Shrimp Cocktail

By Whisper of Yum
  • Total Time:
  • Servings:


Cocktail Sauce

  • ½ cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish or ground horseradish
  • 1 teaspoon worcestershire
  • ½ teaspoon lemon zest
  • ½ teaspoon tabasco
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice

Poaching Liquid

  • 15 jumbo shrimp, deveined, shells on
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 8 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt, Diamond Crystal brand
  • 1 lemon
  • ice bath

To Serve

  • Lemon wedges for squeezing
  • Flat-leaf parsley for garnish
  • Ice for platter


Cocktail Sauce - best if prepared 2-3 hours or night before

  1. In a bowl, add ketchup, prepared or ground horseradish, worcestershire sauce, lemon zest, lemon juice and mix well. Leave in the refrigerator until ready to plate.


  1. Devein shrimp, but do not remove shells. Shells help retain flavor and will be removed after poaching.
  2. Prepare an ice bath. Set aside.
  3. In a dutch oven, add water, kosher salt, bay leaf, juice of lemon + squeezed lemon halves. When poaching liquid comes to a boil, lower heat to a simmer and add shrimp. Cook shrimp for four minutes. Test one to make sure it is cooked through.
  4. Once shrimp are cooked, add to ice bath for 6 minutes. Once shrimp are completely cooled, remove shells until you reach the tails. Leave tail on, as it serves as a good handle and keeps fingers mess-free when dipping.
  5. Place shrimp in a bowl, cover and leave in refrigerator until ready to plate.

To Plate

  1. Place cocktail sauce in a small bowl and center on platter. Layer platter with ice and top with shrimp. Garnish with lemon wedges and flat-leaf parsley. Enjoy!