Baked Chili Shrimp

It doesn’t happen too often around here, but every once and a while, we can find head-on shrimp. If we see them, we buy them – it is the perfect “Adam and Joanne” meal, quick, easy and a little messy. It just so happened that right next to the seafood counter, there were wine bottles for sale — our explanation for the image below.

A little bit about head-on shrimp – we love it, we bake the shrimp with the head still intact, then eat the shrimp by peeling the shell, ripping the head off and sucking out any juices from the head (it’s delicious). If that really isn’t something you’re in to, just buy shrimp without the head and follow the recipe below, it will still be tasty. For this, we did not devein the shrimp, but we are cool with that, if you want to, add in the step.

All you need for this is melted butter (you could use olive oil, too), soy sauce and a fresh chili paste. You can usually find a small jar of it in the international aisle of your grocery store and larger jars (like ours) in an Asian or international store. Look for a jar with “Sambal” on the label — there are lots of varieties, but any that we have tried or found have been great.

How to make Baked Chili Shrimp

Start by adding melted butter to the shrimp.

Then, soy sauce (we always use low-sodium soy sauce, but that is just our preference).

And finally, some fresh chili paste — we love this stuff, we use it on almost everything.

Toss and spread on to one layer on a baking sheet. When we did this, our shrimp were cooler than the butter, so the butter solidified — don’t worry if this happens to you, it will melt once you place the shrimp into the oven.

Bake in a 450°F oven until the shrimp are cooked through, stirring occasionally, 8 – 10 minutes.

4.0 from 1 reviews
Baked Chili Shrimp
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
An easy and delicious shrimp recipe with just enough kick from the hot sauce.
Yield: 2
You Will Need
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chili paste (look for Sambal on the label)
  • 1 pound uncooked large shrimp
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Combine melted butter, soy sauce and chili paste in a large bowl.
  3. Add shrimp and toss until well coated.
  4. Bake until shrimp are cooked through, stirring occasionally, 8-10 minutes.


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16 comments… Leave a Comment
  • Ana March 3, 2014, 2:51 pm

    Hi, I love the recipe and am bound to try it out. Can you please suggest what you prepare for side dish? Veggies maybe? What sort? Can you help with a quick fix? I want the shrimp to be the main attraction for dinner, but still need a light side dish…

  • sean October 29, 2013, 6:57 pm

    you should try soaking and rinsing off your shrimp. It helps cut out the salty, dirty taste.

  • Nancy Long July 3, 2012, 8:38 am

    love me some head-on shrimp – when we lived in New Orleans, they were readily available and used to make hubby’s fav New Orleans style BBQ Shrimp (no bbq sauce) all the time. For some reason, here on the Gulf coast of FL they are much hardier to come by. Will def try this as soon as I can.

  • Beds&Beyond May 23, 2012, 10:40 pm

    Have you tried cooking in sous vide at 122,
    Then coating the shells with your marinade, that should help with the millaird reaction also.
    Then fry at very high temperture.

    you should end up with softer more delicate and complex texture to the flesh.
    Crispier and by far mroe flavoursome shell.

    • Joanne May 26, 2012, 1:27 pm

      We have sous-vied chicken, steak and veggies – not shrimp. A bit too much work for our style, but thank you so much for sharing, we’re sure it’s delish!

  • Beds&Beyond May 5, 2012, 9:34 pm

    Why do you cook the shrimp at such a high temperture

    • Joanne May 6, 2012, 4:42 pm

      The high temp is so the shrimp cook quickly. Also, roasting the shrimp at this temperature actually helps the shrimp caramelize slightly as well as intensify its flavors. You could certainly bake the shrimp at a lower temperature, say 350, but from what we have tasted, the flavors just are not as intense.

  • Wendi @ Bon Appetit Hon October 13, 2011, 8:35 am

    It’s not fair to make me drool over shrimp at 8:35 in the morning. Your lead photo is stunning.

    • inspiredtaste October 13, 2011, 9:29 am

      Thanks, Wendi — Sorry for the whole drooling thing! Although, we won’t judge if you wanted to eat shrimp so early in the morning, we would!

  • Ali October 13, 2011, 4:06 am

    Nice post. The shrimps look so delicious. Would you mind sending me some cause I know i can’t bake my shrimps this good 🙂

  • Bev Weidner October 12, 2011, 6:11 pm

    I seriously might die right now.

    • inspiredtaste October 12, 2011, 6:34 pm

      Oh no, please don’t Bev! We will just send you some, how about that?

  • JavelinWarrior October 12, 2011, 5:17 pm

    Your shrimp are gorgeous and the recipe is blissfully simple! But yeah, while me and my uptight self would be ok with the heads, I’d have to do something about the vein. 😉

  • Cookin' Canuck October 12, 2011, 12:37 pm

    I am always on the lookout for head-on shrimp, too but they are definitely hard to come by. This look like such an easy and flavorful dish. Lovely!


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