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Grilled Za’atar Shrimp

This Grilled Za’atar Shrimp recipe makes a delectable Middle-Eastern-inspired main dish. This simple recipe takes just over 30 minutes from start to finish and is perfect for those on the go!

Grilled shrimp on skewers with za'atar seasoning.

We recommend using fresh and not frozen shrimp for these delicious skewers. Za’atar seasoning can be found in most local and specialty stores and online. You can add this spice mixture to most meats, seafood, vegetables, or meat substitutes. So, it’s well worth the investment.

Grilled Za'atar Shrimp Seasonings

What is za’atar?

Za’atar is a rich, earthy-flavored spice mixture that usually consists of its namesake za’atar (dried hyssop from the mint family), toasted sesame seeds, dried oregano, thyme, marjoram, sumac, salt, and citrus zest. The recipe for za’atar changes from region to region, and its uses are numerous. This spice mixture can be used on baked or grilled foods or as a topping for vegetables and cheese. Za’atar is similar to Dukkah, though the latter contains more nuts and seeds.

Grilled Za’atar Shrimp Ingredients:

  • Extra-large shrimp: 2 pounds of 26/30
  • Metal or wooden skewers
  • Olive oil
  • Lemon zest: Remember to zest the lemons before squeezing the juice! 
  • Lemons
  • Garlic
  • Za’atar seasoning
  • Salt 
  • Paprika (optional)
Grilled Za'atar Shrimp
Sabrina Baksh/derrickriches.com

Making Grilled Za’atar Shrimp:

  • Peel and devein shrimp. Blot dry with paper towels and place shrimp into a resealable plastic bag. 
  • Combine marinade ingredients and pour over shrimp. Toss to coat, seal the zip-top bag, and place it into the refrigerator for 20-30 minutes. 
  • Preheat your grill for 375 degrees F, or medium-high heat. 
  • Once heated, oil your grill grates using a folded paper towel dipped in oil and secured by outdoor cooking tongs. Gently rub the oil-infused paper towel over the grates to create a non-stick surface.
  • Remove shrimp from marinade and thread 4-5 shrimp per skewer. Brush with the remaining marinade.
  • Place za’atar shrimp onto the grill and cook for 3 minutes per side or until the shrimp are firm and pink in color.
  • Once cooked, remove them from the grill, assemble them onto a platter, and drizzle of fresh lemon juice. Serve with your favorite sides.
  • Store leftover grilled za’atar shrimp in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.

Instead of skewering the shrimp, you can use a grill basket to make cooking easier.

Rewarming Leftover Shrimp:

Since these grilled za’atar shrimp are already cooked, we need to avoid overcooking them when reheating. We recommend heating a little olive oil or butter in a pan and rewarm the shrimp for 30 seconds per side or until they are hot to the touch. Promptly plate them and serve.

Like this recipe? Try our popular shrimp recipes!

Try our best grills and smoked appetizer recipes!

Grilled Za'atar Shrimp

Grilled Za’atar Shrimp

An easy and flavorful shrimp recipe to try on the grill. Remember to always buy fresh, not frozen shrimp for kebabs. Za’atar seasoning (a seasoning of sesame seeds, sumac, and other herbs and spices) can be purchased in most grocery stores, online, and sold by various Middle Eastern grocers. You can add this spice on any kind of meat, vegetable, or meat substitute.
5 from 4 votes
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Course: Appetizer, Main Dish
Cuisine: Fusion, Middle Eastern
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 6 minutes
Total Time: 36 minutes
Servings: 4 People
Calories: 364kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds shrimp extra large, peeled, deveined, and tails left on
  • 4-6 skewers (metal recommended)
  • for marinade:
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 large lemons juiced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 teaspoons Za’atar seasoning
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon salt (start with 1/4 teaspoon, taste marinade and increase if needed)
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika

Instructions

  • Peel and devein shrimp. Blot dry with paper towels to remove any excess moisture. Place shrimp in a resealable plastic bag. Use two if necessary.
  • Combine marinade ingredients and pour over shrimp. Move around to distribute evenly. Seal bag and place into the refrigerator for 20-30 minutes. No longer than this or the acid from the lemons will begin to change the texture of the shrimp.
  • Preheat grill for medium-high heat. Right before placing shrimp on grill, make sure to oil the grill grates.
  • Remove shrimp from bag and thread onto skewers; about 4 shrimp per skewer. Place onto the grill and cook for 3 minutes per side or until the shrimp are firm and pink in color.
  • Once cooked, remove from grill, assemble onto platter and give them a little spritz of fresh lemon juice before serving. I recommend grilled vegetables to go with this dish.

Nutrition

Calories: 364kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 47g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 572mg | Sodium: 1909mg | Potassium: 263mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 22IU | Vitamin C: 39mg | Calcium: 346mg | Iron: 5mg

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