Living Columns & Blogs

Coconut Lime Shrimp on Skewers

Nearly a decade ago, I lost something that I once loved.

My taste for shrimp.

I grew up eating shrimp at every opportunity. My birthday dinners were usually at Sizzler where as a kid I would get the deep-fried shrimp. Eventually, I moved on to peel and eat shrimp. One of the first dinners I ever cooked myself was shrimp scampi. And who doesn’t love a spicy Tom Yum shrimp soup?

And then one day I woke up and could not tolerate the flavor of shrimp. I tried a few different types, but to no avail. Shrimp was a no-go for me. I feared this was a precursor to an allergy or something and so I resorted to life without eating shrimp. I couldn’t even be tempted by the yummy Thai soup.

Within the last few months, I have started finding remnants of what I had lost. My taste for shrimp is slowly re-emerging nearly a decade later.

Last weekend, I was reading my favorite magazine -- Sunset -- and ran across a recipe for Coconut Lime Shrimp on Skewers. They actually sounded good, and my kids like to eat anything -- well nearly anything -- on sticks. It was certain to be a hit.

It was a hit. Don’t attempt this on a week night, as I did, if you work. My kids were starved and grumpy by the time dinner was ready. If you do tackle it on a weeknight, marinate the shrimp ahead of time and toast your coconut ahead of time. Otherwise enjoy it on a weekend with a Washington Riesling (Chateau St. Michelle would work, and the price is always right). Here’s the recipe:

Coconut Lime Shrimp on Skewers

Coconut Lime Shrimp Skewers

Time: 30 minutes, plus marinating time. A squeeze of lime adds zing and toasted coconut contributes crunch to this easy make-ahead crowd-pleaser. You'll need at least 24 wooden skewers (6 in.).


Serves 12


• 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger

• 1 tablespoon minced garlic

• 1 tablespoon freshly grated lime zest

• 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

• 1 can (14 oz.) coconut milk

• 2 pounds large shrimp (26 to 30 per lb.), peeled and deveined

• 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

• Fresh lime wedges for squeezing

• 1/2 cup toasted, sweetened shredded coconut


1. In a medium bowl, combine ginger, garlic, lime zest and juice, and coconut milk. Add shrimp, tossing to coat, and chill, covered, at least 1 hour and up to 1 day.

2. Meanwhile, soak skewers in water. Prepare a grill for high heat (450° to 550°; you can hold your hand 5 in. above cooking grate only 2 to 4 seconds). Push 2 or 3 shrimp onto each skewer in a "C" shape (through each end); cook, turning once, until flesh has just turned pink and is slightly charred, about 3 minutes on each side.

3. Arrange skewers on a serving platter and sprinkle evenly with salt, a squeeze of lime juice, and coconut. Serve with extra lime wedges on the side.

Note: Nutritional analysis is per 2-skewer serving.

Nutritional Information

Calories: 147 (56% from fat)

Protein: 13g

Fat: 9.1g (sat 7.3)

Carbohydrate: 3.6g

Fiber: 0.3g

Sodium: 127mg

Cholesterol: 93mg

Sunset, JUNE 2009