This Air Fryer Shrimp has the best smoky flavor and ready in under 15 minutes! The shrimp comes out juicy, succulent and tender!

Air fryer shrimp in a bowl on top of white towel with red dots.

All you need to make this air fryer shrimp recipe is raw shrimp, your favorite seasoning and a few minutes in the air fryer.

I used to make it shrimp tostadas but I can totally see how air fryer shrimp can be served on top of salads, pasta and tacos!

Using an air fryer to make shrimp is an easy way of cooking perfect shrimp without having to use a ton of oil, breading or turn on a conventional oven.

No breading not only means less calories and carbs, but also less mess. With a total of 13 minutes from start to finish, you can have dinner ready with little time and effort.

And the air fryer is capable of cooking shrimp from small to jumbo.

Ingredients You Will Need

Raw shrimps, olive oil, taco seasoning, smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
  • Raw shrimp: I used large shrimp for this recipe. You’ll need to adjust for the time if you plan to use anything smaller (see below for those tips).
  • Olive oil: Just a little drizzle of extra virgin olive oil will help coat the shrimp and keep the dry rub seasoning on the shrimp.
  • Seasonings: Smoked paprika, garlic powder, taco seasoning, salt and pepper is my favorite combination for a simple seasoning. Keep it low sodium by making your own taco seasoning.

How to Make Air Fryer Fried Shrimp

This air fryer shrimp recipe is incredibly easy!

Raw shrimp on a cutting board patted dry with paper towels and seasonings in bowls nearby.

Preparation: This recipe requires a preheat to 400 degrees F.

Add shrimp to a colander to rinse and drain them before placing them in a medium bowl. Pat the shrimp dry with paper towels.

Seasoned shrimp in a bowl with spoon.

Season the shrimp: Drizzle the shrimp with the olive oil and give it a gentle stir to make sure all of them are evenly coated.

Sprinkle the smoked paprika, garlic powder, taco seasoning, salt, and pepper and stir to combine.

Seasoned raw shrimps placed inside air fryer with space in between them.

Air fry shrimp: Place shrimp into the air fryer basket in a single layer. Do not overlap as you want the air to properly circulate each piece.

Cook for 6-8 minutes, or until they’re no longer pink.

Cooked shrimps inside air fryer basket.

Serve immediately on top of salads, as part of a meal on top of a bed of rice or mashed potatoes, or use as a delicious topping for shrimp tostadas!

Can I Cook Frozen Shrimp in Air Fryer?

You can. It will take a few more minutes to cook because it’ll take time for it to thaw, then start to cook.

Also seasonings do not stick well to frozen shrimp. If you absolutely have to cook frozen shrimp, I recommend to run it under warm water for a minute, then pat dry and season.

I would highly recommend to thaw frozen shrimp first for best results. Just place it in the fridge to thaw overnight or to thaw it quickly, place in a bowl with lukewarm water for 15 minutes and drain well.

Tips for Best Results

  • Clean your shrimp: Remove the peel, devein and rinse and drain them.
  • Pat dry: Using paper towels to get rid of excess water helps to ensure you’re not creating steam.
  • You want the heat to crisp up the outside of the shrimp instead of trying to get rid of the water.
  • Work in batches: If you’re making a lot of shrimp, you must not overcrowd the basket. Keep them in a single layer, leaving enough space in between each one for the air to circulate. This recipe was tested using my large 8-quart Cosori air fryer.
  • Plan on using them as an appetizer? I suggest keeping the tails on. This way you can use it to hold onto as you dip into a delicious sauce or dip!
Final dish in a bowl and lemon wedges on a counter.

How to Serve Air Fryer Fried Shrimp?

Shrimp is so versatile, you’re sure to find many ways to use them!

Air fryer shrimp is perfect to be served as an appetizer with cocktail sauce or your favorite dip. Even a ramekin of melted garlic butter is great to pair with it.

Complete your meal and serve air fryer shrimp with a side of Instant Pot brown rice.

Use on shrimp tostadas, in shrimp tacos, or in a shrimp quesadilla.

Add to any simple pasta dish, quinoa salad or wraps.

How to Store Air Fryer Shrimp

To store: Keep any leftover shrimp covered in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.

To reheat: Pop them back into the air fryer at 300 degrees F. Reheat for 3-4 minutes until warm. You could also zap them in the microwave.

FAQs

Can I air fry shrimp with shell on?

Yes. The shrimp will still be tender and juicy, but once the peel comes off, it will have a softer outer texture.

How do you know if shrimp is undercooked?

You’ll know by checking out the thickest part of the shrimp. Raw shrimp is grey and translucent. Once it is cooked, it turns opaque and pink.

If the thickest part of the shrimp hasn’t turned opaque it’s still undercooked and could use a bit of extra time.

Does time vary for different size shrimps?

Yes. Small shrimp will take about 6 minutes and large and jumbo shrimp will take about 8 minutes. 

Smaller shrimp are great for healthy salad recipes, appetizers, quesadillas, tostadas, tacos, and pasta. Large and jumbo shrimp are great for main meals as they’re much heartier and more filling.

Can I make it ahead?

Yes. Season the shrimp up to 24 hours ahead of time. Cover and store in the fridge until you’re ready to make them. Cook as directed.

More Air Fryer Recipes to Try

Closeup of cooked shrimp.
air fryer shrimp in a bowl

Air Fryer Shrimp

This Air Fryer Shrimp has the best smoky flavor and ready in under 15 minutes! The shrimp comes out juicy, succulent and tender!
5 from 5 votes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 146
Diet Gluten Free
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Total Time 13 minutes

Ingredients 
 

Instructions 

  • Preheat air fryer at 400 F degrees. Rinse and drain shrimp, transfer to a medium bowl and pat dry with paper towels.
  • Drizzle with oil and toss to coat. Sprinkle with smoked paprika, garlic powder, taco seasoning, salt and pepper; stir to combine.
  • Transfer shrimp into the basket of air fryer leveling into a single layer and air fry for 6-8 minutes, or until pink and cooked throughout. No need to shake.
  • Serve hot with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice alongside your favorite side dish, in salads, or make shrimp tostadas.

Notes

  • Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
  • Make ahead: Refrigerate seasoned shrimp in an airtight container for up to 24 hours and then cook as per recipe.
  • Reheat: Reheat air fried shrimp in air fryer at 300 degrees F for 3-4 minutes or until warm.
  • Size of shrimp: Small shrimp cooks about 6 minutes and large for 8 minutes.
  • Cooked shrimp: You can cook cooked shrimp the same way for 4 minutes.
  • Work in batches: If you’re making a lot of shrimp, you mustn’t overcrowd the basket. Keep them in a single layer, leaving enough space in between each one for the air to circulate.

Nutrition

Serving: 5shrimp | Calories: 146kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 143mg | Sodium: 934mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Mexican
Author: Olena Osipov
Did you make this recipe?Mention @ifoodreal or tag #ifoodreal!

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About Olena

Welcome! I grew up in Ukraine watching my grandma cook with simple ingredients. I have spent the last 11 years making it my mission to help you cook quick and easy meals for your family!

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I’ve tried quite a few air fried shrimp recipes but this one is the best one so far! So delicious and easy. The only difference I did was that I didn’t have a low sodium taco seasoning, so I used a regular one and just excluded the 1/2 tsp salt that the recipe called for. I also used frozen shrimp that was already deveined and ready to go. I’ve made this recipe a couple times now and this time I made it for shrimp tacos! Yummy.

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