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How-to Smoke Shrimp

Top Geek
Smoking shrimp is fairly straightforward. Add some butter and toss it on the smoker. If you prefer something a little more sweet, savory, or spicy, add one of the marinades we've featured at the bottom of the page.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Calories 30 kcal


  • Smoker or Grill (set for indirect cooking)
  • Hickory or pecan wood
  • Pan


  • Butter
  • Shrimp


  • Pick a method:
    Option 1: Grab a pan and put a bunch of butter in the bottom. Then line the shrimp up in a single layer, a little overlap is okay. This is our least favorite way, the pan and butter don’t allow the smoke to circulate very well, which means it cannot coat the shrimp all the way around. But they are covered in butter and butter is never bad.
    Option 2: Make shrimp kabobs. Fill up a skewer but leave a bit of room in between each piece for the smoke to circulate.
    Option 3: Use a grilling basket. These handy little dudes are perfect for this sort of thing. Plus you don’t have to take the time to skewer them.
  • Now choose your wood. Since the smoking process is going to be quick you will want to use a strong wood. The best options are hickory or pecan. They will produce a lot of flavor in a just a little bit of time. Try to avoid the urge to create great white billows of smoke; it will not add to your smoked shrimp experience.
  • Warm up your smoker to around 200°F, if it’s hot outside you might find it difficult to keep the temperature low. That just mean you will have to pay more attention during smoking.
  • Like we said these guys cook fast, and they will overcook in a heartbeat. Don’t leave the smoker, stick around and pay attention. We’ve all heard the age old advice “if you’re looking you’re not cooking.” Well, don’t stick too close to that one while working with shrimp. An overcooked shrimp is not edible, don’t ruin all your hard work now. Stay and keep an eye out.
  • Once you put them in the smoker leave them for about 10 minutes, then you need to start checking on them every few minutes.
    At around 200°F the shrimp should be done in about 15 - 18 minutes if you have jumbo shrimp it may take longer. But check the shrimp as it smokes, you will be able to tell when they are done because the exterior will be light pink and the flesh will be pearly or white, and opaque. Cooking by temperature and not time is always recommended so 120°F is the done temperature right before things start going south and you end up with chewy shrimp.


Don't have a smoker? No worries, here's some ways you can still get a tasty smoky shrimp without one.
Keyword smoked shrimp, smoking shrimp