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Easy Shrimp Salad Recipe

If you need a quick and easy make-ahead meal, shrimp salad is just the thing.

It’s mega-flavorful and requires only a handful of ingredients. Tender shrimp is coated in a light, creamy dressing flavored with citrus and dill.

Shrimp salad with chopped celery, onion and mayonnaise dressing in a white plate garnished with dill.
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It’s easy to make and comes together in 20 minutes or less, excluding chill time.

It’s a delicious lunch, or you can make it for a light, nutritious dinner. 

Easy Shrimp Salad Recipe 

If you’re picturing a leafy green salad with shrimp, forget that idea. This shrimp salad is totally different. 

It’s more like tuna salad or a chicken salad you’d make for a sandwich. It’s cool, creamy, light, refreshing, and perfect for summer. It also has a ton of delicious umami flavor. 

It tastes great, looks fancy enough for parties, and is wonderfully easy to pull together. In total, it requires about 2 to 3 minutes of actual cooking. The rest is just mixing. 

In other words, it’s tuna salad’s classier, flashier cousin. You’ll love it.

Shrimp in a glass bowl with mayonnaise dressing, red onion and celery with dill.


You need the following ingredients: 

  • Shrimp – Though you can save time using pre-cooked shrimp, I usually don’t. I prefer the taste of fresh shrimp, and it only takes a few minutes to cook. Get shrimp that’s already peeled and deveined, though. No one wants to work that hard.
  • Lemon & lemon juice – You cook the shrimp with lemon wedges for extra flavor. Then, you add freshly squeezed juice to the salad dressing for a bright, zingy flavor. 
  • Mayo – Use whatever brand you like best.
  • Celery & green onions – Use fresh veggies for the best taste and that nice, crunchy texture. For extra crunchiness and heat, substitute red onions. 
  • Dijon mustard – It provides a nice tang that pairs well with the lemon and shrimp. 
  • Fresh dill – Some people don’t appreciate dill, but I love it. And in this recipe, it’s non-negotiable. It adds something bright, tangy, and earthy. The salad just isn’t the same without it. 
  • Salt & pepper – Season with salt and pepper to suit your tastes. 
  • Fresh herbs – Though optional, these really round out the salad. I usually add more dill and cilantro. You can go with rosemary, parsley, or anything else you like. Add them immediately before serving. 

How to Make Shrimp Salad 

Follow these steps to make shrimp salad: 

1. Cook the shrimp. Add them and the lemon quarters to a boiling pot of water. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, just until the shrimp are pink. 

2. Cool the shrimp. Immediately transfer the shrimp to an ice water bath to stop them from cooking. Let them cool. Once they’ve fully cooled, cut them into bite-sized pieces. 

3. Make the salad. Combine the shrimp with all the salad dressing ingredients. (Mayo, celery, onions, Dijon, lemon juice, dill, salt, and pepper.) Mix well, adding more of anything that’s needed.

4. Chill. Let the salad chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. 

5. Garnish and serve. Once the salad is cold, add the fresh herbs and serve. Enjoy! 

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Shrimp salad in lettuce wrap.

Recipe Tips and Variations 

Here are a few final tips for the best shrimp salad: 

  • Trying to eat healthier? Use light mayonnaise instead of full-fat. Plain Greek yogurt is another good substitute. 
  • In a hurry? Save time with pre-cooked shrimp. You don’t even have to boil them! Just thaw them (if frozen) and add them to the recipe cold! 
  • Don’t overcook the shrimp! No one wants rubbery shrimp in their salad, after all. 
  • Make everything bite-sized. This includes the shrimp, onions, and celery. Remember, you want to use this as a cracker topping or sandwich spread. Large chunks will make that difficult. 
  • Add some heat. You can add your favorite hot sauce or a pinch or two of cayenne pepper. Red pepper flakes work, as well.

Ways to Serve Shrimp Salad 

You can serve shrimp salad practically any way you’d serve chicken salad or tuna salad, including: 

  • On a sandwich with or without extras like tomatoes, lettuce, etc. 
  • In a lettuce or tortilla wrap
  • On top of crackers
  • With chips, crackers, pretzels, veggies, and other dippers
  • On top of plain pasta noodles or in cooked pasta jumbo shells
  • In a halved avocado or large bell pepper
  • Inside celery stalks or hollowed-out cucumbers
  • Squeezed into puff pastry shells
Creamy shrimp salad with mayonnaise dressing, dill, chopped celery and onion.

How to Store

As with most seafood recipes, shrimp salad tastes best fresh. Still, you don’t have to trash your leftovers right away.

  • To Store: Transfer the salad to an air-tight container. Refrigerate it for up to 3 days. Just be sure not to leave it out at room temperature too long. The mayo will spoil.

*Note: Because this salad is best served cold, it’s also an excellent make-ahead dish. Prepare it up to 24 hours in advance and refrigerate it. Just wait until before serving to add the herbs. 

More Delicious Shrimp Recipes

You can never have too much shrimp! Here are some of my other favorite recipes: 

Easy Shrimp Salad

Course: MainCuisine: American


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This shrimp salad is light, creamy, and delicious! You’ll love the contrasting flavors of lemon, dill, and Dijon mustard. Try it today!


  • 1 pound raw shrimp, peeled and deveined

  • 1 lemon, cut into four pieces

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise

  • 1/4 cup celery, chopped

  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill

  • salt and pepper to taste

  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh herbs, such as parsley or cilantro (optional)


  • Fill a large bowl with ice water. Set aside. Then, fill a large pot with water. Bring to a boil over high heat.
  • Once the water is boiling, add the shrimp and the quartered lemon. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the shrimp is pink. Drain the water immediately and drop the shrimp into the ice water bath. (This will prevent it from cooking further.) Discard the lemon quarters.
  • Let the shrimp cool. Then, dice it into bite-sized pieces.
  • Combine the shrimp, mayo, celery, onions, mustard, lemon juice, dill, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Mix gently but thoroughly, ensuring everything is well mixed. Taste and adjust the ratio of lemon juice and mayo as needed. Add more seasonings if necessary.
  • Chill the bowl in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. (Longer is fine.) Immediately before serving, add the (optional) fresh herbs.
  • Serve as a dip or on crackers, lettuce wraps, or bread, and enjoy!
Shrimp salad.

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Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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