Fish and Seafood Recipes Salads Side Dishes

Last updated on April 11th, 2024 at 03:43 pm

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Shrimp Salad Recipe [Video]

Undoubtedly, this is the one and only shrimp salad recipe you will ever need. A delicious take on the old-school classic salad, while still maintaining its simplicity. The subtle addition of crunchy celery and the refreshing citrus mayo dressing makes this cold salad the perfect summer potluck dish!

Shrimp Salad Recipe

As a huge seafood lover, undoubtedly this shrimp salad is one of the most popular recipes on my blog. And it makes sense why, this is far from the sad-looking, tiny shrimp covered in way too much mayo, type of salads you see at your corner deli. A tasty and easy recipe, that is ready in 30 minutes, and can be made in advance!

This cold summer salad is bursting with flavor and different textures. A combination of perfectly cooked shrimp, crisp veggies, a creamy salad dressing that does not overpower the shrimp, fresh dill, garlic, and lemon juice. Anyone who tries it, either asks for seconds, or the recipe, and in most cases, for both.

Along with my classic chicken salad or crack corn salad, this creamy shrimp salad is perfect for potlucks, summer BBQ parties, and get-togethers! I enjoy serving it as is, but it’s equally delicious served with saltine crackers, lettuce leaves, hot dog buns, in sandwiches or wraps, on top of leafy greens, toasted bread, or in phyllo cups.

What you’ll need to make shrimp salad

This type of salad has three main components, that all work together in terms of texture and flavor. The main ingredient, is the shrimp, and you should make sure it’s high-quality. The crunchy veggies and the creamy salad dressing tie everything together.


First, let’s talk about the shrimp, because this is the star of the dish, and it should get all the attention. I like to use and recommend jumbo shrimp, however, based on your budget, you can choose other types. When it comes to choosing between fresh or other types of shrimp, here are my recommendations:

  • Fresh – which I recommend and prefer to use, as anything fresh, tastes better! The downside of using fresh shrimp is that you will have to peel and devein it.
  • Frozen – this option, is a second favorite because you can easily get your hands on some high-quality peeled, tails removed and deveined shrimp. You will just have to cook it a few minutes extra.
  • Pre-cooked – while this is a great time-saver, it is my least favorite option. Usually pre-cooked shrimp is less flavorful. You can elevate and improve the flavor by quickly blanching it in some seasoned boiling water with lemon peel, peppercorns, and lots of dill.
  • Canned – I would recommend this option, ONLY if you do not have access to any of the above.


It’s important to keep these simple and use veggies that would complement the salad without masking the shrimp. I use fresh celery and minced red onion. Both add some texture to the salad and just enough flavor, as they are mild enough in taste to not compete with the main ingredient.

Refreshing dressing

This shrimp salad is ALL about the dressing! If you use just mayo, it will seem tasteless and greasy, but with the addition of lemon, garlic, dijon mustard, and dill, the dressing becomes light and bright!

How to make Shrimp Salad

  • Cook the shrimp: In a pot, boil some salted water with some lemon and cook the shrimp for a couple of minutes until it just turns pink. Then, stop it from overcooking from the heat by putting the shrimp immediately in a bowl of iced water. After that, remove it from the water and pat each piece dry or arrange it in a single layer on paper towels to remove excess water.
  • Chop the veggies: Finely chop the red onion and the celery, and add them to a bowl. Also, add the cooked shrimp.
  • Prepare the dressing: In a bowl, mix the lemon juice, garlic, mayo, dijon mustard, fresh dill, and season to taste.
  • Combine: Add the dressing to the bowl with shrimp and veggies, and stir to combine. Refrigerate it for a few hours or overnight for all the flavors to meld well before serving.

Expert tip:

How to peel shrimp:

One of the reasons why some people may avoid making this dish is that they do not know how to peel and devein the shrimp. So, here are some pointers on how to easily do that:

  • Remove the head
  • Use a paring knife to cut through the back.
  • Pull and peel the shell off
  • Pinch the tail off if you like
  • To devein, cut a shallow line along the back and use the tip of the paring knife to pull out the grayish line which is the digestive tract.

Recipe Variations/Add-ins:

  • Ingredients: Aside from the celery, add in some cucumber or bell pepper for an extra crunch. You may try it with avocado, tomatoes, and cilantro.
  • Grill: You may grill the shellfish instead of boiling.
  • Spicy: Toss in some cayenne pepper or jalapenos for some kick. Another option is to mix in some Sriracha or Tabasco sauce into the dressing.
  • Pasta: Make it heartier by mixing in some pasta like rotini.
  • Dressing: For a lighter dressing, use half mayo and half Greek yogurt.


