A simple recipe for golden fried prawns that looks and tastes amazing without any fancy ingredients! Learn how to make crispy prawn fry at home that look like those served in the restaurants, and taste even better.
About the recipe
This copycat recipe is based on crispy prawns fry, one of the popular Indian prawn recipes served as starters at restaurants. It is a bold statement but absolutely true: These golden fried prawns definitely taste better than the restaurant ones.
We don’t need detailed instructions on how to fry prawns, it’s quite easy and obvious. But there are some tips and tricks (that are often overlooked) that will help you master the technique and create a restaurant-quality dish.
Like most of my seafood recipes, this prawn recipe is also a quick and easy one. It requires just 7 basic ingredients and less than 30 minutes.
Fry the prawns with tails removed, and you can turn this into a spicy popcorn shrimp recipe!
Are prawns good for you?
Prawns are a great source of protein, low in calories and saturated fat, rich in omega-3 fatty acids, selenium, vitamin B12, calcium and vitamin E. Hence, they promote heart health, brain function, growth and development and reduce inflammation, risk of illnesses like cancer, arthritis and dementia.
A word of caution, though: while prawns are low in saturated fats, they are rich in cholesterol and sodium. So eat prawns in moderation and be wary of added salt. Prawns are naturally flavorful and tasty, they need less salt and flavoring agents.
Despite the high cholesterol content, shrimps are still a healthy alternative protein source when compared to animal protein like red meat.
I have used jumbo prawns (a personal favorite) for this recipe, but any prawn can be used. This recipe requires a very basic set of 7 ingredients – flour, egg, panko breadcrumbs, chili powder, pepper, salt and oil for frying.
I would recommend using Panko breadcrumbs for this recipe since they give you light, extra-crispy fried shrimps that stay crispy longer. Panko is a variety of flaky bread crumb used in Japanese cuisine as a crunchy coating for fried foods. It is made from bread without a crust, and then grinding the bread to create fine slivers of crumb. It has a crisper, airier texture than most types of breading and resists absorbing oil or grease when fried resulting in a lighter coating. (source)
How to defrost frozen prawns
Fresh or frozen shrimps can be used for this recipe. To defrost frozen shrimps, thaw them by washing a few times with tap water or soaking in tap water for about 10 minutes, until they reach room temperature. Leaving frozen shrimps to thaw naturally (on the kitchen counter) will make the shrimps go limp and mushy.
How to make golden fried prawns- step by step
(You can find the exact measurements and instructions in the recipe card at the end of this page.)
Marinate the prawns with chili powder and salt for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, get the other ingredients ready. Take 3 medium-sized shallow bowls. Place flour with chili powder and salt in the first bowl, eggs beaten with salt and pepper in the second, and bread crumbs mixed with chili powder in the third.
Roll the prawns in the flour, dip in beaten eggs and coat with the bread crumbs.
Heat oil in a frying pan and shallow fry the prawns in batches. Serve with homemade yogurt dip.
What is the best oil for deep-frying prawns?
Vegetable oil or peanut oil is best suited for deep-frying since they have a high smoking point.
Can you fry already cooked prawns?
Cooked prawns are not suitable for frying. Prawns cook fast and turn rubbery if overcooked. Also, cooked prawns do not absorb the flavors well.
How long does it take for prawns to fry?
Breaded jumbo prawns take about 4 to 6 minutes (2 to 3 minutes each side, flipping once midway) to fry to golden crispy perfection. Smaller prawns take about 3 to 4 minutes to cook.
Tips to master this crispy prawn fry
Follow these 4 simple tricks (which are usually overlooked)
- Coat the prawns completely in flour before dipping into the egg.
- Dip quickly in the egg so that the flour doesn’t dissolve in the egg.
- Use panko breadcrumbs that make the prawns extra crispy when fried.
- Chili powder added to the flour and bread crumbs gives additional flavor and attractive golden color to the fried prawns. Optionally, you can add paprika or “Kashmiri chili powder” if you want even more color but with less heat. Adding flavor to the outer layer is the best way to making the most out of breaded and fried recipes, like the Italian potato croquettes.
What goes with Indian prawn fry
These spicy fried prawns can be eaten as an appetizer with a simple homemade yogurt dip (see recipe for simple fish cakes) or creamy avocado chutney and you get the perfect party appetizer or something you can proudly bring to a potluck.
Fried shrimp and rice also go well together. All you have to make is a simple curry like lentil curry (dal) with spinach or chole masala. You can also pair them with flavored rice like lemon rice. For a low-carb option, try coconut cauliflower rice.
These breaded prawns also taste good with
- a salad like chickpea salad, pomegranate salad with mango and coconut or beet orange salad.
- simple side like the no-mayo coleslaw or microwave–fried okra.
- as a kid-friendly snack that can also be adult-friendly! (they’re called popcorn shrimps for a reason)
Looking for more seafood recipes?
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