Shrimp Toast is made with a savory-sweet, garlicky shrimp mixture coated in nutty sesame seeds spread over fluffy slices of white bread. The loaded toasts are fried to a crispy golden brown and cut into perfect mini appetizers.
The Best Shrimp Toast Recipe
Meet your new favorite appetizer; quick and easy-to-make Shrimp Toast loaded with flavor and a creamy, crunchy texture. You’ll sink your teeth into a layer of nutty sesame seeds, followed by a pleasantly springy, protein-packed shrimp filling. The filling is made of chopped shrimp, garlic, soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, and cilantro, and it’s wildly delicious. It sits on top of a wonderfully soft on the inside, crispy on the outside piece of fried white bread.
These shrimp toasts are some of the most commonly ordered appetizers at Chinese restaurants, but now that you have the recipe, you can have these tasty bites on your table in just 20 minutes, likely at a fraction of the price. I say, skip the take-out – these are better!
Why You’ll Love This Prawn Toast
This homemade shrimp toast is one of my favorite quick and easy appetizers to throw together in a pinch.
- Quick and easy. I still can’t believe this restaurant-quality app only takes 20 minutes to make. That’s faster than ordering takeout!
- Texture. I love the crunch of the sesame seed coating next to the pleasantly springy shrimp filling and the soft toast. Not a dull moment here.
- Dynamic flavor. From the brightness of the cilantro to the umami of the soy sauce to the nuttiness of the sesame oil to the slight sweetness of the shrimp, these little appetizers pack a flavorful bite.
Here’s a list of ingredients needed to make this better-than-takeout prawn toast. Don’t forget to scroll to the recipe card below for exact measurements.
- Scallions: Trim off the ends and any bruised parts.
- Garlic: Use fresh garlic cloves.
- Fresh Cilantro
- Egg white: To hold everything together.
- Soy sauce: You can use liquid aminos instead if you would like.
- Toasted sesame oil
- Shrimp: – I suggest purchasing shrimp that is already peeled and deveined. If you would like to use frozen shrimp, thaw before using them.
- Sesame seeds
- White bread as basic as you can find. You can cut the crusts off if you’d like, but it’s not necessary.
- Vegetable oil: Feel free to use Canola oil, Avocado oil, or Grapeseed oil.
How to Make Shrimp Toast
In just 20 minutes, you could have a classic, delicious Chinese appetizer on your table.
- Make the shrimp paste. In a food processor, pulse the scallions, cilantro, and garlic until well-chopped. Add the egg white, soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, sea salt, black pepper, ginger, and ¾ of shrimp. Pulse until a paste forms.
- Fold in more shrimp. Finely chop the rest of the shrimp and fold it into the paste.
- Assemble. Spread the shrimp mixture evenly over each piece of bread. Press sesame seeds into the shrimp mixture.
- Fry. Heat about 1/8 inch of vegetable oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Once the oil is shimmering, add the shrimp toast to the pan, shrimp side down. Fry for 2 minutes, flip, and fry for an additional 1 minute.
- Cut each slice into quarters.
Tips for Success
Follow these tips to help you avoid some common pitfalls people hit when making prawn toast.
- Don’t get fancy with the bread. It might be tempting to reach for that artisanal loaf or the fluffy sourdough loaf, but trust me, stick with basic white sandwich bread.
- Frying oil: Pick a neutral cooking oil with a high smoke point. If you choose olive oil, that flavor will transfer to the toasts. If you use an oil with a low smoke point, you risk burning the toast while cooking it. Stick with avocado oil, canola oil, or grapeseed oil.
- Get the temperature right. Oil that is too cool will not fry the toasts properly. They will absorb the oil and become soggy and greasy. Oil that is too hot will burn the toasts. Be sure to stick to medium-high heat.
- Do not crowd the pan. If you have a slightly smaller pan or if you are trying to double the recipe, opt to fry in batches so as not to crowd the pan.
What to Serve with Shrimp Toast
Feel free to enjoy shrimp toast on its own as a snack or take it to the next level by serving it with some of these suggestions:
- Dipping sauce. Dipping prawn toast into a tasty sauce really elevates the dish. I love it with sweet chili sauce, ponzu sauce, or even just plain ol’ soy sauce.
- Other Asian-inspired appetizers. Have your friends over for apps and cocktails, and serve this takeout favorite with other finger foods. I really like my Air Fryer Crab Rangoon, or these Air Fryer Vegetable Spring Rolls with Peanut Sauce and these Chicken Lettuce Wraps.
- Before a delicious entree. Serve these Chinese shrimp toasts as an appetizer before diving into your favorite Chinese-inspired entree. Try my Easy Chinese Hot Pot Recipe, this Easy Kung Pao Chicken Recipe, or my spicy Szechuan Chicken.
How to Store Leftovers
- Refrigerator: Allow the toasts to cool completely before sealing them in an airtight container and storing them in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- To reheat, pop them in the oven at 350˚F for 10 minutes or until heated through.
More Chinese-Inspired Recipes
Feeling inspired by this Chinese takeout classic? Let’s keep the ball rolling. Here are some of my other favorite Chinese-inspired recipes for you to try. Happy cooking.
- Easy Kung Pao Chicken Recipe
- Szechuan Chicken
- Air Fryer Crab Rangoon
- Chinese Chicken and Broccoli
- Pork Chop Suey
- Salt and Pepper Chicken
- 3 scallions
- 3 cloves garlic
- ⅓ cup fresh cilantro leaves
- 1 egg white
- 3 teaspoons soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ½ pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
- ¼ cup sesame seeds
- 4 slices white bread
- vegetable oil, for frying
- Make the shrimp topping. In a food processor, pulse together the scallions, cilantro, and garlic until well-chopped. Add the egg white, soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, salt, black pepper, ground ginger, and ¾ of the shrimp. Pulse until a paste forms. Transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl, finely chop the rest of the shrimp, and fold it into the mixture.
- Assemble. Spread the shrimp mixture evenly over each piece of bread and sprinkle each slice with sesame seeds. Press the sesame seeds into the bread.
- Fry. In a large, heavy-bottomed pan, heat about 1/8-inch of vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Wait for the oil to shimmer before adding the shrimp toast to the pan, shrimp side down. Fry for 2 minutes, flip, and fry for an additional 1 minute. Do not crowd the pan. Fry the toasts in batches if necessary.
- Remove from the pan and set aside on a paper towel-lined plate while you work on the rest of the toasts.
- Serve. Cut each slice into quarters and serve warm.
- Use fresh or frozen raw shrimp, not cocktail shrimp.
- Keep it simple and use regular white bread slices.
- Whenever possible, use low-sodium soy sauce.
- For frying, use a high smoke point, neutral-tasting oil like avocado, canola, or grapeseed. Avoid olive oil.
- Maintain medium to medium-high heat. Too cool, the toasts become greasy and soggy. Too hot, and they’ll burn.
- Use a deep, sturdy pot or pan for frying the toasts. If you’re using a thermometer, the oil should be around 350°F (180°C) for deep frying.
- Don’t crowd the pan and fry the toasts in batches.
- Shrimp toast is best served immediately while hot and crispy. Serve with soy sauce or sweet chili sauce for dipping.
Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.