Best Shrimp Cocktail Sauce Ever

Shrimp-CocktailThis post was first published during an LA summer heatwave:

Using our oven or stove for any length of time is a mistake because our bedroom is upstairs and we get cranky about rising heat, debating the AC usage, window open, not open, ugh.  The GOOD news is, dinner is Shrimp Cocktail – a giant pile of shrimp, tons of sauce on a bed of celery.  Scrumptiousness.

The diced celery layer resulted from a visit to Knotts Berry Farm with friends, Cathi and Barry.  During dinner, all four of us went nuts over the crisp celery under the sauce of our Shrimp Cocktails. Don’t judge until you try. Crunchy celery turns the classic appetizer into a salad, and if you have enough celery+sauce+shrimp, it’s dinner.

I make cocktail sauce a-la Martha Stewart Magazine’s article, “Shrimp Cocktail 101.” That recipe was spot-on, my adaptation below is a smaller recipe, slightly tweaked as the original has a big WHAM of horseradish heat. The article also presented how to cook shrimp the way I like it, ever so slightly underdone via a quick seasoned boil. I do cook my own shrimp. That is not to say I don’t eat pre-cooked shrimp. Put the pink stuff near me at a party or buffet and you will find me an hour later, still stuffing my face.

Best Shrimp Cocktail Sauce Ever

Adapted from Martha Stewart Magazine – 2 meal-sized servings

  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1 1/2+ Tbsp. prepared horseradish (keep the bottle on hand to taste and add more if desired)
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/8 tsp. hot pepper sauce
  • 1/4 tsp. coarse salt
  • Cracked black pepper

Combine all in a small bowl, cover and refrigerate several hours.  To serve, dice 6 stalks of celery and place in the bottom of 2 bowls.  Split the cocktail sauce recipe between the two servings.  Arrange 3/4 lb. of cooked shrimp between the two servings.  Dinner is served.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Andrea Giambrone August 11, 2010 at 10:18 am

Great recipe! Just the ticket for a cold shrimp-white wine get-together next week. Moreover, you are THE BEST Social Media savvy person I know! Stumble It?? My own version is more like Stumble Through It. When you’re ready to make me look as good as you look, I’ll sign on the dotted line.

2 The Cooking Ninja February 5, 2010 at 8:21 am

ooh…that shrimp cocktail sauce looks delicious and your shrimps – so yummy.

3 lisa August 1, 2009 at 5:54 pm

Thanks for this one Patti. It’s just too darn hot to cook, so I am making shrimp cocktail along with your farmers market salad, fresh cherries for dessert with vanilla ice cream (just a smidge) and I’m done!

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