Like many people, I enjoy all things made with buffalo sauce… buffalo wings, buffalo chicken dip, buffalo sauce on my scrambled eggs, etc. Of course, most food items that fall into that category veer into the territory of being fairly unhealthy and calorie-dense, and I try to keep most of our weeknight meals a little on the lighter side – so, these shrimp are a delicious, lower-calorie alternative.
For me, this is also another dish that can be sort of an easy last-minute weeknight dinner. I typically have most of these items in my fridge already (yay for frozen shrimp!), so this is something I can throw together that looks like I thought WAY harder about it than I actually did. And I truly appreciate any dinner that can make me look smart AND capable!
Before we get to the recipe, let me give you a little Pro Tip in regard to the frozen shrimp – you may recall that in this post, I explained that you should get raw, shell-on, de-veined frozen shrimp. Yeeeeah, well… let’s just say you should make sure to double-check the bag for the word “de-veined”, lest you want to spend an extra 30 minutes cutting the damn digestive tracts out of your shrimp, therefore making this less of a “quick weeknight meal”, and more of a “HONEY, GRAB A SNACK, IT’S GONNA BE A LITTLE LONGER THAN I THOUGHT!” kind of meal. Oops. Dear Tina, take your own advice.
Buffalo Shrimp with Blue Cheese Dip
For the blue cheese dip:
1 cup low-fat sour cream
3 ounces crumbled blue cheese
1 T milk (any kind is fine, even skim)
2 t freshly squeezed lemon juice
pinch each of salt and pepper
assorted vegetables, for dipping
Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside. Cut up whatever vegetables you want for dipping – I used carrots, cherry tomatoes (left whole), and cucumber.
For the shrimp:
1 lb large shrimp (26-30 size), thawed, peeled, de-veined
1/2 t kosher salt
1/2 t black pepper
1/4 t garlic powder
1 T vegetable oil
1/2 c Frank’s Redhot Sauce
1/2 T butter
1.) Once your shrimp are peeled and ready to go, season them all with the salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat, and put the vegetable oil in the skillet.
2.) Once the pan and oil are hot, add your shrimp. Be careful not to crowd the pan (if you do, the shrimp will steam, and they won’t get nice, crispy brown edges) – I find it easiest to do this in 2 batches. Cook the shrimp for about one minute, until the edges are pink and the shrimp are starting to curl up, and then flip all the shrimp. Cook for another minute or so, until the shrimp are pink and opaque.
3.) Put the hot shrimp into a bowl with the hot sauce and butter (you can melt the butter ahead of time, but you don’t need to – the heat from the shrimp will melt it pretty quickly), and toss to coat well. Repeat steps one and two until all your shrimp are cooked and covered in sauce.
I served my shrimp on their own, with a big bowl of cut vegetables for dipping into the blue cheese sauce. However, you could serve this in a lot of different ways – you could put the shrimp over a nice big salad of greens, shredded carrots, and whatever other chopped vegetables you like, and pour the blue cheese sauce over the top (thinned out with a little more milk, if you want). Or, you could throw the shrimp and veggies and sauce into a tortilla or wrap, or you could serve the shrimp and blue cheese sauce over brown rice… the possibilities are endless. The leftovers are delicious cold, too (which alleviates the need for you to be That Guy who is heating up fish in the office microwave – and we all know that no one likes That Guy).
If you aren’t a huge fan of really spicy food (though I don’t think these shrimp are TOO incredibly spicy), you can always add a little more butter to the hot sauce, to cut a little bit of the heat.
I hope I never have to de-vein shrimp, ever again,