Get it while the grilling is good! Grilled Shrimp with Chimichurri Sauce is a Michelin-grade main dish made in a matter of minutes. Tender, buttery shrimp only need a few minutes on the grill to cook to perfection. Whip up a homemade chimichurri with fresh parsley and cilantro for a bright, bold finish. Pair it with practically anything to fit your diet and palate.
It is a truth universally acknowledged that some people are glass-half-full people, and some are glass-half-empty people. I usually fall into the former category, but on occasion I can’t help but be a little down.
One such occasion is when I have perfectly cooked seafood. And it’s because it makes me realize how much bad, overcooked seafood I’ve had. Lifeless, rubbery, and sometimes so overwrought no amount of Old Bay could save it. Then you get one beautifully tender, sweet, juicy grilled shrimp and you’re falling to your knees and shaking your fists at the sky asking “WHY?!?!” while everyone stares at you. Really quite embarrassing.
While I strive to bring you delicious, healthy recipes using clean, whole ingredients, I also want to make sure you’re getting the optimal food experience by perfecting cook times. It’s the marriage of the two that makes magic happen. And while I realize that some people prefer well-done meat, or eggs that are a little too runny (like, c’mon, are you Rocky Balboa?), most of us are looking for the sweet spot.
It is very easy to miss that sweet spot with shrimp. And while one minute more won’t render them inedible – and may be seen as “serviceable,” “passable,” or even “comparable” to something you’d find at a certain legacy chain – you shouldn’t settle for that.
So this is your new mantra: don’t overcook your shrimp. You deserve better. There are other fish in the sea, so if you mess this one up, put another shrimp on the barbie, and try again.
Grilled Shrimp Marinade
Alert! Alert! Danger, Will Robinson! Do NOT over-marinate your shrimp! 15 minutes at room temperature is plenty of time. Anything more than that and you’ve got a ceviche-situation on your hands wherein the acid begins to cook the shrimp.
But also, don’t fret and skip the marinade – the end result is brighter with more robust flavor and tender, juicier grilled shrimp.
- Olive Oil: extra virgin isn’t necessary; feel free to substitute avocado oil.
- Lemon Juice: fresh is best, but if you’re using the bottled stuff, grab a fresh bottle for best flavor.
- Garlic: fresh is best, but you can substitute for ¼ tsp garlic powder if fresh isn’t available.
- Kosher Salt: unless you’re sodium sensitive, do not skip or skimp! The salt keeps the shrimp so juicy and tender.
How to Grill Shrimp
Is it worth firing up the grill for what amounts to just a few minutes? Yes. Yes it is. Grilled Shrimp perform beautifully on the grate and it lends deeper flavor to these delicate, marinated prawns. Be sure to read all the tips below for best results!
For a condensed post, click to view the web story for this recipe!
- Whisk together marinade ingredients and toss in shrimp. Marinate at room temperature for 15 minutes. (Use this time to make chimichurri; see below.)
- Double skewer the shrimp – alternating heads and tails – keeping them tightly packed.
- Prepare your grill for high heat (450°F).
- Arrange skewers on the grate in a single layer. Grill 2 minutes with the lid open, flip, and cook 2-3 minutes more.
- Drizzle with chimichurri and serve immediately.
Chef’s Tips for Perfect Grilled Shrimp
- Skewering: for the juiciest, most tender grilled shrimp, thread onto 2 skewers, alternating heads and tails. This also makes the skewers easier to flip. Pack ’em tight and you’ll reduce the chance that they’ll overcook.
- Do NOT overcook. The shrimp are ready the moment they turn pink and opaque. If you’re nervous, take their temp! Shrimp is cooked through when the internal temperature reads 120°F.
- Do not over-marinate. An acid marinade can literally “cook” seafood (think ceviche). Shrimp need just 15 minutes at room temperature.
- Clean well, devein, then dry completely before marinating. You can read this step-by-step tutorial if you’re unfamiliar with how to clean and devein shrimp.
