How to Make Honey-Walnut Shrimp, an American Chinese Favorite 合桃蝦

Crispy fried shrimp, crunchy candied walnuts, and a sweet-and-tangy sauce. Learn to make this American Chinese classic.

Published Nov. 15, 2023.

Our Chinese family grew up never having tried honey-walnut shrimp.

It wasnt until we came to the United States that this dish—perhaps most famous at Panda Express—entered our lives.

My mother was out with work colleagues at a Chinese restaurant when they suggested honey-walnut shrimp.

One bite and my mom was hooked: Crispy fried shrimp, shellacked in this rich, creamy, sweet-and-tangy sauce, with crunchy candied walnuts adding a nutty accent.


A Very Chinese Cookbook

From American Chinese classics (General Tso’s Chicken) to Hong Kong dim sum favorites (Shu Mai), A Very Chinese Cookbook is ideal for both the Chinese food-curious and experienced cooks seeking a weekend soup dumpling project.

My parents set out to develop their own version, and they landed on several innovations:

  • Instead of American-style mayonnaise, they used Japanese Kewpie mayo, which has a more savory and creamy quality.
  • The sweetness comes from honey and condensed milk, the latter adding an appealing dairy flavor to the sauce.
  • A squeeze of lemon juice balances out the sauce.

Youll find this recipe in our book, A Very Chinese Cookbook, along with 100 more dishes that were rigorously tested and developed. Watch the video below to see us demonstrate Honey-Walnut Shrimp.


Honey-Walnut Shrimp (Hétáo Xiā 合桃蝦)

If you've never tasted this crispy fried shrimp shellacked in mayonnaise, you'll be amazed at how delicious it is.
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