shrimp freezes well, up to 2 months. Reheat for 10 minutes in a 350 degree oven  - or until thawed and warm, and reaches a minimum internal temperature of 145 degrees. 

Nutrition

Calories: 275kcalCarbohydrates: 31gProtein: 20gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 245mgSodium: 905mgPotassium: 173mgFiber: 1gSugar: 16gVitamin A: 133IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 140mgIron: 3mg
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Comments

  1. I’m so in love with this recipe! All the flavors are perfect here. And Marina del Rey shrimp are amazing. They’re our family’s go to shrimp!5 stars

  2. This is just wonderful! Coconut shrimp is one of those dishes that I relegate to “order” versus “make at home” because it intimidates me. But armed with your helpful tips, I feel like I might be able to do it! 5 stars

  3. LOVE coconut shrimp, and yours look so perfectly crunchy! That sauce — love the idea of using apricot.5 stars

  4. Incredible! I love the shrimp and the tasty dipping sauce. I also buy raw frozen shrimp. Marina Del Ray is my favorite. :-) Thanks, Meggan!5 stars

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