Salt and Pepper Shrimp

5 from 3 votes
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I used to always order Salt and Pepper Shrimp if I saw it on the menu… that is, until I learned how to make them at home! This recipe is super easy and well suited for home cooks of any level! And best part is, it’s JUST AS DELICIOUS as eating Salt and Pepper Shrimp at a restaurant!


Nothing beats freshly fried Salt and Pepper Shrimp 🦐 so easy to make at home and so much better than takeout! #cjeatsrecipes #chinesefood

♬ original sound – Chris Joe

Recipe Tips for Salt and Pepper Shrimp

  • SHRIMP SHELLS – Yes, you can eat the shrimp shells! The Salt and Pepper Shrimp shells are flash fried and covered in garlic, fresh peppers, and spicy salt that make them SO delicious. However, if you prefer to remove the shells, that is OK – just do so before cooking them!
  • NEUTRAL OIL – My favorite neutral oil is avocado oil, but you can also use canola or vegetable oil! I don’t use olive oil when cooking Chinese food for two reasons: 1. It has a low burning point and 2. I find that the flavor profile does not usually go with the dish.
  • THAI CHILI PEPPERS – If you are sensitive to heat, I would recommend you decrease the amount of Thai chili peppers or remove them altogether from your Salt and Pepper Shrimp and sub with red & green bell peppers instead.
  • MSG – As always, this is optional.
  • FRIED GARLIC – You can make your own fried garlic OR you can buy these from the store! I got mine from 99 Ranch.


  • Do not let your frying oil drop below 350F when frying! I highly recommend you use a thermometer to keep an eye on the temperature. If you see it dropping below 350F, fry your shrimp in batches. Frying at a low temperature will result in too much moisture (AKA SOGGY!)

If you tried this Salt and Pepper Shrimp or any other recipe on my website, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how it went in the comments below!

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5 from 3 votes

Salt & Pepper Shrimp

Servings: 4
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 8 minutes
Learn how to make Salt and Pepper Shrimp just like they serve at the authentic Chinese restaurants!


  • 1/2 lb shrimp, U16-20
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp msg
  • 1 jalapeno, sliced
  • 2 freshno chilis, sliced
  • 1 thai chili pepper, sliced, optional
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp fried garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 2 cups neutral oil, I used avocado oil


  • Buy shell on & deveined shrimp, otherwise rinse and clean shell your shrimp, then cut off claws with kitchen shears. Cut through the shell along the top of the shrimp and devein.
  • Chop garlic and fresh peppers and place in a small bowl. In another small bowl, mix white pepper, salt and msg to make your spicy salt.
  • Dredge shrimp in cornstarch and heat 2 cups of avocado oil to 375F.
  • Fry shrimp in batches for 2 minutes until golden brown and shell is crisp. Set on a paper towel to drain and immediately season with a few pinches of spicy salt.
  • Heat 1/2 tbsp of oil over high heat, then fry garlic and peppers for 1 minute. Add back your shrimp and the remaining spicy salt and stir fry for another minute. Add fried garlic for garnish and enjoy!


Calories: 467kcalCarbohydrates: 65gProtein: 47gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0.3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.4gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.2gTrans Fat: 0.01gCholesterol: 365mgSodium: 860mgPotassium: 707mgFiber: 2gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 188IUVitamin C: 29mgCalcium: 179mgIron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Chinese
Tried this recipe?Mention @cj.eats_ or tag #cjeatsrecipes!

About CJ

I’m a third generation Chinese-American home cook who has always loved cooking & eating! Welcome to my food blog, where you can find trusted, tested, easy & approachable recipes for the everyday home cook that taste delicious! I am so glad you're here!

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I love this recipe! I love food with a kick so I add a bit more Thai chillies. Also if you have leftovers, airfry them the next day and they will crisp back up!