Air Fryer Bang Bang Shrimp
My crispy Air Fryer Bang Bang Shrimp recipe will rival any restaurant takeaway! In just 6 minutes, you will have incredibly delicious jumbo air fryer shrimp balls that are crisped to perfection. Made with gluten-free panko breadcrumbs, simple pantry ingredients, and my tangy homemade Bang Bang Sauce, this is a must-try appetizer or main course if you love bonefish grill restaurant bang bang shrimp as much as I do!
Looking for a stovetop alternative? Check out my Whole30 Bang Bang Shrimp recipe that’s another fans’ favorite!
Why this recipe is the best
Besides looking super impressive and tasting amazingly delicious, this Bang Bang Shrimp recipe in the air fryer has some additional perks.
- Super crispy shrimp: Bang bang shrimp (also known as boom boom shrimp) in the air fryer stays super crispy and crunchy even when you pour on the delicious sauce. No soggy shrimp here, I promise.
- Healthier: Gluten-free panko bread crumbs and only a tiny amount of oil makes this recipe a healthier alternative to traditional fried bang bang shrimp.
- Pantry ingredients: No running to the store or searching the aisles for fancy ingredients; this recipe uses items just waiting for you in your pantry.
Jumbo white shrimp mixed with a few pantry staples makes the most mouth-watering airfryer bang bang shrimp you have ever had. All you need to do is assemble a handful of simple ingredients for this easy recipe.
- For the shrimp: Jumbo white shrimp, eggs, tapioca starch, gluten-free panko breadcrumbs, sea salt, avocado oil spray (you can use olive oil spray as well), and spring onions (green onions).
- For the bang bang sauce: Mayonnaise, rice vinegar, hot sauce (or sweet chili sauce), garlic, coconut aminos, ketchup, and sea salt.
You can use store-bought Thai sweet chili sauce for this recipe but be aware there are usually added sugars and cornstarch; for that reason, I avoid it and use unsweetened hot sauce instead.
How to make bang bang shrimp in air fryer
Are you ready to wow your friends and family with this amazingly delicious bang bang shrimp recipe? Whether you are making it as a delicious appetizer or a main dish, follow my step-by-step instructions below, and you will be serving up some fantastic shrimp in no time.
- Preheat the air fryer to 400°F (204°C).
- Butterfly shrimp: Using a sharp knife, cut along the “spine” of the shrimp.
- Bread the shrimp: lay out your workspace with a separate bowl for egg, tapioca starch, and gluten-free bread crumbs. To start breading, dip your shrimp in the egg, move to the tapioca starch, then back to the egg, with a final stop at the gluten-free panko. Use your dry hand to press the panko evenly over the shrimp.
- Air fry each side for 3 minutes: Lightly spray the air fryer basket with the spray oil and gently arrange your coated shrimp in a single layer to allow the hot air to circulate. Be careful not to overcrowd the basket; spray the top of the shrimp with additional cooking spray. Carefully flip shrimp at the 3-minute mark and cook for an additional 3 minutes. The breaded shrimp will be golden brown when done.
- Mix sauce: While the shrimp cooks, whisk your sauce ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.
- Serve with bang bang sauce: This is the best part! Drizzle the hot shrimp with the creamy sauce. You will want an extra bowl for dipping on the side because this dipping sauce is AMAZING! Garlicky, a little sweet with the perfect amount of heat, you will be obsessed!
What size of shrimp to use?
I prefer to use extra-large jumbo white shrimp. When purchasing your shrimp, look for 10-15 or 8-12 shrimp counts per pound. Using large shrimp will ensure that they do not get rubbery from overcooking.
You can use frozen shrimp. You will need to defrost the shrimp first; then, you can butterfly it and prepare it for breading and air frying.
I suggest using extra-large jumbo shrimp (peeled with the tail removed). Look for shrimp counts of 8-12 or 10-15 per pound.
