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Top view of pickled shrimp in a jar.

Pickled Shrimp

  • Author: Nicole Gaffney
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: appetizer
  • Method: stovetop
  • Cuisine: american


This easy recipe for pickled shrimp is paired with crispy fried green tomatoes and creamy remoulade for a delicious, Southern inspired summer appetizer that everyone will love!


  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander seed
  • 2 bay leaves, torn or crumbled
  • 1 bunch lemon thyme or regular thyme (optional)
  • 1 clove garlic, smashed
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce, or to taste (I prefer Crystal)
  • 1/2 sweet onion (like Vidalia), thinly sliced
  • 1 lb Wild American Shrimp, peeled and deveined (2630 is a good size)


  1. Crush the celery seed, mustard seed, pepper corns and coriander seed by using a mortar and pestle, or place them in a plastic bag and use a meat mallet to pound them. You want the seeds to be coarsely ground, not a fine powder. Combine the spices along with the bay, thyme, garlic, salt, sugar, lemon juice, vinegar, olive oil and hot sauce in a medium sized bowl, and whisk together until the salt and sugar have dissolved. Place the onions in the brine, then pop it in the fridge to chill while you cook the shrimp.
  2. Bring a medium pot of water up to a boil, and add in any aromatics if desired (I added the lemon rinds, some extra bay leaves and thyme). Drop in the shrimp and cook for about 90 seconds to 2 minutes, depending on size, until they’re bright pink and just barely cooked through. Remove the shrimp, and allow them to drain for a few seconds to avoid diluting the brine. Then, drop them right into the pickling liquid, and mix them around to coat. Spoon the shrimp and onions into a jar or container, pour the remaining brine over, cover and refrigerate. Allow the shrimp to chill and pickle for at least a few hours, but overnight is best.
  3. Serve with fried green tomatoes and Creole remoulade, or with toasted bread.


  • *any size shrimp may be used, but the bigger they are, the less pickley they’ll be throughout.
  • **Some or all of the spices may be omitted if you don’t have them lying around. I happened to have all on hand, so I went for it, but the shrimp will still turn out well without them – just don’t skip the onions, salt or pepper.

Serves 4-6 as an appetizer, or 2-4 as an entree

Keywords: remoulade, shrimp, pickled shrimp, pickled onions