Frozen shrimp in air fryer is a personal favorite, it comes out super tender, crispy and juicy all at the same time.
The best part about cooking frozen shrimp in the air fryer is that the cooking time is cut down significantly making the whole process super fast and simple.
Convinced yet? Here you’ll find out everything you need to know to cook perfect frozen shrimp.
In order to obtain flawless shrimp every single time, we first need to address the equipment.
When compared to baking, cooking frozen shrimp in the air fryer is faster, and the taste and texture is simply a amazing. In fact, frozen shrimp is one of my favorite foods to make in the air fryer. Just picture these yummy shrimp paired with roasted bell peppers and broccoli . It is a match made in heaven.
All air fryers are different and some cook much hotter than others. Once you cook your first batch, you’ll know more of what works for your specific air fryer model.
There are three main types of air fryers; there’s the paddle-type air fryer, the basket-type air fryer and the countertop convection oven.
Though there are many air fryers on the market, it is highly recommended to use basket style air fryer to cook your frozen shrimp.
The basket air fryers are popular because the basket usually has a handle for easy tossing.
As the name implies, these air fryers cook your food in a basket. Since the basket has holes all around, it’s easier for air to get through your food, although you’ll still have to stir it at least once during the cooking process.
A great model for this purpose would be the GoWISE USA 7-Quart Electric Air Fryer.
Take a look at some its components:
- The single basket and crisper tray give you 7 quarts of cooking space, the perfect size for feeding; the whole family or to whip up some snacks for a party.
- Air fry, grill, and more: This extra-large air fryer is designed with 8 cooking functions, so you can save time and space.
- The built-in dehydrate function is designed with a temperature range from 90°f to 170°F and a timer from 2-24 hours.
Other kitchen utensils you may find useful when cooking your frozen shrimp:
- Since the coating on an air fryer is nonstick, you should always use plastic utensils such as spatulas.
- Air Fryer Parchment Paper.
All the ingredients you need is your bag of frozen shrimp
1 box frozen shrimp (or any frozen shrimp, battered, plain, coconut) (4 shrimp per serving)
1 spray coconut oil (for coconut shrimp) otherwise, I prefer avocado oil.
There are different ways to prepare frozen shrimp utilizing your air fryer, making the process slightly different depending on the type of frozen shrimp you purchased. Here you’ll find a few.
FROZEN BREADED SHRIMP
When fried, breaded shrimp have a crunch on the outside and a soft bread layer on the inside. Now with air frying it’s even easier to cook your frozen breaded shrimp.
Cooking Time: 5 – 7 minutes
Ingredients: frozen breaded shrimp
1. Preheat your air fryer to 400 ° F (204 ° C).
2. Place the desired amount of frozen shrimp into the air fryer basket.
3. Air fry frozen breaded shrimp for 5 to 7 minutes (until done).
Tip: Shake the air fryer basket halfway through the cooking time to make sure the shrimp are cooked evenly.
FROZEN BUTTERFLY SHRIMP
Butterfly shrimp are filleted, panko breaded, and fried shrimp- usually made with jumbo shrimp. They have a crispy, brown coating over the juicy inside. These treats usually take a long time in the oven, but are twice as fast in the air fryer!
Cooking Time: 5 – 6 minutes
Ingredients: Frozen butterfly shrimp
Preheat the air fryer to 380° F (193 ° C).
Place the frozen butterfly shrimp in a single layer in the air fryer basket.
Cook the shrimp for 5 to 6 minutes, turning halfway to ensure they cook evenly.
Tip: To fit more frozen butterfly shrimp in your air fryer at once, try leaning them against the sides of the basket. With this method, you won’t have to turn the shrimp.
FROZEN TEMPURA SHRIMP
Usually found in Japanese restaurants, tempura is a deep fried dish that is often made with shrimp and assorted vegetables. Thanks to the air fryer, you can now make tempura at home using a fraction of the oil as traditional tempura.
Cooking Time: 30 minutes
Ingredients: ½ cup rice wine, ¼ cup cornstarch, 1 egg yolk, ¼ cup flour, ⅓ cup ice water, ¼ teaspoon sugar, 1 teaspoon shortening, ½ teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon baking powder, ½ pound frozen uncooked shrimp (dethawed, peeled, deveined, tails on), non-stick cooking spray
Mix rice wine and ¼ teaspoon of salt together in a medium bowl. Place the shrimp into the mixture, cover, and allow to marinate in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes.
While the shrimp are marinating, mix together the remaining ingredients in a separate bowl.
When the shrimp are done marinating, preheat the air fryer to 350 ° F (177° C).
Spray the air fryer basket with non-stick cooking spray.
Dip the shrimp into the batter, avoid covering the tails.
Place the battered shrimp into the air fryer basket in a single layer, avoid letting them touch.
Cook the shrimp for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the batter is a light golden color and the shrimp is cooked.
Serve with a ginger soy sauce or other dipping sauce of your choice.
Tips: You can also make tempura battered vegetables such as green beans, carrots, potatoes, etc. Just follow the same steps and fry using your air fryer.
FROZEN FRIED SHRIMP
Buying premade frozen fried shrimp may be easy, but nothing tastes as good as food you make yourself. With minimal effort you can make fresh fried shrimp that will impress everyone that tries it!
