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If there’s one classic appetizer I love, it’s a basket of fried shrimp. That puffy, crunchy batter mixes perfectly with the taste of the shrimp inside. It’s a classic appetizer that is great served alone, or with your favorite sauce!

For our recipe, we wanted to keep our shrimp decidedly Southern, so we looked for a great cajun-spiced batter. There’s nothing tremendously fancy about this meal, just good down-home southern cooking. It’s perfectly paired with a bottle of beer to drink, and a warm day eating outside. Keep reading below for our favorite recipe…

Fried Shrimp

(makes 6-8 servings)


  • 3lbs large raw shrimp, peeled, tails intact
  • 1 cup while milk
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1 teaspoon plus 1 tablespoonCajun seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup finely ground cornmeal
  • 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • peanut, canola, or other oil for frying


  1. Use a sharp paring knife to butterfly and devein the shrimp.
  2. In another large bowl, whisk together the milk, buttermilk, egg, mustard, and 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning. Pour the mixture over the shrimp, cover, and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes to an hour.
  3. In a shallow bowl, combine the 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning with the salt, cornmeal, flour, and cayenne.
  4. Dredge the shrimp in the cornmeal mixture and shake off any excess. Arrange the shrimp in a single layer on 2 baking sheets.
  5. Pour enough oil into a Dutch oven or other deep pot to reach a depth of 3 inches. Heat the oil to 325F. Place wire cooling racks over a baking sheet lined with paper towels for easier cleanup.
  6. Fry the shrimp in small batches, being careful to not crowd the pot, flipping once, until golden brown (about 1 1/2 minutes on each side). Transfer the shrimp to the wire racks to let drain a few moments. Serve hot.
  7. Enjoy!

Recipe adapted fromLeites Culinaria

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