- You can absolutely use frozen shrimp! Place into a colander and run under cold water until the shrimp are defrosted. Dry well, then move onto the marinade step.
How Long to Grill Shrimp?
Have I mentioned yet that you should not overcook your shrimp? *Ahem* “DO NOT OVERCOOK.” Just. Don’t. Do. It.
Shrimp cook very quickly and cook time will vary very slightly based on the following:
- The size of the shrimp (we recommend Jumbo or Extra Jumbo).
- How the shrimp are skewered. With the two-skewer method we like, you have a little more wiggle room on time.
Start with 2 minutes per side, adding an additional minute if needed. The shrimp are cooked through the moment they turn pink and are completely opaque. The ideal temperature is 120°F.
PRO TIP: Grill with the lid OPEN not closed. High heat + low cook time will create super tender, super juicy shrimp.
How to Make Chimichurri Sauce
Whether by hand or machine, this bright, bold South American sauce should be a household name if it isn’t already. Made from fresh herbs and alliums – and easy-to-find pantry staples – chimichurri is a pesto-like sauce that brings out the best in proteins, veggies, and pasta. It’s a quick and easy upgrade for any dish, but pairs particularly well with charred proteins like shrimp or steak.
- BY HAND: finely chop the fresh ingredients. Whisk together liquids until emulsified. Add chopped herbs and alliums, season, and stir to combine.
- IN A FOOD PROCESSOR: add fresh ingredients to food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add the liquids – EXCEPT OIL – and seasoning. Pulse 5-10 times until well combined. Switch to auto process and pour in olive oil through feed tube until sauce consistency forms.
What to Serve with Grilled Shrimp?
- Keep it keto and pair with simply prepared veggies: cauliflower, broccoli, asparagus, or even zucchini
- Goes great with a basic creamy pesto or tomato sauce over pasta, but at the height of summer, try the winning combo of shrimp with Zucchini and Corn Pasta
- Upgrade: Pair with Flank Steak Skewers but eighty-six the pesto. The deliciousness overlap on the shirimp/steak/chimichurri venn diagram is a perfect circle.
Shrimp for Days!
Did you make this recipe for grilled shrimp? I’d love to know how it turned out! Leave a comment and a rating below.
Grilled Shrimp with Chimichurri SaucePrint Recipe Rate this Recipe Pin Recipe
- 1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ½ c. firmly packed fresh parsley
- ½ c. firmly packed fresh cilantro
- 3 tbsp fresh oregano
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small shallot, finely minced
- ⅓ c red wine vinegar
- ½ c extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp lemon juice from a fresh lemon
- ½ tsp red pepper flakes
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp ground pepper
- Combine the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Whisk until well combined. Add the shrimp to the marinade, toss to coat, then set aside to marinate at room temperature for 15 minutes while you prepare the chimichurri sauce.
- Chimichurri (by hand): finely chop the parsley, cilantro, oregano, garlic, and shallot. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the vinegar, olive oil, and lemon juice until emulsified. Add the chopped herbs and alliums, as well as the red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine.
- Chimichurri (food processor): combine the parsley, cilantro, oregano, garlic, and shallot in a food processor. Pulse until the herbs and alliums are finely chopped. Add the red wine vinegar, lemon juice, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Pulse 5-10 times more, or until well combined. Flip the motor to process and pour in the olive oil through the feed tube until the ingredients form a sauce. Makes about 1.5 cups.
- Skewer the shrimp onto 2 skewers, alternating heads and tails, and keeping them tightly packed.
- Heat a grill to high (450°F). Rub the grates with the cut side of a potato to prevent sticking, or brush with olive oil.
- Arrange the skewers on the grill in a single layer. Grill 2 minutes with the lid open, then flip and cook 2-3 minutes more or until cooked through. The shrimp are cooked through the moment they turn pink and are completely opaque. The ideal temperature is 120°F.
- Drizzle the shrimp with chimichurri sauce and serve immediately.
- Place into a colander and run under cold water until the shrimp are defrosted.
- Dry very well, then move onto the marinade step.