Cedar Plank Shrimp (Shrimp Seared to Perfection in 8 Steps)

Next time you want to throw a shrimp on the barbie, why not try using a cedar plank?

If you’ve never heard of planking, rest easy, there’s no strenuous exercise required!

It’s actually a super simple seafood recipe to make at home!

Read on to enter the world of cedar plank smoking.

Why Cook With A Cedar Plank?

Plank grilling is the process of using a wooden plank, usually from cedar, to cook food.

The plank goes straight on the grill giving the food a rich wood-smoked flavor.

The flavor is more intense than using wood chips, as the food is in direct contact with the smoking timber.

Where To Buy The Planks?

You can buy cedar planks anywhere that sells barbecue and grilling supplies. Failing that, an internet search will provide all you need.

Cedar planks for grilling come in a variety of flavors, such as apple, maple, and cherry.

ou can even soak them in liquids like wine or juice for some extra flavor.

What Else Can Grill on a Plank?

You can add delicious smoky flavors to a number of other types of meat and seafood.

Some of my favorites are grilling salmon on a cedar plank as well as pork chops.

What Sort of Shrimp To Use?

Shrimp comes in a variety of forms – raw, frozen, pre-cooked. You can also buy them whole, deveined, peeled, tails on and tails off.

Raw and fresh works best for cedar plank smoking, and the quality is always better.

If the shrimp are pre-cooked you’re only going to be reheating them. This doesn’t give them the chance to absorb the smoky goodness.

Buying deveined saves a lot of prep work and headaches. The intestinal tract is already removed, which saves any nasty surprises if you miss a bit.

Try to buy the bigger shrimp. They’ll have more substance on the grill.

There’s not much point going to all that trouble for a couple of tiny shrimp. Smaller shrimp are much better for salads and soups.

Preparing The Cedar For Cooking

The most important step for using a cedar plank is to pre-soak the plank in water or some sort of liquid.

Otherwise, the dry plank is coming in contact with direct heat and flame and is prone to catch fire.

Soak for at least 2 hours before using.

Once on the grill give it 5-10 minutes to start smoking.

A handy tip is to soak the plank overnight, then place it in the freezer. When you want to use it, place the plank in hot water for ten minutes before cooking and you’re ready to go!

How To Grill The Shrimp

Grilling on a plank is a pretty straightforward process.

Pre-soak the plank, lay the seasoned shrimp out, and throw it all on the grill. Simple!

What Temperature To Cook

The temperature will vary depending on your grill.  

Spend a bit of time getting to know your particular grill, learning the ins and outs.

As a general rule of thumb, a medium heat of 350°F is ideal for shrimp.

How Long To Cook?

The cook time for shrimp is pretty quick. Three minutes on each side is all they will need.

The beauty of using a cedar plank is the shrimp will absorb the gorgeous smoky flavor from the timber. Grilling alone for such a short time just won’t give the same depth of flavor.

How To Tell The Shrimp Are Cooked?

As the shrimp cooks the muscle contracts so the shrimp will curl and shrink. When it becomes a C shape, you’ll know it’s ready to eat.

If you leave it until it curls completely touching itself it will taste overcooked and rubbery.

Another way to tell is the flesh becomes an opaque white color, with pink and red areas. When raw, the flesh is a translucent grey-blue color.

Will The Wood Catch Fire?

Keep an eye on the timber to watch for flare-ups, but if the plank has been pre-soaked it should be fine.

Recipe – Cedar Planked Shrimp with Garlic Butter

Ingredients

Garlic Butter:

1/4 tsp kosher salt 

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 stick butter, unsalted

1 tablespoon fresh parsley, finely chopped

1 tablespoon fresh tarragon, finely chopped

For the Shrimp:

2 cedar planks, soaked for at least 1 hour 

1 lb jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined

table or kosher salt

black pepper

3 tablespoons olive oil

Method

Garlic Butter:

  • In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.
  • Add the garlic and reduce heat.
  • Simmer until the garlic becomes fragrant, around 5 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and stir in the salt and herbs.
  • Cover and set aside.

Shrimp:

  • Place the shrimp in a large bowl.
  • Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper, completely covering.
  • Place the cedar planks on the grill to get hot, about 3 minutes.
  • Divide the shrimp amongst the planks in a single layer.
  • Cover and cook for 6 minutes, flipping shrimp halfway through
  • Cook until no longer opaque.
  • Remove from the grill and plate up.
  • Drizzle with the garlic-herb butter. Enjoy!

Cedar Plank Shrimp

For some intense smoky shrimp goodness, grab yourself a plank and throw it on the barbecue!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time16 mins
Cedar Soaking Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 26 mins
Course: Dinner, main, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 2
Calories: 291kcal
Author: Charlie

Equipment

  • Grill
  • cedar plank

Ingredients

  • 2 Cedar planks soaked for at least 1 hour
  • 1 lb Jumbo shrimp peeled and deveined
  • Table or kosher salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 3 tbsp Olive oil

Instructions

  • Place the shrimp in a large bowl.
  • Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper, completely covering.
  • Place the cedar planks on the grill to get hot, about 3 minutes.
  • Divide the shrimp amongst the planks in a single layer.
  • Cover and cook for 6 minutes, flipping shrimp halfway through
  • Cook until no longer opaque.
  • Remove from the grill and plate up.
  • Drizzle with the garlic-herb butter. Enjoy!

For some intense smoky shrimp goodness, grab yourself a plank and throw it on the barbecue!

Smoke On!

Charlie

Author: Charlie Reeves
Hi, I’m Charlie, I am head taste tester at Simply Meat Smoking! I love it grilling, smoking, and getting out in the yard with the kids! The family also love to test all my recipes (especially my EXTRA CRISPY pulled pork, smoky pork loin, and ANY SEAFOOD I grill)

You will usually find me playing with the kids, perfecting my brisket bark, or sipping beers with boys around the fire. Can’t wait to share all my delicious smoking and grilling adventures with you!

You can read more on our About Us page.

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