Portuguese Style Shrimp Recipe!

Your "Meez" For The Portuguese Style Shrimp

Your “Meez” For The Portuguese Style Shrimp

Welcome back to Expat in Lisbon! Thanks again for checking out the blog and to show you how much I love having you guys over, I’m making Portuguese Style Shrimps for you today! I will break down this recipe step by step with pictures so you know exactly how to recreate this delicious appetizer that is just bursting with Mediterranean flavors. This recipe is really easy and once you get the hang of it you can bang it out in less than 10 minutes. Seriously! If you have a tablet you can bring it with you right into the kitchen! Let’s get started.

First, you want to get your “meez” together. That’s kitchen lingo for “all the stuff you need for making the dish, organized, and in one place.” How all of that got condensed into “meez” I have no idea.

Your Meez for Portuguese Style Shrimp (serves 2-4)


9-16 raw shrimp with head still on. (3 to 4 shrimp per person, add more if you have to, but then that means you need a large enough pan so that all the shrimps touch the bottom hot surface of the pan)

3 teeth (cloves) of garlic, minced

1 bay leaf

1 tbsp of butter

3 tbsp of olive oil

1/2 lemon juice

Fleur de Sel from Portugal, or regular fine sea salt

Fresh cracked black pepper

1/2 cup of dry white wine (I prefer Vinho Verde, but a Pino Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc will do)

Crusty Portuguese bread (not pictured). 


Kitchen scissors, tongs, chef’s knife, large skillet or fry pan, stopwatch (optional)


For prepwork, you have to rinse and butterfly the shrimp. That means you have to take the kitchen scissors and cut down the spine of the shell on the shrimp, but leave the shell on. DO NOT remove the head. Also remove any long feelers that are still attached to the shrimp. Then you take your chef knife and slice a little bit down the spine of the shrimp, but not all the way through. This is so the sauce can contact the flesh of the shrimp and flavor it more. Then set aside. Next…

Step 1 - Portuguese Style Shrimp

Step 1 – Portuguese Style Shrimp

Add the olive oil, garlic, butter, bay leaf, and black pepper to the pan. Turn on high heat.

Step 2 - Portuguese Style Shrimp

Step 2 – Portuguese Style Shrimp

Once the pan looks like this add your shrimp. Make sure that each shrimp has it’s own space on the pan and that each one is in contact with the bottom of the pan and the sauce. Once the shrimps are in the pan take your 1/2 lemon and squeeze it over the shrimps.

Step 3 - Portuguese Style Shrimp

Step 3 – Portuguese Style Shrimp

Now, wait 5 seconds, and then add your 1/2 cup of white wine

Take a large 3-finger pinch of sea salt and sprinkle it into the pan at a height for even distribution. 

Step 4 - Portuguese Style Shrimp

Step 4 – Portuguese Style Shrimp

Now count to 45, or use a kitchen timer or a stopwatch. Once 45 seconds are up use the tongs to flip them. Cook some more for another 45 seconds, turning down the heat to medium. Once the time is up turn off the stove and transfer to a pasta bowl or deep plate and serve immediately, with crusty Portuguese bread for sopping up the sauce. Enjoy!

Step 5 - Eat! - Portuguese Style Shrimp

Step 5 – Eat! – Portuguese Style Shrimp

Well! I told you guys that it was a quick and simple recipe. When I’m putting together dinners this is usually the last dish that I cook, and the first that I recommend that people dig into! Eat ’em while their hot! The sauce is seriously delicious as well with bread!

Thanks again for stopping by Expat in Lisbon and let me know the results and reviews of the recipe when you make it! As always,

Lisboa Espera Por Ti.

9 responses to “Portuguese Style Shrimp Recipe!

  1. Problem is, Most of the shrimps we can get here are decapitated, also, can we do this without lemon, Mom doesn’t like the sourness of her cooking

    • it’s not a problem if the shrimp has been decapitated, but the head on shrimps do taste better because they keep the flavor of the sauce better. I guess you can do it without lemon, but it really doesn’t make it sour, it just adds a little bit of sharpness to the flavor and makes the sauce less heavy. Try it once with the lemon and if you don’t like it then next time take it out.

  2. Pingback: Portuguese Quail Recipe | Expat In Lisbon·

  3. does adding the wine cause the sauce to become red? ive searched numerous website on how to give the sauce that nice reddish “orangey” color and cannot find :(

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