Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp

8 Servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes

Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp is cooked quickly in a skillet with flavorful garlic butter, and seasoned with paprika and spicy cayenne pepper.

Easy Seafood Recipes like Shrimp Scampi, and Grilled Cilantro Lime Shrimp are perfect dishes to serve during the Summer, and this Hawaiian Shrimp is one more to add to the list. They come together quickly for a quick, flavorful, and refreshing dish. 

Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp on serving plate over rice

This delectable garlic shrimp recipe is inspired by the famous garlic shrimp that you can get from food trucks in Hawaii. The fresh shrimp is coated in paprika, and pepper before grilling. Then it’s tossed in homemade garlic butter perfect for any garlic lovers. The crisp and tender shrimp is easy to make and just as delicious as the authentic Hawaiian dish. 

For a Hawaiian-themed meal, you can serve this Hawaiian Shrimp recipe with other Hawaiian food. It would go great with Hawaiian dishes like Hawaiian Macaroni Salad or Grilled Pineapple. The garlicky flavor is amazing paired with your favorite sweet, tropical tastes. If you’re doing outside grilling, try putting your favorite tropical fruit and bell peppers on skewers to grill. They’d be amazing with the Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp. 

Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp collage

Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp can make a delicious appetizer, especially if you serve it with some extra garlic butter as a shrimp dip. But you can also serve it as a filling and flavorful weeknight meal. Just add scoops of rice to everyone’s plate. Sticky white rice, Brown Rice, or coconut Rice would all taste amazing. Serve the shrimp over the top and enjoy!

Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp collage



  • Garlic Butter: For this recipe, you want 14 cloves of minced garlic (about 1 head of garlic). Add the fresh garlic and butter to a large nonstick skillet over low heat. Let it steep for a couple of minutes until the garlic is browning and starts to be fragrant. 
  • Shrimp: Start by deveining the shrimp. You can also remove the shells, but for a more authentic recipe use shrimp with shells. Dry the shrimp using a paper towel. Then add flour, salt, paprika, and cayenne pepper to a mixing bowl for the shrimp coating. Add the medium shrimp to the bowl and toss well to coat. 
  • Cooking time: Pour the garlic butter into a small bowl and set it to the side. Then add vegetable oil to the base of the skillet, and put it over high heat. Add the coated shrimp and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side. You may need to cook shrimp in batches depending on the size of your pan. The shrimp is done when it’s pink on the outside, but still opaque white on the inside. 
  • Finish: To finish off the recipe, toss the shrimp in garlic butter, and dust additional paprika over the top. Serve over a bowl of rice and enjoy. 
Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp in serving bowl with lemon wedges


  • Lemon Butter Sauce: For a tart, citrus taste, try making garlic lemon butter for the famous garlic shrimp recipe. One juiced lemon should be plenty for the fresh lemon juice. Mix it with the garlic and butter in the recipe to complement the savory garlic flavor. 
  • Cajun Shrimp: To make Cajun shrimp, you’ll simply have to add a few spices to the paprika and cayenne pepper. Whisk some garlic powder, black pepper, onion powder, dried oregano, and dried thyme with the shrimp coating and enjoy. 
  • Meat: The garlic butter and paprika coating taste amazing with juicy shrimp. However, you can also use the same coating and cooking method for other kinds of meat like chicken or salmon. Just keep in mind that chicken and salmon would both take longer to cook in the skillet. Use a meat thermometer to make sure the chicken has reached 165 degrees, and the salmon 145 before serving. 
Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp on serving plate over rice



  • Serve: You don’t want to leave this Famous Garlic Shrimp recipe at room temperature for more than 2 hours. 
  • Store: Let the shrimp cool, and then transfer it to an airtight container to store in the fridge for 3-4 days. 
  • Freeze: You could also keep frozen shrimp for up to 6 months. 

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Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp

Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp is cooked quickly in a skillet with flavorful garlic butter, and seasoned with paprika and spicy cayenne pepper.
Yield 8 Servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 14 cloves garlic , minced (about 1 head)
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 pound shrimp , deveined, shell-on (16-20 count)
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil


  • Add the garlic and butter to a large skillet on low heat.
  • Let steep for 2 minutes until the garlic just starts to be fragrant (on low heat it should not be browning the garlic).
  • Devein the shrimp and dry well using a paper towel. You can remove the shell if you'd like, but for a more authentic experience leave them on.
  • In a large mixing bowl stir together the flour, salt, paprika, and cayenne pepper.
  • Add the shrimp and toss well to coat.
  • Remove the garlic butter from the skillet into a small bowl.
  • Add the vegetable oil on high heat.
  • Add the shrimp cooking for 2 minutes on each side.
  • Add the garlic butter and toss well with the shrimp.
  • Dust with additional paprika if desired and serve over rice.


Calories: 174kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 106mg | Sodium: 360mg | Potassium: 181mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 325IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 49mg | Iron: 1mg
Keyword: Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp
Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp collage

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

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