Is there any fried food more perfect than coconut shrimp? They are juicy, crisp and they even come with their own little handle, also known as a tail, for dipping. The perfect finger food! Coconut shrimp is easy to make, but it needs something to go with it to make it really shine. That’s why in this article we are going to show you what to serve with coconut shrimp.
10 Coconut Shrimp Side Dishes
There are so many great dishes that you should be aware of when figuring out what goes with coconut shrimp. Pair your dish with these selections and you won’t be disappointed. Check out our selections down below.
Coconut is an ingredient that features heavily in South East Asian cuisine. Do you know of any other foods that also feature as a staple?
That’s right, Rice.
If you want a standard filler then you can use plain basmati or white rice. However, to create a dish that goes beautifully with coconut shrimp why not really bring out the tropical flavors? A few tablespoons of chopped up pineapple and a pinch of salt can transform white rice. Alternatively a splash of coconut cream stirred through the rice just prior to serving will make an ideal side.
2. French Fries
If you have got the fryer on the go then French fries provide an ideal answer for what to serve with coconut shrimp. If you think that chicken nuggets and fish goujons are both finger food, and are nearly always accompanied by French fries, there is no reason why French fries wouldn’t work with shrimp. Besides both coconut shrimp and French fries are perfect for dipping…
So if we are talking dipping then we have to talk about sauces. Too much crunch and not enough dip is never a good thing. You can experiment to find a great combination. Our favorites when deciding what to serve with coconut shrimp include tartare sauce, ketchup, sweet chili sauce and occasionally barbecue sauce. You can find a perfect blend of crunch mixed in with sweet, sour or a combination of all. If you want other, healthier options, you could include sweet potato fries or plantain chips.
Coleslaw works well with fried chicken, and works equally well with crispy fried coconut shrimp. Coleslaw has some really complimentary elements. The crunch of the white cabbage in your coleslaw and the slightly acidic element really cuts through the slight oiliness of the shrimp. A key component of coleslaw is mayonnaise, adding a touch of creaminess with every bite. Coconut shrimp is really delicious, but it can look a little bland. If you are making homemade coleslaw use a mixture of different colors to make your plate shine.
Whilst coconut shrimp taste amazing, unless you are cooking a lot of shrimp you might need to pad the dish out slightly. A cheap and easy way to do this is by using pasta. Our recommendation is to make a pasta dish that has creamy and garlicky elements. A basic garlic and herb butter sauce with a splash of cream works perfectly, and you can use your shrimp to soak up all of those lovely flavors.
6. Baked Potato
Ok so a baked potato all on its own might not be the most interesting choice. But the best bit is that you can pimp your potato to make it the ideal accompaniment for what to serve with coconut shrimp. Cream cheese, chopped bacon or even a red pepper salsa can be mixed with the potato prior to serving meaning that whether you choose to have a bite of crispy shrimp or a crispy potato skin, you’ll be in taste heaven.
7. Mango Salsa
We’ve already touched on a tropical vibe. Did you know that the humble mango is the most consumed fruit worldwide? A mango salsa is really quick and easy to make and encompasses lots of flavors which make the ideal accompaniment to coconut shrimp. Simply finely chop the flesh of some ripe mangos and mix with a tablespoon of sliced red onion, a finely chopped bell pepper and some chopped cilantro. Finish the entire thing off with a splash of lime juice.
Coconut shrimp is ever so slightly salty. When served with fresh red watermelon it is the food of the gods. You have the crisp crunch of the shrimp and then the tart sweetness of the popping chunks of watermelon. It’s like natures very own sorbet. Simply deseed a few slices of melon and chop them into rough chunks (bigger is better), place in a bowl and stir in a tablespoon of lime juice and a small handful of chopped mint.
9. Cucumber Salad
Did you know that cucumbers and watermelons are actually a related plant species? For something slightly less tropical make a cucumber salad. It will take you all of about 1 minute. All you will need is a cucumber, a red onion, a little vinegar and a pinch of sugar. Slice your ingredients as fine as you can and mix in a small bowl. Allow to rest for half an hour to let the flavors all meld and the cucumber to become ever so slightly pickled.
10. Grilled Pineapple
We started tropical and we are going to finish tropical! Grilled pineapple is a joy to eat. If you do it right, you’ll end up with slightly crunchy and crispy caramelized sections which gives way to a soft sweet center… Just like coconut shrimp! It is super simple to make, heat a griddle pan or barbecue until smoking hot and add your pineapple slices. If you want to spice things up, a pinch of chili flakes just before serving gives your pineapple a small kick.
There are plenty of ideas as to what to serve with coconut shrimp. Your aim should be to make flavors and textures that really compliment the shrimp, or are the exact opposite. Whether you want something light to serve with your shrimp as an appetizer or bulk up your dish as part of a main meal, we hope you have found something you like. Have you got any ideas? Let us know in the comments below.