Super tasty! This Garlic and Butter Shrimp cooked in Sprite is crazy delicious and so easy you’ll make it over and over again.
We are huge shrimp (or prawn) eaters in the Philippines. Go to any seafood or Filipino restaurant in Manila and you’ll have a myriad of shrimp dishes to choose from!
I guess, it shouldn’t be much of a surprise. After all, the Philippines is an archipelago and totally surrounded by bodies of water. Having over 7,100 plus islands we also possess a vast amount of rivers and lakes.
With all that water (both salty and fresh), seafood abounds and especially shrimps or prawns which you’ll find all over the place in all kinds of markets.
While we make so much variety of shrimp dishes in the Philippines, one dish, in particular, stands out as it is always a crowd favorite! That is —- Garlic Butter Shrimp with Sprite or Halabos na Hipon in the local dialect.
You’re probably re-reading that above statement. Sprite? What?
Yes, indeed shrimp cooked in Sprite!
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that we cook shrimp in Sprite (or 7UP for that matter!). After all, we use Sprite or 7Up in many of our dishes that should it included as part of the local ingredients! LOL.
Seriously, we have chicken and pork dishes cooked with or at least marinated in Sprite! Ok, I’ll let you in on a secret Filipino ingredient – our secret ingredient is Sprite!!! Seriously, we love to cook with Sprite that it seems odd if it is left out in dishes that rely on it for flavor, texture, and tenderness!
It is so popular that even some adobo recipes (adobo is our national dish!) are cooked with Sprite. Now you get how much we love Sprite in our cooking. And, no… this is not a sponsored post by the Coca-Cola Company. You can certainly use 7UP if you prefer that – any lemon-lime soda will do.
I think it’s because we love both sweet-tangy, sweet-tart, and sweet-sour flavors in our cuisine that Sprite or lemon-lime soda has a special place in our cooking.
Anyway, without further ado, here’s our favorite recipe for Garlic Butter Shrimp with Sprite! It’s so simple and quick to make.
My main advice would be to cook with shrimps/prawns with their heads and shells still intact for a more robust and truly delicious flavor. I have tried it with both intact shrimps and shelled shrimps (see photos for comparison) and for me, the difference is night and day in taste. I genuinely prefer and highly recommend the use of fully intact shrimps for full flavor.
The shelled shrimps aren’t bad – it still tastes good what with the sprite, garlic, and butter in it – you can’t go wrong – but if you want some umami goodness – leave the shells alone and keep them on!
How to Make Garlic Butter Shrimp with Sprite (Halabos na Hipon)
Super tasty! This Garlic and Butter Shrimp cooked in Sprite is crazy delicious and so easy you'll make it over and over again.
- 4 cloves garlic (divided), minced
- 1 tbsp oil of choice
- ¼ cup butter
- 1 cup Sprite (or 7 UP or any lemon-lime soda)
- 1 lb shrimp or prawn, deveined but shells and heads (preferably) left intact
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 lemon, a few drops of juice (optional)
In a skillet or shallow pan, brown half of the garlic in the oil over low to medium heat. Spoon the browned garlic and set aside. This would be used for garnish.
In the same pan or skillet, add the butter and remaining garlic. Cook until the butter is melted and the garlic is aromatic. Pour in the Sprite. Simmer for about 3-5 minutes or just until the liquid is reduced.
Add the shrimp or prawn. Season with a little salt and pepper, to taste. Cook for about 3-4 minutes or until the shrimp has fully changed its color and is cooked through. if you are cooking shelled prawns or shrimp, just cook until they are fully opaque. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
Remove the shrimp from the sauce and reduce the sauce some more, if desired. Otherwise, serve the shrimps in a platter and pour over the remaining sauce all over. Squeeze a few drops of lemon juice (optional). Garnish with the browned garlic. You may also sprinkle it with some chopped cilantro or parsley to add a bit of color. Serve over rice. Enjoy.
TIPS & TRICKS
If possible, leave the shells and heads (especially the heads) intact and simply devein the shrimp or prawn. Shrimp heads have a wonderful, briny flavor that livens up any dish it is added to. The heads have a pocket of fat that flavors the shrimp and for this reason, many cooks prefer to leave the heads on. Don't fancy eating the heads, no problem! Just get the flavor by cooking with them then simply remove them after cooking or while you eat them (which is what we do in the Philippines). We always cook with the heads on and simply remove them while eating. We get the good umami flavor that way and trust me, it is worth it.
You can use up to 1.5 pounds of shrimp or prawn for this recipe.