If you find yourself with leftovers, you may store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 day, reheat them in the microwave (1 minute on high power), or the air fryer (380°F for 3 minutes). For the best results and flavor, I recommend eating right away while the shrimp is hot and crunchy from the air fryer.
Cook shrimp in the air fryer for 3 minutes per side for a total cook time of 6 minutes.
Air fryer tip
Rest the shrimp out of the air fryer over a cooling rack as you work on the second batch so that the shrimp will stay crispy!
More air fryer recipes
Have a craving for more delicious recipes you can make in a flash? Check out these easy air fryer recipes, and let me know which is your favorite.
- Crispy Rice Sushi with bang bang sauce is a fun appetizer for game day that is elegant enough to be served as a dinner party canapé.
- This bang bang salmon bites uses the same homemade bang bang sauce that you can easily create variety!
- If you want something the whole family will love, my Air Fried Oyster Mushrooms or Air fryer corn ribs are also a total crowd pleaser.
- Download my air fryer cooking times – a free printable cheat sheet – fore more!
Here are some of my pro tips to guarantee you get the crispiest, most delicious air fryer bang bang shrimp every time.
- Use extra-large jumbo white shrimp with a count of 8-12 or 10-15 per pound.
- Butterflying shrimp (on the backside of shrimp) will make your shrimp extra tasty, improve the texture and make a beautiful presentation.
- Cook shrimp in 2 separate batches. Place shrimp in a single layer in the fryer basket. For best results and even cooking, do not overcrowd.
- Use a cooling rack to cool your shrimp. Allowing air to flow evenly ensures a crispy, crunchy texture that you will love.
Air fryer bang bang shrimp recipe
For the shrimp:
- Pat the shrimp completely dry with a clean paper towel.
- Butterfly the shrimp on the backside. Place the tip of a small paring knife in the cut near the head of the shrimp, then cut along the back of the shrimp about three-quarters of the way to the tail. Don’t cut all the way through the shrimp – just a slight slit to open up the back of the body. This will make your shrimp extra tasty and open up like a beautiful butterfly once cooked.
- Set up 3 wide, shallow bowls and a large empty plate on your countertop – 1 bowl for the whisked egg, the second bowl for starch, and the third bowl for panko bread crumbs. Season the eggs with a small pinch of salt. Season the starch with 2 small pinches of salt. Place the empty plate nearby where you will put your coated shrimp.
- Preheat a 6-quart air fryer at 400F for 5 minutes.
- While the air fryer is preheating, using the same hand, dip the shrimp in the egg until well-coated, then lightly dust with starch, and then back to the egg. Finally, place the egg-covered shrimp into the bowl of breadcrumbs. Use a dry hand to coat and lightly press evenly with breadcrumbs. Repeat the process for the remaining shrimp.
- Spray the air fryer basket with a generous layer of avocado oil. Carefully place the shrimp into the basket with some space between each piece. You’ll need two separate batches to cook the entire shrimp (see notes). Spray more oil on top of each shrimp. Air fryer at 330F (165C) for 3 minutes, then gently and carefully flip them and air fry for another 3 minutes.
- In the meantime, whisk the bang bang sauce ingredients in one bowl.
- Garnish the shrimp with spring onion, drizzle a few spoonfuls of bang bang sauce over the shrimp, and serve the extra sauce on the side.
- It’s likely you will need to make the shrimp in two separate batches. Please make sure to cool the first batch over a cooling rack so the shrimp won’t turn soggy.
- To prevent bread crumbs from falling off of the shrimp, use a little gentle pressure to press the shrimp onto the bread crumbs.
- Only drizzle the bang bang sauce over the shrimp right before serving to keep the shrimp extra crunchy/crispy.
- It’s worth it to spend a little time butterflying the shrimp. It improves the shrimp texture in the mouthfeel and the presentation.
- Size of the shrimp: I use extra-large white shrimp (8/12 count per pound). A slightly smaller version (10/15 count per pound) is okay as well.
- The nutritional label is estimated without the sauce. For a detail information, please see my bang bang sauce recipe.
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