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How to Peel and Devein Shrimp

By David Hu

Shrimp is one of the fastest cooking proteins – and while it often comes shelled and deveined, sometimes you have to do it yourself. If you’ve never done it before, don’t fret, it’s very simple. And besides, you’ll have a tastier dish because shrimp that has been pre-peeled and deveined loses some of its flavor by the time you get it home and cook it.

Here’s how to peel and devein shrimp:

  • To start off, separate the legs from the body, which should loosen the shell.
  • Slip off the shell.
  • Using a small paring knife, make a 1/8-inch slit down the back of the shrimp (the outside edge) to expose the vein which runs the length of the shrimp. This vein, which may be dark or clear in color, is the shrimp’s intestinal tract. It is both bitter to eat and unappetizing. Use the tip of the knife to pull out the vein.
  • Rinse shrimp in cool water and pat dry.

That’s all there is to it!

Here are some Special Fork shrimp recipes that are among our faves, to help you practice your new skill:

Spicy Grilled Shrimp
Stir-Fried Shrimp with Snow Peas
Shrimp and Crab à la Vodka
Pickled Shrimp Salad
Siu Mai (Pork and Shrimp Dumplings)

Special Fork is a recipe website for your smartphone and PC that solves the daily dinnertime dilemma: what to cook now! Our bloggers blog Monday through Friday to give you cooking inspiration. Check out our recipe database for quick ideas that take no more than 30 minutes of prep time. Join the conversation on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Related posts:
  1. If it’s Friday, it’s Video Blog Day on Special Fork
  2. Soup in a Hurry
  3. Don’t Let Your Shrimp Dawdle
  4. Peel ‘n’ Eat
  5. Pizza Pronto!

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