Why It Pays To Rinse Canned Shrimp Before Using Them In A Recipe

For some of us, the idea of cooking sounds fun until it actually comes down to execution. Luckily, there are products like canned shrimp to help make cooking a bit more accessible. Like other canned seafood that can make the job easier, using canned shrimp is a great way to get a serving of protein into your diet on days when you don't have the time or energy to prepare a full meal from scratch. Instead of peeling and deveining each individual shrimp, all you have to do before adding canned shrimp to a recipe is give the contents of the can a quick rinse so they don't overpower the rest of your food.

During the canning process the shrimp are packed in water with sugar, spices, and salt. Because the shrimp sit in this brine for a while, the flavor can become very intense, especially the saltiness. That's why it's best to rinse them off and then pat them dry before using them. This also means that canned shrimp are high in sodium, so be wary if that's something important to you.

It's best to rinse off the salty flavor

You can definitely eat the shrimp straight out of the can with no extra steps, as long as you're prepared for a briny bite. However, the shrimp's extra seasoning can throw off the flavors of whatever recipe you're adding them to. If you don't rinse the shrimp before incorporating them into a dish that has been salted, you risk ruining the overall taste.

Since canned shrimp are already cooked, avoid rinsing them in hot water, as this may cook them to the point of being overdone. It's also a good idea not to add the shrimp until the end of a recipe that requires heat, and to only use low heat if you need to warm them up. If your recipe calls for grilled shrimp, only put the shrimp on the pan for a short amount of time to give them a quick sear.

Canned shrimp make a versatile, convenient option that can be added to almost any shrimp recipe from around the world, such as shrimp scampi, fried rice, salad, and gumbo. Canned shrimp are a perfect pantry staple for the busy seafood fanatic. Just make sure to give them that quick rinse first — unless you really want a taste of the sea!