Where to Get Bang Bang Shrimp: A Guide to Restaurants Serving This Tasty Appetizer

Copycat Bonefish Grill Bang Bang Shrimp | That’s right! It’s a throwdown. Me vs. The Bonefish Grill’s Bang Bang Shrimp. I’m giving this fight to my sister-in-law, who I once saw eat a whole order of Bang Bang Shrimp in two minutes flat. 5 seconds, with my own eyes.

And we have a long history with this restaurant. We ate there right before my husband proposed! The only bad thing is that the Bonefish Grill Bang Bang Shrimp is too good to share, and getting an appetizer for each person is expensive, if you get what I mean.

I’m ready for the challenge of a copycat recipe, even though it’s tough, because I could eat them every day of the week!

Crispy panko bread shrimp tossed in a spicy and creamy bang bang sauce. Save the drive and make bang bang at home.

Crispy fried shrimp in a sweet and spicy creamy sauce – what’s not to love about bang bang shrimp? This popular appetizer has been a staple at Bonefish Grill since the restaurant first put it on their menu over 20 years ago. While Bonefish Grill is renowned for their signature version, you may be wondering what other restaurants also serve up this tasty dish. Keep reading to discover the best places to order bang bang shrimp!

The Origins of Bonefish Grill’s Famous Bang Bang Shrimp

As mentioned, Bonefish Grill is credited with creating the beloved bang bang shrimp appetizer. They first introduced it in the 1990s as a daily special. It quickly became so popular that customers demanded it be made a permanent fixture on the menu.

Bonefish Grill’s bang bang shrimp features large shrimp fried in a light airy tempura batter. It’s then drizzled with a creamy, spicy sauce made with mayo, sweet chili sauce sriracha and other Asian flavors. The dish offers the perfect balance of crispy, creamy and spicy.

The Tampa-based restaurant has carefully guarded the original recipe over the years But that hasn’t stopped other restaurants from putting their own spin on this shrimp classic,

Where Else Can You Find Bang Bang Shrimp?

While Bonefish Grill remains the authority on bang bang shrimp, they aren’t the only restaurant that serves up this tasty appetizer. Here are some other popular spots where you can enjoy various renditions:


The casual dining chain offers crispy shrimp with a bang bang sauce for dipping. Their version comes as an entree with rice and veggies. The sauce is slightly different – a bit sweeter and tangier.

Yard House

Their “boom boom shrimp” features large fried shrimp coated in a creamy chili sauce infused with garlic. It comes as an appetizer with crunchy wonton strips.


Their take on the dish is called “sriracha shrimp.” It’s made by coating shrimp in a sriracha batter then frying until golden. The spicy sauce for dipping has some mayo and garlic.

Red Lobster

Red Lobster introduced their “bang bang shrimp” nationally in 2021. It features crispy shrimp in a sweet chili cream sauce. Closest to the Bonefish Grill original.

The Cheesecake Factory

Offers fried shrimp in a creamy, boldly spiced Thai sauce. More of a nod to Thai flavors than the Americanized bang bang flavor profile. Still tasty!

Joe’s Crab Shack

Their “bangin shrimp” is doused with a sweet chili sauce after frying. The sauce has a thicker, stickier texture than others. Served as an appetizer.

Ruby Tuesday

Fries shrimp in a tempura style batter then tosses in a sweet Thai chili sauce. Garnished with green onions. A little closer to the Thai flavor direction.

Outback Steakhouse

Outback offers “aussie fries” as a side, which are fries topped with fried shrimp and drizzled with spicy boom boom sauce. Similar idea, but presented differently.

As you can see, bang bang shrimp is available at most major chain restaurants nowadays. But the preparation and sauce recipe still varies quite a bit between eateries.

How Bonefish Grill’s Version Stands Apart

While the multiple options are great for shrimp lovers, Bonefish Grill still reigns supreme when it comes to bang bang shrimp. Here’s why their version remains top notch:

  • High quality shrimp – They use large shrimp sourced from sustainable fisheries. Tail-off for extra flavor.

  • Secret recipe – Two decades perfecting the seasoning and technique yields incredible flavor.

  • Light, crispy coating – The shrimp fry up airy and golden, never greasy or heavy.

  • Creamy, balanced sauce – Not too sweet, spicy or overpowering. Perfect consistency.

  • Freshness – Shrimp are cooked to order in each restaurant. Never frozen.

  • Presentation – Artfully plated with sliced green onions as the finishing touch.

  • Consistency – Thanks to strict quality control, you know exactly what you’ll get each time.

The other versions may be tasty in their own right, but none quite match the original magic of Bonefish Grill’s bang bang shrimp.

