This Kung Pao Shrimp recipe is made with a homemade sauce and stir-fried with fresh vegetables. This dish can be made as mild or as spicy as you like by adjusting the amount of chili peppers used. Serve Kung Pao Shrimp over steamed rice for a complete meal.
Kung Pao Shrimp is a popular Chinese dish made with shrimp, roasted peanuts, and a savory sauce. While traditional Kung Pao Shrimp does have peanuts, you can omit them if you have a peanut allergy, are trying to avoid them, or simply can’t find them in your pantry.
💖 Why You’ll Like This Recipe
- It is an easy recipe that can be on your table in 30 minutes!
- You can control the level of spice by adding more or fewer chili peppers.
- This Kung Pao Shrimp is made with a homemade sauce so you know exactly what’s in it.
Let’s take a look at how to make this delicious stir-fry recipe.
1 pound raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
⅛ teaspoon sea salt, to taste
⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons sesame oil, divided
1 white onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon ginger, minced
1 red bell pepper, cut into cubes
1 cup zucchini, sliced and quartered
2 dried red pepper chili (chopped)
Sesame seeds, to garnish
Green onions, to garnish
½ cup soy sauce
1 teaspoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
In a large bowl, mix shrimp, salt, pepper, and cornstarch together.
In a small bowl, mix soy sauce, brown sugar, and hoisin sauce.
Heat a large non-stick skillet on medium heat with 1 tablespoon oil. Stir fry shrimp for 2-3 minutes until cooked. Remove the shrimp from the pan and set it aside.
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in the same skillet and add onion, garlic, ginger, bell pepper, zucchini and red pepper chili. Stir all together and cook until vegetables are fragrant, about 5 minutes.
Add the shrimp back to the skillet and stir.
Pour the sauce over the shrimp and vegetables and stir. Cook until the sauce begins to thicken.
Turn off the heat. Garnish with sesame seeds and green onions.
Serve with rice.
📖 Variations and Add-Ins
If you want to add a little more vegetables to your Kung Pao Shrimp, feel free to stir-fry some green bell peppers or broccoli along with the shrimp. Additional veggies (and fruit) that you can add are:
- Beans sprouts
- Water chestnuts
If you want to make this dish vegetarian, simply use your favorite protein substitute.
🍽️ What To Serve With
- As an appetizer with crusty bread
How To Store leftovers
Allow to cool down completely. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
♨ How to Reheat
Reheat in the microwave on medium heat or on the stove on medium until heated through.
🤷🏻♀️ Frequently Asked Questions
No. Typically, soy sauce and hoisin sauce are made with gluten. For a gluten-free version of this recipe, use tamari in place of soy sauce, and make sure your hoisin sauce is gluten-free.
Shrimp cooks quickly, in just 2-3 minutes once it hits the pan. The shrimp will turn pink and opaque (you won’t be able to see through) when cooked through. Do not overcook the shrimp or they will become tough and rubbery.
If you’re a fan of Chinese food, be sure to check out our recipes for Kung Pao Chicken and Garlic Shrimp.
Kung Pao Shrimp
- 1 pound raw shrimp peeled and deveined
- ⅛ teaspoon sea salt to taste
- ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper to taste
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil divided
- 1 white onion finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 1 tablespoon ginger minced
- 1 red bell pepper cut into cubes
- 1 cup zucchini sliced and quartered
- 2 dried red pepper chili chopped
- Sesame seeds to garnish
- Green onions to garnish
- ½ cup soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
- In a large bowl, mix shrimp, salt, pepper, and cornstarch together.
- In a small bowl, mix soy sauce, brown sugar, and hoisin sauce and set aside.
- Heat a large non-stick skillet on medium heat with 1 tablespoon oil. Stir fry shrimp for 2-3 minutes until cooked. Remove shrimp from the pan and set aside.
- Heat 1 tablespoon oil in the same skillet and add onion, garlic, ginger, bell pepper, zucchini and red pepper chili. Stir all together and cook until the vegetables are fragrant, about 5 minutes.
- Add shrimp back to the skillet and stir.
- Pour the sauce over the shrimp and vegetables and stir all together. Cook until the sauce begins to thicken.
- Turn off the heat. Garnish with sesame seeds and green onions.
- Serve with rice.
Be sure to come back and tell us how your Kung Pao Shrimp turned out!
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