Coconut-Macadamia Crusted Shrimp

You know how Sara went to Anguilla and St. Maarten a few weeks ago and lounged on the beach and ate delicious seafood? Yeah. I stayed in Louisiana, swollen and achy (although very grateful for the healthy little human I’m almost done incubating). So while she was splashing in tropical international waters, I was trying to figure out how one scratches their fire ant- and mosquito-bitten feet and ankles when one cannot reach them.

It’s okay. We’re cool. I knew it was coming for a long time, so I decided to make my own little tropical getaway with some of my favorite flavors. And since the pointiest, largest point of my belly hits the edge of my countertop, I also knew this recipe had to be super quick and easy. This is because I have short little arms and have to try and reach past the giant melon to cook, well, anything. And each cooking experience ends in backaches and made up swear words like “f-balls.” I don’t even know what that means, but I say it about 50 times a day.

DISCLAIMER: I’m truly not complaining. But I guarantee if someone were to record me trying to cook right now, I would be openly mocked on YouTube. DISCLAIMER OVER.

So anyway. Tropical shrimp. You’ll need a pound of peeled, deveined shrimp (tails on or off, totally depends on your preference), some all-purpose flour, garlic powder, onion powder, kosher salt, cayenne pepper (just a little bit), lime zest, 2 eggs, salted macadamia nuts (trust me here), and sweetened coconut.

Yes, I do realize that, like, half the ingredients I just mentioned are not in this picture. That’s how things are going down.

I’m using frozen shrimp because I didn’t have it in me to head to a seafood market. One great thing about frozen shrimp is that unlike other frozen meats, they thaw super quickly. Don’t leave them in the refrigerator to thaw–they’ll get all fishy-tasting and gross if you do. Just pop them into a colander…

and then run them under cool water for about 10 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 450 and lightly crumple some aluminum foil and use it to line a large baking sheet. Set it aside.

Chop enough macadamia nuts to get 3/4 cup.

Mix them with 3/4 cup sweetened coconut in a shallow bowl or on a plate.

In another shallow bowl, whisk together 2 eggs and set aside.

In a large Ziploc bag, combine the flour, garlic, onion, salt, cayenne, and lime zest. Pat the shrimp dry and then place them in the Ziploc bag and shake to coat the shrimp.

Working with a few smaller shrimp at a time (or 1 large shrimp at a time), shake off the excess flour and then dip it in the whisked eggs. Shake off the excess egg and then roll in the macadamia/coconut mixture. Place on the prepared baking sheet and repeat with the remaining shrimp.

Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes (a few minutes longer for very large shrimp).

While the shrimp are cooking, make the sauce; you’ll need 1 medium very ripe mango, 1 cup pineapple chunks (I used fresh pineapple, but you could also use canned pineapple; it just might not be as sweet), the juice of 1 lime, a pinch of kosher salt and a pinch of cayenne (if you want a little kick).

Combine the ingredients in a blender

and blend until smooth.

When the shrimp are done, serve immediately with the dipping sauce. This makes 4 dinner-sized servings or 6-8 appetizer servings.

woman in denim shirt holding a salad bowl
Meet The Author

Sara Wells

Sara Wells co-founded Our Best Bites in 2008. She is the author of three Bestselling Cook Books, Best Bites: 150 Family Favorite RecipesSavoring the Seasons with Our Best Bites, and 400 Calories or Less from Our Best Bites. Sara’s work has been featured in many local and national news outlets and publications such as Parenting MagazineBetter Homes & GardensFine CookingThe Rachel Ray Show and the New York Times.

Read More

Join The Discussion

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Questions & Reviews

  1. I actually didn’t care for these and I wonder if it’s cause of the shrimp or the mango I got from a local store. I may try again soon via deep fry.

