We love easy appetizers, especially those that can be prepared ahead of time.

Crispy Coconut Shrimp is a family favorite with jumbo shrimp coated in a sweet coconut breading, cooked crispy and golden-brown.

Coconut Shrimp as a party appetizer, a side dish, or just a fun snack with a tangy dip or sauce.coconut shrimp with dip

Favorite Shrimp Appetizer

  • Everyone goes for the coconut shrimp on the buffet table because they are so crispy, sweet, and tender.
  • Make ahead and refrigerate or freeze before baking if you’d like. Perfect for last minute meals or snacking.
  • It’s easy to prepare these little bites. Just dip, coat, and bake!
  • These coconut shrimp are oven-baked (or air fried) but still come out with a nice crispy coating.
  • Making your own coconut shrimp costs way less than pre-package and tastes so much better.

Labeled image of all ingredients required to make coconut shrimp

Ingredients & Variations

SHRIMP Fresh or frozen medium or large shrimp that are already peeled and deveined is a huge time saver. They can be butterflied open for a more dramatic presentation and don’t forget to keep the tails on as little handles for dipping.

COATING For this recipe, shredded coconut is pulsed in a food processor and then added to the breadcrumbs so the coating stays light, crunchy, and has the perfect hint of sweetness! You can use either sweetened or sweetened coconut, I prefer sweetened for this recipe.

SEASONINGS Swap up the seasonings to your liking. Try them with some homemade Cajun seasoning or some homemade lemon pepper seasoning.

Coconut shrimp being breaded

How to Make Coconut Shrimp

  1. Coat: Dredge the shrimp in cornstarch and egg and roll in coconut and panko crumbs.
  2. Bake: Bake until golden brown.
  3. Serve: Serve with your favorite dipping sauce like Sweet Chili Sauce.

OPTIONAL TIP: An optional step to prevent curling while cooking is to skewer each shrimp lengthwise with a small skewer. Be sure to remove it before serving!

Other Cooking Methods

This coconut shrimp recipe can be cooked in the air fryer or deep fried if desired.

  • Air Fry. shrimp by cooking at 400°F for 7-9 minutes, flipping over after 4 minutes.
  • Deep fry. Preheat oil to 375°F. Fry shrimp in small batches 3-4 minutes or until golden an cooked through. Drain on paper towel and season to taste.

breaded coconut shrimp prepared to be baked on a parchment lined baking tray

Tips

  • Spray the shrimp very well with cooking spray for a crispy exterior.
  • Be sure to shake off any excess cornstarch, you just want a light dusting. Cornstarch can be replaced with all purpose flour.
  • You can use sweetener or unsweetened coconut flakes, we prefer sweetened.
  • Coconut shrimp cook fast, check them early to ensure they don’t overcook.

Prep Ahead and Leftovers

To prepare shrimp ahead of time, follow the recipe below. Once breaded with coconut, lay the shrimp out in a single layer on a baking sheet.

  • Refrigerate up to 24 hours before baking.
  • Freeze on the baking sheet and once frozen, transfer to a freezer bag or air tight container. Store up to 2 months before baking.
  • Cook frozen prepared shrimp as directed, adding 2 minutes to the cooking time.

Leftover shrimp can be stored in the refrigerator for 3-4 days in an airtight container or zippered bag.

a plate of coconut shrimp with sweet chili sauce

More Shrimp Favorites

Did you make these Coconut Shrimp? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

a platter of coconut shrimp with dip
5 from 16 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Coconut Shrimp

These Coconut Shrimp are battered and coated in coconut, then oven-baked until golden brown!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4

Ingredients  

  • 1 pound large shrimp peeled & deveined
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup sweetened flaked coconut
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • cooking spray

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 425°F.
  • Combine cornstarch, salt, and cayenne pepper in a small bowl. Place beaten egg in a separate bowl.
  • Place coconut in a food processor and pulse to create a slightly finer texture (or chop with a knife). You don't want it too fine, just broken up a little bit. Mix with bread crumbs.
  • Dredge shrimp in cornstarch mixture and shake to remove any excess cornstarch. Dip in egg, and dip into the coconut mixture, pressing to adhere. Spray with cooking spray.
  • Place shrimp on a parchment-lined pan and bake for 8 minutes. Flip shrimp and bake an additional 5-10 minutes or until cooked through. Broil 1 minute if desired.
  • Serve warm with sweet chili dip (recipe below).

Notes

Homemade Dipping Sauce: Melt 1/2 cup apricot jam (or orange marmalade) in a small pan. Whisk in 2 teaspoons dijon and 1 teaspoon Sambal Oelek or sriracha.
Air Fry. shrimp by cooking at 400°F for 7-9 minutes, flipping over after 4 minutes.
Deep fry. Preheat oil to 375°F. Fry shrimp in small batches for 3-4 minutes or until golden and cooked through. Drain on paper towel and season to taste.
  • Cooking time is for large shrimp, adjust cooking time for other sizes.
  • Spray the shrimp very well with cooking spray for a crispy exterior.
  • Be sure to shake off any excess cornstarch, you just want a light dusting. Cornstarch can be replaced with all purpose flour.
  • You can use sweetener or unsweetened coconut flakes, we prefer sweetened.
  • Coconut shrimp cook fast, check them early to ensure they don't overcook.
5 from 16 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 329 | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 225mg | Sodium: 1136mg | Potassium: 266mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 349IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 104mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Appetizer, Main Course, Seafood
Cuisine American

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Coconut Shrimp plated and with dip and writing

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About the author

Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!
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Comments

  1. Once I used ovenfry, it’s a version of shake and bake to make coconut shrimp. Boy was it good. Thanks for the tip on breaking up the coconut and dipping sauce too.

  2. These look great. Can they be made in an air fryer instead? I’m assuming I can use your oven baked shrimp recipe and just add the coconut.5 stars

    1. haven’t tried it but I don’t see why it wouldn’t work. You could try using the instructions in this recipe for Air Fryer Shrimp. Let us know how it is Linda!