9 Store-Bought Frozen Shrimp To Buy And 4 To Avoid

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When compared to the shrimp you might score at your favorite restaurant, most of us would agree that shrimp found in the frozen food aisle of the grocery store is a lackluster replacement — and that's putting it mildly. While we all have dreams of store-bought shrimp that take exactly like they would when cooked fresh, the reality is that, deep down inside, we know that getting frozen shrimp to taste just right at home is oftentimes a futile effort.

Thankfully, there's hope, even in the freezer case. We've collected some of the best (and a few of the worst) store-bought frozen shrimp brands and flavors to share with you, along with the consensus concerning how each one cooks up and tastes. We've done all the digging by searching through dozens of reviews, comparing sizing and prices, and giving you the raw details on what everyday people like you really think about shrimp sold in the frozen food aisle. We'll go into a bit more detail with this at the end.

In the meantime, pull up a chair and lend us your ear. We're diving into the frozen shrimp products you should buy and those you should avoid.

Buy: Margaritaville Key West Chili Citrus Frozen Shrimp

Just by looking at the package, the Margaritaville Key West Chili Citrus Shrimp might appear a bit gimmicky, but honestly, it's a great grab. At Target, an 8-ounce box of frozen shrimp goes for $6.99. The shellfish comes drenched in a delectable chili citrus sauce that reviewers can't seem to get enough of.

Founded in part by singer Jimmy Buffett, Margaritaville is now a popular restaurant chain across the globe. According to the box, this recipe comes right from the Margaritaville kitchens. When it comes to reviews on this frozen shrimp, we had a hard time finding a bad one. People raved about the flavor, ease, and versatility of this seafood grab. Many praise the fact that they can saute these up in a matter of minutes, while others enjoy placing it over rice or pasta for heavenly results.

All told people can't get enough of this frozen shrimp. This is easily one of our top frozen shrimp picks.

Avoid: SeaPak Parmesan Butterfly Frozen Shrimp

We're surprised to see a release from SeaPak make the avoid side of this list, but here we are, discussing the ills of one of its seemingly promising frozen shrimp buys: the Parmesan Encrusted Butterfly Shrimp. Those who have tasted the shrimp have discussed a few different reasons for making a complaint, some of which overlap. In a nutshell, taste testers have a problem with the flavor of the shrimp. Some have deemed it to be too full of salt while other reviewers say they're void of the parmesan flavor promised in the package. Other reviews slam the tomato romano sauce, stating that it doesn't match the taste of the shrimp and that, even if it did, it was still downright awful.

Depending on where you look, you might find this frozen seafood pick listed at $11.99 for 20 shrimp, which isn't too bad. Still, given its uninspiring flavor and iffy sauce, you might want to save your money and spend it on one of the higher-quality frozen shrimp buys on this list.

Buy: Margaritaville Jammin' Jerk Frozen Shrimp

Jerk flavors might not be everyone's idea of a great bite, but those who love the heat will want to check out this frozen shrimp pick. Another great Margaritaville release, this "Jammin' Jerk" shrimp offers 8 ounces of shrimp for $6.99. The package describes the flavor as succulent with delicious Jamaican spices. Patrons who have sampled the shrimp couldn't agree more.

According to reviews, this shrimp is extremely flavorful, which caught a few buyers by surprise. Nevertheless, they claim the taste is top-notch, and though it does feature a bit of heat, the spice level is just enough to make it tasty without going over the top.

Despite the glowing reviews, there are a few who sport a different opinion of this shrimp. A few claimed the shrimp was flat-out gross, while others simply said it was a bit oily but still packed in a good amount of flavor. Either way, we think this shrimp is worth the buy, especially considering its reasonable price point

Avoid: Royal Asia Gluten Free Boom Boom Shrimp With Sriracha Aioli

Looking for gluten-free shrimp? Royal Asia Boom Boom Shrimp with Sriracha Aioli might seem like a great option, but you're better off skipping this one. Multiple buyers aren't very pleased with this pick, which is a real shame, considering how hard it can be to find good gluten-free shrimp.

According to the scathing reviews we've found, this release from Royal Asia just isn't it. One reviewer says he was surprised because he tried another version of this brand and liked it, but found the Boom Boom Shrimp variety to be a hard pass. After reviewing many critiques, it seems the main issues are blandness and texture. It's also reported to be super eggy, which turned off quite a few reviewers. Everyone likewise seemed to be seriously put off by the rubbery texture of the shrimp, leading to one bad review after another.

