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the easiest poached shrimp on a large brown platter with lemon wedges
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4.75 from 20 votes

How to Make Poached Shrimp

Learn how to make the most tender poached shrimp every time. It is so easy to make poached shrimp at home with just a few easy steps. This is the perfect shrimp to make an amazing shrimp cocktail recipe.
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Keyword how to make shrimp cocktail, how to poach shrimp, shrimp poaching liquid
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
cooling time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 121kcal
Author Eileen xo




  • In a large pot, over medium-high heat, add water, black peppercorns, fresh parsley, lemon juice, lemon halves, Kosher salt, and bay leaf.
  • Bring the water to a rapid boil.
  • Add the shrimp to the water. Remove the pot from the heat and cover with a lid.
  • Let the shrimp poach in the liquid about 5 minutes. Shrimp will be cooked through and pink in color.
  • While the shrimp poaches, prepare a large bowl of ice water. Set aside.
  • Use a wire mesh strainer or slotted spoon to remove the shrimp to the bowl of ice water.
  • Let shrimp cool for about 10 minutes before removing from the ice bath with a slotted spoon.
  • Serve shrimp with a dipping sauce such as cocktail sauce, make shrimp salad, add to pasta salads, etc.


Note 1: I use extra large shrimp 26/30 size, which averages about 26 shrimp per pound. 
Note 2: If whole black peppercorns are not available, use 1 teaspoon black pepper.
Be sure to check Expert Tips and FAQs above with important tips and questions that can help make a delicious recipe.
Storage: Cooked shrimp can keep in the refrigerator in an air tight covered container for up to 2 days.
  • Any nutritional data I provide is an approximation and actual dietary information can vary based on ingredients and proportion sizes.
  • Weight Watchers 0 point


Serving: 8shrimp | Calories: 121kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 285mg | Sodium: 1479mg | Potassium: 123mg | Fiber: 0g | Sugar: 0g | Vitamin A: 120IU | Vitamin C: 6.5mg | Calcium: 185mg | Iron: 2.7mg