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Really Crunchy Fried Shrimp Recipe

Really Crunchy Fried Shrimp is a simple fried shrimp recipe that yields quite a crunchy experience. The secret ingredient may surprise you:  ordinary saltine crackers!

REALLY CRUNCHY FRIED SHRIMP-in a bowl with remoulade sauce

Fried food is an endangered species in my kitchen. Despite the ban on grease, these shrimp, specifically, are on the protected list.

For some years now, we’ve followed a tradition of serving fried shrimp on New Year’s Day. Although I’m a person who loves change and variety, such traditions do make menu planning a little easier. Wouldn’t you agree?

Because it’s pretty basic, I never thought about posting the recipe until my daughter-in-law requested it. As a result, this one’s for you, Susie.


One of my cooking heroes is Helen Corbitt of Neiman Marcus fame. I have several of her recipes on this website like this Monkey Bread and Espresso Angel Food Cake.

When reading through her book Helen Corbitt’s Cookbook, I found the recipe simply entitled “Fried Shrimp.” This recipe is barely adapted from her recipe. It’s simple and perfect as is.

“The smashed saltines give them (fried shrimp) a rough pretty appearance, and somehow they “eat” better.”
–Helen Corbitt


how to hand-bread shrimp using crushed saltines
You’re only four steps away from yummy crunchy shrimp. Make that five. You definitely need to fry it.

Serve with cocktail sauce or remoulade sauce. (See notes below for my no-recipe version of remoulade sauce).


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Really Crunchy Fried Shrimp shown in a bowl with remoulade sauce

Did you try this recipe and enjoy it? Consider helping other readers (and me) by returning to this post. Leave a rating on the recipe card itself underneath the picture. Although always appreciated, comments aren’t required.

If you have a question or tip to share, please leave it in the regular comments after the recipe so I can answer back. Or, email me privately: paula at

Thank you for visiting!

Really Crunchy Fried Shrimp

Really Crunchy Fried Shrimp

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

Simple fried shrimp with a crunchy coating. 


  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 36 saltines
  • 1 pound shrimp, medium or large
  • Vegetable oil or shortening


  1. Combine first three ingredients and pour onto flat plate.
  2. Whisk eggs and milk together in a small bowl.
  3. Crush saltines and place onto another flat plate or shallow bowl.
  4. Remove shells and devein shrimp. You may leave the tails on...or not. Your choice. Butterfly each shrimp with a small sharp knife.
  5. Roll each shrimp in seasoned flour, then dip in egg mixture, and finally, press shrimp into crumbs until covered. Be sure shrimp is butterflied (spread open) for maximum crumb retention which equals more crunchiness. Allow to sit on wax-paper covered cookie sheet for about 30 minutes.
  6. Fry in 3-4 inches of oil heated to 375 degrees until golden. It doesn't take long so stay close. Remove from grease and allow to drain onto paper towels.


My no-recipe remoulade sauce:

To approximately 1/2 cup mayonnaise, add enough catsup until it's nice and pink. Stir in a generous spoonful of pickle relish and one hardboiled egg, chopped finely.

Please note that the calorie count does not include the oil the shrimp is fried in as that is impossible for me to measure accurately in my home kitchen.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 329Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 226mgSodium: 931mgCarbohydrates: 34gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 25g

Did you make this recipe?

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Saturday 11th of March 2017

How. Many Carbohydrates are there in each, do you know?


Monday 7th of March 2016

I just made this recipe with fresh off the boat Jumbo Gulf Shrimp. I didn't fry enough! They were so good I wanted more than the 5 I fried for my lunch but I am quite full. They are so delicious and so crunchy. Can't wait to cook them again this evening for hubby! I have searched a long time and tried so many fried shrimp recipes. No more searching, this is it!! Thanks so much!


Monday 7th of March 2016

I forgot to ask. Have you tried this recipe with fish?


Wednesday 19th of March 2014

Made this recipe tonight and it was the best shrimp we ever had! Thank you so much..this will definitely be a big favorite.

Ruth Kukaska

Monday 9th of December 2013

Oh my god, this is the best recipe every, thank you for sharing with us.


Thursday 15th of August 2013

This recipe is awesome!!!! Absolutely restaurant quality recipe. ...I will be making these at every event I host! !!!