Made popular by Bonefish Grill, no restaurant can compare with this homemade Bang Bang Shrimp recipe! Shrimp are tossed in a flavorful breading and fried to crispy perfection before being doused in a spicy sweet bang bang sauce.
You’d be hard pressed to find an appetizer more addictive than this one. Legend has it that someone is at a party at this very moment, contemplating if they should eat yet another bang bang shrimp. If you’re considering making this homemade appetizer recipe for a party like Superbowl Sunday or just for cocktails with friends, consider doubling the batch.
What makes these shrimp so addictive is the crunchy breading and the sauce, of course! Bang bang sauce is notoriously mouthwatering. It’s creamy, spicy, and sweet – it really has it all. When you taste all of those incredibly mouthwatering flavors are paired with crunchy breading and perfectly cooked shrimp, it’s pretty impossible to only have just one.
If you’ve never deep fried shrimp before, I’ll let you in on a little secret… It’s easy. Like, really easy. The steps for this recipe are delightfully low stress and pretty hassle free! As long as you manage not to burn yourself with grease (we’ve all been there), this should be a pretty smooth sailing shrimp recipe to whip up just before your party.
What is Bang Bang Shrimp?
Bang Bang Shrimp is an appetizer that got popularized by the chain restaurant, Bonefish Grill. It’s not a nod to any other cuisine but just mainly their “signature” appetizer. I remember the first time I went there – I knew I should’ve ordered two! They were so crazy addicting, but now being able to make crispy bang bang shrimp at home allows me make as much as I want for a fraction of the cost! I loved it so much I also made a bang bang chicken version!
Ingredients You’ll Need
For the exact measurements, scroll down to the bottom of the post.
The sauce calls for:
- Mayonnaise – Full fat mayo works best for the creamy consistency.
- Sweet chili sauce – Any brand will do the trick!
- Honey – Try to use a good quality honey for the best flavor.
- Sriracha – For just a little extra heat. Add more if you want more spice.
For the shrimp breading, you’ll need:
- Buttermilk – You can always own by combining 1 cup of whole milk with 1 tbsp of lemon juice or vinegar.
- Flour – All-purpose flour is what you should use.
- Cornstarch – This helps give them breading some real substance when frying.
- Breadcrumbs – For the crunchiest results, use panko bread crumbs!
- Seasonings – Add some extra flavor to this dish by sprinkling some garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper.
The rest of the dish requires:
- Vegetable oil – For frying!
- Shrimp – Use raw medium shrimp that are peeled and deveined.
- Green onions – This is optional, but recommended as a garnish for the fresh flavor it provides.
Can I use bread crumbs instead of panko? I find that regular store-bought breadcrumbs are too fine a texture for this recipe.
Is there a substitute for the mayonnaise in the sauce? Yes, you could use Greek yogurt or sour cream.
Can I just use milk instead of buttermilk? No, if you don’t have buttermilk you can create your own by adding 2 ¼ teaspoons of vinegar or lemon juice to ¾ cup measure. Then fill the measuring cup up with milk and allow it to sit for about 10 minutes.
How to make bang bang shrimp
For detailed instructions, scroll down to the bottom of the post.
Whisk together the spicy mayo sauce. In a medium bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the spicy mayo and set aside.
Whisk together the batter. In a separate bowl, whisk together the ingredients that make the batter: buttermilk, cornstarch, and flour.
Mix together the dry ingredients. In another separate bowl, mix together the panko breadcrumbs along with the seasonings.
Heat the oil for frying. In a large heavy-bottom pot (such as a Dutch oven), heat the oil to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
Dredge the shrimp. While the oil is heating, dredge the shrimp in the batter mixture then directly into the panko mixture.
Fry! Once the oil has come to temperature, gently add the coated shrimp into the oil and fry for about 2 minutes. Place the fried shrimp onto a paper towel lined plate then repeat until all the shrimp has been fried.
Coat in the spicy mayo sauce. Pour the spicy mayo mixture on top of the fried shrimp and toss to coat!
Pro tip: don’t overcrowd the pot or you’ll drop the temperature of the oil too much and you’ll end up with soggy/oily bang bang shrimp! They won’t be bang bang, they’ll be womp womp, LOL
Is bang bang shrimp spicy? They have a little spice, but it’s well balanced with the creamy mayo and sweet chili sauce and honey. You can always add more or less sriracha for heat if you’d like.
Why are my shrimp soggy? The key to not-soggy shrimp is to not overcrowd the pan! When you’re frying the shrimp, work in batches. If you add too many shrimp at a time, the temperature of the oil will drop and cause the shrimp to be under cooked and soggy.
Also, when they’re hot and right out of the oil, don’t stack them on top of each other. You’ll want them to cool on a single layer. If you stack them on top of each other, they’ll steam and the breading will become soggy.
Could I bake these in the oven or use the air fryer? Yes! I prefer the texture of the deep fried shrimp but if you would prefer, you could spread the shrimp on a wire rack over a baking sheet. Bake them at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes. In the air fryer, large shrimp should cook for 9 minutes at 400 degrees. You could also try grilling the shrimp.
What to eat with Bang Bang Shrimp? It’s great on its own as a finger food appetizer but it also goes great with rice, pasta, or roasted veggies. You could also serve it in tacos with hard or soft tortilla shells or use butter lettuce leaves and create a low-carb bang bang shrimp taco!
Can I use frozen shrimp? Yes, you can! Just make sure it’s thawed before cooking.
Storing, reheating, and making ahead instructions
Can this dish be made ahead of time? You can prepare the sauce and batter mixture ahead of time but I do not recommend dredging the shrimp until you’re ready to fry.
How long will bang bang shrimp stay fresh? In an airtight container, leftover bang bang shrimp will stay fresh for up to 3 days. If you know you want to save some for later, set those shrimp aside and don’t toss in the sauce just yet! You don’t want the breading to get soggy.
To reheat, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spread the shrimp on a wire rack placed over a baking sheet and bake until heated through. (It should only take about 10 minutes.)
Keep the party going with more of my favorite apps!
Bang Bang Shrimp
For the sauce:
- ½ cup (112 g) mayonnaise
- ¼ cup (64 g) sweet chili sauce
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1 teaspoon sriracha
For the shrimp breading:
- ¾ cup (177 ml) buttermilk
- ½ cup (63 g) flour
- 2 Tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 cup (60 g) Panko crumbs
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
For the rest of the dish:
- 2–3 cups (473 ml) vegetable oil
- 1 pound (454 g) raw medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
- Optional garnish of chopped green onion
- In a medium bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, sweet chili sauce, honey and sriracha to make the sauce. Set this aside.
- In a separate, large bowl, whisk buttermilk, flour, and cornstarch together.
- Stir the shrimp into the buttermilk mixture, covering evenly. Set this aside.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the Panko, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper.
- Place the oil into a heavy bottom pan. You want to have about 1 inch of oil in the pan. Turn the heat to medium. (If you have a thermometer, you want to get the temperature to about 375 °F (191 °C).)
- When the oil is being heated, lightly strain the shrimp, then dredge in the panko mixture, and place in the hot oil. It will only take a minute or 2 per side to be fully cooked. Only fry a few shrimp at a time or the oil temperature will drop and you won’t get a crispy texture.
- When you remove the shrimp from the frying pan, place it briefly on a plate lined with a paper towel to absorb excess oil. Then toss the shrimp with the sauce.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.
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