Piña coladas are one of my favorite tropical drinks. The flavor combination of pineapple, coconut, and rum is perfection. I can almost hear the palm trees swaying in the salty ocean air now… Ahhhh. Now take that flavor combination and add some shrimp to it. Oh yes.
The idea for this recipe came to me one Saturday afternoon in San Diego. I had picked up some shrimp from the store and couldn’t decide what to make for lunch. I saw the pineapple on the counter and knew immediately what had to go down: piña colada shrimp. And it did not disappoint.
This recipe is quick and simple, but packs some amazing flavor. The presentation also makes it nice for a special dinner or lunch!
Now on to the logistics: This recipe calls for coconut cream, which makes the perfect consistency and taste for the sauce. Don’t try to use coconut milk here or the sauce will be too thin. I tried it. Trust me on this one. Sometimes you can find coconut cream in stores, but if you can’t you can make it from a can of coconut milk.
Grab a can of full fat coconut milk (don’t shake it!) and put it in the fridge overnight. The next day, turn the can upside down and open with a can opener. The coconut milk should have separated under refrigeration. The liquid coconut water will be on top and the coconut cream will be on the bottom. Pour off the coconut water and save for a smoothie or enjoy over ice while your cooking! Scoop out the coconut cream and reserve 2 Tbsp for this recipe.
Some coconut milk brands do not separate in the fridge as well as others or even at all. I have found that Native Forest and Thai Kitchen both work well. I recommend Native Forest because their coconut milk is organic and the cans are BPA free.
Before you add the shrimp into the recipe, make sure that you dry them really well. If they are not dry then their liquid will water down the piña colada sauce. I usually dry them with paper towels and then let them sit on the counter on top of more paper towels for about 30 minutes prior to starting the recipe.
- 1 pineapple
- 2 cups cooked black rice (exclude to make the recipe completely paleo)
- 1 lb shrimp, peeled, dried with paper towels
- 1 tsp coconut aminos
- 2 Tbsp rum (exclude to make the recipe completely paleo)
- 2 Tbsp coconut cream
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- 1.5 Tbsp grass-fed ghee or butter
- Cut pineapple lengthwise with a sharp knife.
- Scrape out the inside of the pineapple using a soup spoon. Reserve ⅔ cup of the "pulp" that you've scraped out for the recipe. You will probably need to cut out the hard center of the pineapple with a knife. I usually use this part as dog treats!
- Mix coconut aminos, rum, coconut cream, and salt in a small bowl.
- Melt ghee or butter in a medium/large skillet over medium heat.
- Pour coconut cream mixture in the skillet and cook over medium/high heat for about 1-2 minutes, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan with a flat top spoon, until the liquid is reduced by half.
- Add pineapple and cook for 1 minute.
- Add shrimp to the pan and cook for about 2 minutes or until pink and cooked through, stirring occasionally.
- Serve with black rice in the pineapple halves for a cute, coastal presentation!
How did you like it? I’d love to hear from you in the comments section below!