Spicy Shrimp

July 26, 2009

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: This is dead simple, and totally delicious. I tend to grill up millions of them, take them off the skewers, pile them on a platter, and stick a few toothpicks on. People get the idea pretty quickly, and they disappear... I like them good and spicy, but you can adjust the amount of Sriracha as you'd like. - HelenHelen

Food52 Review: We love Sriracha's heat, which is warm, lasting, and assertive without being overbearing. Helen combined the hot sauce with a few everyday ingredients -- olive oil, Worcestershire sauce, sugar and cilantro -- to create a sublime marinade for shrimp. The oil and sugar give the marinade some viscosity so it doesn't just season the shrimp but clings to it. But it's the sugar that makes this dish -- on the grill, the sugar caramelizes, giving the shrimp a laquered feel, and its sweetness balances the kick of the Sriracha. Buy some beer or Tequila. - A&MThe Editors

Serves: a bunch of shrimp
Prep time: 4 hrs
Cook time: 30 min


  • 1/3 cup Sriracha
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 handful cilantro, roughly chopped, plus more for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 pounds large shrimp (16 to 20 count), peeled and deveined
In This Recipe


  1. Mix together the Sriracha, olive oil, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, cilantro, and sugar. Season aggressively with salt and pepper. Put in a 1-gallon plastic bag, add the shrimp, and mix together in the bag. Marinate in the fridge for 2 to 4 hours. Or longer.
  2. Heat a grill. Skewer the shrimp (4 to 6 shrimp per skewer) and grill until pink and delicious, 2 to 3 minutes per side.
  3. Remove the shrimp from the grill, slide the shrimp from the skewer using a fork, and pile on a serving platter. Sprinkle with finely chopped cilantro, and throw a few toothpicks in a few shrimp. Watch them disappear.

More Great Recipes:
American|Cilantro|Seafood|Shrimp|Serves a Crowd|Grill/Barbecue|Make Ahead|Summer|Appetizer

Reviews (84) Questions (8)

84 Reviews

Steve W. August 25, 2018
New to Food 52 so strictly as a courtesy I'm going to share the one 1st step of making virtually any shrimp dish. This will be especially helpful to those of you who insist on overcooking your seafood. Step one: place cleaned shrimp in a bowl, add about a teaspoon of baking soda, and some water, and stir until mixed. Brine for 15 minutes and pour off water. People will all comment how succulent and tasty your shrimp are. This also works wonderfully for thinly cut slices of chicken breast to keep juicy when stir frying.
MikNik June 25, 2018
Grilled this last night exactly as written after marinating for about 3 hours. So, so good, and so, so easy. Heat level was pretty mild, in a good way.
Ko T. December 15, 2017
So easy, so tasty. Everyone that I introduced this recipe to loves it. I take it to potluck (cook them in my cast iron pan instead of on the grill), summer grilling session, beach picnic, camping trip, you name it. I love it!
Lucy October 20, 2017
Really easy and delicious both hot and cold. Cooked on a skillet due to the weather but a charcoal grill would be an excellent addition! Paired excellently with the sriracha lime corn salsa.
lawprof July 30, 2017
Absolutely wonderful! I varied the recipe a bit (Frank's instead of Sriracha, twice the garlic, juice of half lemon). After savoring the meal, I heated the remaining marinade, reducing it slightly, then cooled it, added: a splash of cider vinegar; diced onion, celery, sweet red pepper; and the left-over shrimp - and marinated it all for a few days. Result: and excellent shrimp salad.
Megan June 13, 2017
Have made this many times and always wish there was more! Tonight, I didn't have quite as much shrimp as I thought. Inspired by EmilyC's use of marinated broccoli on the grill in a recipe I can't wait to try (https://food52.com/recipes/71410-grilled-tahini-yogurt-broccoli-salad-with-bread-basil-and-almonds?from_feed=1), I decided to throw some broccoli florets in the marinade and then skewered them separately and grilled (they needed a bit more time than the shrimp). So delicious! We ate this piled up next to a chickpea salad w/chimichurri. Such a great warm weather meal!
Yvette August 8, 2016
This is such a great recipe - I plan on making these for the rest of my life.
ace June 25, 2016
i tried this recipe a few times, and sometimes substituted the prawns with chicken. it works! Really good recipe. Many thanks for sharing.
Corinne June 15, 2016
Can I use Frank's instead of Siracha?
zoemetro U. May 21, 2016
We made these for the umpteenth time last week. And my friends actually called and requested them again for our bbq gathering this evening. Thank you for the oh-so-simple-absolutely-delicious-addicting recipe.
essbee May 10, 2016
I'm very good at some things but none of those things is correct expressions of ratios. All I really want to say here is that this recipe scores high in terms of its simplicity to Wow! ratio. How I would express that mathematically is beyond me, but trust me when I say that this recipe produces compliments that are disproportionate to the effort that you will put into making it.
lfm May 3, 2016
People were literally chasing me around for these off the grill at our outdoor party.
Jo June 8, 2015
I jst made it for dinner wow!!! I cannot believe that i made this omg soooo good i used a cast iron
Lynn June 6, 2015
Is this gluten free?
ZiggyPiecrust May 17, 2015
Making these for probably the fiftieth time - this is the most requested dish I make and they are perfection every time. I will warn you that when seared inside in my Lodge cast iron pan - the fumes have been known to clear all guests out of the kitchen. Gotta love a dish that sparks a little danger and fear pre eating.<br />
Very delicious! I did not include any salt in the marinade because of my father's high blood pressure and despite that he still loved it. The dish has a nice spice level, it's a bit more than warm but it does not burn. My younger sister found it a bit too hot, but she cooled off with some coconut rice we made to serve on the side.
Riveroaks April 28, 2015
I prepared these for the first time the other night and we all loved them. I split some baby romaine lettuce coated them with olive oil and salt and grilled them the same time I was cooking the shrimp. Put the chopped grilled romaine and cilantro on a platter and then put the shrimp on top. The smokiness of the lettuce and the fresh cilantro added to the hot shrimp.
Nela November 23, 2014
Could I make this recipe on a skillet? In the oven?
De J. August 26, 2014
Delicious with some grilled peaches to balance the heat!
ErinC August 20, 2014
This is great for a summer night with chips and guac (the guac cuts the spice of the shrimp nicely)--I used the leftovers as the protein in Vietnamese Rice Noodle Salad (by Food52 contributor MollyandBrandon) and it was perfect! Love it by itself, but it was truly delicious with this summery noodle salad.