How to Reheat Shrimp in a Microwave? (Best Method)

As a seafood junkie myself, shrimp is a food item I always have in my fridge. I cook shrimp at least twice a week, whether roasted or poached. It’s nutritious, versatile, and low-calorie. What more can a girl ask for?

But dealing with leftover shrimp was always the hardest part. On a stovetop, heating it for a second longer would make it rubbery and over-cooked. Through my experience(s), I’ve come to know that shrimps are sensitive to heat and that makes reheating them extremely tricky. 

After ruining a few batches of already beautifully cooked shrimp on the stovetop, I came to the following conclusion. An open flame is an uncontrolled heat source that could over-cook shrimp in mere seconds. So combining shrimp with a stovetop became a huge no-no for me.

That’s when I realized, isn’t the microwave a viable source to heat things up? Why can’t I reheat my precious shrimp in a microwave? And so, I went ahead and tried it.

To my surprise, it came out decent. So I started experimenting, and, ultimately, mastered the art of microwaving shrimp.

Sounds like an achievement, no?

Today I present to you a complete guide on microwaving shrimp. Reheating shrimp in a microwave is no rocket science and it’s a technique you can quite easily master. Just keep a few pointers in mind, and you’re good to go.

I know you’re curious to find out the details. Just keep on reading to find out more!

Can You Reheat Shrimp In A Microwave?

Yes, definitely. You can reheat shrimp in a microwave. A microwave is a source of heat like any other, so why can’t it be used to reheat food items like shrimp?

Reheating seafood is extremely technical because they tend to overcook quite easily and start to smell unpleasant. However, in my opinion, reheating shrimp is not a big deal and if done right, it gives the desired result with zero effort.

If you reheat shrimp with 30 seconds intervals, no damage will be done. The short intervals will prevent overcooking. But don’t overheat shrimp more than once. If you do, the texture will be compromised and the taste and smell will become unpleasant.

All you need to do is place the shrimp in a microwave-safe container and place it in a microwave. Reheat it at small intervals and check whether the inside is warmed up. And always try to reheat small portions of the shrimp which you can eat in one go (no judgment on your portion size)!

Do not overcrowd the dish or reheat it in big batches. Reheating large portions of shrimp will make them stay cold on the inside while the outsides will get over-cooked.

how to cook shrimp in the microwave

Step-By-Step Instructions to Reheat Shrimp

Follow the following steps to reheat shrimp to perfection:

  1. Spread the shrimp evenly in a microwave-safe dish. Don’t layer them nor stack them. Make sure the plate isn’t overcrowded.
  2. Cover the dish with a microwave-safe lid to trap the steam inside the dish.
  3. Heat the shrimp at high heat for a maximum of 3 minutes at 30-second intervals. Check the temperature in between intervals and stop when the internal temperature of the shrimp is 74 degrees Celsius.
  4. Stir the shrimp using a spoon. Do not use your hands if you want to avoid burning them!
  5. Let them cool for one minute before serving.

How Long Should You Reheat Shrimp?

It doesn’t take more than three minutes for shrimp to get reheated in a microwave. When reheating, always start with one minute of reheating and add increments as needed.

Always add a lid on the top of the dish before placing the shrimp in the microwave. Make sure there is still a small outlet for air to avoid steam from building up. 

Always cook your shrimp on full to medium power, depending on the wattage of your microwave. But never go over 3 minutes of cook time. If the shrimp is reheated for too long at high heat, it will dry out and get rubbery. And trust me when I say that no one wants it.

How Do You Know When Shrimp is Done Reheating?

can you reheat shrimp in the microwave

When reheating shrimp in a microwave, when it gets hot to the touch, and steam rises from the surface, it is a clear indication that the shrimp is perfectly reheated. When it’s done, the reheated shrimp will smell just like cooked shrimp.

But the best way to know whether your shrimp is reheated perfectly is to check the internal temperature using a kitchen thermometer. The internal temperature of perfectly reheated shrimp will be 74 degrees celsius.

If you don’t reheat your shrimp properly, to the correct temperature, you’re risking a ton. It can cause food poisoning! Incorrectly reheated shrimp might have bacteria that can harm your body. No shrimp is worth this much risk!

Sometimes, when shrimp are covered with a sauce, it’s hard to tell whether it is reheated to the correct temperature. But no need to worry because I’ve got you covered here as well through a small hack!

There is a small crevice in the back of the shrimp where the shrimp’s vein once was. The opposite end to the shrimp’s tail, which is the thickest section, would remain locked. And the crevice, which was once translucent, will get opaque when the shrimp is reheated perfectly.

Is It Safe To Reheat Shrimp In A Microwave?

