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Shrimp Louie

  • Serves: 4
  • Prep Time: 20 min
  • Cook Time: 10 min
  • Calories: 436
homemade shrimp louie salad with avocado, hard boiled eggs, tomatoes and capers with a tangy dressing

There’s no shrimp louie quite like a truly, madly, deeply classic shrimp louie salad—no swaps, no changes, nothing incredibly modern. We present to you, our perfect shrimp louie recipe!

The Simple Perfection of a Classic Shrimp Louie

If you love shrimp, like we do, we’re betting that your idea of heaven on earth is a big platter of it that you get to call dinner. That’s basically what shrimp louie is. Shrimp louie is a descendent of the equally wonderful crab louie, and seems to have likely originated in California sometime in the very early 1900s. This classic cold seafood salad is simple and retro-elegant (is that a thing? Can we just say that it is?) and really showcases shrimp in all its meaty, bright pink glory! At once light and celebratory, it just begs to be paired with a chilled glass of rosé or bubbly and a warm summer night. You can also serve it with some good bread (maybe a crusty baguette?) but you certainly don’t have to—it’s an event in and of itself.

ingredients laid out for shrimp louie salad. romaine, tomatoes, hard boiled eggs, capers, avocado, mayonnaise
dressing in a bowl for Shrimp Louie Salad with a spoon.

Start With: Classic Shrimp Louie Salad Ingredients

Oh man. We told you we didn’t mess with anything, and that’s true in spirit. But in practice, we did swap romaine lettuce for iceberg, which is arguably a little bit more traditional than romaine. The thing is, people have been making and serving shrimp louie salads for more than a hundred years now, and it’s hard to say that there’s one exact way to make one! If you keep the shrimp louie toppings simple, keep the shrimp as the centerpiece, serve it with a creamy, mayo-based dressing, well, that sounds like a louie to us! So ours is as traditional a recipe as any, and that seems fair enough, right? OK, without further ado, here’s everything you’ll need to make our shrimp louie recipe:

For the salad:

  • Romaine lettuce

  • Hard-boiled eggs

  • Cherry tomatoes

  • Avocado

  • Capers

For the shrimp marinade:

  • Medium shrimp

  • Tabasco

  • Lemon

  • Garlic powder

  • Olive oil

  • Worcestershire

  • Honey

  • Paprika

raw shrimp marinated in spices in a bowl
marinated shrimp cooked in a saute pan

Top Them With: A (Pretty) Traditional Shrimp Louie Dressing

In lesser establishments, shrimp louie dressing is basically just Thousand Island dressing. But more creative cooks—and more louie-obsessed restaurant chefs—like to take things a little further, and make a louie dressing that’s truly worthy of a salad as perfect as this one. For our shrimp louie dressing, we kept it mayo-based—to us, that’s a must—and drew the rest of our dressing inspiration from the shrimp marinade and the general spirit of this salad! Bright, bold, classic flavors that satisfy without demanding much of us other than pure enjoyment. Here’s what’s in our creamy shrimp louie dressing:

  • Mayonnaise

  • Dijon

  • Lemon

  • Tabasco

  • Honey

  • Worcestershire

  • Capers

  • Garlic powder

  • Paprika

homemade Shrimp Louie salad on a plater with avocado, romaine lettuce, hard boiled eggs, tomatoes, capers and a dressing

How to Make the Best Ever Shrimp Louie Salad

Not only is this salad super easy, you can prep a lot of the ingredients ahead of time. Hard-boil the eggs and whip up the dressing a few days ahead of time, and you’ll be ready to quickly cook the shrimp and assemble the salad just about anytime the mood strikes (or the company shows up!). Here’s how easy it is to make a shrimp louie:

  1. Begin by marinating the shrimp—just while you make the dressing and assemble the other ingredients, no more than 10-15 minutes. The shrimp will soak up the flavor quickly, and you don’t want the shrimp meat to begin to break down too much before cooking.

  2. Use a food processor to mix up the shrimp louie dressing.

  3. Pan-fry the shrimp until it’s cooked and let it cool for a few minutes.

  4. Toss the lettuce with dressing, lay it out on a platter and top it with eggs, cherry tomatoes, avocado, capers, and shrimp. Salt & pepper to taste, and dig in!

Shrimp Louie salad on a plater with avocado, romaine lettuce, hard boiled eggs, tomatoes, capers and a spicy dressing

Tools You’ll Need:

More Easy Shrimp Recipes to Try

homemade shrimp louie salad with avocado, hard boiled eggs, tomatoes and capers with a tangy dressing
Shrimp Louie salad on a plater with avocado, romaine lettuce, hard boiled eggs, tomatoes, capers

We’re on a Shrimp Bender and Please No One Stop Us

We’re so in love with shrimp right now—it’s fast, it’s easy, it’s sort of healthy, and everyone loves it. What’s not to love?! And this shrimp louie is the perfect summertime dinner. We know it’s going to be showing up on repeat all summer long, and we’re here for it. We hope it finds its way into your heart, too! If you make it, let us know how you like it! Share a photo and tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper so that we can see your stuff! Happy eating!

Shrimp Louie

  • Serves: 4
  • Prep Time: 20 min
  • Cook Time: 10 min
  • Calories: 436

Ingredients

Shrimp and Marinade

  • 1 lb Medium shrimp, peeled and deveined, about about 20-25
  • 1/2 tsp Tabasco, plus more for serving
  • 1 Tbsp Lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp Garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 2 Tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp Worcestershire
  • 1 tsp Honey
  • 1/4 tsp Paprika

Dressing

  • 1/2 cup Mayonaise
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon
  • 1/2 tsp Lemon zest
  • 3 1/2 tsp Lemon juice, from one lemon
  • 1/2 tsp Tabasco sauce
  • 1 tsp Honey
  • 1/2 tsp Worcestershire
  • 2 Tbsp Capers, drained
  • 1/4 tsp Garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp Paprika

Salad

  • 2-3 Heads romaine lettuce, chopped about 8 cups (butter lettuce or mixed greens also work well)
  • 4 Hard boiled eggs, halved
  • 8 oz Cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 Large avocado, sliced
  • Capers, drained, for serving
  • Flaky salt, for eggs

Method

  1. In a medium sized bowl, make the marinade by mixing together the Tabasco, lemon juice, garlic powder, salt, olive oil, Worcestershire, honey and paprika. Add the shrimp, toss to coat and set aside.
  2. Add all of the dressing ingredients to the base of a food processor. Pulse to combine until mostly smooth.
  3. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp and cook until opaque and there are no more gray parts left, about 5-7 minutes. Transfer the shrimp to a plate to cool while preparing the salad.
  4. Add the lettuce to a large bowl and toss with the dressing. Top with hard boiled eggs, cherry tomatoes, avocado slices, additional capers if desired and cooled shrimp.
  5. Sprinkle the salad (especially the eggs) with flaky salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste.