This Shrimp Salad Recipe is made with pesto, vinegar, parmesan cheese, butter, shrimp, goat cheese, lemon, and all tossed in chopped romaine.
This was such an easy, delicious, and healthy recipe that can be made in under 15 minutes. The reason why I love buying shrimp and cooking it is because of how little the cooking time it takes to make shrimp. This recipe is simple: you make the pesto vinaigrette, use half to marinate the shrimp and the other half as the dressing. The flavors of this are so delicious and you will be hooked!
- Why make Shrimp Salad?
- What type of Shrimp to buy
- Shrimp Salad with Pesto Ingredients
- How to make Shrimp Salad Recipe
- What type of greens should I use for Shrimp Salad?
- Pesto Shrimp Salad Recipe Variations
- How to store Shrimp Pesto Salad
- Shrimp Salad Top tips
- Shrimp Salad Recipe
- Food safety
Why make Shrimp Salad?
Shrimp salad is a delicious and refreshing dish that can be enjoyed on its own or as a filling for sandwiches, wraps, or lettuce cups. There are several reasons why someone might choose to make shrimp salad:
- Quick and easy: Shrimp salad can be made in just a few minutes with minimal preparation. This makes it a great option for busy weeknights or last-minute gatherings.
- Healthy: Shrimp is a low-calorie, high-protein seafood that is rich in vitamins and minerals. By using a light dressing and incorporating fresh vegetables, shrimp salad can be a healthy and satisfying meal.
- Versatile: Shrimp salad can be customized to suit individual tastes and dietary preferences. You can add different types of vegetables, herbs, or spices to create a unique flavor profile. Shrimp salad can also be served on a bed of lettuce or mixed with pasta for a heartier dish.
- Delicious: Shrimp has a delicate and sweet flavor that pairs well with a variety of ingredients. When combined with a tangy dressing and crunchy vegetables, shrimp salad can be a refreshing and satisfying meal that is perfect for warm weather.
What type of Shrimp to buy
When it comes to choosing shrimp for a shrimp salad, you have a few options. Here are three common types of shrimp that work well in shrimp salads:
- Cooked and peeled shrimp: This is the easiest option because the shrimp is already cooked and ready to go. Look for fresh or frozen shrimp that have already been peeled and deveined. You can find cooked and peeled shrimp in most grocery stores.
- Raw shrimp: If you prefer to cook your own shrimp, look for raw shrimp that have been peeled and deveined. You can either poach the shrimp in boiling water for a few minutes until they turn pink or sauté them in a pan with some olive oil and garlic.
- Salad shrimp: Salad shrimp are smaller than regular shrimp and are usually sold cooked and frozen. They are a convenient option for shrimp salads because they are already bite-sized and can be thawed quickly.
Shrimp Salad with Pesto Ingredients
- Apple Cider Vinegar
- Parmesan Cheese
- Goat cheese
- Romaine Lettuce
See recipe card for Pesto Shrimp Salad with Lettuce quantities.
How to make Shrimp Salad Recipe
Preheat the oven to 375°F and place the prosciutto on a baking sheet with parchment paper. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Set aside on a cooling rack to cool. When the prosciutto cools, it should be able to crumble.
Combine the pesto, vinegar, lemon juice and parmesan cheese and whisk.
Add half of it in a bowl with shrimp. Save the other half.
Heat up the butter on another skillet for the shrimp. With a slotted spoon, place the shrimp and then cook 2-3 minutes on each side, until pink and opaque.
In a big bowl, add the chopped romaine, goat cheese, cooked shrimp, crumbled prosciutto and pour the rest of the dressing. Mix well and enjoy your Shrimp Pesto Salad!
Hint: Make sure the prosciutto cools so it can become crusty and crumble easily.
Shrimp: Make sure to buy shrimp that haven’t been previously frozen for best quality, although you totally can use previously frozen shrimp. Ask the fish monger to devein your shrimp before to make your life easier.
Prosciutto: This is completely optional but the combination of the shrimp, prosciutto and goat cheese is absolutely phenomenal. For the baked prosciutto, you could use Jamon serrano instead.
Goat Cheese: Instead of goat cheese, crumbled feta cheese is a great alternative for a saltier cheese.
What type of greens should I use for Shrimp Salad?
- Romaine lettuce: Romaine lettuce is a crunchy and flavorful option that works well in shrimp salad. Its sturdy leaves hold up well to the weight of the shrimp and other ingredients.
