A quick, easy and delicious shrimp dinner, with shrimp in a ginger, garlic and turmeric flavoured coconut milk broth. A feast for the eyes and the palette!
Why you’ll love this Shrimp with Coconut Milk
- This delicious shrimp dinner recipe is super quick and easy! You’ll be enjoying dinner in less than 30 minutes.
- This dish pairs coconut milk with turmeric, which makes it a nice change from a curry.
- The bright colours and fresh flavours of this dish are always appealing and satisfying!
Shrimp – I am a big fan of Argentinian Shrimp (aka Argentinian Red Shrimp). It is beautiful, meaty shrimp and is distinctly pink when raw. That said, any raw shrimp will work fine here. Be sure to allow time for the shrimp to thaw ahead of time.
If you only have cooked shrimp, see the Recipe Card for some tips on using it in this dish.
Coconut Milk – you can use full-fat or lower fat coconut milk. The lower fat coconut milk will make a thinner sauce, but you could thicken it slightly if you like with a cornstarch slurry, if you like (mix one Tablespoon cornstarch with two Tablespoons cold water and stir a bit at a time into sauce until thickened to your liking).
- Combine shrimp and marinade ingredients to a medium bowl.
- Stir to combine well.
- Heat oil in a skillet and add the shrimp. Cook 2-3 minutes.
- Remove shrimp to a bowl and set aside.
- Leave behind the liquid from the shrimp in the skillet.
- Add the red pepper strips and cook, stirring for a couple of minutes to soften.
- Add the coconut milk and soy sauce.
- Stir to combine, bring to a boil, then allow to simmer a few minutes to reduce the sauce..
- Return the shrimp to the skillet.
- Add the baby spinach.
- Cook until spinach wilts.
- Finish with a squeeze of fresh lime.
Be sure not to over-cook the shrimp. As lovely as Argentinian Shrimp is, as it is pink to start, it can be hard to judge when it is cooked, unlike regular shrimp that starts off grey and turns pink. Be sure to watch the time and don’t over-cook the shrimp during the first cooking.
Likewise, don’t cook too long after adding the shrimp back to the skillet. It should just be there just long enough to it warm through.
Don’t forget the salt! Coconut milk is not salted, so the base of this dish needs some salt to bring out all the great flavours. Taste, salt and taste again. Add more salt, if needed, until you are happy with the flavours.
Making ahead, storing and freezing
This dish is best enjoyed freshly cooked, as making ahead and re-heating risks over-cooking the shrimp. That said, I have re-heated it and it’s still pretty darned good. So in a pinch, it works.
Freezing isn’t recommended for the same reasons above (over-cooking shrimp). The sauce may also change texture a bit from the freeze/thaw process.
Get the Recipe: Shrimp with Coconut Milk
- 3 large garlic cloves, minced or grated
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon ginger paste
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- A few red pepper flakes, optional
For the skillet:
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 1 pound large raw Argentinian shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails on or off, thawed if frozen
- 1/2 red bell pepper, cored and seeded, then thinly sliced
- 14 oz full-fat coconut milk
- 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 tsp brown sugar, optional
- 3 cups baby spinach, well packed
- Juice from 1/2 lime
- Green onion, green part only, thinly sliced
- Chopped cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
- Sliced jalapeno
- Lime wedges
- Steamed rice or cooked noodles
- In a medium bowl, add the shrimp and the marinade ingredients. Stir to combine well.
- Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the shrimp and spread into an even layer. Allow to cook without stirring, for 2 minutes. *Be sure not to over-cook at this point. The shrimp will get more cooking later in the process. Remove shrimp to a bowl and set aside, leaving as much of the liquid/seasoning in the skillet as possible.
- In the same skillet over medium heat, add the red pepper strips and cook, stirring, until the peppers are tender-crisp. Add the coconut milk and soy sauce. Add the brown sugar, if using. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat slightly and allow to simmer a few minutes, to reduce slightly.
- Return the shrimp to the skillet. Add the spinach and stir in. Cook until the spinach wilts. Finish with the juice of half a lime.
- Taste sauce and add additional salt and lime, as needed.
- Serve with steam rice or cooked noodles, garnished with green onion, sliced jalapeno, lime wedges and chopped cilantro.
Adapted from a NYT recipe.