Food of the Week: Shrimp

This column marks two years that I’ve presented a food of the week (every three weeks), with some background and nutrition on the featured food followed by several healthy, relatively simple recipes. At this anniversary point, I invite your suggestions on foods you would like me to write about in future columns (email The foods I’ve done so far are canned fish, cottage cheese, cocoa powder, sweet potatoes, plain yogurt, quinoa, swiss chard, walnuts, limes, fennel, eggs, raspberries, tomatoes, barley, tofu, cabbage, peanut butter, cauliflower, oranges, oat bran, beef, flaxseed, asparagus, mushrooms, salmon, cherries, coconut, bok choy, watermelon, blueberries, carrots, almonds, maple syrup, and brown rice.

Now, some words on this week’s food, shrimp. This popular seafood is high in protein and relatively low in calories, containing 80-90 calories and about 17 grams of protein per three-ounce serving. It is also a good source of a few vitamins and several minerals, notably selenium. Though high in cholesterol, according to the FDA’s daily recommended value, many nutrition advocates (such as Dr. Oz and the Livestrong Foundation) regard it as a heart-healthy food.

In addition to the recipes here, try using cooked shrimp in fried rice, quiche, salad (perhaps with a vinaigrette of sesame oil and rice vinegar), and tacos.

Peruvian Shrimp
and Corn Chowder

The Food and Wine Soups and Salads Cookbook notes that the corn in this chowder is “traditionally left on the cob.” Though this recipe hits the spot on a cold day, you might try making it in the summer when fresh corn on the cob is plentiful.

Peruvian Shrimp and Corn Chowder
Peruvian Shrimp and Corn Chowder

1-2 T. cooking oil
3 t. salt
1 onion, chopped
¼ t. cayenne pepper
½ t. paprika (opt.)
½ t. cumin
Dash Tabasco sauce (opt.)
1-2 c. chopped butternut squash
½ small head green cabbage, chopped
1 lb. baking potatoes (about two), peeled and chopped
2 c. corn
2 quarts water
1 c. heavy cream
1 lb. cooked, peeled shrimp
1 c. frozen peas (opt.)

Heat the oil in a large pot and add the onion, spices, and a teaspoon of salt. Cook about 5 minutes, until onion is translucent. Add the Tabasco, squash, cabbage, potatoes, corn, and water. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. Add the cream, shrimp, remaining salt, and peas. Cook until heated through, then taste and add more seasoning if desired.

New Orleans-Style
Barbecued Shrimp

Like the previous recipe, this has many ingredients, but it is quite simple to prepare. By Susan Manlin Katzman in Quick and Easy Recipes: Entrées.

New Orleans-Style Barbecued Shrimp
New Orleans-Style Barbecued Shrimp

1 ½ lb. raw shrimp (see note)
6 T. butter
3 T. olive oil
3 T. chili sauce
1 ½ T. lemon juice
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
¾ t. liquid smoke
½ t. each dried parsley, oregano, thyme, and paprika
¼–½ t. hot pepper sauce
Salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper to taste

Rinse shrimp in cold water and pat dry. Set aside. In a large skillet, combine the remaining ingredients. Stirring frequently, bring mixture to a simmer and cook 5 minutes. Add shrimp. Turn heat to high and cook, stirring often, 5 to 10 minutes, until shrimp are done. Do not overcook.

Note: My source recommends using jumbo unpeeled shrimp and having diners peel the shrimp as they eat. As this variety can be expensive, you may want to use smaller peeled shrimp, as I did.

Shrimp Scampi
with Vegetables

A Zone Diet recipe. Serves 1.

1 t. olive oil
12 asparagus spears, woody bases trimmed, sliced into 1-in. pieces
¾ c. yellow onion, finely chopped
1 medium green pepper, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
4-5 oz. raw shrimp, shelled and deveined
¼ c. dry white wine (opt.)
1-2 t. lemon juice

In a large pan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Sauté the vegetables, stirring often, about 10 minutes, until tender. Add the shrimp, wine, and lemon juice. Lower heat to medium and cook 5 minutes, until shrimp are pink.

Thai Shrimp and Cabbage

I ran this in my October 2011 cabbage column, but it is worth featuring again. Serves 1.

1 c. shredded green cabbage
3 t. vegetable oil
¼ c. thinly sliced onion
1 garlic clove, minced
8 uncooked, peeled, and deveined shrimp
1 T. soy sauce
1/8 t. cayenne pepper
1 T. minced fresh cilantro (opt.)

In a skillet, cook the cabbage in 1 t. oil until tender. Remove and keep warm. In the same skillet, cook the onion and garlic in the remaining oil until tender. Add the shrimp, 2 T. water, and soy sauce, cooking until shrimp turn pink. Stir in the cayenne pepper and cilantro, and serve over cabbage.