Since many of us use frozen shrimp, you need to know how to thaw shrimp properly to get the best results with shrimp recipes. Learn all the tips and secrets for thawing shrimp quickly and easily for all your favorite recipes!

Frozen Shrimp

At supermarket, you will find frozen shrimp, defrosted shrimp (which have been frozen previously), and “fresh and never frozen shrimp” (which is rare and much more expensive).  As shrimp is highly perishable, and we don’t know how long the defrosted shrimp has been defrosted, a lot of us prefer to buy frozen shrimp, and defrost them at home when needed.

How to Thaw Shrimp

How you thaw frozen shrimp can impact their texture, therefore it’s important to thaw them properly. There are several methods to thaw shrimp, you can choose the one that’s most suitable to your circumstances.

Method 1

Place the frozen shrimp in a colander, let the cold tap water run through the shrimp and goes down the drain. It usually takes about 15 to 20 minutes for the shrimp to be ready.  Pat them dry with paper towel before cooking.

Method 2

Step 1: Place the frozen shrimp in a large bowl.

Frozen Shrimp

Step 2: Add cold water to cover all shrimp. Let them sit for about 10 minutes.

How To Thaw Shrimp_Adding Cold Water

Step3:  Drain the water, and add some fresh cold water, covering all shrimp. Let them sit for another 15 minutes or so. The shrimp should be thawed but still cold.

Shrimp in Cold water

Step 4: Drain the water and pat the shrimp with paper towel to dry. Then they are ready for cooking.

(Note: Some people prefer to seal the shrimp in a plastic bag before placing them into the water. It’s totally fine, the only thing is that it will take longer to thaw. )


Step 1: Place the shrimp in a container or bowl, covered them with lid or plastic wraps. Then place them in the refrigerator overnight.

Step 2: Take the shrimp out of fridge the next day, rinse them with cold water and dry with paper towel.

Don’t use hot water or microwave to thaw frozen shrimp as this will lead to uneven texture. Usually the outside of the shrimp will feel defrosted but inside is still frozen.

After you learn how to thaw shrimp fast, it’s time try some delicious shrimp dishes. Enjoy!

Looking for easy shrimp recipes?