Crispy Baked Coconut Shrimp

These Crispy Coconut shrimps are baked and are a great appetizer to serve at parties. The secret to the incredible crunchy coating is toasting breadcrumbs and shredded coconut. And the bonus is an easy dipping sauce recipe that goes well with it.

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I tell you, these baked crispy coconut shrimps are life-changing. Once you pop one in your mouth, first you get the crunchy coconut crust, then comes the juicy tender perfectly seasoned shrimp. While we love to order these in restaurants, it is an occasional indulgence.

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Deep fried coconut shrimp taste amazing but it costs your waistline dearly. Also, they are a bit greasier for my taste, as breadcrumbs and coconut flakes tend to absorb a lot of oil. Whereas these baked ones taste very close to the deep-fried version but are also guilt-free.

The breading technique that I follow in this recipe is mess-free. It is not the conventional flour-egg-breadcrumb method. No messy fingers, wet crumbs in the breading bowl.

Coconut Shrimp served with sweet and Spicy Mayo dip.Pin

Ingredients for Coconut Shrimp

  • Shrimps- Go for large shrimps with the tail on. Keeping the tail on is optional but they serve as handles and are easier to eat. Frozen shrimp will also work, just make sure they are thawed and drained well.
  • For wet coating – Egg, milk, flour, paprika, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
  • For dry breading – Panko breadcrumbs and shredded coconut. Shredded coconut sticks better and more evenly than coconut flakes. Coconut flake is what you have on hand, then run in a food processor to break it. Desiccated coconut has a fine texture and won’t give the necessary crunch. If you prefer the coconut shrimps a bit on the sweeter side, you can use sweet coconut flakes.
Ingredients for Coconut ShrimpPin

2 Easy steps to make Crispy Baked Coconut Shrimp

The breading technique that I have used here is somewhat similar to what I used in Chicken nuggets and Crispy baked chicken tenders. No need to set up a breading station, no dirty fingers, and a mess-free process.

  1. Toast the breading – The secret to the perfect crunchy coating is to toast coconut flakes and panko. Shrimp doesn’t take long to cook. So while the shrimp are getting cooked, the coconut crumb coating turns perfectly golden brown.
  2. Make the wet marinade for shrimp. This step is a combination of egg wash and dredging of flour steps from the usual breading process. Mix egg, flour, milk, paprika, garlic powder, salt and pepper. The mixture should be like a paste and coat the shrimps well. This wet marinade with the spices, also helps to season the shrimp.
  3. Coat with the breadcrumb and coconut mixture. And bake until crispy.
Steps to make Crispy Coconut ShrimpsPin

Tips for Perfectly Baked Coconut Shrimps

  1. Make sure you drain the shrimp well and pat it dry. Otherwise, the wet mixture would be too thin and won’t stick well.
  2. Baking on a rack allows the air to circulate around the shrimp, making it crispier.
  3. If using frozen shrimps, they must be thawed well. Otherwise, they will be cooked unevenly.
  4. You can also air-fry the coated shrimp.
Coconut Shrimp served with sweet and Spicy Mayo dip.Pin
Coconut Shrimp served with sweet and Spicy Mayo dip.Pin

More Appetizer Recipes…

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Crispy Coconut Shrimp

Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
These shrimp baked with a crispy coconut coating are so good and are a perfect appetizer. The trick to get a perfect golden crust is to toast the coconut flakes and panko breadcrumbs before coating.
Servings 18 -20 pieces

Ingredients
  

  • 18-20 shrimp

For first coating

  • 1 large egg
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper

Panko Coconut Coating

  • ½ cup panko breadcrumb
  • 1 cup shredded coconut (ref note 1)
  • 2 tbsp Oil

Dipping Sauce

  • ½ cup sweet chilli sauce
  • 2 tbsp mayo
  • 1 tsp worcestershire sauce

Instructions

  • Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Clean and devein the shrimp. I keep the tails on, as it will work as a little handle while eating. Drain water well, in case of any.
  • Mix panko bread crumbs, coconut flakes, and 2 tablespoons of oil. Bake it in a preheated oven until it is light golden brown in color. Take the pan out and give it a stir in between for even coloring.
    Alternatively, you can also toast the mix on the stovetop. It is important to toast in low heat and stir it frequently for even browning.
  • Prepare a baking rack placed on top of a baking tray. Spray the rack with nonstick spray (this is an extra step, to prevent the shrimp from sticking)
  • In a large mixing bowl add egg, flour, milk, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, salt, and black pepper. Whisk well to get rid of any lumps. The consistency should be like a paste. Add the shrimp and toss to coat with the mix. (ref not 2)
  • Using a kitchen tong, pick a shrimp and place it on the toasted coconut mix. using your hand or a fork coat the shrimp evenly on both sides. Press the shrimp gently into the mixture so that the dry mix sticks well and evenly.
  • Shake off the extra breading and arrange the shrimp on a wired rack.
  • Bake in a preheated oven for about 10-12 minutes. For large shrimps 10 minutes and extra large shrimps about 12 minutes.
  • Sprinkle flaky salt on top if preferred.
  • For the dipping sauce, mix together sweet chili sauce, mayo, and Worcestershire sauce. Serve along with Coconut Shrimp.

Notes

  1. I have used unsweetened shredded coconut. You could use sweetened coconut as well. If you have coconut flakes, I would suggest running in in a food processor to break them down. Shredded coconut sticks better than flakes. 
  2. After adding the shrimp to the egg and flour mix, if you feel the mixture is not thick enough ( because of some remaining liquid in the shrimp), then add  1-2 teaspoons of flour to get the right consistency)

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 80kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 211mg | Potassium: 32mg | Fiber: 0.4g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 28IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 0.3mg
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