Make restaurant-style honey walnut shrimp at home in under 20 minutes. Serve this delicious recipe featuring crispy shrimp in a sweet, silky mayo sauce and crunchy walnuts with rice for a quick weeknight meal.
Table of Contents
- Why you’ll love this honey walnut shrimp recipe
- Ingredients Needed
- How to make honey walnut shrimp
- Flavor and recipe variations
- What to serve with honey walnut shrimp
- Storage instructions
- Recommended tools to make this recipe
- Recipe tips and tricks
- More takeout fakeout recipes
- Frequently asked questions
- Honey Walnut Shrimp
Why you’ll love this honey walnut shrimp recipe
- It is so moreish. Let’s be real, who can’t stop eating Chinese takeout? This recipe is so flavorful, sweet, and savory that you cannot stop eating it.
- Easy to make. Although there are three components, they all take less than 5 minutes to make. It’s also so much cheaper to make at home, and let’s face it…it tastes better!
- Panda Express copycat. A single bite of this dish will transport you to your favorite Chinese restaurant. This version was inspired by Panda Express, but we made it slightly healthier but just as delicious!
- Crowd pleaser. You can never have too much honey walnut shrimp! It is always a hit with crowds, and I rarely have any leftovers!
- Honey. To caramelize the walnuts.
- Water. To make honey syrup.
- Walnut halves. You don’t need to toast the walnuts before use. Also, you can substitute walnuts with pecans in this recipe.
- Mayonnaise. Make your mayonnaise at home or use a readymade one.
- Honey. Adds sweetness to the sauce. You can also use sugar, maple, or agave syrup instead of honey.
- Plain yogurt or Greek yogurt. Use whichever is readily available to add creamy tanginess to the recipe.
- Cornstarch. To make the crispy coating for the shrimp.
- Salt and pepper. To season the batter.
- Egg and Water. Whisk together egg and water to make the batter with cornstarch.
- Shrimp. Buy peeled, deveined, and uncooked shrimp for this recipe.
- Vegetable oil. Use vegetable oil, canola, or sunflower oil to fry your shrimp.
How to make honey walnut shrimp
- Make the candied walnuts. Make honey syrup by heating honey and water in a saucepan over medium heat. Add walnut halves, coat them with honey syrup, transfer them on a baking sheet, and let them cool.
- Make the sweet sauce. Whisk mayonnaise, yogurt, and honey in a medium bowl until combined.
- Coat the shrimp. Stir cornstarch with salt and pepper in a shallow dish and whisk egg and water in another. Coat the shrimp in cornstarch, the egg mixture, and again in the cornstarch.
- Fry the shrimp. Fry the shrimp in hot vegetable oil for 2-3 minutes per side. Transfer it to a wire rack or a plate lined with a kitchen towel to soak excess oil.
- Garnish and serve. Drizzle shrimp with the sweet sauce, sprinkle with candied walnuts, and serve immediately.
Flavor and recipe variations
- Add red chili pepper flakes. Add a touch of heat by sprinkling ½ tsp of red pepper flakes on the shrimp.
- Garnish with fresh greens. Sprinkle finely sliced spring onions or chopped coriander stems to add a fresh element to the dish.
- Flavor the cornstarch. Add garlic and onion powder along with salt and pepper to flavor the cornstarch.
- Change the batter. Use a readymade tempura mix to make a crispy tempura batter.
What to serve with honey walnut shrimp
- Noodles. A quintessential pairing, fry up some noodles (ramen or soba are great), and toss the shrimp with honey walnut sauce through it.
- Rice. Make a meal-for-one by serving it on top of jasmine, cauliflower, or fried rice bowl.
- Veggies. Serve this shrimp with some simple stir-fried or steamed vegetables or simple Asian greens.
- Soup. Go to distance with a full-fledged takeout style meal by starting with some sweet corn soup or egg drop soup.
To store. If you have shrimp leftovers, refrigerate them in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
To freeze. The coating loses its crispiness upon freezing. So, I don’t recommend freezing the leftovers.
To reheat. Although shrimp will not be as crispy, you can still reheat the leftovers in the oven at 350°F or in the microwave till warm.
Recommended tools to make this recipe
- Saucepan. To make the honey syrup.
- Large skillet. This multi-purpose skillet is excellent for sautéing, searing, and frying.
Recipe tips and tricks
- Pat fry the shrimp. Dry the shrimp gently with a paper towel to ensure the cornstarch coating sticks.
- Make the candied walnuts first. Candied walnuts will become crunchy as they cool down. So, make them first.
- Fry in batches. Do not overcrowd the frying pan. To cook all shrimp evenly and to maintain the oil temperature, fry the shrimp in batches.
- Avoid overcooking the shrimp. Remove the shrimp from the heat when they become opaque and the batter becomes slightly golden. No one likes rubbery, dry shrimp.
More takeout fakeout recipes
Frequently asked questions
Yes, you can! Remember to thaw the frozen shrimp in advance and allow them to come to room temperature before using.
If you are allergic to walnuts, you may use roasted almonds, pecans, or whole cashews.
Precooked shrimp overcooks during frying and result in an unpleasant texture. Hence, I don’t recommend using precooked shrimp in this recipe.
Honey Walnut Shrimp
- In a small saucepan, combine the honey and water over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture thickens. Add the walnut halves and stir to coat. Spread the coated walnuts on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and let cool.
- Make the sweet sauce: In a medium bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, honey, and yogurt until smooth. Set aside.
- In a shallow dish, combine the cornstarch, salt, and black pepper. In another shallow dish, whisk together the egg and water. Dip each shrimp in the cornstarch mixture, then in the egg mixture, and then back in the cornstarch mixture.
- In a large skillet or wok, heat about 1 inch of vegetable oil over medium-high heat until hot.
- Working in batches, add the shrimp to the hot oil and fry until golden brown and crispy, about 2-3 minutes per side. Place the shrimp on a wire rack while cooking the remaining shrimp.
- Once all the shrimp is cooked, drizzle with the sweet sauce, sprinkle with candied walnuts, and serve immediately.
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