- Butter lettuce: Butter lettuce has a delicate texture and a mild flavor that pairs well with shrimp. Its leaves are tender and can be torn into bite-sized pieces for easy eating.
- Spinach: Spinach is a nutrient-dense green that adds a pop of color and flavor to shrimp salad. It has a slightly bitter taste that balances well with the sweetness of the shrimp.
- Arugula: Arugula has a peppery flavor that can add a nice contrast to the sweetness of the shrimp. Its leaves are tender and have a slightly spicy kick.
- Mixed greens: A mix of different greens, such as spinach, arugula, and baby kale, can add a variety of textures and flavors to shrimp salad.
Pesto Shrimp Salad Recipe Variations
Here are some variations of pesto shrimp salad that you can try:
- Pesto Shrimp Pasta Salad: Cook your favorite pasta (penne or fusilli work well) according to package instructions and let it cool. Toss the cooked pasta with cooked and cooled shrimp, chopped cherry tomatoes, sliced olives, and pesto dressing. Add chopped fresh basil and grated Parmesan cheese before serving.
- Pesto Shrimp Caesar Salad: Top a bed of romaine lettuce with cooked and cooled shrimp, croutons, and grated Parmesan cheese. Drizzle with Caesar dressing and pesto dressing.
- Pesto Shrimp Avocado Salad: Combine cooked and cooled shrimp, diced avocado, diced tomatoes, and pesto dressing in a bowl. Serve over a bed of mixed greens or spinach.
- Pesto Shrimp and Quinoa Salad: Cook quinoa according to package instructions and let it cool. Combine cooked and cooled shrimp, diced cucumbers, diced bell peppers, and pesto dressing with the quinoa. Add chopped fresh parsley and crumbled feta cheese before serving.
- Pesto Shrimp Caprese Salad: Alternate cooked and cooled shrimp, sliced cherry tomatoes, and fresh mozzarella cheese on a platter. Drizzle with pesto dressing and balsamic glaze. Add chopped fresh basil before serving.
Check out this Rock Shrimp Tempura for other shrimp recipes.
Here are some essential kitchen tools and equipment you'll need to make pesto shrimp salad:
- Large mixing bowl: You'll need a large mixing bowl to toss the salad ingredients together.
- Salad spinner: A salad spinner is helpful for washing and drying the greens for the salad.
- Cutting board and knife: You'll need a cutting board and a sharp knife to chop the vegetables, shrimp, and other salad ingredients.
- Pan: You'll need a pan to cook the shrimp in.
- Blender or food processor: You'll need a blender or food processor to make the pesto dressing.
- Measuring cups and spoons: You'll need measuring cups and spoons to measure out the ingredients for the salad and the dressing.
- Serving bowl or platter: You'll need a large serving bowl or platter to present the salad.
How to store Shrimp Pesto Salad
To store pesto shrimp salad, follow these simple steps:
- Cover: Cover the salad with a tight-fitting lid or plastic wrap to keep it fresh.
- Refrigerate: Place the salad in the refrigerator immediately. The salad should be stored at a temperature of 40°F or below.
- Consume within 3 days: Pesto shrimp salad is best consumed within 2-3 days of preparation. After that, the quality and texture of the shrimp and other salad ingredients may deteriorate.
- Keep dressing separate: If you have any leftover salad dressing, store it separately in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Add the dressing to the salad just before serving to prevent the greens from wilting.
Shrimp Salad Top tips
Here are some top tips for making pesto shrimp salad:
- Use fresh ingredients: To make the best pesto shrimp salad, use fresh and high-quality ingredients. This will ensure that the salad tastes great and is visually appealing.
- Cook the shrimp just right: Overcooking shrimp can make it tough and rubbery. Cook the shrimp just until it turns pink and is opaque. Avoid overcooking the shrimp.
- Use the right amount of dressing: Use the right amount of pesto dressing to avoid overwhelming the salad. Add the dressing gradually, tossing the salad as you go, until you reach the desired level of flavor.
- Let the salad chill: Chill the pesto shrimp salad in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving. This will help the flavors meld and the salad to become more refreshing.
- Customize the salad: You can customize the pesto shrimp salad to your liking. Try adding some chopped herbs, such as basil or parsley, or other ingredients, such as diced avocado, cherry tomatoes, or sliced red onions.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove