Satisfy your seafood cravings with these delicious, crispy and golden brown fried vegan shrimp. Fried vegan shrimp is a classic southern comfort food staple. Make this recipe in under 30 minutes. A great appetizer or dinner option that everyone; vegan and non-vegans alike will love.
Curious about vegan shrimp? What are the ingredients in vegan shrimp? Where to buy vegan shrimp and how to cook them? We’ll answer all your questions and share delicious recipes with you. Everything from this delicious vegan fried shrimp recipe to our vegan shrimp tacos and vegan shrimp Alfredo. Recipes that are perfect for vegans, vegetarians and people with shellfish allergies.
Why You Will Love This Recipe
Quick & Easy - ready in under 30 minutes.
Seafood Flavor - the perfect amount of seafood taste without being overpowering.
Allergy-Friendly - these imitation shrimp are a great seafood alternative for those with shellfish allergies and their gluten and soy free.
What Is Vegan Shrimp?
The simple answer to what are vegan shrimp is; it depends on the brand you purchase. Konjac (an Asian root vegetable) powder is a very popular ingredient for vegan shrimp to be made from. That’s because the scent is slightly fish-like, and the mouth feel is very similar to shrimp. They normally also contain: vegetable gum, starch, paprika, sea salt and seasoning like seaweed and kelp.
The shellfish-free alternative can also be made from soy or pea protein.
Mushrooms and Heart of Palm are the ingredients a lot of at home recipes call for.
Vegan shrimp taste on its own doesn’t have a lot of flavor. The flavor comes from seasoning well and using ingredients with a similar taste like kelp, seaweed extract and old bay seasoning. The texture is soft and tender.
Vegan Shrimp - is a seafood alternative that mimics the taste and texture of real shrimp.
Kelp Granules - to give it a seafood-like taste.
Cornmeal - to give it that crispy coating.(Can substitute with Panko Breadcrumbs)
Step 1: Defrost frozen vegan shrimp in refrigerator.
Step 2: Prepare breading mixtures.
Add cornmeal mixture, kelp, old bay, paprika, onion powder and garlic powder to either a large ziplock bag (preferred) or shallow bowl. Mix well. Set aside.
In another shallow dish pour just egg mixture.
Step 3: Assemble wet, dry mixtures and shrimp in an assembly line fashion.
Step 4: First, place shrimp in wet mixture and shake off excess.
Step 5: Place wet vegan shrimp into ziplock bag and shake until well coated or dredge through cornmeal mixture in bowl, until all sides are coated. Shake off excess flour and place on a clean baking sheet. Set aside.
Step 6: Pour oil into heavy bottom pan over medium heat until oil is hot.
TIP - Don't overcrowd the pan. Too many pieces of food in the pan will lower the temperature of the oil. Frying in oil not hot enough results in the food soaking in more oil and becoming greasy.
Step 7: Add shrimp to frying or cast iron pan in a single layer; making sure to not overcrowd the pan.
Step 8: Let them cook for 1 and a half minutes then flip for an additional minute, until crispy and golden brown. You can use a spider strainer to easily remove.
Step 9: Drain on a paper towel lined wire rack placed over a baking sheet to remove excess oil.
Vegan Fried Shrimp Substitutes
Shrimp alternatives can be made with a variety of ingredients.
- Soy protein or pea extract can be used, which is often flavored with seaweed.
- At home, DIY recipes often call for ingredients like hearts of palm, tofu, soy curls or king oyster mushrooms.
Sauces That Go Great With Vegan Shrimp
Vegan Cocktail Sauce
Not Vegan Thousand Island exactly but close.
Recipe For Vegan Cocktail Sauce
Looking for a really simple, quick and cheap recipe. This four ingredients sauce is the perfect topping.
- ½ cup of ketchup
- 2 tablespoons wasabi or horseradish
- Vegan Worcestershire sauce
- Lemon juice ( 1 lemon)
- Optionally you can add a little Tabasco sauce or cayenne powder if you want more heat.
Storage And Reheating
Top Tip - We don’t recommend microwaving. Microwaving will leave your leftover shrimp soggy.
Refrigerate: These are best eaten the day of, for the most crispy experience. They will keep in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days in an airtight container.
Reheating: Reheat the "shrimp" by pan-frying in a little oil for a few minutes until warm or reheat by baking them at 400F for 3-5 minutes until warm. Can use air fryer at 400F for 5 minutes.
1. Brands like All Vegetarian offer a wide variety of plant-based meat, poultry, and seafood options including cruelty-free shrimp
3. Vegan Zeastar, which I find in the frozen section at my local Asian market.
4. Sophie’s Kitchen
5. Loving Hut
6. Plant Based Seafood Co.
You have two options online or in-person:
In Brick And Mortar Stores:
- Local asian farmer market
- In person we have also purchased from the Loving Hut vegan restaurant chain’s brand; they have locations in the following states: Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, Virginia, Ohio, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Texas, Arizona, California, Oregon and Washington.
No, they have very little protein naturally. We find it best to use on recipes with a lot of protein like our cashew Alfredo. Or eat with high protein sides.
Craving More Vegan Seafood Recipes?
Try these easy and delicious plant-based seafood recipes.
Love this recipe? Please leave a 5-star ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating in the recipe card below & if you REALLY like it, consider a comment down below. Thanks!
Vegan Fried Shrimp
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- 8.8 oz Vegan Shrimp - one bag 8.8 is about 18 vegan shrimp
- Lemon slices - optional, but gives a good zing
- Oil - for frying - use a oil with a high smoke point like peanut or avocado oil. Vegetable Oil will also work and it’s less expensive.
- 1 cup Vegan fish fry breading mix - we use the brand Louisiana Fish Fry
- 1.5 teaspoon Kelp granules
- 1.5 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
- 1 teaspoon Paprika
- 1 teaspoon Onion powder
- 1 teaspoon Garlic powder
- ½ cup JUST Egg
- Defrost frozen vegan shrimp in refrigerator.
- Prepare dry breading mix. Add cornmeal mixture, kelp, old bay, paprika, onion powder and garlic powder to either a large ziplock bag (preferred) or shallow bowl. Mix well. Set aside.
- In another shall dish pour just egg mixture. Assembly wet, dry mixtures and shrimp in a assemble line fashion.
- First place shrimp in wet mixture and shake off excess.
- Place wet vegan shrimp into ziplock shake until well coated or dredge through cornmeal mixture in bowl until all sides are coated. Shake off excess flour and place on a clean baking sheet. Set aside.
- Pour oil into heavy bottom pan over medium heat until oil is hot.
- Tip - Don't overcrowd the pot. Too many pieces of food in the pan will lower the temperature of the oil. Frying in oil not hot enough results in the food soaking in more oil and becoming greasy.
- Add shrimp to pan in a single layer; making sure to not overcrowd the pan.
- Let the vegan shrimp cook for 1.5 then flip 1 minutes, until crispy and to a golden brown perfection. Can use a spider strainer to easily remove.
- Serve hot and enjoy!