Brining Shrimp before cooking?

I saw something recently about brining shrimp, for a few minutes, before cooking, properly rinsing first, of course, but I can’t find the method. Or maybe it’s simpl and I’m looking for more than what’s necessary….Does anyone have some experience with this?

32 Answers

  • alkapal Nov 2, 2021

    when i read the title, i thought, won’t that cure the little buggers? and then i thought, why, shrimp are briny already! hmmm, alka is a little confused here! you can marinate, but “brining” is not something i would recommend. even if marinating, don’t do it too long or they will be mushy.

    • lupaglupa Nov 2, 2021

      It does seem kind of redundant! Usually brining makes things juicier but shrimp don’t really need the help, IMHO. However – this link has instructions:…

    • C. Hamster Nov 2, 2021

      Brining is a fantastic thing to do if you’re going to dry cook the shrimp. It’s a very commomly used technique for shrimp.

      Brine it just like you’d brine poultry, only do it for much less time.

      1/2 cup kosher salt dissolved in 4 cups of cold water. Maybe add a little sugar to heighten the savory flavor. Soak the shrimp for 20 minutes.

      Rinse if you want to but IMO that’s not really necessary.…

      • scubadoo97 Nov 2, 2021

        That’s the way I do it. Brining gives that “pop in the mouth” feel. Does wonders for farmed shrimp that don’t have great texture. 20-30 min max for brining shrimp. Don’t over do the salt. I often do half and half salt/sugar and do rinse well before cooking.

        • alkapal Nov 2, 2021

          interesting technique. i shall give it a try!
          when i grew up in florida, the shrimp were very fresh gulf shrimp. they didn’t need help. those were the days….

          • scubadoo97 Nov 2, 2021

            Gulf shrimp are still around, just not as plentiful in the local supermarkets and twice the price but still worth buying over farm raised.

            • alkapal Nov 3, 2021

              thanks scuba, i know you know your stuff!

              • C. Hamster Nov 3, 2021

                I totally agree. Luckily a market near me carries gulf shrimp from the USA at a reasonable price. They taste very different than the asian shrimp. Sweeter and tastier.

          • violabratsche Nov 2, 2021

            Perfect, Hamster, thanks. I’m usually the first with my finger on the Google button, but I missed it there.

            Thanks again

          • tarteaucitron Nov 2, 2021

            Actually I do brine shrimp, but only as a remedy when I get a batch that turns out to be mushy (I don’t know why, but sometimes it happens).

            To restore the firm texture or at least to help with it, I brine the shrimp for some 15 minutes, in water that is roughly as salty as seawater. Then rinse, marinate/cook as usual, and the “bite” in the flesh magically comes back.

            • chowser Nov 3, 2021

              I like Alton Browns method of cooking shrimp for shrimp cocktail, with brined shrimp:


              • WCchopper Nov 3, 2021

                Brine them (briefly) with the shells on and then toss them with melted butter, worchestershire, cayenne, garlic and smoked paprika and roast them hot and fast! Wear an old shirt and sit outside with someone you’re very comfortable looking foolish in front of and enjoy!

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