Can you believe that I first came up with this Paleo Walnut Shrimp recipe over five years ago, and I’m only getting around to posting it now?
Okay—I actually did publish it…waaaay back in 2013. It’s one of my favorite dishes from our first cookbook (and our app), but for years, I held off on publishing this recipe on my blog, waiting (and waiting, and waiting…) for a super-special occasion to do so. After all, in my family, Walnut Shrimp was only served at happy gatherings—which is probably why I associate this dish with such fond memories. And when my parents would take us out for celebratory feasts (in Chinese restaurants, naturally), I could never resist the siren call of crunchy shrimp and candied nuts—all slathered in a creamy, tangy-sweet sauce.
Well, I suppose the start of the Lunar New Year is a good enough reason to finally whip out this beloved dish. My Paleo Walnut Shrimp is an utterly authentic-tasting real-food version of this Hong Kong classic; once you try it, I bet you’ll love it as much as I do.
Paleo Walnut Shrimp
Let’s start with the nuts. Preheat the oven to 350°F with the rack in the middle position. Add the walnuts, maple syrup, melted ghee, salt, and cayenne to a medium bowl, and stir to combine. Make sure the nuts are well coated.
Spread the walnuts in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Bake for 15 minutes or until fragrant, stirring often to ensure even cooking. Keep a close eye on the walnuts—particularly in the last few minutes—to prevent scorching. Take the walnuts out of the oven, and give them one final toss. They’ll still be sticky, but the coating will harden once the nuts cool down.
Next, make the sauce. In a medium bowl, combine the mayonnaise, honey, and lemon juice…
…and whisk to combine into a sweet, creamy dressing.
In another medium bowl, toss the shrimp with the salt.
In a large bowl, whisk the egg white until frothy, and add the tapioca starch. Mix to form a smooth batter. No clumps, please!
Add the shrimp to the batter and mix well, making sure they’re completely coated.
Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add the ghee. Then, once it’s shimmering, fry the shrimp in three separate batches. Cook the shrimp for 1 to 2 minutes on each side…
…or until they’re golden on the outside and no longer translucent on the inside.
Transfer the cooked shrimp to a wire rack.
When all the batches are done, plop the shrimp into the bowl with the honey-mayo sauce…
…and gently toss to coat the prawns before plating.
Sprinkle the candied walnuts and toasted sesame seeds on the shrimp…
…and serve immediately!
Looking for more recipe ideas? Head on over to my Recipe Index. You’ll also find exclusive recipes on my iPhone and iPad app, and in my cookbooks, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2013) and Ready or Not! (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2017)!
Prep 20 mins
Cook 30 mins
Total 50 mins
Yield 4 servings
This Paleo Walnut Shrimp is my utterly authentic-tasting real-food version of a Hong Kong classic; once you taste it, I bet you’ll love it as much as I do. After all, I’ve never been able to resist the siren call of crunchy shrimp and candied nuts—all slathered in a creamy, tangy-sweet sauce!
Paleo Walnut Shrimp
Cuisine Chinese, Paleo, Nom Nom Paleo, Gluten-free, Seafood, Shellfish
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