Shrimp Cake Sandwiches

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Step up your summer sandwich game with fresh shrimp cakes.

Shrimp Cake Sandwiches
Photo: Victor Protasio; Food Styling: Rishon Hanners; Prop Styling: Audrey Davis
Active Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
35 mins
Servings:
4

Nothing says summer quite like a fresh seafood sandwich; this year, we're ditching the hamburgers and hotdogs for these delectable Shrimp Cake Sandwiches. Cousin to the more well-known crab cakes, shrimp cakes are seriously underrated in our books. Shrimp is easy to come by and holds together well in a patty.

These shrimp cake sandwiches are the epitome of a simple seafood supper. Packed full of bright herbs like scallions, parsley, and basil, these patties are full of fresh flavor. And when piled high with red onion, tomato, Bibb lettuce, and a swoop of Sriracha mayo on a buttery brioche bun, it's an epic sandwich that guests will be recalling—and likely dreaming about—for weeks to come.

Half a cup of flour is all it takes to bind these patties together and ensure they keep their shape in the skillet. Be sure to allow your batter 15 minutes to rest, which helps all the ingredients hydrate and bind. If you're looking to serve these shrimp cakes as an appetizer, simply opt for a smaller-sized patty (1/4 or 1/3 cup) and serve with toothpicks during cocktail hour.

The pan-seared shrimp cakes are crisp on the outside and very tender and juicy in the center. We suggest buying fresh shrimp from a trusted local fish market; you can purchase pre-peeled and deveined shrimp to save prep time for yourself.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup coarsely chopped scallions (from 1 bunch) 

  • 1 cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves and tender stems

  • 5 tablespoons chopped fresh basil, divided 

  • 1 pound medium-size peeled, deveined raw shrimp

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • ½ cup mayonnaise, divided

  • 2 tablespoons Sriracha chile sauce, divided

  • ¼ cup canola oil

  • 4 brioche hamburger buns, split 

  • 4 tomato slices 

  • ¼ cup thinly sliced red onion (from 1 small onion)

  • 8 Bibb lettuce leaves (from 1 head)

Directions

  1. Pulse scallions, parsley, and 2 ½ tablespoons of the basil in a food processor until finely chopped, about 5 pulses. Scrape down sides of processor bowl. Add shrimp, flour, salt, 2 tablespoons of the mayonnaise, and 1 tablespoon of the Sriracha. Pulse in 1-second bursts just until mixture starts to clump together and you can still see pieces of shrimp, 10 to 12 pulses. Transfer to a medium bowl; let stand 15 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, stir together remaining 6 tablespoons mayonnaise, 2 ½ tablespoons basil, and 1 tablespoon Sriracha in a small bowl. Set aside.

  3. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Using a ⅔-cup-capacity scoop or measuring cup, scoop 4 mounds of shrimp mixture into hot oil. Flatten with a spatula to form 3 ½-inch-diameter patties that are about ¾ inch thick. (If mixture sticks to spatula, dip spatula in hot oil.) Cook shrimp cakes until golden brown and opaque throughout, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels. Drain oil from skillet. Reduce heat to medium. Add buns in batches, cut sides down, and cook until toasted, 1 to 2 minutes.

  4. Evenly spread mayonnaise mixture on cut sides of buns. Top each bottom bun with 1 shrimp cake, 1 tomato slice, red onion slices, and 2 lettuce leaves. Cover with top buns, and serve immediately.

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