This Bloody Mary Shrimp recipe takes the flavors from your favorite cocktail and turns it into a delicious weeknight dinner! With ripe cherry tomatoes, spicy horseradish, and plump shrimp, this is an easy, flavorful meal that will impress.
Why You'll Love this Dish
Do you love a Bloody Mary cocktail? Tomato juice, vodka, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco, and lemon are all powerhouse flavors that combine to create a bold but harmonious drink.
I love it when they add lots of garnishes, too - celery stalks, bacon, green olives, pickles.
This Bloody Mary Shrimp recipe is easy dinner meets everyone's favorite classic brunch cocktail.
So, why will you love it? First, it's super easy recipe to make. It's a one-pan dish that can be served with rice, pasta, or bread to dip.
Second, it's extremely tasty. Delicious shrimp, sweet tomato, vodka, spicy horseradish, and lots of tangy lemon juice combine to create a bright, punchy dish that'll wake up your dinner routine.
Also, it's quick! Ready in under an hour, this dish is perfect for weeknights, but impressive enough for a weekend brunch or dinner for friends.
What You'll Need
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- Shrimp Raw shrimp is best here. Pre-cooked shrimp will become rubbery if cooked further. Frozen raw shrimp is just as good as fresh raw shrimp.
- Tomato Juice I tested this both with 100% tomato juice and with a tomato and vegetable blend. I found it turned out well with both options.
- Cherry Tomatoes Grape tomatoes will work, too.
- Garlic Use fresh garlic or opt for jarred garlic. I would not sub in garlic powder.
- Bacon This is optional, but adds a nice saltiness and richness to the meal.
- Vodka No preference on brand or quality here. The alcohol cooks off in the sauce.
- Worcestershire Sauce
- Horseradish This recipe was tested with both creamed horseradish and prepared horseradish. I like it both ways! You can also check out this horseradish substitute guide for more options.
- Lemon Juice I like using fresh lemons, but you can also purchase bottled lemon juice if fresh lemons aren't available.
- Olive Oil You will only need this if you aren't using the bacon.
- Salt and Pepper I use kosher salt for my cooking. I find it's easier to control the saltiness of the dish. Freshly ground black pepper is my preference.
- Fresh Herbs Finishing this dish with a bit of fresh parsley or dill is optional, but recommended.
How to Make Bloody Mary Shrimp
Step One Devein the shrimp. First, make a small slit down the interior of the shrimp with a paring knife.
Step Two Remove the vein.
Step Three Chop the bacon and fry over medium heat in a pan.
Step Four Add the garlic when the bacon is almost finished cooking.
Step Five Add in the cherry tomatoes and vodka. Let cook for about 5 minutes, taste for seasoning, and add some salt and pepper if needed.
Step Six Pour the tomato juice, horseradish, and Worcestershire sauce into the pan. Stir well to combine.
Step Seven Bring the heat down to medium-low and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, until the sauce begins to thicken and the vodka cooks out.
Step Eight Add shrimp, season with salt, and cook for 2 to 3 minutes per side, until just opaque.
Step Nine Remove from heat, stir in the lemon juice, and taste for seasoning.
Step Ten Arrange your shrimp on a plate or in a small bowl and serve right away with fresh herbs and lemon wedges.
Variations and Substitutions
- Try adding a bit of tomato paste for an extra savory flavor.
- You could swap the lemon at the end for lime wedges.
- For spicier shrimp, add a bit of hot sauce or some extra horseradish to the dish.
Storage and Reheating
Fridge Refrigerate any leftover shrimp in an airtight container for 3 to 4 days.
Freezer I do not recommend freezing this dish.
Reheating To reheat, add the leftovers to a pan over medium heat and warm through, or add to a bowl and microwave for a few minutes. Be sure to cover the dish if you're microwaving as it may splatter.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Bloody Mary cocktails have tomato juice, or Bloody Mary mix, vodka, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, and lemon. They are often garnished with things like celery, olives, and citrus wedges.
The main difference between Bloody Mary mix and cocktail sauce is that Bloody Mary mix is made with tomato juice whereas cocktail sauce is made with ketchup.
Absolutely! A simple shrimp marinade with garlic and lemon would be lovely here.
How to Serve
I love to serve this dish over rice or pasta, or with a big hunk of French bread. You can also serve it as a warm appetizer with toothpicks or some bread.
Some of my favorite sides with Bloody Mary Shrimp are Arugula Caprese Salad, a fresh caprese salad with arugula and balsamic glaze, Spicy Roasted Vegetables, which you really just need to cut and roast in the oven, and Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Asparagus, which are simple, versatile, and healthy.
- Be sure to only cook your shrimp for as long as is needed to reach an opaque color. This will result in perfectly cooked shrimp. Depending on the size of shrimp you use, this could be anywhere from 1 to 3 minutes per side.
- If you're adding alcohol to a sauce, give it adequate time to cook down. This prevents a raw alcohol taste from being present in the finished dish.
- Looking for a way to add a little extra flavor and color to your dish? Finishing a dish with fresh herbs immediately enhances both the flavor and appearance of your dish. This dish is great finished with parsley or dill.
Other Seafood Recipes to Try
Bloody Mary Shrimp
- 2 slices bacon optional
- 1 tablespoon olive oil use only if omitting the bacon
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons vodka
- 1 cup tomato juice or tomato and vegetable juice mix
- 1 tablespoon horseradish prepared or creamed
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 pound shrimp raw, deveined, outer shells removed
- 1 lemon
- fresh herbs like parsley, basil, or dill, optional
- Add the chopped bacon to a pan over medium heat and cook until almost crisp, about 4 minutes. If not using the bacon, just start with a tablespoon of olive oil.
- Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Add the cherry tomatoes and vodka. Cook for about 5 minutes.
- Pour in the tomato juice, horseradish, and Worcestershire sauce. Bring the heat down to medium-low. Taste for seasoning, adding salt and pepper if needed, and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the sauce thickens a bit and the alcohol has burned off.
- Add the shrimp, season it with salt, and cook for about 2 to 3 minutes per side, or until opaque.
- Take the bloody mary shrimp off the heat, squeeze over the juice of half a lemon, taste for seasoning and serve with fresh herbs, lemon wedges, and your choice of pasta, rice, or bread.
- Estimated calories are for 2 large servings. If serving as an appetizer or a lighter meal, feel free to portion into more than 2 servings.
- See text of post for more information about deveining shrimp.
- Fridge Refrigerate any leftover shrimp in an airtight container for 3 to 4 days.
- Freezer I do not recommend freezing this dish.
- Reheating To reheat, add the leftovers to a pan over medium heat and warm through, or add to a bowl and microwave for a few minutes. Be sure to cover the dish if you're microwaving as it may splatter.