Cooking Time: 5 – 7 minutes
Ingredients: 1 pound frozen raw shrimp (dethawed, peeled, deveined, tails on), ⅓ cup flour, 3 eggs, 1.5 cups panko bread crumbs, seasoning of choice, non-stick cooking spray.
Beat eggs until frothy in a medium bowl.
In a separate bowl, mix together the flour and seasonings.
Dredge the shrimp in the flour, shaking off excess. Then dip the shrimp into the eggs before pressing into panko on both sides.
Lightly spray the shrimp with cooking spray.
Place the shrimp into the air fryer basket in small batches and cook at 350 ° F (177° C) for 5 to 7 minutes until the panko is a crispy golden brown.
Tip: If you experience the shrimp sticking to the air fryer basket, try spraying the basket with a non-stick spray of your choice before putting the shrimp into it.
Do I need to defrost frozen shrimp before air frying?
Just to be clear, some of the most common questions about air frying frozen hash browns include this one.
And the answer is no, you do not need to defrost the shrimp before you start cooking them. You can just pull them straight from the freezer and pour them out of the bag into the air fryer basket!
How long do you cook frozen shrimp?
Cook the shrimp at 400F. The cook time varies and depends on what kind of shrimp you have.
Cook for 5 minutes if the shrimp is labeled as frozen cooked shrimp.
Cook for 10 minutes if it’s frozen raw shrimp.
Should I freeze frozen shrimp before frying?
It really depends on when you want to consume your frozen shrimp.
If you want to consume your shrimp as soon as you come back from the market, then keep them outside. However, if you want to enjoy this delicious dish some other time, then keep the bag in your freezer.
What sauce goes perfectly with frozen shrimp?
This is another personal choice. Some prefer the classic cocktail sauce while others enjoy a citrus sauce option.
Other popular dipping sauces for frozen shrimp include a ginger soy sauce, a creamy garlic sauce, a spicy tomato sauce, Thai peanut sauce, tartar sauce, tropical mango coconut sauce, etc.
Here we give you the recipe for shrimp cocktail sauce:
- Ketchup. Use your favorite brand.
- Lemon juice.
- Prepared horseradish.
Add ketchup, lemon juice, and prepared horseradish to a bowl and mix well to combine. Adjust to your preference and refrigerate.
What are the best frozen shrimp brands?
There are lots of brands that make and supply frozen shrimp. Check out some of our favorite picks
How to reheat frozen shrimp
You can easily reheat shrimp in your air fryer.
All you need to do is, place the shrimp in your air fryer and “air fry” at 370F for 3-4 minutes or until warm.
The secret for making GREAT frozen shrimp (RAW)
You can absolutely air fry frozen shrimp taken directly from the freezer.
When talking about frozen, raw, un-breaded shrimp; it doesn’t matter how rock hard your shrimp may be, it cooks perfectly well in the air fryer.
Lots of factors influence outcome of how frozen shrimp cook. They all vary significantly in size, coating, pre-cooked or raw, so you’ll have to adjust timing.
All air fryers are different and some cook much hotter than others. Once you cook your first batch, you’ll know more of what works for your model of air fryer and size of food.
Make sure to cook in just a single layer. Cook in multiple batches if needed.
This tips will help you achieve great results
- Cook Frozen – Do not thaw first.
- Shake or turn if needed. Don’t overcrowd the air fryer basket.
- If cooking in multiple batches, the first batch will take longer to cook if Air Fryer is not already pre-heated.
- If using a larger air fryer, the recipe might cook quicker so adjust cooking time.
- Remember to set a timer to shake/flip/toss as directed in recipe.
How do you make frozen shrimp taste better?
Frozen, raw, un-breaded shrimp certainly needs some seasoning.
If you want to make your frozen shrimp tastier, seasoning is key before you put them into your air fryer.
1 pound (454 g) frozen raw shrimp
oil spray or vegetable oil , to coat shrimp
salt , to taste
black pepper , to taste
- Evenly coat the frozen shrimp with oil spray or vegetable oil. Season with salt & pepper (you do not need to thaw the shrimp).
- Place the frozen shrimp in the air fryer basket and spread in an even layer (make sure they aren’t overlapping).
- Air Fry at 400°F/205°C for 8-10 minutes, flipping the shrimp halfway through cooking. Check for doneness & air fry longer if needed.
Can frozen shrimp be thawed and refrozen?
There is no reason to defrost your shrimp, simply add the shrimp to your air fryer and set the temperature to 400 degrees F for 5 minutes. If they are not previously cooked and are just raw shrimp, then about 10 minutes.
That said thawing your frozen shrimp is super easy. Simply remove the desired quantity of frozen shrimp from the bag and thaw on a paper towel to allow any excess moisture to be absorbed.
Then re-seal the bag with the remaining frozen shrimp removing any excess air, and place back in the freezer.
How to keep frozen shrimp fresh?
The most practical way to preserve frozen shrimp is to keep it properly stored in the freezer.
Frozen shrimp can keep for up to 6 months without losing its flavor.
How to stock your freezer with frozen shrimp
Storing cooked shrimp:
- Remove the shells.
- Boil the shrimp for approximately 10 minutes.
- Place the cooked shrimp on a baking sheet and put it in the freezer
- Transfer the shrimp in large freezer bags
Storing raw shrimp:
- Remove the shrimp heads prior to freezing.
- Clean the shrimp under running water.
- Place the shrimp in closed containers.
- Pour a brine solution in the container.