Sweet and Sour Shrimp

Sweet and sour shrimp with green peppers, pea pods, carrots, in a sweet and sour pineapple sauce. Served over rice.

Sweet and Sour Shrimp

Sweet and Sour Shrimp

I love sweet and sour anything and this shrimp version is so good. I especially like it because this is a quick week night meal that seems special at the same time. I also use this same recipe for chicken if you aren’t a shrimp fan. I would use chicken breast and it does need to cook a little longer than the shrimp. Shrimp cooks in a few minutes and if overcooked gets very tough. Depending on the size you cut the chicken the chicken alone could take 10 minutes.

Let’s talk about shrimp for a few minutes. When buying it you see a number on  sales usually that might be 16/20, 21/25, 26/30, 31/40. This tells you how many shrimp you will get in a pound. The smaller the numbers are the bigger the shrimp.  My personal favorites are the 16/20’s. They are easy to peel and a great size for just eating. Buy what your budget allows you to do is the best rule of thumb.

When I buy shrimp from a grocery store I never buy what’s in the case. I always ask the person behind the counter to get it from the back frozen. All shrimp comes into the grocery store frozen unless it specifically says fresh. That way I can control how it thaws instead of trusting someone else and I know it hasn’t been sitting out all day in the store cooler. I have never been turned down when I requested it this way. I will do the same with fish when I buy it if I know it was previously frozen.

To clean shrimp, first remove the shells. Then take a knife and make a shallow cut where you see a dark vein. Scrape it out the best you can and rinse it well. I put them in a strainer while I do the rest and blot well with paper towels before cooking. The drier the shrimp is will make it easier to get that nice brown edge when you saute them. Wet shrimp will just steam.

Sweet and Sour Shrimp
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: Serves 4
Sweet and sour shrimp with green peppers, pea pods, carrots, in a sweet and sour pineapple sauce. Served over rice.
  • 1 lb. medium or large shrimp - shelled and deveined
  • 1 can pineapple slices (reserve the juice)
  • 1 1/2 cups sweet peppers
  • 2 cups pea pods
  • 1 carrot - optional
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 - 3 tablespoons oil
Marinade for Shrimp
  • 1 tablespoon Oyster Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Soy Sauce
  • Pepper to taste
Sweet and Sour Sauce
  • 1 cup juice from the canned pineapple
  • 3 tablespoons vinegar (white or rice vinegar)
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch mixed with water
Serve with rice
  1. Marinade the shrimp in the soy sauce and oyster sauce while you prepare the vegetables.
  2. Chop up the onions into small pieces. Chop the carrot into small circles, very thin.
  3. Slice the sweet peppers into strips and cut in half in the pieces are too big.
  4. Drain the pineapple and reserve the juice. Cut the pineapple into large chunks.
  5. Remove the strings from the pea pods if you have them.
  6. Mix the sauce ingredients together. Set aside until ready to use.
  7. Add the oil to a saute pan. Add the shrimp and cook for about 2 - 3 minutes. Don't cook the shrimp all of the way. Put on a plate while you prepare the rest.
  8. Add the onions, carrots and sweet pepper strips to the pan. Cook for several minutes until the start to wilt and the onion become transparent. Add the pineapple and pea pods to the vegetables. Cook for about 2 minutes, while the pineapple gets hot. Stir often.
  9. Add the shrimp back to the pan.
  10. Stir up the sauce ingredients. Pour into the pan and stir while the sauce thickens. When the sauce is thickened it's done. Serve over rice.


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  1. Mary MacAdam says

    I was looking for a recipe for sweet and sour shrimp and your’s sounds like the best I have come across. I am going to try it . Your sauce sounds better than the ketchup Emeril says to use and you better than the bottled stuff others recommend. Also, I love pea pods. The rest of your site looks real interesting too. I will be back often.

  2. says

    I made this for dinner tonight. Delicious! Instead of regular rice, I used cauliflower rice, worked just find. Will definitely make this again!

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