Sesame Shrimp Stir-Fry


Yes, this recipe is designed to be freezer-friendly.

Sesame Shrimp Stir-Fry
Photo: Victor Protasio; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall; Prop Styling: Audrey Davis
Additional Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
20 mins

One of our favorite things about a simple seafood supper is its lightning-fast cook time. Our Sesame Shrimp Stir-Fry comes together in a flash for a healthy and satisfying weeknight supper.

Packed with vegetables and flavored with a sweet-and-spicy sauce, this shrimp stir fry is sure to knock you out of your weeknight dinner rut. Best of all, this restaurant-quality dish is ready to serve in just 20 minutes. The tangy sauce packs some heat from the chile paste, but the spiciness is balanced out with a dose of light brown sugar.

Cooking the vegetables—a medley of red bell peppers, carrots, white onion, and broccoli—on high heat before adding the sauce gives them a nice char, and enhances the overall flavor of the stir fry. The vegetables and shrimp absorb the sauce really well. Serve this stir-fry over rice or noodles—the choice is yours—but be sure to spoon extra sauce over top.

You might be surprised that this dish is also designed to be freezer-friendly. Make the recipe (double it if you prefer) and freeze in an airtight container up to six months. You'll thank yourself in the future when this dinner practically makes itself.


  • ½ cup soy sauce

  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar

  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil

  • 1 tablespoon ground fresh chile paste (such as sambal oelek)

  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch

  • 3 garlic cloves, grated (about 1½ tsp.)

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil

  • 2 large red bell peppers, cut into 1-inch pieces (about 4 cups)

  • 3 medium carrots, sliced 1/8 inch thick (about 1½ cups) 

  • 1 medium-size white onion, cut into ¼-inch wedges (about 2 cups)

  • 4 cups broccoli florets (from 1 small head)

  • 1 ½ pounds large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined

  • ¼ cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro

  • Hot cooked rice, optional


  1. Whisk together soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil, chile paste, cornstarch, and garlic in a small bowl. Heat canola oil in a large skillet over high. Add bell peppers, carrots, onion, and broccoli; cook, stirring often, until just beginning to become tender, about 4 minutes. Add shrimp and soy sauce mixture; cook, stirring often, until shrimp are fully cooked and sauce is slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with cilantro. If desired, serve over rice.


Let cooked shrimp mixture cool to room temperature, about one hour. Fill a ziplock plastic freezer bag three-fourths of the way full, and seal, pushing out any air. Freeze until solid, at least four hours or up to six months.


Allow bag to thaw overnight in refrigerator. Heat a large skillet over high heat; add thawed stir-fry mixture. Cook, stirring often, until heated through, 10 minutes. Sprinkle with cilantro, and serve with rice, if desired.

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