These easy, juicy shrimp and chive patties are healthy, satisfying, and so customizable based on what you have in your fridge! The best part -- this recipe doesn't even require any eggs.
This is a recipe I came up with when I wanted to use up all the ingredients in my fridge. On days where I forget to defrost meat in time for dinner, I reach for frozen shrimp. I call it my "emergency protein" because it thaws in just 10 minutes and cooks in even less time!
How to customize these shrimp and chive patties based on what you have
I happened to have extra Chinese garlic chives and bell peppers in my fridge, so that's what I used in this recipe. You should feel free to customize this based on what you have in yours! Some tasty substitutions would be scallions with peas, carrots, or corn (the frozen medleys would be convenient).
For the meat itself, you can mix in ground pork or fish paste. These are common tasty additions to shrimp paste in Chinese cuisine!
THREE simple tips for the tastiest shrimp and chive patties
Tip #1: Blend the shrimp into a smooth and sticky paste
Blending the shrimp into a smooth and sticky paste makes the texture springy and bouncy -- just what we want! It also makes sure that the patties stick together. This is why we don't need eggs in this recipe.
If you don't have a food processor or blender, you can mince by hand. Mince the shrimp as fine as possible, and keep folding it over itself and mixing it in a bowl to create a paste.
Tip #2: Add a sprinkle of baking soda
In most of my recipes that use shrimp, I like to use just a sprinkle of baking soda. This is a technique in Chinese cuisine that gives the shrimp that satisfying bite. Just a little goes a long way!
Tip #3: Pan-sear the patties until they form a golden brown crust
The light golden brown crust gives these patties an extra layer of flavor! Take the time to let each side form that golden brown crust before flipping.
Two tools I recommend for this recipe
food processor or blender
A food processor or blender will save you so much time when making the shrimp paste! It takes less than 10 seconds to blend the shrimp into a smooth and sticky paste, the ideal texture for these patties.
Otherwise, you can definitely make the shrimp paste by hand. Mince the shrimp as fine as possible, mix it in a bowl aggressively to create a smooth and sticky paste.
ice cream scoop
I also recommend using an ice cream scoop (one with a trigger release) to form the patties, if you have it in your kitchen already! These patties are stickier compared to your normal meatballs, so it can be messy using just a spoon.
Using an ice cream scoop also makes sure every patty is the same size.
Best ways to enjoy your shrimp and chive patties
As a snack or appetizer, dipped in sauce
This is one of my favorite ways to enjoy these shrimp and chive patties! I like to dip them in a little sweet Thai chili sauce, or any other sweet and sour sauce. (This is the time to pull out those saved sauce packets from McDonald's!)
You can also make these patties smaller, and they're perfect little appetizers for a potluck or party.
As a side or main dish, eaten with rice
These shrimp and chive patties are filling and satisfying enough to be a side or main dish! They're great paired with rice, or even noodles.
As a topping in a comforting noodle soup
These shrimp and chive patties can be enjoyed just like fish cakes! I love having them in a noodle soup, like udon noodle soup.
The paste can also be cooked in a yummy hot pot broth.
As a slider or sandwich
A fun option, try enjoying these shrimp and chive patties in a slider or sandwich! I think these would pair so well with Hawaiian sweet rolls.
Or just on their own!
I promise, these are fulfilling and satisfying enough to eat just on their own and with nothing else.
Whichever way you choose to eat these, I hope you enjoy them 🙂
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Shrimp and Chive Patties without Eggs
- 1 lb peeled and deveined shrimp (1 lb with shells removed)
- ⅓ cup Chinese garlic chives chopped (or sub scallions)
- ⅓ cup bell peppers finely diced (or sub other veggies like peas, corn, or carrots)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Few dashes of white pepper
- ¼ teaspoon chicken bouillon powder
- 2 teaspoon oyster sauce
- ⅛ teaspoon sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon baking soda optional, but gives the patties an extra bouncy texture
- 2 teaspoon cornstarch
- ½ teaspoon sesame oil
- neutral oil for cooking
- sweet Thai chili sauce (storebought) or sweet and sour sauce (optional)
Prepare the shrimp and veggies
- Defrost, peel, and devein the shrimp if needed.1 lb peeled and deveined shrimp
- Chop the garlic chives into ½ inch pieces, and finely dice the bell peppers (or whatever veggies you're using). If using frozen carrots, peas, or corn, just thaw them in a bowl of water.⅓ cup Chinese garlic chives, ⅓ cup bell peppers
Make the shrimp paste
- With a food processor or blender, blend the shrimp paste until it becomes a smooth and sticky paste. This should only take ~10 seconds. If you don't have a food processor, you can mince by hand.
- Put the shrimp paste in a bowl with all the seasonings. Mix well.¼ teaspoon salt, Few dashes of white pepper, ¼ teaspoon chicken bouillon powder, 2 teaspoon oyster sauce, ⅛ teaspoon sugar, ⅛ teaspoon baking soda, 2 teaspoon cornstarch
- Add the chopped garlic chives and diced bell peppers. Mix until the veggies are well-incorporated. Add sesame oil, and mix one final time.⅓ cup Chinese garlic chives, ⅓ cup bell peppers, ½ teaspoon sesame oil
Cook the shrimp & chive patties
- Heat up your pan on medium heat. Once preheated, add ~3 tablespoon of neutral oil.neutral oil for cooking
- Using an ice cream scoop or a spoon, form equal-sized patties. Carefully add them into the pan, leaving space between each patty. Gently flatten with your spatula. They shouldn't be thicker than ½ inch to ensure the middle cooks through. You can lightly oil your spatula to prevent it from sticking to the patties!
- Pan sear on both sides for 3-4 min or until a golden brown crust forms. Remove onto a wire rack or paper towel. Repeat with any remaining shrimp paste.sweet Thai chili sauce (storebought) or sweet and sour sauce
- Serve with sweet Thai chili sauce, or another sweet and sour sauce, or just eat them on their own! They also make great sliders 🙂