Shrimp hush puppies are easier to make at home than you might think! These crispy bites are ready in just a few minutes.
How long has it been since you’ve had a hush puppy?
When I was a kid, we only had them on rare occasions — after all, I grew up in Wisconsin, and hush puppies are a decidedly Southern thing.
I loved every opportunity I had to eat them, though. I adore cornbread, and fried cornbread? Get out.
I don’t know if it’s the places I’ve been eating lately or hush puppies have been seeing a resurgence lately, but they’ve been popping up on more menus. We mostly cook at home, though, so it took approximately two seconds of thinking about what to make for Mardi Gras to land on shrimp hush puppies.
how to make shrimp hush puppies
Hush puppies are crazy easy to make. It’s a simple cornmeal batter, and from there you can add all manner of mix-ins, from cheese to sausage to spicy peppers.
We don’t eat a lot of shrimp in my house because my kids think it looks too weird, but when mixed into a batter and fried no one is the wiser.
I used a special locally milled cornmeal for my hush puppies called Bloody Butcher, which gave them an interesting red tint instead of the standard yellow. Yellow cornmeal works just fine of course, but try it with other cornmeal varieties if you can get your hands on some!
You’ll want to start heating the oil before you mix your batter so that you can start frying as soon as it is ready. 350°F is the ideal frying temperature; if you don’t have a deep fryer with a temperature dial or a thermometer, you can drop a bit of batter into the oil once it starts to shimmer. If the batter starts frying, the oil ready!
Do keep your oil at a consistent heat so you fry evenly and don’t end up with burned outsides and raw insides. (I really do recommend a thermometer!)
I use a cookie scoop to portion out the batter into even amounts. You can use two spoons, or even a melon baller. It’s important to keep the balls all approximately the same size for even cooking.
Fry the shrimp hush puppies for about 3 minutes, then remove from the oil and set to cool and drain. I place newspaper on a rimmed cookie sheet and then set a rack over that. Paper bags also work well for soaking up the excess oil.
how to serve hush puppies
Hush puppies are best served warm, just out of the fryer. You can add herbs and grated cheese over the top, or serve them with tartar sauce, remoulade, or even a shrimp cocktail sauce.
These shrimp hush puppies are a great party appetizer, but we like them simply as a side dish too. Most recently we served them up with barbecued chicken and green beans, but you could go classic with a fried fish plate.
how to reheat hush puppies
Unless you’re hosting a party, hush puppies tend to make more than needed for the average family meal. Fortunately, you can easily reheat any leftovers.
Store cooked hush puppies in an airtight container in the refrigerator, with a paper towel lining the bottom to soak up any excess moisture.
Reheat hush puppies in a hot oven or toaster oven until hot and crisped. Alternately, you can also briefly re-fry them in hot oil — or try an Air Fryer!
Check out all posts in our Mardi Gras party, and scroll down for the recipe for shrimp hush puppies.
Hurricane Matthew (A Hurricane Drink Recipe) by Off the Eaten Path
Vieux Carre Cocktail by Feast + West
No Churn Mardi Gras King Cake Ice Cream by The Speckled Palate
Cajun Spicy Tomato Soup by Online Pastry Chef
Jambalaya Balls by Love & Flour
Traditional Polish Paczki by The Crumby Kitchen
King Cake Donut Holes by Cake ‘n Knife
Easy Shrimp Po Boys by Simply Whisked
Easy Jambalaya by The Secret Ingredient Is
Mardi Gras King Cake by Nancie’s Table
Homemade Beignets by Kudos Kitchen by Renee
Pecan Pralines by Stephie Cooks
Shrimp Hush Puppies
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/4 cup minced onion
- 2 tablespoons minced jalapeño
- 8 ounces cooked shrimp , chopped
- 1 cup milk
- 1 egg , beaten
- 1/3 cup grated cheddar cheese
- Oil , for frying
Heat oil in a deep fryer or deep skillet to 350°F.
While oil is heating, whisk together cornmeal, flour, baking powder, salt, cayenne, and paprika.
Add onion, jalapeño, shrimp, milk, egg, and cheese all at once and stir well to combine ingredients, making sure all the dry bits are fully incorporated.
Once the oil is at temperature, use a cookie scoop or two spoons to drop balls of batter into the oil, taking care to not crowd the fryer. Fry each batch for about 3 minutes, then remove to a lined plate or cookie rack set on a baking sheet to drain.
Repeat until all batter is used. Serve immediately.
Nutrition facts are an estimate and do not include any oil that remains on the hush puppies after frying.