How to Tell When Shrimp is Cooked?

Cooked shrimp temp

What is the ideal cooked shrimp temp? What temp should shrimp be cooked to? How to know when shrimp is done? If this is your first time making shrimp, you may have a few questions in regards to how long it takes to cook and how to determine if it’s fully cooked and safe to consume.

After all, not everyone makes seafood all the time, so knowing these things up front can make your cooking process easier.

On average, it only takes about five minutes to fully cook shrimp. However, this time frame will depend on the size of the shrimp you’re cooking and where you’re cooking it – i.e. a grill, air fryer, or stovetop.

Whether you’re serving shrimp as the main course or as a star component of a savory pasta dish, knowing how to properly cook it will ensure your shrimp turns out perfect each and every time.

Below are some answers to the most commonly asked questions about shrimp cooked temp, how to tell when shrimp is ready to eat, and temp of cooked shrimp.

How Do You Know if Shrimp is Cooked?

First up, how do you know if shrimp is cooked? There are a few different ways you can do so:

  • Look at the color of the shrimp: Fully-cooked shrimp are usually opaque and have a pink hue to them. If you take your shrimp out of the pot and see that it’s gray, you’ve, unfortunately, cooked it too long.
  • Examine the shape: When a shrimp is cooked to perfection, the tail end will start to curl upward in a C-shape. If they end up forming an O-shape, then they’re overcooked.
  • Feel the texture of the shrimp: Cooked shrimp will still be firm to the touch, but relatively soft. Think of al dente pasta, but in shrimp form. If shrimp is overcooked, the texture will be rubbery, which can be quite disgusting to consume.
  • Check the temperature: The ideal internal temp of shrimp when it’s fully cooked is 165 degrees Fahrenheit. To check this, we recommend buying an internal meat thermometer so you can pull your shrimp out as soon as it’s reached the optimal internal temp for shrimp.

How Long Does it Take to Cook Shrimp?

As mentioned in the opening paragraph, it usually takes about 4-6 minutes to fully cook shrimp. Granted, this depends on the type of cooking method you use.

There are five common cooking methods for preparing shrimp: baking, boiling, deep-frying, sauteing and grilling. While each one has its benefits, each one of them may have a different cooking time.

For example, if you’re baking shrimp, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and bake for about 10 minutes until fully cooked. Grilling them at 350-450 degrees F will only take about five or seven minutes, whereas boiling them will take about two minutes.

Deep-frying and sauteing shrimp will both take you about 1-2 minutes if you’re cooking a batch of six shrimp at a time.

The elements listed above can provide information on how to know if shrimp is cooked, regardless of which cooking method you choose to implement.

What’s the Best Temperature to Cook Shrimp?

What temp is shrimp cooked? Generally speaking, shrimp is considered fully cooked and safe to eat once it reaches an internal temperature of at least 165 degrees.

However, when it comes to knowing what temperature to cook it at, most experts agree that a temperature between 350-400 degrees Fahrenheit gets the job done.

Remember, if you’re cooking shrimp in an air fryer, be sure to spread them all out in a single layer to make sure they cook evenly.

Expert Tips for Avoiding Overcooked or Undercooked Shrimp

Shrimp is one of those foods that if not watched carefully can quickly fall victim to being either over or undercooked. To avoid this, here are some expert tips we recommend using:

  1. Remove them from heat as soon as you notice a pink hue developing: Letting them sit for even just another minute longer can cause them to get rubbery. Once they become rubbery, they’re unfortunately going to be pretty inedible.
  2. Only cook the same type of shrimp together: Even though you may want medium-sized shrimp and jumbo shrimp served at your next party, cooking them together is a big no-no. This is because different size shrimp need to be cooked for different amounts of time. Since jumbo shrimp are just that — jumbo — they cook in about 7-8 minutes, whereas medium-sized shrimp only need 3 -4 minutes. To get perfectly and evenly cooked shrimp, keep all the same sizes in one pan. That way, you’re not cooking half correctly and ruining the other half of your batch. This is one expert tip that will save you a lot of time in the long run!
  3. Don’t take your eyes off the crevice: You know that part of the shrimp where the vein used to be? Yeah, you’re going to want to keep your eyes on that to know when to remove the shrimp from heat. Once the flesh of this area starts turning pink, the shrimp is considered fully cooked.

Can You Eat Undercooked Shrimp?

So you want to know how to tell when shrimp is done, but you also want to know if it’s safe to consume shrimp that may be a little undercooked.

Well, the answer to that commonly asked question is no.

Just like a lot of other forms of food, undercooked shrimp may have harmful bacteria living on it that can cause unpleasant physical symptoms in those who have weakened immune systems.

One of the most common viruses found on raw or undercooked shrimp is Vibrio, which causes a virus called vibriosis. These symptoms can cause gastrointestinal issues, fever, swelling, and even infections in your bloodstream.

