Steakhouse Shrimp Cocktail Recipe: No Menu Required for This Easy Seafood Appetizer by Donna John

Seafood Appetizers Lunch
a year ago

Steakhouse Shrimp Cocktail Recipe: No Menu Required for This Easy Seafood Appetizer

My grandson absolutely loves seafood, especially shrimp and fish. One thing that lights up his face is when he sees shrimp cocktail on the menu. After him trying some just OK shrimp cocktails when out and about, I decided to find a recipe to make him when he came to visit that was better than OK.

This shrimp cocktail recipe tastes like what you would order at a nice steakhouse. The shrimp are boiled in a poaching liquid seasoned with onion, lemon, garlic, tarragon and seafood seasoning. The homemade cocktail sauce recipe is fresh and full of strong flavors that complement the shrimp perfectly.

If you can't find jumbo shrimp, buy the biggest shrimp you can find for this steakhouse shrimp cocktail recipe. Small shrimp will work, but just don't have the impact when serving this seafood appetizer to friends, family or guests – or grandsons.

Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 2 to 4



  • 2 pounds shell-on deveined jumbo shrimp
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 lemon
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2 sprigs fresh tarragon
  • 1 tablespoon seafood seasoning (I like Old Bay)
  • 1 bay leaf

Cocktail Sauce

  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup chili sauce (I use Heinz Chili Sauce)
  • 1/4 cup prepared horseradish
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • hot sauce, to taste (I use a few drops of Tabasco Sauce)

Here's how to make it: 

  1. Fill a large pot with water and add the onion, lemon, garlic, tarragon, bay leaf and seafood seasoning. Bring to a boil and simmer about 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, add the shrimp and cook until cooked through, about 5 minutes. Remove the shrimp to an ice bath. Once cool, drain well. 
  2. To make the cocktail sauce, combine all the ingredients. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. 
  3. To assemble the shrimp cocktail, spoon some sauce into individual serving bowls and top with shrimp or serve the cocktail sauce in a bowl with the shrimp on the side. 

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Bay Leaves $4 & Up
Ketchup $2 & Up
Chili Sauce $3 & Up
Horseradish $3 & Up
Hot Sauce $2 & Up
We have some shrimp cocktail lovers in our family too, thanks!
Elisa Schmitz
This brings back great memories of family dinners out, when my daughters would always look forward to ordering shrimp cocktail as a special treat. Thanks for the great recipe to make it at home!

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