Colossal shrimp? huge shrimp? 26/30? What go it every mean? Learn just how to decipher shrimp sizes, recognize what size and how many shrimp you require for her recipe, and also get cooking inspo in this referral guide.

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How room Shrimp Sized?

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

So, for example, U/15 shrimp save fewer than 15 shrimp every pound. 21/25’s sweet in at 21 to 25 shrimp to a pound. As the numbers acquire smaller, the shrimp obtain bigger.

Sometimes, you’ll watch a sizing term alongside the number such as “Large” or “Jumbo”. Because that accuracy when cooking, I choose to salary closer fist to the number count 보다 the sizing term.

The seafood industry doesn’t standardize this terms, therefore while one brand or fishmonger might speak to 16/20’s “Extra Jumbo,” another might call them “Colossal.” Relying on the shrimp count rather lets girlfriend know precisely how numerous shrimp you’re gaining when to plan a recipe.

Shrimp Sizing Chart

Common Sizing hatchet (Varies)Shrimp count Per PoundApprox. Count 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 1 count bigger with the shells. So, say you buy U/15 shrimp with the heads and also shells on. As soon as the heads space removed, they’ll weigh in two measures smaller in ~ 21/25 shrimp per pound, and also when peeled, they’ll be 26/30’s.

I really often to buy shrimp v the shells on due to the fact that I find that they store the meat juicy as soon as cooking and also give them great flavor. So, as soon as I’m shopping, I arrangement my serving sizes on the following smallest shrimp top top the graph from the counting on the label.

How big is a traditional Shrimp Serving?

The FDA list the serving size for cooking seafood, consisting of shrimp, as 3 ounces. I’ve detailed the approximate recommended counts every serving in the table above.

As with any kind of guideline, judge it and change based on your guests’ appetites and kind of dish you’re serving. For an appetizer, girlfriend can regularly aim toward the lower finish of the range, specifically if you’re serving other dishes together it. If shrimp room the main course, you might round up.

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

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

Most that 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; no too large and no too tiny for the bulk of recipes. Keep in mind the shrimp cook quickly, and overcooked shrimp deserve to be tough and also rubbery. You’ll desire to save your eye ~ above the timer, especially when using shrimp in ~ the smaller finish of the range.

When selecting your shrimp size, likewise consider the cooking an approach and your personal preferences for shrimp sizes. Grilling shrimp and don’t want to skewer them? go bigger. Making shrimp salad and also don’t want to have to reduced the shrimp? go smaller. Want to do a showstopper impression? any type of of the colossal sizes do a stellar presentation.

Here’s a list of cooking methods I’ve found finest for various shrimp sizes. Be affected by each other in mind the this isn’t a steadfast list, yet a basic guideline to assist with recipe planning.

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

Get Cooking: few of Our Most popular Shrimp Recipes


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

Hi Ed,Honestly, i don’t remember ever before buying “extra jumbo” shrimp year ago. Even “jumbo” shrimp on restaurant menus ago then seemed a bit larger than the count suggests now. Together I discussed in the article, the naming system isn’t standardization in the seafood industry. I’m certain it’s shifted throughout the years, just as it can differ through brand. This is why I constantly recommend going through the count rather than the descriptive name. (Many recipes only carry out the name, though, so the chart provides a reference allude for usual current labeling.)