This Easy Buffalo Shrimp recipe can be baked or pan-seared. This healthy dish is seasoned to perfection and the juicy shrimp are drizzled in spicy sauce. Serve this on a salad or with any of your favorite side dishes.
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What Type of Shrimp to Use
If you’re serving this dish as a main, large shrimp are the best shrimp to use. If you’re serving this as an appetizer or side dish, small shrimp may work for you.
The size of shrimp can vary depending on the species and where they are caught. Large and jumbo shrimp are considered to be those that are at least 21-25 count per pound. This means that there will be 21-25 or fewer shrimp per pound.
The common raw shrimp you will find in stores include tiger shrimp, jumbo shrimp, and wild-caught shrimp.
For taste, wild-caught shrimp are generally considered to be the best option as they have a more flavorful and firmer texture compared to farm-raised shrimp. Wild-caught shrimp are shrimp that are caught in their natural habitat in the ocean or other bodies of water, as opposed to being farmed or raised in captivity.
Farm-raised shrimp are raised in captivity on a shrimp farm. These farms can be located in ponds or in tanks on land. The shrimp are typically fed a diet of fishmeal, soy, and other ingredients, and are sometimes given antibiotics or other chemicals to prevent disease. Those chemicals are then passed into the food you eat.
I prefer wild-caught and large shrimp.
You can bread the shrimp using breadcrumbs and bake or air fry them if you wish. See the recipe card below for detailed instructions.
If you aren’t looking for breaded shrimp, the recipe card below includes instructions on how to pan-sear the shrimp in minutes. From there, drizzle them in buffalo sauce.
What Type of Buffalo Sauce to Use
Frank’s RedHot Original is considered by many to be the original buffalo sauce, and is a good choice for a classic buffalo flavor. Texas Pete is a bit spicier than Frank’s and has a bit more vinegar taste
You can also make your own buffalo sauce at home by mixing 1/2 cup hot sauce, 1/4 cup melted butter, and 1 tablespoon of vinegar. You can also add other ingredients such as garlic powder, onion powder, or honey to adjust the flavor.
How to Make Buffalo Shrimp
Full detailed instructions are below in the recipe card.
- Season the shrimp with paprika, salt, and pepper to taste.
- Place a skillet on medium-high heat and add olive oil and shrimp.
- Cook the shrimp and drizzle with buffalo sauce.
How to Tell When the Shrimp is Done/Finished Cooking
Cooked shrimp will turn pink and opaque. The shrimp will also become firm when you touch it. Perfectly cooked shrimp usually has a C-shape, as opposed to a tightly curled O shape.
You can also check out my guide on How to Tell if Shrimp is Cooked here.
Overcooked shrimp is grayish-white in color. The flesh is tough and rubbery. It is difficult to chew and may have a mushy texture. You can avoid overcooked shrimp by not cooking it for too long and by following the tips above. Shrimp only takes a few minutes to cook!
Is it Spicy?
Buffalo sauce is typically made from a mixture of hot sauce, butter, and vinegar, and can vary in spiciness depending on the brand or recipe. It is generally considered to be a medium-spicy sauce, with a balance of heat and flavor. Some variations may be milder or hotter than others.
How to Store Leftovers
Leftovers can be stored in the fridge tightly sealed for 3-4 days.
How to Reheat
The best way to reheat leftover shrimp is in a pan on medium heat with butter or oil. You can also reheat in the air fryer on 350 degrees until warm. Be careful, because the same rules regarding overcooking apply. If you heat it for too long it will be rubbery. I don’t use the microwave for this reason.
You can freeze the shrimp tightly covered and sealed for 2-3 months. Defrost overnight in the fridge.
Pair With These Recipes
More Shrimp Recipes
Pan Seared Shrimp
- 1 egg Beaten.
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup panko bread crumbs
- cooking oil spray I like to use olive oil.
Pan Seared Shrimp
- Season the shrimp with the paprika, salt, and pepper to taste.
- Place a skillet on medium-high heat and add the olive oil and shrimp.
- Cook the shrimp for 2-3 minutes on each side until it is no longer pink.
- Remove the shrimp from the pan and drizzle in buffalo sauce.
Breaded Baked Buffalo Shrimp
- Air Fryer: Preheat air fryer to 400 degrees.Oven Instructions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Place the flour, egg, and panko bread crumbs in three separate bowls. Add the paprika, salt, and pepper to taste to the bowl with the flour.
- Create a cooking station. Dip the shrimp in the flour, then the egg, and the panko bread crumbs last.
- Air Fryer: Spray the air fryer basket with cooking oil. Add the shrimp to the Air Fryer basket. Spray the shrimp with cooking oil. Cook for 6 minutes on 400 degrees.Open the basket and flip the shrimp to the other side. If you like your buffalo shrimp saucy, cook for an additional 2 minutes without adding the buffalo sauce (add it after the shrimp have cooked). If you prefer to have the flavor of the buffalo sauce baked into the shrimp. Remove the shrimp from the basket, toss it in the buffalo sauce and air fry for an additional 2 minutes.
- Oven: Place the breaded shrimp on a sheet pan. Spray the shrimp with cooking oil. Bake for 10-15 minutes until crisp.