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Garlic Shrimp Stir Fry

Juicy shrimp are sautéed with a gorgeous rainbow of vegetables and an Asian garlic sauce in this easy, fast, delicious garlic shrimp stir-fry.

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Garlic Shrimp Stir Fry with snow peas and bell peppers over rice on a plate

Stir-Fries: The OG One-Pan Dinner

Shrimp make the best stir-fries. One of the trickiest things about cooking shrimp is that they can overcook easily, and overcooked shrimp is a real bummer. But! Cooking shrimp in a stir-fry is a natural fit for these juicy little crustaceans. A fast fry is the easiest way to cook them. Sautéed quickly over high heat, with a flavorful sauce and some veggies, this recipe is all but guaranteed to produce perfect shrimp every time. It’s healthy and quick, but it’s also a fun dish to throw together for friends—using shrimp makes it feel a little special, and it’s easy to make it gluten-free so it accommodates a lot of dietary preferences.

Ingredients laid out for garlic shrimp stir fry red bell peppers, asparagus, cilantro
Garlic Shrimp Stir Fry sauce in a bowl
asparagus, red bell pepper and snow peas sautéed in a frying pan
Garlic Shrimp Stir Fry in a pan wth asparagus, snow peas and red bell peppers

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Meet the King of All Stir-Fry Sauces: Garlic Sauce!

This healthy, easy shrimp with garlic sauce stir-fry is brought to life with the super-savory garlic stir-fry sauce that you’ll sauté the shrimp and veggies in. We also have a pared-down stir fry sauce that has a shorter ingredient list that you can use too.

  • Soy sauce. You can substitute gluten-free tamari if you’d like to make this into a gluten-free shrimp stir-fry.
  • Sesame oil. We prefer the nuttier flavor of toasted sesame oil, but either toasted or untoasted will work just fine.
  • Chili sauce. We usually reach for the straightforward chili-heat of sambal oelek, but you could use sriracha if that’s what you have on-hand. Or, if you’d like to make your garlic shrimp stir-fry more mild in flavor, just leave it out.
  • Brown sugar. A little sweetness is key, and helps to balance all of the big flavors that are at play in this garlic stir-fry sauce.
  • Garlic. And lots of it! We call for six fresh cloves of garlic.
  • Cornstarch. This may seem like a weird ingredient, but cornstarch is the magical stir-fry sauce ingredient—it makes the sauce a little bit thick and helps it to coat the shrimp, asparagus, snow peas and peppers in just the way you want it to.
hands pouring garlic sauce over shrimp stir fry in  pan.
Garlic Shrimp Stir Fry in a pan with asparagus, snow peas, red bell peppers

How to Make Garlic Shrimp

Newsflash! You don’t need a wok to make a great at-home stir fry for dinner. All you really need is a frying pan, but here are a few tips to get any stir fry just right:

  • Choose a large skillet with a rounded or flat bottom—you want to have plenty of room to keep the ingredients moving around in the pan as you cook, which is the key to a good stir-fry. For crisp veggies and perfectly-cooked shrimp, it’s important not to overcrowd the pan. Having a larger pan makes that easier to do.
  • Use medium-high heat for this shrimp stir-fry—it gives the veggies enough time to get nicely tender, without getting burned or becoming soggy. Medium-high is just right for cooking the shrimp quickly, too, which helps them stay juicy and tender.
  • When you’re prepping the shrimp, asparagus, bell peppers and snow peas, think about size as you chop. Making sure your veggies and shrimp are roughly the same size will help ensure even cooking.
  • If you’re wondering how long to fry shrimp, the main thing to do is to WATCH. It’ll happen fast—as in three minutes-ish—and so once you add the shrimp to the pan, stir it constantly and keep watching. Once it turns pink, it’s probably done.
Garlic Shrimp Stir Fry
Garlic Shrimp Stir Fry in a an with a wooden spoon

Tools You’ll Need:

More Shrimp Recipes We Love

Healthy, low-carb, fast and easy, shrimp is one of our favorite ingredients to work with. Here are four shrimp recipes that are always a hit in our house:

Garlic Shrimp Stir Fry with snow peas and bell peppers over rice on a plate

Stir It Up!