At Target, there was at least one rave review of this flavor. However, this reviewer revealed that she had cooked the shrimp in an air fryer rather than in the oven. Maybe this is where the discrepancy lies. We aren't sure. Either way, most people aren't feeling it. Sorry, Royal Asia.

Buy: SeaPak Budweiser Beer Battered Jumbo Frozen Shrimp

This popular yet limited option from SeaPak sounds absolutely delicious, but does it live up to its name and redeem the brand? Maybe. First, you should know that some retail chains, like Sam's Club, indicate that SeaPak Budweiser Beer Battered Jumbo Shrimp is occasionally unavailable. Still, you may run across it at other stores. So, is it worth it?

Seemingly so! Though it does have a few haters here and there, most people are swooning over this frozen shrimp. Not only is the taste of the shrimp itself delicious, but the citrus sauce that comes with it seems to be the real star of the show. You can find this yummy offering in a box of up to 2 pounds to keep your household happy and full. According to the serving size, each 2-pound box contains roughly 27 pieces of shrimp. There are smaller sizes available; the variety we found at Kroger costs $10 per 12 shrimp.

Though this might not be the best deal on frozen shrimp we've found, the flavor and sauce make it worth it. Just know that some people have a few qualms about the batter on the shrimp being a bit too thick and sweet.

Buy: AquaStar Breaded Butterfly Frozen Shrimp

In need of a lot of shrimp for a great price? If so, check out AquaStar Breaded Butterfly Frozen Shrimp the next time you're at the store. We found these at Target and saw they garnered wonderful reviews from almost everyone who sampled them. According to buyers, these cook up crispy and tasty and, like most frozen shrimp featured on this list, fare even better in an air fryer.

The only issue? The box purports that these are large shrimp when the shrimp are quite small. This is likely why you get so many (45-50) for $10.99. People who open the package may gape in disappointment at the size of the shrimp, but once they taste the shrimp and experience the satisfying texture, they tend to submit high praise.

Though this may not be the largest frozen shrimp on the market, it still ranks highly in terms of texture and flavor, making it a worthy frozen shrimp purchase.

Avoid: SeaPak Popcorn Shrimp

Oh, no. Another SeaPak frozen shrimp option landing itself on our "nope" list? Yep, and this time it's pretty bad. SeaPak's Popcorn Shrimp swings and misses in several categories. From texture to flavor and even cleanliness, SeaPak Popcorn Shrimp strikes out in all the worst ways.

Starting with texture, some people find these seafood morsels grainy. As for flavor, the shrimp has been referred to as "repulsive." As if that wasn't enough, some customers complained that the shrimp had not been properly deveined.

According to Dr. Dave Love, interviewed in SELF, the contents of this black line in shrimp may not pose the health risks people assume that they do – as long as it is properly cooked. He suggests hitting an internal of 145 degrees Fahrenheit, matching the recommendation of the USDA. Nevertheless, the mere thought of ingesting the contents of shrimp intestines is enough to make some stomachs turn. Unsurprisingly, this mishap concerning SeaPak Popcorn Shrimp has been enough to cause people to sidestep this particular shrimp offering for good. Can't say we blame them!

Buy: Red Lobster Cheddar Bay Biscuit Frozen Shrimp

Seafood chain Red Lobster is famous for its crave-worthy Cheddar Bay biscuits, so we were curious as to how a biscuit-flavored batter would turn out with shrimp. As it happens, it does quite well! Believe it or not, one of the things that shrimp lovers adore most about this frozen shrimp is the breading. According to reviews, not only is this Red Lobster Cheddar Bay Biscuit Shrimp absolutely delicious, but the breading on the shrimp bakes up crispy and crunchy the first time. 

We will say that most of the reviewers used an air fryer and often left the shrimp in the air fryer for a little longer than recommended to make sure the breading was plenty crisp. Still, at least one reviewer placed the shrimp in the oven with similar results, leading us to believe that as long as you follow the directions on the package, you should end up with deliciously crunchy shrimp almost every time.

As for how many shrimp you get, expect to pay around $8 for a standard package of nine shrimp. It isn't a lot for the price, but for a quick snack to pair with a salad or other side dish, we think it's worth it.

