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How to: shrimp kabobs

Shrimp kabobs are an easy way to give great grilled flavor to shrimp and vegetables.

  • When it’s Done:
    • When the shrimp curl and turn pink and the flesh is pearly and opaque.
  • 30 large shrimp
  • with tail shells on (21-25 count per pound)
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Green onion
  • Pineapple chunks
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Marinade (optional)
  • Prep time: 45 minutes
  • Cook time: 25 minutes
  • Servings: 6–8

The easiest way to grill shrimp is actually on skewers, because they become infinitely easier to manage and flip. You can grill the shrimp on the kabobs with the shells on or off—either works fine. Add some fresh vegetables or fruit to your shrimp skewers and you have a fantastic grilled meal on a stick. Here’s how to make them in just seven steps.

  1. KFD_SKEWER-0025

    Get your skewers ready.

    Get your skewers ready. Both metal or bamboo skewers can be used for shrimp kebabs. If you’re using bamboo skewers, be sure to soak them in water for an hour prior to grilling.
  2. 2

    Start a two-zone fire.

  3. Fire up a full chimney of Kingsford® Original Charcoal, or light a pile of about 100 briquettes. Once coals are ready for a medium heat, pile them all onto one side of the grill. Leave the other side completely empty.
  4. 3

    Prep and skewer.

    Cut your vegetables to match the size of your shrimp. Because shrimp cook so quickly, choose vegetables that also cook quickly, like cherry tomatoes and scallions. Fruits like pineapple or peaches also pair well. Gently thread your ingredients onto the skewers, alternating between shrimp and veggies to ensure even cooking. Do not overcrowd your skewers, but don’t skimp either. You want to fill the skewers so the shrimp and veggies are touching but not tightly packed.
  5. 4

    Get your flavor on.

  6. If you plan on marinating your vegetables or fruits, do so in a container separate from the shrimp. If marinating the shrimp, avoid high acid ingredients like lemon juice or vinegar, as they can alter its delicate texture. Or just do what we do—toss a little olive oil, salt and pepper onto your assembled kabobs, and let the flavors of your fresh ingredients shine.
  7. 5

    Sear and flip your shrimp kabobs.

  8. Grill your shrimp skewers directly over the coals on the hot side of the grill. Shrimp don’t take long to cook—only two to three minutes per side—so don’t load up the grill with too many skewers at once. Cook them in batches so you can flip them and move them aside in case of flare-ups.
  9. 6

    Finish on the cool side.

    If you are using particularly large, meaty shrimp, you may need to let them finish cooking through on the cool side of the grill.
  10. 7

    Serve immediately.

  11. You do not need to rest your shrimp kabobs, just serve them hot off the grill. Shrimp kabobs go great with leafy green salads for a lighter meal or paired with hearty pasta dishes on the side.

The advantage to using shell-on shrimp is their natural fireproof jacket prevents burning, and the meat steams up nicely inside. If you choose to go shell-on, use a liquid marinade to season so that more flavor gets past the shell.

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