Yes, it is completely safe. You can eat reheated shrimp within 4 days of it sitting in the fridge.

However, there is always the risk of seafood getting smelly and drying out in the microwave. To avoid this from happening, you can add onions and garlic which will make the unpleasant smell go away and the shrimp will taste much better after reheating.

Another risk involved is that the shrimp might end up stinking up your microwave. The seafood-y smell is very hard to eliminate from the appliance, but it isn’t impossible. Wipe the microwave walls with lemon juice and dish soap, and the stink will go away. 

Shrimp holds a lot of flavor and nutrients. It is recommended to reheat shrimp with a sprinkle of water and cover it with a microwave-safe lid. The steam will help keep the moisture and flavor locked in and won’t let the appliance stink up.

Tips To Reheat Shrimp in a Microwave

The following tips and tricks will further help you in reheating your shrimp to perfection in a microwave:

  • Don’t stack one shrimp on top of the other.
  • Don’t eat the shrimp immediately after taking it out of the microwave, as it might burn your mouth.
  • If your shrimp is frozen, defrost it first before reheating it in a microwave. If you don’t defrost your shrimp it, it will stay cold on the inside, and the outside will overcook.
  • Do not reheat the shrimp twice.
  • Sprinkle some water inside the dish to prevent the shrimp from drying out and to ensure even distribution of heat.
  • Make sure that the shrimp hasn’t gone bad before reheating it. Otherwise, your appliance will stink up badly.
  • Reduce the refrigeration time as much as possible. The less time in the fridge, the less the stink.
  • Store the shrimp in the fridge in a zip lock bag or in a bowl wrapped with cling film.


Shrimp is among the most nutritious foods, but reheating it can be a true challenge, as it tends to get rubbery when overheated. The taste and smell become extremely unpleasant as well. Sometimes, when reheated improperly, it might also give you food poisoning.

But with the instructions given above, and to the right temperature, shrimp can be reheated perfectly in a microwave. Not only that, using the microwave is one of the easiest and quickest ways to reheat shrimp.

Now that you know all this, don’t be afraid to cook shrimp in large batches. You can always reheat them and have them tomorrow, right?

Hopefully, this helped you out!


how to reheat shrimp

How can I reheat shrimp without overcooking it?

To reheat cooked or leftover shrimp, place them in a microwave-safe dish and drizzle some olive oil on top. Cover the dish with a lid or plastic wrap and microwave for 30 seconds to one minute. Alternatively, you can also sauté the shrimp in a pan with some olive oil until heated through.

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Can I reheat breaded shrimp?

Yes, you can reheat breaded shrimp by placing them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and spraying them lightly with cooking spray. Bake in the oven at 350°F for about 10-12 minutes until they are crispy and heated through.

What is the best way to thaw frozen shrimp?

The safest way to thaw frozen shrimp is by placing them in the refrigerator overnight. If you need to thaw them quickly, place them in a bowl of cold water for about 15-20 minutes or until they are no longer icy.

What are some delicious dishes that I can make using pre-cooked shrimp?

You can use pre-cooked shrimp to make various dishes such as Shrimp Scampi, Shrimp Alfredo Pasta, Shrimp Fried Rice, Shrimp Tacos, Shrimp Salad Sandwiches etc.

Is it safe to eat leftover shrimp dishes after reheating?

Yes, it is safe to eat leftover shrimp dishes after reheating if they have been stored properly and reheated thoroughly. Make sure that the internal temperature of the food reaches at least 165°F before consuming it.

How can I reheat grilled shrimp without making it rubbery?

To reheat flavorful grilled shrimp, wrap them in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and place them on a baking sheet. Heat the oven to medium heat and bake for a few minutes until they are hot. Make sure to spread the shrimp in a single layer so that they reheat evenly.

What is the best way to store leftover fried rice?

To keep your fried rice fresh, transfer it into an airtight container while still warm. Cover with plastic wrap before sealing with the lid. Store in the fridge for up to 4 days or freeze for longer storage.

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Can I use a steamer to cook shrimp scampi?

Yes, you can steam your shrimp scampi by placing them in a steamer basket over boiling water. Cook until pink and opaque, about 2-4 minutes depending on their size.

How do I know if my cooked shrimp has gone bad?

Spoiled shrimp will have an off smell and slimy texture when touched. If you notice any discoloration or mold growth, discard immediately as these are signs of bacterial contamination.

What is the best way to reheat frozen cooked shrimp?

The most effective way to thaw frozen cooked shrimp is by placing them in cold water for about 10-15 minutes before reheating using one of the methods mentioned above (oven or steaming). Avoid microwaving as this may cause uneven heating and make your shrimps dry out quickly.

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