To avoid severe illnesses like this, always make sure that your shrimp is fully cooked. Studies have found that approximately 35% of all farmed shrimp contained this bacteria. Always make sure you’re going by the ideal internal temp shrimp to avoid harmful symptoms.

Why is Your Shrimp Not Turning Pink?

The ideal shrimp cook temp is 165 degrees Fahrenheit, but despite cooking it at that temperature for the right amount of time, your shrimp is still not turning pink. If this sounds familiar, it’s probably because it still wasn’t cooked right.

Though shrimp can be different colors raw, all of it turns a shade of pink when it’s fully cooked. So, if your shrimp isn’t turning pink, it’s because it’s undercooked. Undercooked shrimp will either be white or gray. In terms of shape, undercooked shrimp will also be straight.

Curious as to why shrimp turns pink in the first place? It’s because raw shrimp contains a molecule called astaxanthin, which helps develop color. Ever wonder why a carrot is orange? You have astaxanthin to thank for that (just don’t mix carrots and shrimp, that’s not a good combination!)

Why Does My Shrimp Taste Rubbery?

Like the dull color, rubbery shrimp is the result of it being overcooked.

Shrimp only takes a few minutes to fully cook, so when it stays in the oven or pot of boiling water longer than it’s meant to, it causes it to overcook, turn into an O-shape and get all rubbery and soggy. Not a great combination, if you ask me!

To avoid overcooked, rubbery shrimp, make sure you’re cooking it only to its ideal shrimp done temp. The ideal shrimp internal temp is 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Frequently Asked Questions

Check also:

What is the Best Method for Cooking Shrimp?

The answer to this question is going to depend on your personal preferences, and of course, how much time you have to dedicate to cooking.

However, if you’re looking for one of the most popular methods, look no further than sautéing. Not only does sautéing shrimp only take a minute or two, but it tends to give them the best texture and juiciness without the risk of being too chewy.

Plus, cooking shrimp inside a skillet leaves a lot less margin for error because it’s much easier to keep an eye on and not overcook. You can see the progress being made.

What Temp Should Shrimp be Cooked?

At what temp is shrimp cooked? In most cases, between 350-400 degrees Fahrenheit. This temperature applies to all cooking methods, so whether you’re baking them in an oven or an air fryer, most recipes will adhere to this time frame.

So next time someone asks you, “what temp is shrimp fully cooked,” you can whip out this answer!

How Long Do You Cook Fully Cooked Shrimp?

Knowing how to tell if shrimp is cooked is the first step in understanding how shrimp should cook in the first place. Fortunately, there are a few easy ways to tell that your shrimp is fully cooked and ready to serve and consume, whether you’re simply reheating fully cooked shrimp or those that are raw:

  • The shrimp has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit
  • The shrimp has a pinkish color, including at the base of the tail
  • The shrimp is curved into a C-like shape. If the shrimp is shaped like a C, it’s cooked. If it’s shaped like an O, it’s overcooked.

Remember, the more often you cook shrimp, the easier it’s going to be to know when they’re done and how long to cook them for. And speaking of knowing how long to cook them for, the time frame may vary on whether or not you’re cooking with the shells on or off.

Shelled shrimp can take between 3 and 4 minutes to cook, but the larger they are, it could go up to 7 or 8 minutes. As a general rule of thumb, the smaller and unshelled your shrimp is, the less time it’ll take to cook.

If you bought your shrimp fully cooked, then all you’re doing is re-heating them. Since they’ll usually be frozen, you’ll have to cook them for about two to three minutes on each side. Serve and enjoy.

So far, we answered a lot of questions about shrimp, including how long it takes to cook and how you can determine it’s safe for consumption. Now that it’s all said and done, are you ready to make some delicious shrimp for yourself? Here’s the perfect recipe:

Cooked shrimp temp

How to Tell When Shrimp is Cooked

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes


  • 1 pound of peeled, deveined, uncooked shrimp
  • 2 tablespoons of butter or margarine
  • 1 large minced garlic clove
  • 2 tablespoons of chicken broth or white wine
  • ⅛ teaspoon of cayenne pepper (up to ¼ if you want a little more heat)
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • 5 teaspoons of lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh parsley (minced)


  1. In a microwave-safe pie plate, combine butter, cayenne pepper, and garlic. Microwave on high until butter is fully melted. Then, stir in wine (or chicken broth), lemon juice, salt, and parsley. Add shrimp and toss until fully covered by the other ingredients.
  2. Microwave shrimp, covered, for about 2 and a half to 3 and a half minutes, or until the shrimp turns pink.
  3. Give everything another quick stir to make sure everything’s fully blended.
  4. Serve with some delicious and crisp white wine and enjoy!

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