Grilled Shrimp and Citrus Salad

This grilled shrimp and citrus salad could be an elegant starter course for 6 to 8 people, or a main meal salad for 4. It is a perfect summer meal, although it's not relegated to just the summer.

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The first step in making this salad is to peel and devein the shrimp. You can read about how to do that in the cooking school section here. I do prefer to get shrimp that is still in its shell, rather than peeled and deveined shrimp. I find that you end up with better quality shrimp if you buy them in their shell (how could they not be in better shape having gone through one less step in getting to you). Also, it’s nice to have shrimp shells on hand to make a quick seafood stock to flavor soups and stews (just keep them in your freezer until you’re ready to use them). I do leave the tails on for this salad because they make the shrimp so much more attractive in the finished dish, but you can pull them off if you prefer.

shrimp in various stages of being peeled and deveined on brown paper.

The next skill you have the opportunity to use when making this salad is segmenting citrus fruit. Don’t fret about this! You have 30 minutes while the shrimp is marinating, so you might as well put that 30 minutes to good use. I have another cooking school article and video on how to supreme citrus fruit here. Remember to do this over a bowl so you can catch all the citrus juice. You won’t actually use the juice in the recipe, but it’s delicious poured into a glass and enjoyed!

Orange being supreme with grapefruit and orange peel nearby.

Don’t put that knife down just yet, because you’ll also slice some fennel. Fennel is not the most common vegetable to many home cooks. When it comes to cutting it into dice or slices you follow the same rules as for an onion. Find more info on how to slice fennel in the cooking school here

Fennel being sliced on a wooden cutting board.

Of course, it doesn’t have to be summer for you to enjoy this delicious salad. There are all sorts of ways to grill shrimp indoors if it’s too cool to go outside – in a grill pan on the stovetop or in an electric countertop grill or panini press. You also don’t even have to grill the shrimp to make this salad – you could air-fry the shrimp for about 5 minutes at 400ºF or just sauté the shrimp in a skillet. If it is summer, however, tossing the shrimp on the outdoor grill is a nice way to add a little smoky flavor to the citrus flavors in this starter or entrée and the grill marks do look nice. 

Shrimp grilling on a grill pan.

You can serve this salad when the shrimp are still warm – the contrast between the warm shrimp and cool citrus is another great part of the salad – but don’t worry if the shrimp are not piping hot. Serving closer to room temperature is absolutely fine. Once you have the components ready, it’s an easy toss together and enjoy. Save any extra dressing for another salad – it’s delicious!

Preparing a grilled shrimp and citrus salad - Vinaigrette being poured on greens, fennel and citrus segments in a large wooden salad bowl.

 

 

Featured Recipe Techniques

More about the skills used in this recipe.

Cooking School
How to Peel and Devein Shrimp

It's true that shrimp cooked in their shells have more flavor than peeled shrimp, but unless you're having a casual...View Technique

How to Supreme Citrus Fruit

When you add citrus fruit segments - whether they be grapefruit, orange, mandarin, lemon or lime - to salads, desserts...View Technique

How to Cut Fennel

Fennel is a vegetable that often baffles the home cook. It has a bulb at the bottom, several stalks protruding...View Technique

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Grilled Shrimp and Citrus Salad

  • Prep Time: 30 m
  • Cook Time: 6 m
  • Total Time: 36 m
  • Servings:
    4

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 lime juiced
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound large shrimp peeled and deveined
  • 1 head Boston Bibb or butter lettuce
  • ½ head green leaf lettuce
  • 1 bulb fennel quartered and sliced ¼-inch thick
  • 2 oranges
  • 2 ruby red grapefruits
  • ¼ cup fresh mint chopped
Honey Lime Dressing:
  • 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 lime zest and juice
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Combine the olive oil, lime juice, honey, coriander, salt and freshly ground black pepper in a medium bowl. Add the shrimp and toss to evenly coat. Let the shrimp marinate for 30 minutes.
  2. While the shrimp is marinating, supreme the oranges and grapefruits. Slice off the top and the bottom of the fruit first to create a flat surface. Then run your knife down the sides of the orange, curving with the shape of the orange, to cut away all the peel. Carefully, make slices on either side of the membranes separating the orange segments, loosening the segments from the orange. Be sure to do this over a bowl to catch all the juices (which you can transfer to a glass and enjoy!).
  3. Make the dressing by combining the white balsamic vinegar, lime juice, lime zest, honey, Dijon mustard and salt. Whisk in the olive oil, drizzling slowly to emulsify and thicken the dressing. Season with freshly ground black pepper.
  4. Tear the Boston Bibb lettuce and green leaf lettuce into bite-sized pieces and place them in large salad bowl. Add the fennel and citrus segments.
  5. Pre-heat an outdoor grill, electric grill or stovetop grill pan to medium-high heat. Grill the shrimp for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, seasoning with salt.
  6. Drizzle some of the dressing on the salad and toss to coat. Place the grilled shrimp on the salad and drizzle a little more of the dressing on top. Finish with the fresh chopped mint leaves and serve immediately.
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