Shrimp – How to Peel and Devein Shrimp

July 17, 2012 2 Comments

Is there a better way to peel and devein shrimp?

Here is one way taught to me by a professional chef that I can recommend to you.

The easiest way I know to peel and devein shrimp is to buy them already done. The problem with that is

arrow They cost more money

arrow They are less protected against freezing

arrow There are times when you just want the shell and tail left on especially if you are going to barbecue them.

Buying Shrimp

Just so you know, almost all shrimp you buy at your local grocery store behind the glass have been frozen and defrosted for you.

So why not just wait until there is a great sale on frozen shrimp and purchase a bag to keep in your freezer. They are easy to defrost and it’s great having them on hand for a quick appetizer or to use to make dinner.

Defrosting Mistake I’ve Made For Years

I typically defrost frozen shrimp by removing them from the bag, putting them in a bowl and running water over them. WRONG. I just learned that water should never touch the shrimp or they will lose flavor.

(And I’m not so sure shrimp has that much flavor to start with…it’s all about what you cook or dip them in that makes them taste so good.)

Better Idea – A better idea would be to remove the shrimp you need, put them in a zip lock bag and either let them defrost in the refrigerator overnight or run them under cold water in the bag. You never want to defrost them in the microwave because you just may cook them some before you even get started.

What About the Peel and Tail?

Depending on how you are going to cook them and how you are going to present them determines whether I live them on or not. If I’m making a scampi or using the shrimp in a pasta dish, I like to remove both the peel and the tail.

Don’t you just hate when restaurants leave the tail on and you don’t know what to do with it. Is it polite to grab it with your fingers and what are you suppose to do with it once you bite it off?

Now if I’m going to grill shrimp, I sometimes leave the peel and tail on to keep the meat moist and then remove it just before serving or let my guests remove them. You have to be careful not to burn the shells or they can leave an unpleasant taste to the meat.

A quick and easy tip when grilling shrimp with just the tails is to wrap the tail in tin foil and remove it before serving. This will keep the tip from burning on a hot grill messing up the presentation.

How Do You Know When Shrimp Are Done Cooking

You don’t want to under cook or over cook shrimp so I wrote this simple article providing helpful suggestions and tips on how to know when shrimp are done cooking?


Last modified on Mon 4 February 2019 6:57 pm

Comments (2)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Lynda says:

    You never actually fulfilled the promise of your article’s title: “How to peel and devein shrimp”. All you said on the topic was to buy them already peeled and deveined unless you needed the peel on for cooking.
    Not helpful at all.
    Could you try again? Thanks.

    • Hi Lynda, thank you for bringing this to my attention. I did have a great video from one of the on-line cooking schools showing you exactly how to peel and de-vein shrimp but they shut off their video feed so I found this great video on youtube from my friend Dani Spies that I think will give you exactly what you need.

Leave a Reply