10 Minute Air Fryer Frozen Shrimp – No Thaw!

by Ella

Not sure what to do with that bag of shrimp hanging out in the back of your freezer? You have to try making frozen shrimp in the air fryer!

This air fryer frozen shrimp is SO easy to make, and tastes absolutely incredible! I’m sure you’ve seen all of the hype about air fryers by now, but they’re truly worth the investment. They make cooking so easy! If you love shrimp as much as I do, you’ll have to try air fryer shrimp and this juicy 10-minute shrimp next!


Air Fryer’s Mechanism

An air fryer operates on the principle of rapid hot air circulation. It uses convection technology to circulate hot air around the food, creating a crispy exterior while preserving the tenderness within. This technology significantly reduces cooking time and minimizes the need for excessive oil, making it a health-conscious choice for preparing a variety of dishes, including frozen shrimp.


Advantages of Using an Air Fryer

Time Efficiency: The air fryer’s rapid cooking process means you can enjoy your favorite meals in a fraction of the time it would take using traditional methods.


Healthier Option: Using little to no oil results in healthier dishes without sacrificing flavor and texture.


Even Cooking: The air fryer’s convection mechanism ensures even cooking, eliminating the need to constantly monitor and flip the food.

Convenience: Cooking frozen shrimp straight from the freezer eliminates the need for thawing, making it a time-saving option for busy schedules.

See Also: Shrimp: Nutrition, Health Benefits, choosing & storage

How to Cook Frozen Shrimp in the Air Fryer

Cooking frozen shrimp in an air fryer is a convenient and efficient way to enjoy delicious seafood without the hassle of thawing. With the right technique, you can achieve perfectly cooked, tender, and flavorful shrimp with a crispy exterior. In this guide, we'll walk you through the steps to cook frozen shrimp in an air fryer, ensuring a hassle-free and delightful culinary experience.
Prep Time2 minutes
Active Time8 minutes
Course: Main Course
Yield: 2
Cost: $5


  • Air fryer
  • Cooking spray (if not using oil-coated shrimp)


  • Frozen shrimp
  • Olive oil (optional)
  • Seasonings of your choice (e.g., salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika)


  • Preheat your air fryer to 400°F (200°C) for a few minutes. Preheating ensures even cooking and helps achieve that desired crispy texture.
  • If the frozen shrimp is deveined and peeled, you're ready to go. If not, consider deveining and peeling the shrimp before cooking for a more convenient eating experience.
  • Rinse the frozen shrimp under cold water to remove any ice crystals. Pat them dry with paper towels to ensure they cook evenly.
  • In a bowl, toss the thawed and dried shrimp with a drizzle of olive oil (if using) and your preferred seasonings. Common choices include salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika. The oil will enhance flavor and help achieve a crispy texture.
  • Place the seasoned shrimp in a single layer in the air fryer basket. Avoid overcrowding the basket, as this could lead to uneven cooking.
  • Insert the basket into the preheated air fryer.
  • Cook the shrimp for 8 to 10 minutes, flipping them halfway through the cooking time. Cooking times may vary based on the size of the shrimp and the specific air fryer model.
  • Keep an eye on the shrimp; they should turn opaque with a golden-brown exterior. For larger shrimp, the internal temperature should reach 140°F (60°C), while medium shrimp should reach 120°F (49°C).
  • To ensure the shrimp are cooked to perfection, you can use a food thermometer to measure their internal temperature. The shrimp should no longer be translucent and should have a firm texture.

Serve and Enjoy:

Once cooked, remove the shrimp from the air fryer and transfer them to a serving dish. Garnish with chopped herbs, a squeeze of lemon, or your favorite dipping sauce.

Air-fried frozen shrimp can be enjoyed as a standalone dish, added to salads, pasta, or even used as a taco filling.

See Also: How to Cook Frozen Shrimp & 10 Recipes!

Tips for Success:

Preheating Matters: Always preheat the air fryer before cooking to ensure consistent and even results.

Single Layer: Arrange the shrimp in a single layer to ensure they cook evenly and achieve a crispy texture.

Seasoning Variations: Feel free to experiment with different seasonings and flavor profiles to suit your taste preferences.

Monitor Cooking Time: Keep an eye on the shrimp during cooking, as cooking times may vary based on shrimp size and air fryer model.

Dipping Sauces: Prepare dipping sauces like cocktail sauce, garlic aioli, or tartar sauce to enhance the flavor of the shrimp.

Oil Usage: While not mandatory, a light coating of oil helps achieve a crispy exterior. Cooking spray can also be used to prevent sticking.

FAQs About Cooking Frozen Shrimp in the Air Fryer

Q1. Can I cook frozen shrimp directly in the air fryer without thawing?

Yes, one of the benefits of using an air fryer is that you can cook frozen shrimp directly without the need to thaw. Thawing can lead to loss of moisture and texture, but cooking frozen shrimp in the air fryer preserves their natural flavors and succulence.

Q2. Do I need to preheat the air fryer before cooking frozen shrimp?

Yes, preheating the air fryer is recommended. Preheating ensures that the air fryer reaches the desired cooking temperature, which is essential for achieving even and consistent cooking results.

Q3. What temperature should I set the air fryer to when cooking frozen shrimp?

The recommended temperature for cooking frozen shrimp in the air fryer is around 400°F (200°C). This high temperature helps create a crispy exterior while maintaining the tenderness of the shrimp inside.

Q4. How long should I cook frozen shrimp in the air fryer?

Cooking times can vary based on the size of the shrimp and the specific air fryer model. As a general guideline, cook the shrimp for 8 to 10 minutes, flipping them halfway through the cooking time. The shrimp should turn opaque with a golden-brown exterior.

Q5. How do I know if the frozen shrimp are cooked thoroughly?

To ensure that the frozen shrimp are cooked thoroughly, use a food thermometer to measure their internal temperature. The internal temperature of the shrimp should reach 120°F (49°C) for medium shrimp and 140°F (60°C) for larger shrimp.

Q6. Can I use a batter or breading on the shrimp before air frying?

Yes, you can coat the frozen shrimp with a light batter or breading before air frying. However, keep in mind that a thicker coating may affect the cooking time and result in uneven cooking. It’s best to use a light and even coating.

Q7. Can I cook other seafood using the same method?

Yes, the same method can be used to cook various types of seafood, such as fish fillets, scallops, and even crab cakes. Adjust the cooking times and temperatures based on the specific seafood you’re cooking.

Q8. Can I season the frozen shrimp before cooking?

Absolutely. Seasoning the shrimp before cooking adds flavor to the dish. Common seasonings include salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika, and herbs. You can also experiment with different spice blends and marinades.

See Also: What to Serve with Coconut Shrimp? (8 Perfect Side Dishes)


The air fryer, a modern marvel in the kitchen, has redefined convenience without compromising on flavor and quality. Cooking frozen shrimp to perfection in an air fryer is a testament to the culinary advancements that make our lives both simpler and more delicious. By understanding the technology, preparing the shrimp correctly, and following key steps, you can elevate frozen shrimp into a culinary masterpiece that tantalizes your taste buds and simplifies your cooking routine. As you embark on this flavorful journey, let the air fryer be your trusted ally in crafting impeccable seafood dishes with the perfect balance of crunch and succulence.



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