rispy Coconutty Shrimp Recipe

The tropical sweetness of coconut combined with shrimp is a true winner. Served in many restaurants, coconut shrimp are often deep fried arriving at your table dripping with unhealthy amounts of fat. This variation uses less oil, delivers a crispy texture and restaurant quality flavor!

Make it fun – Get your kids involved in the prep. In this recipe, you’ll set up three dipping stations – the dredge, the liquid and the crunch. The dipping steps are perfect tasks for little fingers (and your fingers will stay clean for cooking). Plus their “I helped Mom make dinner” pride will likely win over even the pickiest eater.


  • 12-15 large shrimp, shelled and de-veined
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ cup coconut milk
  • ¾ cup panko crumbs*
  • ¾ cup unsweetened shredded coconut**
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • sweet and sour sauce for dipping

* Panko crumbs are Japanese bread crumbs. They are often stocked in the Asian section of your supermarket.
** Unsweetened coconut is stocked in the bulk section of a natural foods store.


  1. Set up the dipping station with three wide flat bowls. Place the corn starch and salt in first bowl and mix with a fork. Pour the coconut milk in the second bowl. Toss together the panko and coconut in the third bowl.
  2. Dredge the shrimp on both sides in the cornstarch. Then dip them into coconut milk and then coat them in the panko/coconut mixture, pressing lightly.
  3. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium high. Fry shrimp until browned, about 2 minutes per side. Drain on a paper-towel lined platter. Serve with dipping sauce.

Dipping Sauce:

Store bought sweet and sour sauce is perfect for this dish. If your kids would like a more familiar flavor; try mixing equal parts ketchup and sweet and sour sauce together.

Makes 4 servings.