Bang Bang Shrimp

By: MeganPosted: 24/03/2024 Updated: 13/04/2024
Prep 15 minutes
Cook 15 minutes
Total 30 minutes
Crispy and succulent bang bang shrimp deep fried to golden perfection and then tossed in a spicy, creamy sweet chili sauce and garnished with green onions makes the most delicious appetizer or meal in under 30 minutes!
Bang Bang Shrimp
A pair of chopsticks holding up a bang bang shrimp.

We love bang bang shrimp! It is lightly crisp, savory, sweet, spicy, and delicious. Plus, this bang bang recipe is easy to make with only a handful of ingredients and easy-to-follow steps. You can serve this crispy shrimp as a snack, an appetizer, or a whole meal with rice or garlic noodles.

What is Bang Bang Shrimp?

Bang-bang shrimp is a popular dish that originated from the Bonefish Grill, an American restaurant based in St. Petersburg Florida. Bang bang shrimp consists of crispy buttermilk battered fried shrimp that is tossed in a creamy, sweet, and spicy sauce that is made of mayonnaise, sweet chili sauce, and sriracha.

Bang bang shrimp is in no way authentic or associated with any cuisine, but whoever invented this dish is a genius! I have found a post where a previous Bonefish Grill employee mentioned that they would soak the shrimp in buttermilk before breading and would use Maloy Ploy sweet chili sauce. So in essence, this is a copycat bang bang shrimp recipe.

A plate of bang bang shrimp on a bed of lettuce.

Ingredients

You can find all of the bang bang shrimp ingredients at your local grocery store. I have linked everything that I used for you below.

Bang bang sauce

  • Mayonnaise: mayonnaise is the base of the creamy sauce that thickens the sauce and gives it that signature tangy flavor.
  • Thai Sweet chili sauce: use Maloy Ploy Thai sweet chili sauce for the closest copycat bang bang shrimp flavor as Bonefish grill. It is also my favorite Thai sweet chili sauce that I always use.
  • Sriracha: sriracha is what adds a spicy kick to the bang bang sauce.
All the ingredients for making bang bang sauce in bowls and labeled.

Shrimp

  • Large Shrimp: the larger the shrimp the bigger and juicier the bite! Otherwise, you can use any shrimp that is peeled and deveined.
  • Buttermilk: buttermilk adds flavor helps tenderize the shrimp and keeps it juicy. The acidity in buttermilk also ensures a crispy exterior when fried.
  • Sriracha: adding sriracha to the buttermilk adds another spicy layer to the batter.
  • Cornstarch: cornstarch is the ideal starch for frying the shrimp. It provides a thin crisp layer around the shrimp.
  • Garlic Powder: garlic powder adds a sweeter, warmer less assertive garlic flavor than fresh garlic.
  • Onion Powder: onion powder season the shrimp with a sweet and savory flavor.
  • Salt: a touch of salt will enhance the natural flavors of the shrimp.
  • Neutral Oil: any neutral oil with a high smoke point will work such as vegetable oil, peanut oil, grapeseed oil, or canola oil.
  • Green Onions: green onions are thinly sliced for garnish.
All the ingredients for making bang bang shrimp organized in bowls and labeled.

Substitutions and Additions

You can customize this bang bang shrimp recipe with the following suggestions for substitutions and additions.

Substitutions

  • Protein: you can experiment with different proteins such as chicken, calamari, scallops, or even fish.
  • Potato Starch or Tapioca Starch: instead of cornstarch you can use potato starch or tapioca starch.
  • Hot Sauce: instead of sriracha, you can use your favorite hot sauce.
  • Japanese Kewpie mayonnaise: for a deeper, tangier flavor use Japanese kewpie mayonnaise instead.

Additions

  • Panko bread crumbs: instead of cornstarch, you can use panko bread crumbs for an even crispier texture.
  • Cilantro: adding chopped cilantro can bring more freshness to the bang-bang shrimp.
  • Citrus zest: to brighten up the flavor, grate some lime or orange zest on top of the fried shrimp.

How to Make Bang Bang Shrimp

Here are the step-by-step instructions on how to make this bang-bang shrimp recipe. I recommend using a candy thermometer in the oil to monitor the temperature of the oil.

  1. Make the sauce. In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, sweet chili sauce, sriracha, and rice vinegar to a bowl. Mix to combine and set aside.
Bang bang shrimp sauce mixed together in a glass bowl.
  1. Coat the shrimp. In a large mixing bowl add the shrimp, buttermilk, and sriracha. Mix to evenly coat the shrimp.
Raw being coated in a seasoned buttermilk mixture.
  1. Create a seasoning mixture. In another mixing bowl, add the cornstarch, garlic powder, onion powder, and salt. Mix to combine.
A cornstarch seasoning mixture in a glass bowl.
  1. Dredge the shrimp. Working one at a time, remove the shrimp shaking off any excess, and coat thoroughly with the cornstarch mixture. Shake off any excess and place the shrimp on a wire rack over a baking sheet.
Dredged large shrimp waiting on a wire rack.
  1. Cook the shrimp. Heat a heavy-bottomed pot to 350 degrees F over medium-high heat. Working in batches, lower the shrimp with a spider strainer and fry for about 3-4 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Remove and transfer to a wire rack to drip off any excess oil.
  1. Coat the shrimp. Once all the shrimp is fried, place the shrimp in a large mixing bowl with the sauce and toss until the shrimp is evenly coated.
Fried shrimp tossed in bang bang sauce.
  1. Serve. Transfer the shrimp to a serving platter and garnish with green onions. Serve with a side of steamed rice and enjoy!

