This unique appetizer brings together three of our most favorite things in the culinary world: Grilling, Buffalo sauce, and shrimp.
Shrimp is so versatile and is amazing with so many different types of seasoning. This variation using a simple homemade Buffalo wing sauce with homemade blue cheese is mouth-watering. Grilling them is easy and the flavor is incredible. And they come together in no time at all!
How To Make Grilled Buffalo Shrimp
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The Ingredients You Will Need
This has all the wonderful flavors of Classic Buffalo Chicken Wings, but we’re substituting the chicken with shrimp! Here’s what you’ll need to have on hand:
Shrimp – We recommend large shrimp, but not extra jumbo or colossal. These are ideal for popping in your mouth. See the Expert Tip about selecting the right size.
Seasonings – Salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and chili powder.
Hot sauce – Frank’s is classic and our favorite.
Butter – Unsalted
Blue cheese dressing – Homemade is a must and can be made in advance (click the link for the easy recipe).
You’ll also need wooden or metal skewers, or a grill skillet/pan, and a grill (gas, charcoal, or electric).
EXPERT TIP: Shrimp are sold by count per pound in the United States. The number on the label will indicate the number of shrimp in the package. If it reads 21/25, you know there should be from 21 to 25 shrimp in each pound.
Tips for Perfect Grilled Buffalo Shrimp
Prepare the Shrimp – As mentioned, these shrimps are easy for guests to grab and just pop in their mouths. Therefore we recommend going with not too large of shrimp, and remove shells, tails, and de-vein them.
Serve Immediately, While They’re Hot – They are so tasty, they’re even yummy after they’ve cooled off. But, they are definitely best served nice and hot. Have your celery and blue cheese dressing plated ready to go before you grill and coat the shrimp.
Make the Blue Cheese Dressing – We can’t stress this enough. Homemade blue cheese dressing is not hard to make and can be made several days in advance. It matched against the Buffalo shrimp is through-the-roof delicious.
EXPERT TIP: If you are using wooden skewers, it’s not a bad idea to soak them in water for about 30 minutes. Because the shrimp cooks so quickly, you probably won’t run the risk of the wooden skewers catching on fire, but just to be safe, we recommend it.
How To Serve
You will want to serve these just as you would standard Buffalo chicken wings.
We love to place them in a pile in the center of large oval platter and then flank them with cut celery pieces and a couple small jars of the homemade blue cheese dressing.
You could also serve them with homemade ranch dressing.
EXPERT TIP: The shrimp only take about 8 to 10 minutes to cook on a hot grill. They will be pink and slightly curled on the skewers. While they are grilling, be sure to get your sauce simmering on the stove and then pour the hot wing sauce directly over the shrimp in a heat-proof bowl.
Other Awesome Appetizer Recipes to Try
We love appetizers so much that we sometimes make a spread of them just to have for a fun meal. Here are some of our all-time favorites that we’re sure you and your family and friends will love, too:
Baked Teriyaki Chicken Wings
Italian-Style Chicken Wings with Gorgonzola Dipping Sauce
Crosshatch Sweet Potato Chips with Cajun Remoulade
Loaded Potato Skins
Homemade Jalapeño Poppers
These are all so good and it’s hard to choose one as our favorite. But, in the meantime, are these babies calling your name?
EXPERT TIP: After you’ve tossed the shrimp in the sauce, use a pair of tongs to place them on a platter, and then spoon the rest of the sauce all over the top. Amazing!
What Can Be Made in Advance
To save yourself some time, mix together the rub ingredients. This can be done days in advance. The shrimp can be seasoned several hours before grilling.
You can place all of the sauce ingredients into your saucepan, but no need to simmer until the shrimp is on the grill.
Remember, the shrimp only takes about 8 to 10 minutes to cook on the grill, so taking these small “do ahead” steps will make the time to present the final dish very fast and easy.
If you are a fan of grilled shrimp and if you also love Buffalo flavored dishes, you and your guest are going to flip this grilled Buffalo shrimp.
The shrimp is seasoned nicely and the sauce has that classic Buffalo sauce. The result is shrimp that is deeply flavorful, and not fishy tasting at all.
And did we mention, the homemade blue cheese dressing is the perfect match for the flavor profile with the grilled shrimp. So good!
Ready to make the best shrimp appetizer this side of Buffalo, NY? Go for it!
And when you do, be sure to take a photo of it, post it on Instagram, and tag @HowToFeedaLoon and hashtag #HowToFeedaLoon!
Grilled Buffalo Shrimp
- 4 to 6 wooden or metal skewers
- Homemade Blue Cheese Dressing click for easy recipe
- 1 tsp Kosher salt
- 1 tsp black pepper divided (1/2 tsp for the shrimp and 1/2 for the sauce)
- 1 tsp garlic powder divided (1/2 tsp for the shrimp and 1/2 for the sauce)
- ½ tsp onion powder
- ¼ tsp smoked paprika
- ¼ tsp chili powder
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- 18 large shrimp peeled and deveined
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 4 tbsp unsalted butter
- ¼ cup hot sauce Frank's is good
- celery cut into strips
- Make the blue cheese dressing and chill, covered, until ready to serve.Homemade Blue Cheese Dressing
Prepare the Shrimp
- Prepare your grill for direct cooking over medium heat.
- In a small bowl, mix together the salt, pepper (½ tsp), onion powder, garlic powder (½ tsp), paprika, chili powder, and cayenne pepper.1 tsp Kosher salt, 1 tsp black pepper, 1 tsp garlic powder, ½ tsp onion powder, ¼ tsp smoked paprika, ¼ tsp chili powder, ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- Place the shrimp in a large bowl and toss with the olive oil. Sprinkle the seasonings all over them. Toss until they are well coated.18 large shrimp, 2 tbsp olive oil
- Skewer all of the shrimp.
- Grill the shrimp, turning once, until just cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, heat the butter, hot sauce, ½ tsp garlic powder, and½ tsp black pepper in a small saucepan over medium heat until simmering.4 tbsp unsalted butter, ¼ cup hot sauce
- Remove grilled shrimp from the skewers and place them in a clean heat-proof bowl. Pour the sauce over the shrimp. Toss to coat.
- Serve immediately with blue cheese dip and celery.celery
POST UPDATE: This recipe was originally published in August 2017, but was updated with improved tweaks to the recipe with new tips and photography and a fabulous new video in September 2023!