Here are some other ways you can elevate the dish by serving it in other ways aside from eating it as it is:

  • Stuff it inside hollowed-out tomatoes, bell peppers, or avocado halves.
  • Top it on cucumber slices, crackers, or on a bed of lettuce.
  • Wrap it up or put it in sandwiches.
  • Make it into Cheesy Shrimp Salad Sliders.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is shrimp salad made of?

This classic recipe combines perfectly cooked shrimp with crunchy red onion and chopped fresh celery. All coated in a citrusy and creamy dressing, made with mayonnaise, lemon juice, dijon mustard, savory garlic, and some fresh dill. Since this is a versatile dish, other ingredients, like chopped bell peppers, cucumbers, and avocado can be added to the mix. This salad tastes great when paired with greens, so serving it on butter lettuce leaves, or on top of salads is a great choice.

How long can you keep a shrimp salad in the refrigerator?

Shrimp salad can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 2-3 days. However, you have to keep in mind a few factors. If you already served the salad, and it stayed at room temperature for a few hours, that reduced the storage life for the leftovers. It also depends, on what temperatures the salad has been exposed to and for how long. If you served it at a BBQ party and it was hot outside, I would not recommend refrigerating it again, but would rather discard it. This recipe has a mayo-based dressing, and if exposed to room temperature or hotter temperatures has an increased risk of spoiling and can lead to digestive discomfort. Keep the salad refrigerated, and just serve as much as you think it will be consumed.

Is salad shrimp already cooked?

Salad shrimp otherwise called cocktail shrimp is an incredibly convenient and versatile ingredient as it has already been cleaned, peeled, deveined, and you guessed it, COOKED. While it can be used to make shrimp salad, as it will save you some time and effort, I highly recommend using fresh shrimp instead. Keep the cocktail shrimp for other recipes, like soups, omelets, or any other recipe where it involves cooking it.


  • Refrigerate: This is the type of recipe that should be served cold, so make sure you refrigerate it for a few hours before serving. Add the salad to an airtight container and store in the fridge for 2-3 days.
  • Freeze: It is not recommended to freeze this recipe.

More delicious salad recipes:

Recipe tips:

  • If you can’t find jumbo shrimp, pink shrimp will work great in this recipe as they are small and mildly flavored.
  • The shrimp cooks quickly, make sure the water is boiling before adding them. They will be ready in about 3 minutes and should look pink and opaque.
  • It’s equally important to flavor the bling water with some salt, and lemon, and if you want, you can add peppercorns and a few garlic cloves.
  • Do not skip the ice bath, if you just drain the shrimp after boiling, they will continue cooking and that will change their texture. Instead of tender, they will become rubbery.

Shrimp Salad Recipe

Undoubtedly, this is the one and only shrimp salad recipe you will ever need. Creamy, crunchy and refreshing! Ready in just 30 minutes!

photo of shrimp salad
  • Prep Time30 MIN
  • Cook Time10 MIN
  • Servings 6 servings as a side dish


  • 1 pound shrimp peeled and deveined
  • 1 lemon quartered
  • 1 cup celery finely diced
  • 1/2 red onion finely minced


  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh dill chopped - plus more for garnish
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Add the quartered lemon to the water.
  • Place nearby a large bowl filled halfway with ice water.
  • Add the peeled and deveined shrimp to the boiling water and cook for 2-3 minutes or until pink and opaque.
    boiling shrimp with lemons
  • Drain and transfer the shrimp to the bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process.
    ice bath for boiled shrimp
  • Drain the shrimp then pat dry.
  • Mix all the dressing ingredients in a small bowl.
    shrimp salad fressing ingredients in a bowl
  • Place the shrimp, celery, and red onion, in a medium salad bowl. Add dressing and toss gently to coat. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
    shrimp salad ingredients in a bowl
  • Transfer the salad to an airtight container and refrigerate for a few hours before serving. Garnish with additional fresh dill when serving.

Nutrition Facts


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This salad is full of flavor and so refreshing! We loved it and definitely will be making it again and again!

Erin | Dinners, Dishes and Desserts

Erin | Dinners, Dishes and Desserts

Absolutely delicious! I would love to make this again!



The flavor in this dish is out of this world. I cannot get enough of it!



I know this is generally considered an appetizer, but I made it for dinner last night. It has everything you need for a meal if you think about it. Tast-TEE.

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