The Best Frozen Coconut Shrimp We Tasted

If you can’t pick up and go on a luxurious vacation to the Caribbean or the Keys, sitting down to a big-a** platter of the best frozen coconut shrimp is the next best thing. Okay, maybe it isn’t the next best thing (Southern California has many lovely beaches just a short drive from my home that I happily visit when I need to get away), but there’s something so exceedingly laid back and beachy about coconut shrimp. When you need those vibes and also don’t want to futz with batter and coconut shreds, frozen coconut shrimp really come in handy. 

There aren’t a huge number of frozen coconut shrimp options at the grocery store, but we found some good ones all the same. First and foremost, we were looking for firm, flavorful, and sizable shrimp. Shrimp shouldn’t be shrimpy (sized). We also wanted coconut flavor (duh), but not so much coconut flavor that it overpowered the sweet, oceanic taste of the shrimp. Because shrimp should be shrimpy (tasting). Lastly, all of these come with dipping sauces (nice, right?!), so we took those into consideration, too. These are the best frozen coconut shrimp you can get at the grocery store (and, yes, Trader Joe’s coconut shrimp made the cut). (Note: If you’re not into coconut but still want fried shrimp, check out our ranking of the best frozen fried shrimp.)

best coconut shrimp

Best Sweet

Northern Chef Coconut Shrimp

If you eat coconut shrimp because you like coconut more than you like shrimp, you’ll like these. These pack a huge, sweet coconut flavor. They’re really nice looking, too (you know, for entertaining purposes)—the coconut browns well and gives them a nice crunch. My gripe about these is that the butterflied shrimp themselves are pretty dinky. The breading-to-shrimp ratio is off, but the sweet thai chili sauce that comes in the bag keeps them from coming off as dry. It adds more sweetness, yes, but also a peppery tang. These aren’t the best coconut shrimp you can buy, but they won’t ruin your party either. Oh and worth mentioning: They’re gluten free! Huge for GF folks.

Credit: Merc / Instacart




best coconut shrimp

Best Savory

SeaPak Jumbo Coconut Shrimp

As I’ve mentioned (a lot), coconut shrimp can lean a bit sweet, but these SeaPak frozen coconut shrimp have just the right amount of sodium. They’re not just sweet. You can also taste shrimp because their flavor isn’t overwhelmed by the flavor of coconut shreds. These crisped up nicely in the oven and were very satisfying. Also, congrats SeaPak for making the best dipping sauce of any brand we tried. Rather than sweet chili or sweet and sour, they went with a mustardy orange marmalade sauce that’s intensely delicious. I’d happily buy SeaPak coconut shrimp again, but I’d also happily buy that dipping sauce on its own if they ever decided to bottle it.

Credit: Merc / Walmart




trader joe's coconut shrimp review

Best Quality Shrimp

Trader Joe’s Coconut Shrimp

These are actually really good! They aren’t suuuuuuper coconutty like Northern Chef; they’re like breaded shrimp with some coconut shreds in the mix. The breading is nicely salted. It’s not sweet. It’s actually savory. The breading gets a little mushy around the shrimp, but they’re really nice and crispy on the outside. The shrimp themselves are the best quality we tried. They’re very firm. I like firm shrimp, personally. They’re not huge, but they’re larger than the sad little flat shrimp that get lost in the breading like most other brands. I would absolutely buy these again!

Credit: Liv Averett




best coconut shrimp

Best of the Best

Whole Catch Crunchy Coconut Butterfly Shrimp

These have been hard to find lately (at least where we are), but they’re just so good. We were initially introduced to them when we were tasting shrimp for our general frozen fried shrimp taste test and they nearly took the whole thing (alas, we wanted to go with a classic breaded fried shrimp). They’re large and firm and flavorful. The coating is coconutty without being cloying. They actually don’t come with a dipping sauce, but we trust you to be resourceful (to be honest, I dip pretty much everything in Heinz Mayoracha now, anyway). These are restaurant quality, so naturally they’re the best frozen coconut shrimp at the store. If you happen to spot them at Whole Foods, buy them.

Credit: Merc / Amazon




Other products we tried: Margaritaville Calypso Coconut Shrimp, Kroger Crunchy Coconut Shrimp

About the Author

Gwynedd Stuart

Gwynedd Stuart, Sporked’s managing editor, is an L.A.-based writer and editor who spends way, way too much time at the grocery store. She’s never met an Old El Paso taco or mozzarella stick she didn’t like.

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