Creamy Shrimp Salad

4 from 1 vote

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My creamy shrimp salad is the perfect dish for a warm summer day. Creamy, light, and bursting with flavor, color, and texture from diced onions🧅, sweet peppers, fresh chives🌿, and dill, you will fall in love with this easy and tasty preparation of shrimp.

Why You’ll Love Creamy Shrimp Salad

Creamy shrimp salad is a great dish that combines perfectly poached shrimp with fresh ingredients and a creamy dressing. The shrimp is tender and juicy, while the sweet pepper, red onion, and optional jalapeños add a burst of flavor. Fresh herbs like chives and dill, combined with a creamy mayo-based dressing, I can chug😉! This dish is quick to prepare, making it perfect for any occasion. It’s a healthy and versatile option that’s sure to please, whether you’re enjoying it at a gathering or at home.

How to Prepare Creamy Shrimp Salad

🍤If you find cooking seafood or shellfish intimidating, starting with shrimp is a great choice. You poach the shrimp in a pot of boiling water until they naturally curl and turn pink.

💦Usually, this takes just 3 minutes of cooking time. Then the shrimp are transferred to an ice bath (a large bowl of ice water), to “shock” them, or in other words, cool them down quickly and prevent them from overcooking.

🐯You can buy peeled, deveined shrimp in the frozen aisle of your grocery store. Alternatively, you can ask your fishmonger to peel and devein them for you, which takes half the prep work out of your hands. I used tiger shrimp which are large and have a really lovely sweet taste and slightly meaty texture. Generic shrimp will work just fine too.

🌯This recipe came about when I was looking for a quick, satisfying lunch that also felt a bit special. This recipe hit the spot and it can be prepared in about 10 minutes from start to plate. The salad is delicious on its own, but also incredible tucked inside tortillas, on top of plain pasta, or served open-faced on top of some multigrain toast (in the Danish style of smorrebrod).

Nonna’s Tip

You can add the poached shrimp to an ice bath or transfer them to a plate and pop them in the freezer for a few minutes to cool off. The ice bath stops the cooking process which we want so that the shrimp does not overcook. 

Substitutions and Variations

Whether you’re looking for substitutions to accommodate dietary preferences or seeking variations to suit your taste buds, this dish welcomes experimentation.

  • You can use crabmeat or any seafood of choice instead of shrimp.
  • If you want to lighten up the dressing, use 1/2 mayo + 1/2 plain yogurt
  • Feel free to add or take away any herbs/veggies according to preference.
  • If you don’t like dill, try other fresh herbs, such as parsley or cilantro. 

Best Served With

  • You could serve this alongside steamed veggies, such as broccoli or carrots.
  • Try this with rice, or pasta 🍝or put it inside a tortilla.

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Common Questions

What can I use instead of shrimp?

You can use crabmeat or any seafood of choice for this recipe.

How long does the salad remain fresh, and for how long can I store it?

This salad remains fresh in the fridge in a tightly sealed glass container for 2 to 3 days.

Can I use frozen shrimp for this recipe?

Yes, you can use frozen shrimp, but make sure to thaw them before poaching. You can thaw them by placing them in the refrigerator or by using the quick thaw method under cold running water.

Can I make this salad ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare the salad components (poached shrimp, chopped vegetables, and dressing) in advance and assemble them just before serving to keep the salad fresh and crisp.

Can I serve this salad as a side dish?

Absolutely! Creamy shrimp salad can be served as a main course or as a side dish, depending on your preference and the occasion.

Can I use a different type of herb instead of dill?

Certainly, you can use other fresh herbs like parsley, cilantro, or tarragon to add your preferred flavor to the salad.

Creamy Shrimp Salad

My creamy shrimp salad is the perfect dish for a warm summer day. If you're intimidated by cooking seafood or shellfish, shrimp is one of the best places to start. They are simply poached in a pot of boiling water until they curl into themselves and turn pink in just 3 minutes of cooking time.
4 from 1 vote
Course: Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 2
Author: The Modern Nonna
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 3 minutes
Total Time: 13 minutes


Poaching The Shrimp

  • water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ lemon
  • salt
  • 16 jumbo tiger shrimp , peeled and deveined (thawed if frozen)

Additional Ingredients

  • 1 Cubanelle pepper, finely diced (sweet)
  • ½ red onion, finely diced
  • 2 jalapeños, finely diced
  • ½ tablespoon lemon zest
  • 3 tablespoons chives, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup dill, finely chopped and fresh
  • cup mayo, I use Vegenaise
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon relish
  • salt and pepper , to taste


  • NOTE: If your shrimp are not already peeled and deveined, you can do this after they are poached.
  • Add about 4 cups of water to a large pot. Add the bay leaves, squeeze in the lemon juice and the squeezed lemon half, and a big pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat.
  • Once the water boils, turn off the heat and add the raw shrimp. Cover the pot with a lid and cook for 3 minutes or until the shrimp curl into themselves and turn pink. Meanwhile, prepare a large bowl of ice water.
  • After 3 minutes, transfer the shrimp with a spider (or small strainer) to the ice water. Let the shrimp chill for 1 to 2 minutes, then transfer to a plate and set aside.
  • Add the pepper, onion, jalapeño (if using), lemon zest, chives, dill, mayo, mustard, relish, and season with salt and pepper. Add the peeled, chilled shrimp.
  • Toss everything together and enjoy!



You can add the poached shrimp to an ice bath or transfer them to a plate and pop them in the freezer for a few minutes to cool off. The ice bath stops the cooking process which we want so that the shrimp does not overcook. 


Calories: 409kcal, Carbohydrates: 11g, Protein: 24g, Fat: 30g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 17g, Monounsaturated Fat: 7g, Trans Fat: 0.1g, Cholesterol: 217mg, Sodium: 1536mg, Potassium: 396mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 1669IU, Vitamin C: 45mg, Calcium: 130mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
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Hi! I'm Sneji. Nice to meet you!

I am more commonly known as “The Modern Nonna” on social media where I create easy home cooked meals with a modern twist. I was born and raised in Sofia, Bulgaria and learned how to cook at the best culinary school in the world – my grandma’s kitchen. I lived in Greece on the Island of Crete with my parents for a while and then moved to Toronto, Canada when I was in grade 5. I started to really cook and experiment with food 11 years ago when I was 21 years old. Everything I currently know is a reflection of some part of my life…

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4 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

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    1. Hi Gina, I recommend you use whichever type of relish you love the most. I used a savory pickle relish. You can also omit the relish; it’s totally optional.