Here's a yummy way to grill shrimp that couldn't be easier. It's as simple as mixing the shrimp with pesto, threading the shrimp onto skewers (or putting it in a grilling basket), and putting it on a hot grill for 4 minutes. Done!
Good at any temperature! This tasty shrimp is so versatile since it can be served hot, room temperature or cold. Serve it at room temperature for an appetizer, cold on a salad, or hot on top of rice for dinner.
Make ahead convenience. I'm a fan of recipes that can be made a day ahead to reduce last minute prep stress when I'm serving a meal. These shrimp skewers can be assembled up to a day ahead and refrigerated. You can refrigerate them before or after grilling the assembled skewers.
Step-by-step photos for making
Pesto Grilled Shrimp
Step 1. Assemble the ingredients:
- raw large or jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
- pesto -- store bought or homemade (here's my recipe); pesto is all you need to add flavor to the shrimp, since it is already seasoned with basil, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, nuts, and parmesan cheese.
Step 2. If you're using wooden skewers, start soaking them in water. This will help keep them from getting too burned on the grill. I used 6" skewers--a good size for individual servings.
Step 3. Rinse shrimp, drain, and pat dry with paper towels.
Step 4. Add shrimp and pesto to a large bowl and toss gently until shrimp is evenly coated.
Step 5. Thread the shrimp onto skewers, piercing each shrimp through the head and tail. I alternated the direction of the tail as I threaded these--only because they look prettier that way.
- view on Amazon: wooden skewers
Step 6. Put the skewers on a hot grill. Grill for 1-1/2 to 2 minutes on each side, just until they turn opaque.
It's important not to overcook the shrimp. It cooks very quickly and will turn tough and rubbery if you overdo it.
Eat now or make ahead. The shrimp can be eaten hot right away. Or, you can put it in a dish, cover, and refrigerate it. I made this shrimp a day ahead, and it was ready to serve the next day.
Another option: skip the skewers and grill the shrimp in a basket. If you'd prefer to grill the shrimp without making skewers, I recommend using a grill basket so you don't have to worry about the shrimp falling between the grill grates. Simply place the shrimp in a single layer in the basket and grill until it just turns opaque, then use tongs to flip and grill the other side. This is a fast and easy way to grill shrimp.
The basket-grilled shrimp can be served piled on a plate or in a bowl.
A great way to feed a crowd! I periodically make lunch for my sons' company Less Annoying CRM. Pesto shrimp skewers were part of a picnic-style Italian meal where everything on the menu could be served cold or at room temperature. That made it easy to prepare everything ahead at home and serve it when I arrived at their offices--no stressing about serving hot food. Also on the menu was my antipasto with creamy Italian dressing and no-cook cherry tomato sauce on pasta. Since no heating is required, this menu is great for outdoor picnics, too.
These yummy shrimp skewers are so easy to make. They can be an appetizer or a main course served over rice. I love them on salads, too!
Make it a Yummy day!
If using wooden skewers, place in shallow container and cover with water. Let them soak for at least 30 min.
Rinse and drain shrimp; pat dry with paper towels. Add shrimp and pesto to large bowl and gently toss until shrimp is uniformly coated.
Thread the shrimp onto skewers, piercing each shrimp through the head and tail. Alternate the direction of the tail as you thread them for an attractive presentation.
Preheat grill on high heat. Place shrimp skewers on hot grill and cook for 1-1/2 to 2 minutes on each side, just until opaque. Don't over cook. Grilled shrimp can be served right away or refrigerated and served the next day.
ALTERNATIVE METHOD: grill the shrimp in a basket. If you'd prefer to grill the shrimp without making skewers, use a grill basket so you don't have to worry about the shrimp falling between the grill grates. Place shrimp in a single layer in the basket and grill until it just turns opaque, use tongs to flip and grill the other side.
--Cold with lightly dressed salad greens.
--Hot as a main dish, served over rice.
--Room temperature as an appetizer.
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