Did you love this easy, fast garlic shrimp recipe? Snap a photo of your garlic shrimp with veggies and maybe even a video of the beautiful people you feed it to. Tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper. Happy eating!

Garlic Shrimp Stir Fry

  • Serves: 6
  • Prep Time:  5 min
  • Cook Time:  15 min
  • Calories: 210

Ingredients

  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce or tamari
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon chili sauce, such as sambal oelek
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup snow peas
  • 2 pounds large raw tail-on shrimp, peeled and deveined

For Serving

  • Cooked rice
  • Chopped fresh cilantro
  • Sesame seeds

Method

  1. In a small bowl, combine the garlic, ¼ cup of water, soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil, chili sauce, and cornstarch. Whisk to combine.

  2. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil is glistening, add the bell pepper, asparagus, and snow peas. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables begin to soften, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the shrimp and cook, stirring occasionally, until pink and opaque, 3 to 4 minutes more.

  3. Add the soy sauce mixture to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is slightly thickened and the shrimp and veggies are completely coated, about 5 minutes.

  4. Serve over cooked rice, sprinkled with cilantro and sesame seeds, if desired.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories210
  • Protein23 g
  • Carbohydrates14 g
  • Total Fat6 g
  • Dietary Fiber2 g
  • Cholesterol220 mg
  • sodium1217 mg
  • Total Sugars8 g

Garlic Shrimp Stir Fry

Questions & Reviews

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  • Barbara

    How long can this last in the fridge. How many days

    Should be good up to 4 days. Hope you enjoy!

  • Kay

    How can I make this amazing dish with lower sodium?

    The items that bring sodium also bring a lot of the flavor (soy sauce, chili paste and sesame oil) YOu can cut back on those items but it will effect he taste a lot.

  • Nick

    Can you use something else besides cornstarch for this receipe?

    Arrowroot or potato starch could work.

  • Scott

    Hi, have prepared kimchi sauce in a jar and sweet chili sauce also. No regular chili sauce. Which should I improvise with? Or neither? Thanks.

    Neither would be a good sub in this recipe.

  • Sofia

    I cannot eat cilantro - is there anything that can be substituted?

    You can just skip it or sliced green onions would be good on top as well. Hope you enjoy Sofia!

  • anne

    Siracha sauce is a great substitute for the chili sauce. I see others using dry ground ingredients instead. I'm not sure that is the best substitute

    Thanks Anne Marie.

  • Anne

    5 star rating for a reason. I've been cooking Asian food since I was little. My boyfriend doesn't like most of the authentic tastes. We tried this recipe and only changed up the soy sauce for coco aminos seasoning sauce. It's just like soy sauce, just no soy. Anyway, he loved this and so did I . This recipe is definitely our middle ground favorite from now on.

    Thanks Anne, we are so glad you both loved it!

  • Meg

    Delicious! I reduced the chili oil earlier by 1/2 Tbsp but the sauce still had kick and lots of flavor! Did not have cilantro on hand but saw the comments on spring onion. Topped the dish with that and added toasted sesame seeds.

    Thanks Meg, we are so glad you loved it!

  • Molly

    Really enjoyed this recipe. I add more veggies (mushrooms, bok choy, broccoli, and baby carrots). Flavorful and healthy!

    Thanks Molly, we are so glad you loved it!

  • David

    Excellent with one exception. I sautéed the chopped garlic with the vegetables. I would never cook garlic at the end with a sauce. I did not have chili sauce so used an 1/8 tsp of cayenne pepper. Only had one pound of shrimp but still worked out fine.

    Thanks David, glad you enjoyed it!