Shrimp Chow Mein is a homemade version of your favorite take-out, with shrimp, veggies, and noodles in a savory sauce, ready in 30 minutes.
Shrimp Chow Mein is one of the most popular Chinese Food take-out dishes, and it’s insanely easy to make right at home! This chow mein is the shrimpier version of the Classic Chinese Chow Mein made with fresh shrimp, vegetables, and a savory sauce tossed with chow mein noodles and bean sprouts.
There is not a lot of prep time needed for this, because the whole thing takes a total time of under 30 minutes to prepare. Plus it’s done in just one pot (or wok), so cleanup is really easy.
In fact, this recipe comes together so quickly, you’ll want to have everything prepped ahead of time. While you’re prepping your veggies, you can have your noodles cooking in hot water, then have them ready to go when your shrimp goes in.
Frequently Asked Questions
Both dishes use egg noodles, but shrimp chow mein uses specific chow mein fried noodles, while lo mein uses noodles that are boiled. Lo mein also typically has more sauce in the dish than chow mein, while chow mein has more oil and is crispy in texture because the noodles are fried.
Lots of veggies would go great with Shrimp Chow Mein. Try adding mushrooms, green onions, bamboo shoots, water chestnuts, bell peppers, broccoli, or bok choy.
If you want to make this vegetarian, you can substitute the shrimp with extra firm tofu.
Make this chow mein lower carb by using tofu noodles, but they won’t be as crunchy as your traditional chow mein noodle. Or you can stir fry spiralized vegetables like carrots and zucchini.
This recipe calls for shrimp but you can make it with pork, beef, prawns, or chicken, too. I like to use chicken breast for a leaner cut of meat. Or make this vegetarian with extra firm tofu.
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More Homemade Chow Mein and Noodle Recipes
- Ramen Noodle Salad
- Panda Express Chow Mein (Copycat)
- P. F. Chang’s Garlic Noodles (Copycat)
- Chicken Pad Thai
Tips for Making Shrimp Chow Mein
- Can’t find chow mein noodles? You can substitute yakisoba noodles and just toss the packet and use the noodles only.
- You can add ½ teaspoon of powdered ginger or a teaspoon of minced ginger to the Chow Mein for more flavor, or ¼ teaspoon of cayenne pepper or a dash of sriracha for heat.
- Part of what makes Chinese food taste so good is the way the wok works with the heat. Try to keep your wok or pan really hot, and pay close attention while stirring to make sure the food quickly cooks instead of burning. I like to use a more traditional wok, but you can find electric ones if you don’t have a gas stove.
- This Shrimp Chow Mein recipe calls for either regular or light soy sauce, it is not recommended to use dark soy sauce for this chow mein.
How to Store Shrimp Chow Mein
- Serve: Do not leave Shrimp Chow Mein at room temperature longer than 2 hours.
- Store: Shrimp Chow Mein will last refrigerated in an airtight container for 3-4 days. When reheating, add a tablespoon or two of water to the dish, to keep the noodles from drying out.
- Freeze: Shrimp Chow Mein can be frozen up to 3 months. Allow to cool completely before freezing in individual freezer safe containers for easy defrosting and reheating.
- 1 pound shrimp , peeled and deveined (13-15 count)
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 cup cabbage , thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup red cabbage , thinly sliced
- 1 cup celery , thinly sliced
- 1 carrot , thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic , minced
- 2 tablespoons sweet soy sauce , aka Kecap Manis*
- 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
- 4 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 1 cup water
- 12 ounces chow mein noodles , cooked a minute shy of the directions*
- 6 ounces bean sprouts , optional
- sesame seeds for garnish , optional
- Heat a large pan or wok on high heat with the oil and cook the shrimp for one minute on each side then remove the shrimp from the pan and add in the cabbage, red cabbage, celery and carrots.
- Cook 2-3 minutes until wilted, add the garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds.
- Add the soy sauce, sweet soy sauce, oyster sauce and water and bring to a boil for 1 minute.
- Add in the pasta, bean sprouts and shrimp and toss to coat.
Photos used in a previous version of this post.