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Honey Walnut Shrimp (Best Recipe)

If you’re craving Chinese takeout, whip up this easy honey walnut shrimp at home!

Crunchy shrimp tempura gets tossed in a sweet creamy sauce and candied walnuts. It’s a restaurant-worthy dish you can whip up in 35 minutes.

Top View of a Bowl With Honey Walnut Shrimp with Sweet and Creamy Sauce
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Honey Walnut Shrimp

Honey walnut shrimp is a popular Chinese-American dish. It has all the umami-rich flavors and crunchy-tender textures you crave!

The juicy, crispy shrimp tempura come with a creamy mayo and condensed milk honey sauce. The candied walnut topping adds an extra crunch.

I’m not lying when I say that my copycat recipe is superior to Panda Express. The delicately crisp batter and well-balanced sauce is to die for.

As a bonus, this recipe is a cinch to make. So skip the line and make honey walnut shrimp!

Honey Walnut Shrimp Ingredients - Shrimp, Mochiko Flour, Egg Whites, Vegetable Oil, Mayonnaise, Honey, Walnuts and Sugar

Ingredients

You can make this scrumptious honey garlic shrimp recipe with just 10 ingredients.

Here’s what you need:

Shrimp Tempura

  • Shrimp – It’s better to get the kind that’s already peeled and deveined for convenience.
  • Mochiko Flour – Also called glutinous rice flour. It serves as the base of the batter. Some recipes use flour or cornstarch, but for me, mochiko yields a far crispier and crunchier coating.
  • Egg Whites – They’re whisked with mochiko to form the batter. They help make the coating extra light and delicate.
  • Vegetable Oil – For frying the shrimp. Use neutral-tasting oil with a high smoke point, such as vegetable oil, canola oil, and peanut oil.

Sauce

  • Mayonnaise – It adds richness and creaminess to the shrimp.
  • Honey – It’s called honey walnut shrimp, after all!
  • Sweetened Condensed Milk – For added sweetness and creaminess.

Candied Walnuts

  • Walnuts – The classic recipe uses walnuts, but feel free to use whatever kind of nut you like.
  • Sugar + Water – When boiled together, they turn into a thick glaze that’ll crunch up as they cool and dry.

How to Make Honey Walnut Shrimp

Making honey walnut shrimp is easier than you might think! You can have this dish ready in just five simple steps.

1. Make the candied walnuts. Heat water and sugar on medium heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves, then bring to a boil. Add the walnuts, boil for 2 minutes, then drain. Dry the walnuts on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

2. Make the tempura batter. Whisk the egg whites until they foam up. Gently mix in the mochiko until well combined.

3. Coat and fry the shrimp. Preheat the oil. Dip the shrimp in the batter and shake off the excess. Fry in hot oil until golden brown. Place the cooked shrimp on a wire rack. Repeat.

4. Make the sauce. Whisk together the mayo, honey, and condensed milk.

5. Coat the shrimp. Toss the shrimp in the sauce and sprinkle the candied walnuts on top. Serve with rice if desired. Enjoy!

Closeup View of Homemade Honey Walnut Shrimp Served on a Bowl

Tips for the Best Honey Walnut Shrimp

Frying shrimp can be a little tricky. Don’t worry, these tips will help!

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  • Pat dry the shrimp. Before dipping them in the batter, pat dry the shrimp with a paper towel. It will help the coating stick and make them crispy.
  • Don’t batter the shrimp heavily. Just coat them lightly so they turn out delicately crisp.
  • Don’t over-crowd the skillet. Otherwise, you’ll steam the shrimp instead of frying it. Fry in batches!
  • Use a cooking thermometer. You need to keep the oil between 350 to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Otherwise, the shrimp won’t cook properly. A candy thermometer can help keep an eye on the temperature.
  • Adjust the sweetness. Condensed milk is extremely sweet. If you want to adjust the sweetness of the sauce, start with half a tablespoon. Then, add more to taste.
  • Add lemon juice. If you find the sauce overly rich, balance it out with a spritz of lemon juice.
Honey Shrimp with Walnuts, Drizzled With White Sauce

FAQs

Is Honey Walnut Shrimp an authentic Chinese dish?

While its origins are unclear, many believe that honey walnut shrimp was invented in Hong Kong in the 60s and was introduced in the US in the 80s.

The dish is offered in Chinese and American Chinese restaurants worldwide.

Does this dish taste like Panda Express?

While the taste and texture profiles are the same, my copycat recipe yields a crisper and more delicate coating, plus a lighter sauce.

How many calories are in Honey Walnut Shrimp?

Bad news, dieters! This recipe makes 4 servings, and 1 serving has 605 calories.

There are 4 servings in one recipe.

Can I Use Frozen Shrimp?

Yes, either fresh or frozen and thawed shrimp are both okay to use here.

For convenience, buy shrimp that have already been peeled and deveined. The size is up to you, but I prefer 26/30.

Don’t use pre-cooked shrimp.

What to Serve with Honey Walnut Shrimp

Honey walnut shrimp is best eaten with rice! You can’t go wrong with simple steamed white rice or fried rice.

For a healthier alternative, go for black rice or cauliflower rice.

Can I Freeze Honey Walnut Shrimp?

Sorry but no, I don’t recommend it.

The shrimp’s coating will lose its delicate crunch when frozen, thawed, and reheated, even when you store the shrimp, sauce, and walnuts separately.

How to Store Honey Walnut Shrimp

Honey walnut shrimp is best best served immediately. The tempura coating and walnuts will lose their crunch over time.

But don’t let that stop you from enjoying leftovers! Flavor-wise, the shrimp will still be delicious.

You can also store the shrimp and the sauce separately. Then, fry when you’re ready to eat.

Follow these steps to store and reheat:

To Store: Store leftover shrimp in an air-tight container. Or, store the shrimp, sauce, and walnuts in separate containers. Refrigerate the shrimp for up to 2 days and the sauce for 1 week. Store the walnuts at room temperature.

To Reheat: Reheat in the oven for 4 to 6 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. I don’t recommend microwaving. The shrimp and walnuts will become rubbery.

More Chinese Takeout Recipes You’ll Love

Bang Bang Shrimp

3-Ingredient Orange Chicken

Beef and Broccoli

Bang Bang Chicken

Sweet and Sour Chicken Balls

Chinese Almond Chicken

Honey Walnut Shrimp (Best Recipe)

Servings

4

servings
Prep time

15

minutes
Cooking time

20

minutes
Calories

605

kcal

This honey walnut shrimp is even better than takeout! With just a few ingredients, you can recreate your favorite restaurant dish right at home.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup water

  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar

  • 1/2 cup walnuts

  • 4 large egg whites

  • 2/3 cup mochiko (glutinous rice flour)

  • 1 cup vegetable oil, for frying

  • 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise

  • 2 tablespoons honey

  • 1 tablespoon sweetened condensed milk

Instructions

  • Pour water into a small saucepan over high heat. Mix in the sugar until dissolved. Bring the mixture to a boil. Add the walnuts and boil for 2 more minutes. Drain the walnuts and spread them in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper to dry.
  • Whisk the egg whites until foamy. Whisk in mochiko until the mixture turns into a paste-like batter.
  • Preheat oil in a heavy deep skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Working quickly, dip the shrimp in the mochiko batter and shake off the excess. Fry in the skillet until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes on each side. Drain shrimp on a wire rack. Repeat until all remaining shrimp are fried.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, honey, and sweetened condensed milk. Toss in cooked shrimp. Sprinkle with candied walnuts and serve. Enjoy!
Honey Walnut Shrimp

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author avatar
Kim - InsanelyGood
Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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