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Jumbo Enjoyment

Shrimp are living proof that good things come in small packages. Low in calories with no saturated fat, and rich in antioxidants, they’re good nutrition as well as good eating. True, shrimp contain some cholesterol. But in a healthy portion size, they can still be part of a heart-smart diet.

Buying, Prep & Storage

You can buy shrimp raw, cooked, peeled, and/or deveined. They can be baked, broiled, grilled, steamed, sautéed, fried or boiled.

For a quick entrée or complement to any dish, frozen peeled shrimp can be ready to eat in minutes. The firm translucent flesh of raw shrimp comes in a wide range of colors and sizes — including pink, gray, brownish or yellow — depending on the variety. Once cooked, the flesh becomes opaque, and pinkish or cream in color.

Shrimp should be refrigerated, preferably on crushed ice. You can also freeze shrimp, whole or peeled, in order to enjoy it once it’s out of season. Just place shrimp in an airtight bag or container, add a little bit of water, and then freeze.

Cooking Tips

  • Shrimp will lose half its weight after cooking, so two pounds of raw shrimp will become one pound of cooked.
  • It's easier to peel and devein shrimp while raw. But note that shrimp cooked in the shell has more flavor than shrimp peeled before cooking.
  • To devein shrimp, make a shallow cut along the outer curve of the shrimp and pick out the dark, ribbon-like vein with a pointed utensil and then rinse the shrimp.
  • Cook shrimp only until the flesh becomes opaque. Overcooking shrimp will make it dry and rubbery.
  • You can make a delicious broth by boiling the shrimp shells with spices, garlic, onions, celery and carrot; use it for soups and chowders.
  • Using beer to cook the shrimp will give them a slightly sweet flavor.

Serving Suggestions

Shrimp dishes — such as shrimp scampi — are often served with linguine or angel hair pasta. Fresh asparagus, broccoli florets or a salad of baby spinach also complement the flavors and add color. Savory wild rice pilaf or crusty fresh bread to dip in sauce can help round out the meal as well. Shrimp also lends itself beautifully to classic Asian flavors, such as coconut, curry, lime, garlic and ginger. When you're in a rush to prepare dinner, frozen shrimp and vegetables prepared in a stir-fry can have you ready in a flash.