Trying to find new ways to reduce your time in your kitchen can be a full-time job. But there are some foods that you can cook together in the same dish or pan to speed up the cooking process.
Chicken and shrimp can not only be cooked together safely but should be cooked together. The chicken’s flavour only helps to highlight that of the shrimp and vice versa, creating a delicious meal.
How To Cook Chicken And Shrimp
Most people are confused that chicken and shrimp can be cooked together. However, this is mainly because of safety concerns than anything else.
The key to cooking chicken and shrimp together is timing.
Chicken takes longer to cook all the way through than shrimp. To ensure that you do not end up with raw chicken or burnt shrimp, allow the chicken a few minutes to cook before you add the shrimp.
Here is the best way to cook chicken and shrimp together. We are assuming you are using diced chicken breast or thighs and peeled, prepared and raw shrimps:
- Heat Some Fat
Add butter or oil to a frying pan, depending on the dish you are cooking. Allow the fat to heat up until it is sizzling.
- Season The Chicken
While the fat is heating up, season your chicken with a few simple herbs, salt and pepper. You will not need to overload the chicken with flavour as the shrimp will also provide a lot of flavour.
- Season The Shrimp
You can also go ahead and lightly season your shrimp in a different bowl than the raw chicken.
- Add The Chicken
Lay your chicken pieces in the oil, covering the chicken in as much fat as possible.
- Cook The Chicken
Leave the chicken to cook for 2-4 minutes in the pan. Agitate the chicken every so often so that it doesn’t burn.
- Add The Shrimp
Add your shrimp to the pan when the middle of the chicken is still a little pink and juicy, but the outside is browned.
- Cook Together
All that’s left to do is cook the shrimp and chicken, allowing their flavours to rub off on each other naturally. It will take 3-4 minutes for the shrimp to cook through depending on their size.
Know Your Timings!
Diced chicken cubes will take roughly twice as long to cook through versus shrimps. If you’re going to cook these two proteins together then make sure you give the chicken a head start.
Isn’t Cooking Chicken And Shrimp Together Unsafe?
Like cooking any dish that includes seafood or chicken, you will need to be aware of the hygiene risks of cooking raw meats.
As mentioned above, you will need to cook your chicken before the shrimp to ensure that you are not serving raw chicken. But you do not want to cook the chicken entirely before you add the shrimp.
This means the chicken juices left in the pan when adding the shrimp will still be raw. Avoid removing the chicken or the shrimp once combined until both are thoroughly cooked to keep your kitchen safe.
Your chicken will be safe to heat once the middle of the largest chicken piece has reached 165F or 75C. When the chicken has reached this temperature, the shrimp will also be safe to eat.
If you are still unsure if your shrimp is cooked, the best way to check is to ensure that the shrimp is entirely pink.
How To Season Chicken And Shrimp
Chicken and shrimp, while a wonderful combination on the plate, are usually treated differently.
But seasoning and flavouring the two proteins to work together is very easy. Even the most amateur chefs will have no trouble presenting a delicious dish.
Chicken is one of the most versatile meats in the world. You can season it with just about anything without ruining its flavour.
As for shrimp, that is best paired with cream and light ingredients. Butter, garlic and parsley are always a winning combination.
When you season your chicken and shrimp to combine the two, go with lighter and more delicate herbs such as parsley, basil and sea salt.
What Do You Serve With Chicken And Shrimp?
Okay, so chicken and shrimp make a great combination. But you can’t just serve the two proteins by themselves. You need to add some filling starch and vegetables.
The best way to compliment chicken and shrimp is to keep the dish light.
In moderation, tomatoes, peas, lettuce and even celery will work well alongside chicken and shrimp. You can also use a range of mushrooms if their flavour is not too rich.
To bulk the dish out, you can use noodles or rice.
Linguine and white rice are the best pairings, but you can experiment with what you have to hand without worrying about your dish too much.
Will Chicken Work Well With Other Seafood?
Though chicken is versatile and can pair great with a range of food in flavour, its texture can be an odd addition to many fish dishes.
The reason chicken works fine with shrimp is that the tenderness of the chicken and the firm but also tender texture of the shrimp are similar enough to work. Other sea foods have too much of a different texture to work with chicken.
It is also worth mentioning that shrimp only really pairs well with chicken. Other meats can be too tough or gamey to luxuriate in the salty, slightly sweet flavour or shrimp.
Cooking Chicken and Shrimp FAQs
Below are a few further questions about cooking chicken and shrimp together.
Yes, you can cook any cut of chicken with shrimp but you will need to consider timings. Shrimp will take just a few minutes to cook, so ensure the chicken is almost cooked before adding the shrimp.
Although it is OK to marinade raw chicken with shrimp, you will probably need to cook the chicken first, so it will be more practical to have them marinaded individually.
Acacia may be a freelance writer by day, but they are a food fanatic by night. They are always trying out new recipes or finding different ways to elevate classical dishes. But their biggest culinary aim is to educate others on the basics of the kitchen so that they too can enjoy delicious food.