How to Order Bang Bang Shrimp Like a Pro

Now that you know where to find bang bang shrimp, here are some tips for ordering it like a boss:

  • Ask if there’s a smaller appetizer portion or full entree to choose from. The appetizer is often plenty for 2 to share.

  • Request extra sauce on the side if you really like to dunk or want more to drizzle over rice.

  • Say no to utensils and eat with your hands! The shrimp are easier to eat when you dip them into the sauce.

  • If ordering as an entree, ask for extra lemon wedges. The acidity cuts through the richness nicely.

  • Add a cold beer or sweet cocktail to balance out the heat and creaminess of the dish.

  • For takeout, the sauce can make the shrimp soggy over time. Request it on the side.

  • Ask about any seasonal flavors or limited time preparations to try something new!

With these tips in your back pocket, you’ll be ready to maximize your bang bang shrimp experience, whichever restaurant you choose to visit.

How to Recreate Bang Bang Shrimp at Home

Want to save some money and try making this appetizer at home? Here is a simplified bang bang shrimp recipe you can whip up:


  • Shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Flour
  • Egg
  • Panko breadcrumbs
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • Mayo
  • Sweet chili sauce
  • Sriracha
  • Garlic powder
  • Green onions for garnish


  1. Make the sauce: Mix together mayo, sweet chili sauce, sriracha and garlic powder. Refrigerate until needed.

  2. Prep the shrimp: Rinse and pat dry shrimp. Dredge in flour, dip in egg, then coat with panko crumbs.

  3. Heat 1 inch of oil in skillet over medium-high heat. Fry shrimp 2-3 minutes until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.

  4. Toss shrimp in the sauce or serve sauce on the side for dipping. Garnish with green onions. Enjoy!

Be warned – it likely won’t match the flavors of the restaurant versions. But it’ll still satisfy that bang bang shrimp craving in a pinch!

Satisfy Your Bang Bang Shrimp Fix

This beloved appetizer has developed quite a cult following over the years. While Bonefish Grill still serves the gold standard, you have lots of options when a bang bang shrimp craving strikes. Check out the recipes at Chili’s, Yard House or Red Lobster for some delicious variations. Just ask the server what makes their version unique. Or better yet, gather a group of friends and host a bang bang shrimp taste test challenge! With all the choices, it’s a great time to be a fried shrimp fanatic.

FAQs About Bang Bang Shrimp

Still have some questions about this popular appetizer? Here are answers to some commonly asked questions:

What is in the bang bang shrimp sauce?

Most bang bang sauces contain mayonnaise, sweet chili sauce, sriracha, garlic, and sometimes other ingredients like vinegar, soy sauce or sesame oil. The exact recipe varies by restaurant.

Why is it called bang bang shrimp?

The name is thought to come from the “bang” sound the shrimp makes when you dip it into the sauce and the “bang” of flavor from the spicy sauce hitting your taste buds.

Is bang bang shrimp spicy?

Most versions have a mild to medium level of spice from ingredients like sriracha and chili sauce. Let your server know if you need a milder version.

What drinks pair well with bang bang shrimp?

The rich creaminess pairs nicely with something refreshing like beer or cocktails with citrus juices. Sweet wines or bubbly drinks also complement the flavors.

Can you make bang bang shrimp gluten free?

Yes, use rice flour and cornstarch instead of regular flour when breading the shrimp. Verify the sauce ingredients are gluten free. Fried in pure vegetable oil.

Is bang bang shrimp healthy?

While delicious, it’s a high calorie appetizer due to being fried. Balance it out by sharing as an appetizer and pairing with lighter sides.

what restaurant has bang bang shrimp

What is in Bang Bang Shrimp sauce?

Sriracha is a Thai hot sauce made from peppers, vinegar, garlic, sugar, and salt. When I first started experimenting, I thought that some of the spicy flavor might come from it. This stuff is like Asian ketchup with a kick, making so many things more delicious.

Some places serve sweet Thai chili sauce with their wontons and egg rolls. This sauce and those little red pepper flakes are sweet because of it. You can get this gorgeous mixture of sweet and heat at most grocery stores in the international aisle.

So we know the red heat comes from the chili sauce and sriracha, but it turns out kind of pale orange with a creamy texture that’s all thanks to mayonnaise. I used Japanese kewpie mayo, which is smoother and creamier than regular mayonnaise, made with rice wine vinegar instead of the distilled vinegar in the traditional kind we spread on our ham sandwiches.

Plain mayo will work too if that’s what you have. Add a little rice wine vinegar to finish the sauce.

What if I don’t eat shrimp?

If you don’t like fish or you’re allergic, this dish would also taste great with diced chicken thighs. For a vegetarian Meatless Monday dish, you can also make it with cauliflower florets. OMG now I need to go make that!.

How to Make Authentic Bang Bang Shrimp at Home | The Real Recipe

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