Shrimp cooked in teriyaki sauce is a very easy dish to prepare, perfect for someone like me who works full-time and doesn’t have time or energy to engage in lengthy and complicated recipes at the end of the workday. This recipe uses a bottled teriyaki sauce, which is dressed up quite a bit with quite a few simple additions (available in most pantries), such as lime juice, honey, garlic, just a touch of sesame oil (for flavor), and red chili sauce for spiciness. Adding these few simple ingredients to a bottled sauce makes it richer, more flavorful, and tasting like it’s home-made. Adding freshly toasted sesame seeds makes the sauce even more delicious, although you can skip this step (or not) if your bottled sauce already has sesame seeds in it.
The important thing in this recipe is to not over-cook the shrimp. It doesn’t take much time to cook the shrimp – only a couple of minutes per side in a well pre-heated skillet. Overcooking can happen very fast which will result in tough and rubbery-like tasting shrimp effectively ruining the dish. This recipe lists very short times for sauteing the shrimp in the skillet and then cooking it just a little bit more in the sauce. If the resulting sauce is too thin, use the optional step of mixing 1 teaspoon of cornstarch in 1 tablespoon of hot water and then adding it to the boiling sauce just for a minute, to thicken. Do not try to reduce the sauce by boiling it down for over a minute or two (along with the shrimp in the skillet) because a) shrimp will toughen up and become rubber-like; b) the sauce is to good to be reduced, just use the cornstarch to thicken it.
3/4 cup teriyaki sauce (use gluten-free version* for gluten-free recipe)
2 teaspoons lime juice (or lemon juice)
5 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon red chili paste [optional] or any other spicy red sauce
1 tablespoon vegetable or olive oil
20-24 shrimp (count), peeled and deveined, with tails still attached (if desired)
1-2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds [optional]
1 teaspoon cornstarch mixed in 1 teaspoon of hot water [optional]
cooked rice noodles or cooked rice
Combine teriyaki sauce, lime (or lemon) juice, minced garlic, honey and sesame oil in a bowl. Stir to combine. You might want to warm honey in a microwave before adding to the sauce to make it softer.
OPTIONAL: At this point, you can also mix in 1 teaspoon of red curry paste if desired.
Place shrimp in a large ziploc bag. Add half of the teriyaki mixture to the bag and secure the top. Toss shrimp in the bag to make sure all shrimp is coated with the sauce. Marinate for about 15 minutes, no longer.
Heat vegetable or olive oil in a large skillet over high heat, add shrimp from the plastic bag (but without the sauce) and cook for 2 minutes, turning once (about 1 minute per side). Add all the sauce (from the bag and from the bowl) into the skillet and continue cooking the shrimp on high heat for 1-2 minutes until the sauce boils and thickens.
OPTIONAL: Mix in toasted sesame seeds into the sauce, in case your teriyaki sauce did not have any or if you want extra.
OPTIONAL: If you want a thicker sauce, at this point dissolve 1 teaspoon of cornstarch in about 1 tablespoon of water. Add this mixture to the boiling sauce in the skillet and stir well while boiling - the skillet sauce should thicken. Do not let the sauce boil for more than about a minute, otherwise the shrimp will become too tough and rubberish.
Cook rice noodles or rice according to package instructions. At this point, you can add rice noodles (or rice) to the sauce in the skillet and stir fry shrimp and the noodles/rice all together in the sauce. Or, you can just use plain cooked rice noodles (or rice) as a bed for shrimp and the sauce. It's up to you. I prefer the latter! 🙂
Make a bed of the rice noodles (or rice) in individual serving plates. Spoon shrimp and the sauce on top.
* For gluten-free version, use Gluten-Free Teriyaki Sauce, such as the one produced by Kikkoman.