Scrumptious, spicy, shrimp stir- fry

If you love fresh, succulent, shrimp with a touch of spice, this dish will hit the spot! Fresh tomatoes are sautéed with onions and garlic to create a spicy sauce with  a touch of tangy flavor from fresh tamarind. Cilantro and scallions add an earthy flavor to this dish which tastes best served with Indian naan or on a bed of wild rice or quinoa. Watch out! The shrimp is so scrumptious, you will find your family stealing it straight out of the pot, before you can serve it!

© Copyright, April 2016, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE.

© Copyright, April 2016, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE.


1 lb shrimp, shelled and deveined

2 tbsp peanut oil

2 small onions

3/4 cup finely chopped tomatoes

2 large cloves, garlic

2 tbsp fresh chopped cilantro

1 small scallion, finely chopped

For the marinade:

2.5 tsp ginger-garlic paste

3/4 tsp garam masala

3/4 tsp chili powder

1/2 tsp ground fennel or ground coriander-cumin powder

1/4 -1/2 tsp turmeric

2 tbsp tamarind extract*

1 tsp salt or to taste

*Soak tamarind in about 3 tbsp of warm water for a few minutes. Gather up the tamarind and using the fingers and palm of the hand, squeeze tightly, to extract the concentrated juice into a medium bowl. You will need about 2 tbsp of this extract. Refrigerate the remaining tamarind in a small, glass, air-tight container. (Will last for up to 1-2 weeks, depending upon humidity)


  1. Mix ingredients for marinade and apply to cleaned, shelled and deveined shrimp.
  2. Set aside marinated shrimp.
  3. In a thick bottomed saucepan, heat oil.
  4. When oil is hot, add the garlic, sauteing until a light golden brown. Watch for signs of burning and adjust heat as required.
  5. Add the diced onions, sauteing until soft and translucent, about 5-7 minutes

    © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE

    © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE

  6. Now add the fresh chopped tomato, and chopped cilantro, stirring until both blends in with the onion, and the mixture becomes one homogeneous mass.

    © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE

    © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE

  7. Now add the marinated shrimp, stirring gently until coated with the onion-tomato mixture in the pan, about 2 minutes, until shrimp begins to turn opaque, with a pink tinge.

    © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE

    © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE

  8. Add about 4 oz of water, stirring gently, bring to a full boil for a minute or so until heated through and switch off the heat. Be careful that shrimp is not overcooked, but at the same time make sure it is cooked through.
  9. Serve hot, garnished with fresh, chopped scallions
© Copyright, April 2016, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE.

© Copyright, April 2016, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE.

Registered Dietitian’s tip: Many folks tend to shy away from shrimp secondary to its notorious cholesterol content. 3 oz. or approximately 85 grams of cooked shrimp provide approximately 179 mg of dietary cholesterol and very little total as well as saturated fat, ( assuming you do not fry these in butter, in which case all bets are off!), while also supplying small amounts of healthy, unsaturated fats. It is worth noting that since saturated and trans fats have a much greater impact on your blood cholesterol levels compared to dietary cholesterol itself, and since shrimp has very little, if any saturated fat, moderate amounts of shrimp and other forms of shell-fish may be included in an overall healthy diet.

Disclaimer: All the content on this blog is strictly for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical advice. Please consult your doctor or registered dietitian for recommendations tailored to your unique needs.


About Sangeeta Pradhan RD, CDE

Hi there! Welcome to my blog! If you are confused with all the conflicting messages you get bombarded with every day on carbs, fats, proteins, gluten and anything you can think of related to nutrition, look no further! The purpose of my blog is to cut through all this clutter, utilizing scientific, evidence based guidelines to help you, the consumer, navigate the complex, dietary landscape, and thus empower you to make informed decisions.
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16 Responses to Scrumptious, spicy, shrimp stir- fry

  1. Amy says:

    Love it! I’ll give a try! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks, Amy! Let me know how it turns out. Enjoy!


  3. Amy says:

    I love Indian food. 🙂 Thank you!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thanks, Amy! I am biased, but I have to agree:))


  5. Carrie Rubin says:

    I am not a seafood eater–not even tuna. Just never acquired a taste for it, and the smell makes me nauseous. But I imagine chicken could be substituted! Ah, chicken breasts are always my go-to. 🙂


  6. Dear Carrie,

    Yes, you could follow this recipe almost exactly and substitute about a pound of boneless, skinless chicken breasts in place of shrimp. The only step I would change is marinate the chicken for a good hour or so, to soak in the flavors. I think you will like it. Let me know. Enjoy! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  7. dgkaye says:

    Looks scrumptious Sangeeta. I’m allergic to shrimps but I should think this yummy marinade would do nicely on chicken. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Yes, Debbie,a s I mentioned to Carrie, use about 1 lb of boneless, skinless chicken breasts and marinate for at least an hour. Follow the rest of the recipe as described. Good to hear from you. Enjoy! Have a great weekend:)

    Liked by 1 person

  9. dgkaye says:

    Thanks Sangeeta. Happy weekend to you too. 🙂


  10. This choice of dish looks so delicious and the way you have presented it makes it impulsive and irresistible. Yes, I agree with such wonderful display of taste and color, no family member can resist and it can create chaos in the dinning table and all the dining etiquette can go for a toss when such flavours and smell is kept in front. I always love the way you present and there is this nutrition and the health angle to the cooking and eating which so important now a days.
    Hope you had a lovely Sunday.


  11. Thanks, Nihar for your very thoughtful and kind feedback as always! Really appreciate it. 😊 Have a wonderful week! Kind regards!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Always a pleasure to read your delightful posts and there is such a wonderful composition through words, it feels the food is there though it becomes a lovely food for thought.
    Have a lovely week ahead.


  13. Thanks, Nihar for your very kind comments. Enjoy the week!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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