  2. I came back to make this recipe today for probably the fifth or sixth time and saw that I hadn’t commented. My family LOVES this recipe. It’s just labor intensive/expensive enough that I don’t make it all the time, but still simple enough that I make it for company often. The sauce was yummy, but I usually skip it for ease, because the shrimp is just. that. good. Also, I found unsalted macadamia nut bits in the baking aisle that were much cheaper that the salted whole kind, and most of the chopping is done for me. I just add a little bit of salt to them. Delicious! And then I have the rest of the bag available for cookies or trail mix 🙂

  3. Coconut shrimp is one of my favorites! Love the pineapple-mango sauce you served with this!

  4. I made this shrimp recipe along with your Caribbean salad and cilantro-lime rice recipes for my mother-in-law’s birthday dinner. We all loved the shrimp; I can’t wait to make them again! My mango and pineapple got used up before I made the dipping sauce, so I used your dipping sauce recipe for your coconut chicken fingers and it was delicious with the shrimp! Thanks again for a wonderful recipe!

  5. Made this last week and it got my husband’s stamp of approval…meaning I can make it again (he’s kind of a picky eater)! It was delicious; wouldn’t even need the dipping sauce but it did add an extra something to the meal.

  6. I just made this tonight and loved it! We didn’t have macadamia nuts in the house, so I used cashews. Also, I needed about 1.5 times as much coconut mixture to coat my 1 lb of shrimp. Maybe I had smaller shrimp?

    We also like a little more heat around here, so I added a squirt of sriracha chili sauce to the egg. Yum! Thanks again!

  7. I love shrimp but am the only one in my family who does. Could you use chicken instead? How would it change the cooking times?

  8. I am going to have to try these without the nuts (food allergy over here)! They look delicious.

  9. Sounds sooooo good! I will definitely have to make this. I’m also pregnant and I have the same problem with the counter. Washing any dishes by hand is awful because of my short arms and big belly. I pretty much have to lean on the counter to do it. Not fun. But I’m glad I’m not the only one with this problem!!

  10. These look so yummy! Our favorite is the cocnut shrimp at McGraths- mostly becuase they have this amazing sweet orange dipping sauce. Good luck with the new baby!

  11. WOW, this sounds amazing and perfect to complement the heat 🙂 And you make it sounds so easy… can’t way to try!

  12. I don’t love shrimp, but anything with coconut and macadamia nuts begs me to sign up!
    Also -I love hearing about your trip- some of us have to live vicariously!

  13. I love, love coconut shrimp and have ultimate sympathy with the backache – it took me a while to figure out why I had a backache each night after dinner… because this 35-week belly is messing up my cooking mojo!! So thanks from a fellow prego for a quick, easy, delicious recipe I may just have to try tonight. Happy babymaking to you!

  14. Kate, you are hilarious, and these shrimp sound delicious. Coconut shrimp are one of my one-true-loves. And the smoothie for a sauce?! I don’t think any of that will actually make it onto the shrimp. I think I will just drink it all. Now then, stop all this cooking nonsense and just take naps and watch soaps in a reclining position with your feet up.

  15. I was wondering the same thing about the crumpled foil. As much as I cook, I have never thought of that. Thanks for the tip, I think you just saved me from burning my finger tips everytime I have to flip halfway throught the cooking process and some f-balls ;)(I actually say f-balls without the f, picked it up somewhere, but don’t remember when) slipping out of my mouth too!

    1. Hey i just saw your comment and thought i’d help. The crumpled foil helps the shrimp (or whatever you’re baking) cook more evenly. Now, you don’t have to worry about flipping them over halfway through or anything. Hope this helped 🙂

    2. Yep, ditto Allie. 🙂 It allows the hot air to circulate under the foil. Plus it doesn’t stick and you don’t wind up with one side that’s kind of gummy.

  16. Hi Kate! I love the blog, and cookbook! I make at least one of your recipes each week, and anxiously await your new postings each MWF! You guys are awesome! My family and I just recently moved to the Baton Rouge area, and I’m having a bit of a cultural shock (both in the food sense, and surroundings)! Got any advice for me ? 🙂 I know you may not want to divulge this via computer for the entire world to see, and I totally understand, but are you closer to New Orleans area or somewhere entirely different? Good luck with your soon to be new arrival!

    1. I’ll send you an email a little bit later. It’s a huge change, right?! 🙂

  17. Really looks yummy…now you stop all that cooking until the baby arrives. I say your meals should be served to you on a silver tray. Keep a little bell by your side to summon them up. Yeah.

  18. Coconut-macadamia? Say no more. I would eat an armadillo if it were encrusted with coconuts and macadamias!