General Tso’s Shrimp doesn't get better than this! Crispy fried shrimp are tossed in a sweet and spicy sauce and served with a sprinkling of sesame seeds and spring onions. My dish will surely make you forget your favourite restaurant’s takeout.
General Tso’s Shrimp is a very popular American Chinese dish that is subtly sweet with a kick of chili. The sauce is thick and full of flavour from the ginger, garlic, chili and the Asian condiments.
If you love seafood, you will love this recipe. Otherwise feel free to swap the shrimp for chicken or tofu. The dish will still be wickedly delicious.
Another great thing about this dish is that no deep-frying is required. The same level of crunchiness can be attained with shallow frying. The recipe is very straight-forward, fuss-free and fairly quick.
Why You’ll Love It
- No-deep frying required
- Quick weeknight meal ready in 20 minutes
- Better than takeout
- Shrimp - You can use raw, peeled shrimp or even blanched ones. If you prefer chicken, use that instead. Or swap with tofu to make it wholly vegetarian.
- Egg - A beaten egg is required to bind the shrimp with the breading.
- Flour Mix - I use a mixture of flour and cornflour (cornstarch). Cornstarch adds a lightness to the coating.
- Sauce - This sauce is a combination of hoisin sauce, rice vinegar, sriracha sauce, all-purpose soy sauce, brown sugar and toasted sesame oil. Full ingredient list can be found below in the recipe card. Hoisin sauce is very important for this recipe and I suggest you to not replace or skip it.
- Garlic + Ginger - Adds amazing flavour to the sauce.
- Crushed Red Pepper - These add heat to the dish. They can be replaced with dried long red chilies or if you prefer it extra spicy use fresh bird’s eye chilies.
- Sesame Seeds - Use toasted sesame seeds. They are great to add depth of flavour and flair to the dish.
- Spring Onion - Green part for garnish.
How To Make General Tso’s Shrimp
- Breading Shrimp: Season the shrimp with salt and black pepper then whisk in an egg. Combine the flour and cornflour (cornstarch) in a ziplock bag to keep it mess-free or use a shallow plate. Add the shrimp to the bag and shake well to coat evenly.
- Shallow-Frying: Heat oil in a pan for shallow-frying. Then drop the shrimp without overcrowding. Fry on medium-high heat till golden and crispy on both sides. Remove on a plate.
- Thickening Sauce: Take away excess oil from the pan. In the remaining oil saute the chopped ginger and garlic. Add the crushed red pepper at this point if you like it spicier otherwise add at the end for just a subtle kick of chili. Pour the General Tso’s sauce and let it thicken on low heat. Turn off heat.
- Combining Everything: Toss in the fried shrimp and remove on your serving dish. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and sliced green part of spring onion.
- Don’t overcrowd the pan while frying shrimp.
- Add the shrimp to the sauce just before serving. The longer the shrimp sit in the sauce the softer they will get.
- Many ingredients are swappable! I always get questions about replacing rice vinegar with white vinegar or skipping hoisin sauce. But remember if you do that the dish will taste less like it is supposed to be.
- You can definitely adjust the spice in this dish according to your liking. Add fresh bird’s eye chilies for a super spicy sauce. Use long dried red chilies like my Thai Cashew Nut Chicken for a different look. Or add the crushed red pepper along with ginger and garlic in the beginning to have a little more heat.
- Prep everything before you begin cooking, have the sauce, coated shrimp, ginger, garlic and garnishes ready on your countertop.
This recipe pairs quite well with my Garlic Butter Fried Rice or you can also serve it alongside some stir-fried noodles.
You can definitely store this dish for upto 3 days in an airtight container but remember after going in the fridge the shrimp will absorb the sauce and won’t stay crispy.
Broccoli goes really well with this dish. You can also use bell pepper, mushrooms, carrot and/or snap peas.
Absolutely! Swap the shrimp with boneless chicken thighs or breasts cut in 2.5 cm (around 1 inch) cubes and follow the rest of the recipe as it is.
More Asian Dishes
General Tso's Shrimp
- 500 g shrimp raw or blanched
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon crushed black pepper
- 1 teaspoon white pepper
- 1 egg beaten
- ½ cup plain flour
- ½ cup cornflour (cornstarch)
- ⅓ cup neutral oil for shallow-frying
- 2 tablespoon neutral oil
- 1 tablespoon garlic finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon ginger finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 spring onion green part sliced
- toasted white sesame seeds
- Mix together the sauce ingredients and keep aside.
- To the shrimp add the salt, crushed black pepper and white pepper. Mix. Then stir in one beaten egg.
- In a bowl or ziplock bag, add the flour and cornflour (cornstarch). Add the shrimp and shake the bag to coat everything well.
- Heat oil in a pan for shallow-frying. Drop the shrimp without overcrowding the pan. Fry in batches if your pan is small.
- Fry on medium-high heat till golden and crispy on both sides.
- Remove on a plate and keep aside.
- In the same, use 2 tablespoon of the remaining oil. Saute the ginger and garlic on medium heat. Add the crushed red pepper at this point if you like more spice.
- Pour the sauce, reduce the heat to low and let the sauce thicken and get glossy. Stir continuously so that the sauce doesn't get clumpy.
- Then turn off heat and toss in the fried shrimp.
- Remove on a serving plate and garnish with toasted sesame seeds and spring onion.
- Enjoy it with steamed rice or on a bed of plain stir-fried noodles.
You can swap the shrimp with chicken or tofu.
Feel free to adjust the chili according to your liking.
Remember if you swap or skip the ingredients in the sauce the dish will taste less like the original.
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