Tips for the Best Bang Bang Shrimp

  • Use high-quality shrimp. For the best flavor, use fresh high-quality shrimp that is firm, translucent, and does not have a strong fishy smell.
  • Remove excess buttermilk and cornstarch. If the breading is too thick, it may fall off when you fry it. So when dredging the shrimp, make sure to drip off any excess buttermilk and cornstarch before frying.
  • Heat oil to 350-375°F (175-190°C). 350 degrees Fahrenheit is the ideal temperature to fry the shrimp. Any lower, the shrimp will become greasy, and any higher than 375 degrees the shrimp may burn quickly.
  • Fry in batches. Fry the shrimp in batches to prevent overcrowding. This also ensures even cooking.
  • Drain excess oil and rest. Remove the fried shrimp with a spider strainer and let it cool on a wire rack for at least 5 minutes to drain any excess oil. This also keeps the shrimp crispy.
  • Serve immediately. Since this is a fried dish, for the best flavor serve immediately when hot and crispy.

Storage Instructions

This bang-bang shrimp recipe is best when served immediately. However, you can store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. I recommend storing the bang bang sauce separated from the shrimp if possible.

Reheat: to try to recover the texture, the best way to reheat is to use an air fryer or bake them at 350 degrees F until warm and crispy.

Frequently Asked Q’s and A’s

What is bang bang shrimp made of?

Bang bang shrimp is made of fried shrimp dipped in buttermilk and coated in cornstarch. It is then tossed with bang bang sauce which consists of mayonnaise, sriracha, and Thai sweet chili sauce.

How do you tenderize the shrimp?

You can tenderize the shrimp with the buttermilk. Buttermilk contains lactic acid that breaks down the proteins in the meat making it more tender.

How do you serve bang bang shrimp?

You can serve bang bang shrimp as an appetizer on its own or with a bowl of steamed rice, noodles, or a side of stir-fried vegetables. You can also add some lettuce and pineapple or mango salsa and serve it as a taco.

How spicy is bang bang shrimp?

The spicy level of the bang bang shrimp will vary depending on how much sriracha you use. This recipe uses a minimal amount of sriracha for a more mild experience. You can make it spicier by adding more sriracha to taste.

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Recipe

A top down view of bang bang shrimp topped with sliced green onions.

Bang Bang Shrimp

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Crispy and succulent bang bang shrimp deep fried to golden perfection and then tossed in a spicy, creamy sweet chili sauce and garnished with green onions makes the most delicious appetizer or meal in under 30 minutes!
Servings: 4 servings
Print Recipe

Ingredients

Bang bang sauce

Shrimp

Garnish

  • 2 green onions thinly sliced for garnish
  • lime wedges to serve

Instructions

  • Make the sauce. In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, sweet chili sauce, and sriracha to a bowl. Mix to combine and set aside.
  • Coat the shrimp. In a large mixing bowl add the shrimp, buttermilk, and sriracha. Mix to evenly coat the shrimp for at least 15 minutes.
  • Create the breading mixture. In another mixing bowl, add the cornstarch, garlic powder, onion powder, and salt. Mix to combine.
  • Dredge the shrimp. Working one at a time, remove the shrimp shaking off any excess, and coat thoroughly with the cornstarch mixture. Shake off any excess and place the shrimp on a wire rack over a baking sheet.
  • Cook the shrimp. Heat a heavy bottomed pot to 350 degrees F over medium high heat. Working in batches, lower the shrimp with a spider strainer and fry for about 3-4 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Remove and transfer to a wire rack to drip off any excess oil and cool for 5 minutes.
  • Coat the shrimp. Once all the shrimp is fried, place the shrimp in a large mixing bowl with the bang bang sauce and toss until the shrimp is evenly coated.
  • Serve. Transfer the shrimp to a serving platter and garnish with green onions and lime wedges. Enjoy!

Notes

  • Use high-quality shrimp. For the best flavor, use fresh high-quality shrimp that is firm, translucent, and does not have a strong fishy smell.
  • Remove excess buttermilk and cornstarch. If the breading is too thick, it may fall off when you fry it. So when dredging the shrimp, make sure to drip off any excess buttermilk and cornstarch before frying.
  • Heat oil to 350-375°F (175-190°C). 350 degrees Fahrenheit is the ideal temperature to fry the shrimp. Any lower, the shrimp will become greasy, and any higher than 375 degrees the shrimp may burn quickly.
  • Fry in batches. Fry the shrimp in batches to prevent overcrowding. This also ensures even cooking.
  • Drain excess oil and rest. Remove the fried shrimp with a spider strainer and let it cool on a wire rack for at least 5 minutes to drain any excess oil. This also keeps the shrimp crispy.
  • Serve immediately. Since bang bang shrimp is a fried dish, for the best flavor serve immediately when hot and crispy.

Nutrition:

Calories: 2498kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 256g | Saturated Fat: 40g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 146g | Monounsaturated Fat: 58g | Trans Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 162mg | Sodium: 1338mg | Potassium: 268mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 396IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 145mg | Iron: 1mg

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