This Cantonese-style scrambled eggs with shrimp recipe is nostalgic to me because it reminds me of my childhood. I’ve been missing home lately and was craving this dish, so I wanted to recreate it and share this authentic recipe with you!
I love the simplicity of the recipe and the ease it takes to make it. 10 minutes is all you need and dinner is ready! The ingredients are simple and easily accessible – all that’s required are eggs, shrimp, and a few everyday pantry staples.
I really enjoy the consistency of the silky eggs coupled with the juicy succulent shrimp. It doesn’t really get any better than this! I prefer using fresh shrimp with the shell on and processing it myself at home. I like saving the shells in a ziplock bag and storing them in the freezer until I have enough to make a stock. If you prefer using frozen raw shrimp, that would work fine for this recipe as well!
Why you’ll love this recipe
Although scrambled eggs are usually associated with breakfast in Western culture, it is actually common in many Cantonese and Asian lunch and dinner dishes. The ingredients are fairly simple and straightforward – many of which you should already have in your kitchen!
The combination of the juicy succulent shrimp and silky velvety scrambled eggs is incredibly delicious. It’ll leave you wondering why you haven’t been eating your eggs with shrimp. Once you take a bite, you’ll understand why it’s a Cantonese staple.
How do I prepare Chinese Scrambled Eggs with Shrimp?
Ready to level up your scrambled eggs and your dinner? To get started, follow my step-by-step instructions below!
Step 1: Prepare the shrimp
Add the shrimp, salt, and white pepper to a bowl and mix them together. Toss in the cornstarch and mix again until all the shrimp are fully coated.
Step 2: Make a cornstarch slurry
Mix together 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch and 1/2 tablespoon water to make a starch slurry.
Step 3: Prepare the eggs
Combine the eggs salt, sugar, sesame oil, white pepper powder, starch slurry, and chopped scallions together in a bowl. Whisk until they’re thoroughly mixed.
Step 4: Saute the shrimp
Add 1 tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat in a wok or pan. Once the oil is hot, place the shrimp and cook until they’re 80% done. Remove the shrimp from the heat and add them to the egg mixture.
Step 5: Cook the egg mixture
Wipe the wok or pan you used previously with a paper towel to clean it. Next, heat the remaining oil in the pan. Once the wok or pan starts to smoke, add the egg and shrimp mixture, and cook for about 30 seconds. The sides of the egg mixture should bubble and puff up at this stage.
With a spatula, lift the cooked layer of eggs and fold it on top of the uncooked eggs. Continue to do this 3 to 4 times. Then, turn the heat off and continue to fold and layer the eggs until your desired doneness.
Keep in mind that the residual heat will continue to cook the eggs so work on the eggs quickly or the eggs will overcook! (If I lost you with the directions, you can also refer to the video below to see how I layer and fold the eggs 🙂).
Step 6: Plate and serve!
Once you’re satisfied with the doneness of the egg, transfer it to a plate and serve while it’s hot!
Cooking tips for Chinese Scrambled Eggs
If you want to master the techniques of making this delicious scrambled egg dish, here are a couple of tricks to can keep in mind:
- To impart more flavor to the shrimp, you can let them marinate in the seasoning for 30 minutes to 1 hour in the fridge before cooking.
- Since the shrimp has the tendency to turn rubbery when overcooked, remember to not cook them thoroughly when sautéeing them for the first time. You’ll know when they’re 80% done when they’re no longer translucent but not vibrant orange like they are when fully cooked.
- Despite its name, it’s essential not to scramble or mix the eggs vigorously when cooking. You want to create thin layers of eggs to help achieve that gorgeous silky consistency.
Shrimp: Although shrimp is the star protein, you can also add or replace them with other seafood, including scallops, squid, or prawns.
Sesame oil: The nuttiness of the sesame oil is very unique and can be difficult to replace so I don’t recommend substituting it.
White pepper powder: I prefer to use white pepper powder for this recipe – it has an earthy flavor that enhances but doesn’t overpower the dish. If you can’t find white pepper powder, feel free to substitute it with ground black pepper.
Cornstarch: Cornstarch helps seal the juices of the shrimp by creating a thin barrier so it plays an important role in this recipe. For a cornstarch alternative, substitute with potato starch.
