Colossal shrimp? large shrimp? 26/30? What does it all mean? Learn how to decipher shrimp sizes, identify what size and also how many shrimp you need for your recipe, and also get food preparation inspo in this referral guide.

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How space Shrimp Sized?

Shrimp sizes space denoted in numbers, such as 21/25 or U/15. When you watch a “U” in the count, it way that there space “under” that number of shrimp in a pound. The slash in between numbers denotes a variety of shrimp in a pound.

So, because that example, U/15 shrimp save fewer 보다 15 shrimp per pound. 21/25’s weigh in in ~ 21 to 25 shrimp come a pound. Together the numbers acquire smaller, the shrimp obtain bigger.

Sometimes, you’ll see a sizing term together the number such as “Large” or “Jumbo”. Because that accuracy when cooking, I prefer to salary closer attention to the number count 보다 the sizing term.

The seafood industry doesn’t standardize this terms, so while one brand or fishmonger might contact 16/20’s “Extra Jumbo,” another might contact them “Colossal.” Relying on the shrimp count instead lets girlfriend know precisely how numerous shrimp you’re acquiring when planning a recipe.

Shrimp Sizing Chart

Common Sizing term (Varies)Shrimp counting Per PoundApprox. Counting Per 3 oz Serving
Extra ColossalU/102-3 shrimp
Super ColossalU/122-3 shrimp
ColossalU/153-4 shrimp
Extra Jumbo16/204-5 shrimp
Jumbo21/255-6 shrimp
Extra Large26/306-7 shrimp
Large31/358-9 shrimp
Medium Large36/409-10 shrimp
Medium41/5010-12 shrimp
Small51/6012-15 shrimp
Extra Small61/7015-17 shrimp
Tiny71+18+ shrimp

Do Head-On or Unpeeled Shrimp influence Shrimp Counts?

According come Louisiana straight Seafood’s Handbook, shrimp are two counts larger with the head on and also 1 count bigger with the shells. So, speak you purchase U/15 shrimp with the heads and shells on. As soon as the heads room removed, they’ll weigh in two actions smaller in ~ 21/25 shrimp per pound, and when peeled, they’ll it is in 26/30’s.

I really often purchase shrimp v the shells on because I find that they store the meat juicy once cooking and give them good flavor. So, once I’m shopping, I plan my serving size on the following smallest shrimp top top the graph from the counting on the label.

How huge is a traditional Shrimp Serving?

The FDA perform the serving size for cooked seafood, consisting of shrimp, together 3 ounces. I’ve detailed the approximate encourage counts per serving in the table above.

As with any kind of guideline, referee it and readjust based on her guests’ appetites and type of food you’re serving. Because that an appetizer, you can frequently aim toward the lower finish of the range, particularly if you’re serving other dishes together it. If shrimp are the main course, you could round up.

Honestly, rounding up is usual here. Ours love of shrimp is strong!

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Help! mine Recipe simply Says “Raw Shrimp.” What Shrimp Sizes must I Choose?

Most of the time, if there’s no designation, you’ll it is in fine functioning within the 36/40 come 16/20 range. It’s a goldilocks range; not too big and no too little for the mass of recipes. Store in mind that shrimp chef quickly, and also overcooked shrimp have the right to be tough and rubbery. You’ll want to save your eye ~ above the timer, especially when making use of shrimp at the smaller end of the range.

When choosing your shrimp size, likewise consider the cooking method and your an individual preferences because that shrimp sizes. Grilling shrimp and also don’t desire to skewer them? go bigger. Making shrimp salad and also don’t desire to have actually to cut the shrimp? go smaller. Desire to do a showstopper impression? any of the colossal sizes do a mainly presentation.

Here’s a perform of cooking methods I’ve found ideal for assorted shrimp sizes. Be afflicted with in mind the this isn’t a steadfast list, however a basic guideline to help with recipe planning.

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Boiled, Broiled, Sautéed, Steamed: AllBaked/Roasted: U10 come 36/40Deep Fried: U10 come 26/30 if butterflying, 31/35 come 70+ if frying entirety shrimpGrilled: U10 come 31/35 (consider skewering the smaller sized shrimp in this range)Pastes/Fillings: 51/60 to 71+Popcorn Shrimp: 51/60 come 71+Salads: 16/20 to 71+, depending on the texture you’re trying to find in her salad, and also whether you desire to reduced the shrimp.Shrimp Cocktail: U/10 come 31/35

Get Cooking: several of Our Most famous Shrimp Recipes


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Roasted Shrimp Cocktail
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Shrimp Lo Mein
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Cajun Grilled Shrimp and Grits
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Easy Shrimp Scampi
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Bacon sheathe Shrimp through Bourbon Glaze
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Wonton Soup

Hi Ed,Honestly, i don’t remember ever before buying “extra jumbo” shrimp years ago. Also “jumbo” shrimp ~ above restaurant menus ago then seemed a bit bigger than the count says now. Together I stated in the article, the naming device isn’t standardization in the seafood industry. I’m certain it’s shifted throughout the years, simply as it can differ by brand. This is why I always recommend going through the count rather than the descriptive name. (Many recipes only carry out the name, though, so the chart offers a reference allude for usual current labeling.)