Scallion-Lime Shrimp Cakes

These crispy, golden shrimp cakes can be served as either an appetizer or main course. The flavors of lime, scallions, and cilantro blend well together while remaining distinctive. The addition of cream cheese to the mixture lends rich taste and texture that’s a little reminiscent of crab rangoon. We served them with sweet Thai chili sauce straight from the bottle for dipping.

Scallion-Lime Shrimp Cakes

Scallion-Lime Shrimp Cakes

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Golden brown shrimp cakes flavored with scallions, cilantro and kaffir lime make a delicious appetizer for 6 or dinner for 4.


  • 3/4 lb shrimp, peeled, deveined and finely chopped
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tablespoons coconut milk, or heavy cream
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Grated zest of 2 limes or 1 teaspoon kaffir lime powder, see recipe notes
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or more to taste
  • 1-2/3 cups panko crumbs
  • 1 cup green onions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro chopped
  • Vegetable oil for shallow frying


  • In a medium bowl, combine the shrimp, eggs, cream cheese, coconut milk, garlic, salt, pepper and lime zest (or kaffir lime powder) until well mixed. Mix in the panko crumbs, green onions and cilantro.
  • Line a baking sheet with wax paper. To form each shrimp cake, firmly pack some of the mixture into a 1/4 cup measure that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Turn upside down and tap until the formed shrimp cake comes out onto the paper-lined baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining mixture. Using the back side of a spatula, gently press on each cake to flatten slightly. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to one hour.
  • Heat 1/4-inch of vegetable oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp cakes in a single layer and cook until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Work in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan. Once cooked, the shrimp cakes can be kept warm in a 300°F oven for up to 30 minutes. Serve with sweet Thai chili sauce for dipping.

Tips for Making This Recipe

Recipe Notes:

We really prefer the aromatic flavor of kaffir lime in this dish. Kaffir lime powder is a relatively new product that is really convenient to use and has a wonderful, exotic lime aroma and pungent citrus flavor. It’s available from If you’re not familiar, they’re a wonderful mail-order source for authentic Thai ingredients, recipes and information.
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