Oil: I like using sunflower seed oil but neutral-tasting oil would work including:
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you peel shrimp shells?
If you haven’t tried peeling the shrimp shells before, start by pulling off its head and legs. Then, using a pair of kitchen shears, make an incision down the back of the shrimp all the way to the tail. Remove the shell by carefully working your way from the top to the bottom. Lastly, pull off the tail and you’re done! Repeat the steps for the remainder of the shrimp. You can discard the shells or boil them with aromatics to create a shrimp stock. I like to store the shrimp shells in my freezer until I have enough to make a large pot of stock.
Should you devein the shrimp for this recipe?
The vein is completely edible however, I prefer removing it because it can add an unpleasant gritty texture. If you’re not familiar with the vein, it is the intestinal tract of a shrimp – which is the black vein that runs along their backs. To devein shrimp, start by peeling the shrimp by following the instructions in the previous paragraph. Once peeled, use a small knife and pick out the vein from the back of the shrimp. Slowly pull the vein out until completely removed. You can also use a toothpick or a fork to remove the vein easier. Remember to wash the shrimp before moving on to the next step.
What does the starch slurry do for the eggs?
Adding the starch slurry to scrambled eggs prevents them from turning rubbery when cooking. Eggs can be tricky to cook under high heat due to their delicate nature. So, the starch slurry is added to ensure that you get that coveted silky texture every time you make them!
Aside from preventing the eggs from overcooking, the cornstarch slurry also traps moisture so they can maintain their creaminess after. This is a trick you can use when preparing regular scrambled eggs too! Say goodbye to tough and dry eggs 🙂
Can you store leftover Chinese Scrambled Eggs?
Although this scrambled egg dish is best served when freshly cooked, any leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge. To reheat the eggs, microwave in 30-second intervals until warmed through. Be careful not to reheat it for too long since the eggs and shrimp can overcook easily. To reheat over the stove top, add a small amount of oil to a pan and heat over medium heat. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes or until hot.
Looking for more quick and easy Cantonese-inspired dishes? Check these out!
1. Air Fryer Char Siu – If you want restaurant-quality char siu without having to put in extra time and effort, you have to give this recipe a try!
2. Salt and Pepper Shrimp – Get ready for a shrimp party with this crispy delicious salt and pepper shrimp. For shrimp lovers, this recipe is for you!
3. Pea Shoots with Garlic – Get your veggies in with this simple yet delicious 5 ingredient vegetable stir fry dish!
4. Air Fryer Salt and Pepper Tofu – In search of a light and healthy recipe? This salt-and-pepper tofu is the one! Cooked to perfection in the air fryer and perfectly seasoned.
5. Bok Choy with Garlic Sauce – Simple, easy, and only takes 10 minutes to make!
Chinese Scrambled Eggs with Shrimp
- 4 oz shrimp washed and deveined
- 3 eggs
- 1 scallion chopped
- 2 tbsp neutral oil
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp sesame oil
- 1/8 white pepper powder
- 1/2 tsp cornstarch for starch slurry
- 1/2 tbsp water for starch slurry
- In a bowl, add the shrimp, salt, and white pepper. Mix together well. Toss in the cornstarch and mix again until fully coated.
- Mix together 1/2 tsp cornstarch and 1/2 tbsp water to make a starch slurry.
- Combine the eggs, salt, sugar, sesame oil, and white pepper powder, starch slurry and chopped scallions together in a bowl. Whisk until fully mixed.
- In a wok or pan, add 1 tbsp oil over medium high heat. Place the shrimp in the pan and cook until they're 80% of the way done. Remove from the heat and transfer the shrimp into the egg mixture.
- Wipe the wok or pan down clean. Heat the remaining tbsp of oil over medium-high heat.
- When the wok starts smoking, add the egg mixture and let this cook for about 30 seconds. The sides of the egg mixture should bubble and puff up.
- Using a spatula, lift the cooked layer of eggs and fold it on top of the uncooked eggs. Continue to do this 3-4 times. Do not scramble or mix the eggs vigourously or else it won't be silky
- Turn the heat off and continue to fold and layer the eggs until your desired doneness. Keep in mind that the residual heat will continue to cook the eggs.
- Transfer to a plate and serve immediately.
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