Buy: SeaPak Jumbo Coconut Shrimp

Considering the fact that these are shrimp from the frozen food aisle, the SeaPak Jumbo Coconut Shrimp packs a lot of quality and flavor into one box. Though there are a few naysayers when it comes to this particular grocery store item, most seem to enjoy the product. Many have noted that the flavor of these is outstanding, with a light coconut essence that makes them unique and pleasant. Many also love the sauce that comes with the shrimp, further claiming the portion is plentiful. To many, this makes for a wonderful pairing between shrimp and sauce in the convenience of your own home.

As for the negative comments, some buyers have complained that the coconut flavor isn't quite strong enough, while others gripe that these "jumbo" shrimp aren't very jumbo at all. Still, others say that the size of the shellfish is plenty big and, given the pictures we've seen of the shrimp, we think we agree. Either way, this seems like it is a win for most. Since you might not find them everywhere you go, you should make sure that you grab a box when and if you can.

Avoid: Royal Asia Nashville Style Hot Frozen Shrimp

The Royal Asia Nashville Style Hot Frozen Shrimp was a difficult one to assign to a category, given that reviews of this product are split. Some think this frozen shrimp option is rather tasty, and it seems to fare much better than the Boom Boom Shrimp With Sriracha Aioli from the same brand. Still, there are things about this shrimp that may make it worth avoiding – depending on your expectations, that is.

One of the main critiques people seem to have regarding this shrimp is that they don't taste anything even close to the flavor of a typical Nashville hot chicken-inspired entree. Despite its bright orange-red bue, most reviewers describe only a mildly spicy kick that's nowhere near the bold flavor of a traditional Nashville-style dish. Another issue people have is the amount of shrimp you get for the price. You'll get about 20 shrimp for $8.99, which isn't so bad considering that some other brands offer less for a similar amount. But for a few, the price isn't entirely worth what's in the box. Take that for what it's worth.

Buy: SeaPak Shrimp Fried Rice Bites

SeaPak's Shrimp Fried Rice Bites are hibachi-style fried shrimp rolled with rice for delicious Japanese flair without the expensive price tag. These bites come with yum yum sauce to further accentuate the flavor of these convenient snacks.

So, what do customers think? The Shrimp Fried Rice bites don't feature many comments, but the reviews we found have nothing but positive things to say. One YouTuber states that these SeaPak Shrimp Fried Rice Bites taste like a combination of crab cakes and popcorn shrimp, which he rather enjoyed. He did note that the texture was doughy, but he still enjoyed the flavor. Other reviewers concur that the bites are delish and feature shrimp in just about every bite. And though we didn't see serving sizes in comparison to the price on this one, however much it costs is likely worth the splurge every once in a while – especially if you're a fan of fried fish and hibachi restaurant-style flavors.

Buy: Margaritaville Calypso Coconut Frozen Shrimp

We rarely find people griping about Margaritaville frozen shrimp and, thankfully, the same is true for the Calypso Coconut Frozen Shrimp on offer from the brand. Reviewers marvel at how tasty the shrimp are, even though some believe there should be more in the box than the few pieces of shrimp they received. Still, most are floored by the flavor and claim that the mango sauce that accompanies them pairs perfectly with the shrimp.

Since there are only a few shrimp in the box (depending on how big a box you buy and where you get them), some people have found unique ways to put them to use. Avid reviewers claim these are great for popping in the oven as a quick party snack, an appetizer, or a light dinner, especially when paired with a little something on the side. Either way, these coconut frozen shrimp taste incredible no matter how they're served.

Buy: SeaPak Shrimp Scampi

If you're a fan of shrimp scampi, you'll definitely want to get your hands on this one. Another great buy coming from SeaPak is this frozen shrimp scampi creation, which some buyers say tastes just like something you'd make from scratch at home. The ingredients, though not perfect to some, contain many flavorful elements, such as cream, romano cheese, onion powder, garlic, and lemon peel, making for a complex, delicious flavor that would taste exquisite over noodles alone.

Fans claim this is a tasty grocery store grab and although it is frozen, it has a delicious butter sauce and seasoning that works to make a full meal for anyone who is hungry and strapped for time. As far as pricing goes, expect to pay around $9.99 for 12 ounces, which works out to roughly 14 shrimp pieces according to the package.

Hey, it might not be served fresh to your table from a local restaurant, but the SeaPak Shrimp Scampi tastes pretty good anyway and is a frozen shrimp option that is not to be missed.


To curate our list of store-bought frozen shrimp to buy and avoid, we sifted through reviews of shrimp items that were available via popular grocery stores, including Target, Sam's Club, and more. We considered the overall consensus amongst reviewers as well as factors like pricing, portions, and ingredients to make our decisions.