Sautéed Shrimp with Buttery Balsamic Sauce

Serves 4-6

2 lbs. sustainable Gulf Shrimp (31-35 count)
1 stick of  butter, cut into 8 pieces (about 1 Tbsp. each) 
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp. chopped mixed fresh herbs, such as chives, tarragon, Italian parsley
Lemon wedges (optional)

Peel & devein shrimp

Dry the shrimp well with paper towels and set aside.

Put a colander in a bowl and set it beside the stove.

In a large heavy skillet set over high heat, melt 1 Tbsp. of the butter.

When the butter foams, add the shrimp and season well with salt and pepper. Stir several times as the shrimp cooks — they may brown slightly, which is good. They’re done as soon as they’re just cooked through and opaque, 3 to 5 minutes. 

Remove the pan from the heat and transfer the shrimp with a slotted spoon to the colander. Cover the shrimp loosely with foil and set aside to keep warm while making the sauce.

Reduce the remaining cooking liquid in the pan down to 1 or 2 tsp. 

Set the pan back over high heat and add the remaining butter. Swirl every few seconds until the butter turns light nut brown, about 2 minutes.

Immediately pour the balsamic vinegar into the pan as well as any liquid that had accumulated in the bowl under the shrimp colander.

Continue to scrape the buttery brown bits and cook until the sauce thickens and starts to appear glaze-like, about 3-4 minutes. The sauce will reduce to about 2/3 cup.

Turn off the heat and stir in the shrimp to coat them lightly with the sauce and briefly rewarm them without cooking any further. Taste and adjust the seasonings, if necessary.

Sprinkle with the fresh herbs and serve immediately with lemon wedges, if desired.


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