70+ Shrimp Recipes for Easy Weeknight Dinners

updated Nov 15, 2023
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Credit: Photo: Alex Lepe ; Food Styling: Rachel Perlmutter

Whether you’ve committed to making shrimp a dinnertime staple or are simply bored with boneless chicken, look no further than this tiny and tasty crustacean. Not only is shrimp quick-cooking and readily available fresh at the fish counter, but it’s also one of the few varieties of seafood that’s just as good, if not better, bought frozen.

Tender and sweet, shrimp is the perfect protein to serve atop salads, chop for ceviche, or nestle among noodles. And since shrimp can be cooked every way imaginable, the possibilities are endless. To help you get started, we’ve rounded up every shrimp recipe you’ll ever need all in once place — over 70 in total!

How to Buy the Right Shrimp for You

There’s a sea of choices when it comes to selecting shrimp for supper. Unless your grocer has fresh seafood delivered daily or you live by the sea, your best bet is to skip the seafood counter, where you’re likely to find flash-frozen shrimp that’s been defrosted for you. Packages of frozen shrimp are full of information about where the shrimp were caught, their size, and whether they’ve been peeled or deveined, so take a close look before you buy.

Basic Shrimp Info and Recipes

Are you new to cooking shrimp or just need a refresher on a go-to technique? No matter how you’re preparing dinner — from the stovetop to the grill to the oven — we’ve got a shrimp strategy to match.

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Peel & Devein Shrimp

Shrimp are little sea creatures that live on or around the ocean floor. They have a very hard outer shell made of segmented pieces, a softer underside, lots of little feathery legs, and a tail.

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Cook Frozen Shrimp

Discovering that I could cook shrimp straight from the freezer has to be one of the happiest accidents to come out of my kitchen this summer. You see, the resulting shrimp are so juicy and flavorful that I can hardly believe I’ve ever taken the time to thaw shrimp, however easy and short the thawing may be. Straight from the freezer to the sheet pan, these shrimp are coated with Cajun seasoning for a spicy, savory take on broiled shrimp.

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Roast Shrimp in the Oven

The beautiful thing about shrimp is that, even if you’re starting from frozen, they don’t take but a few minutes to cook. Here’s how to cook shrimp quickly and easily in the oven — such a treat!

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Quickly Cook Shrimp on the Stovetop
The easiest stovetop method for simply preparing shrimp.
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Grill Juicy, Flavorful Shrimp
The answer is skewers and yogurt, my friends. Curious? Let's light up the grill and literally put shrimp on the barbie. (Yep, I went there.)
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Shrimp Marinade
A spicy shrimp marinade inspired by the flavors of carne asada.
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Shrimp Appetizers and Starters

If you’re looking to start a larger meal with a shrimp dish, or need something small to fill out your already-made salad and sides, look to one of these easy shrimp recipes.

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A Perfect Shrimp Cocktail with Classic Cocktail Sauce

Making shrimp cocktail and classic cocktail sauce at home (rather than grabbing that deli platter) guarantees that you’ll have plump, juicy shrimp and cocktail sauce with just the right amount of pizzazz.

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Smoky Corn and Shrimp Fritters

Fritters are best enjoyed immediately, but leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

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Bourbon-Glazed Shrimp

Quick-cooking shrimp make for easy weeknight meals, plus their mild flavor makes them incredibly versatile so that you don’t ever have to get bored.

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Southern-Style Pickled Shrimp

While this recipe is worthy of being made year-round, I find it tastes even better in the throes of summer, when turning on a kitchen appliance is the last thing you want to do in grasps of the Georgia heat.

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Garlicky Shrimp with Tequila and Lime
A flavorful 5-minute shrimp dish made with the same ingredients as a classic margarita.
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Louisiana Barbecued Shrimp

You won’t find any barbecue sauce in model/chef/restaurateur B. Smith’s dish of shrimp in spiced butter sauce: “Barbecue shrimp” is just the name Louisiana Creole cooks assigned to shrimp braised in wine, beer, or garlic-butter sauce.

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Pasta and Noodle Dishes with Shrimp

Whether you’re in the mood for restaurant-inspired meals or looking for a quick-cooking skillet dinner, a good way to use shrimp is by pairing it with pasta. From takeout-style lo mein to an elegant-but-easy weeknight Alfredo, there are plenty of inventive ways to pair shrimp and noodles.

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Shrimp Scampi (with Linguine)
This is a dish for easy, fancy shrimp at its very best — over pasta!
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Shrimp Alfredo
How to make the easiest, most delicious homemade shrimp Alfredo with fettuccine any night of the week.
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Easy Bang Bang Shrimp Pasta
A lightened-up take on Bonefish Grill's famous Bang Bang Shrimp, tossed with pasta to make a crowd-pleasing dinner.
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Creamy Shrimp Pasta
A double hit of lemon balances out the creaminess.
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Pad Thai
Dish up these tasty noodles for lunch, dinner, or as a late-night restorative.
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Shrimp Lo Mein
Stir-fried lo mein noodles with plum, juicy shrimp and perfectly cooked broccoli.
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Smoky Cajun Shrimp Orzo
Plump orzo pasta and shrimp are cooked in a smoky tomato broth spiked with Cajun spices.
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Mexican-Spiced Shrimp and Orzo Skillet

This Mexican-spiced version cooks up with plump shrimp and tender orzo pasta in a creamy tomato sauce, all finished with some salty crumbles of cheese sprinkled on top. It might feel a bit like you’re eating risotto, but it takes less time and it doesn’t require you to be constantly fussing and stirring at the stove.

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Caesar Shrimp and Avocado Noodle Bowls

These bowls, which are ideal for a weeknight meal, are inspired by the ease and versatility of noodle bowls, with the tangy lemon and Parmesan flavor combo you get from a bold Caesar dressing.

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Creamy Asparagus and Shrimp Pasta

A simple pan sauce can elevate even the most basic meals. Here, a creamy Alfredo-style sauce with Pecorino cheese makes a sublime meal of linguine, asparagus, and shrimp.

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Stir-Fried Chili-Lemon Shrimp and Rice Noodles

I've been fascinated by Thai cuisine recently, mainly because one of its tenets is a balance of hot, sour, salty, and sweet. I took that balance to heart when creating this easy weeknight stir-fried noodle dish; it’s seasoned with condiments I always have in the door of my refrigerator, and peppered with plump shrimp I keep on hand in the freezer.

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Shrimp Pasta with White Wine Sauce

Succulent shrimp and linguini are tossed with a super-quick tomato cream sauce — one that’s fragrant with aromatic garlic, shallots, and white wine.

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Cold Coconut Rice Noodles with Poached Shrimp, Mango, and Thai Chile

This rice noodle salad streamlines that premise by using just five key ingredients: noodles, shrimp, coconut milk, mango, and chile peppers (although the toppings mentioned above are all viable swaps). The coconut milk’s sugar is balanced with a heavy dose of salt, which might seem like too much as you’re adding it, but it’s just right with the starchy noodles, sweet fruit, and fiery hot chiles.

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Shrimp Chili Oil (Minyak Hebi)

This hot, steaming bowl of fragrant, spicy broth with noodles, prawns, and eggs is a common dish in Malaysia. The key component is the spice paste, which takes a bit of time, but once you’ve made it, you can keep it in the fridge for up to a month. Alternatively, there are very good store-bought pastes available.

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Roasted Shrimp and Pea Couscous Salad

This warm roasted shrimp salad tastes like the early days of spring. It’s bright and cheerful, thanks to plenty of tangy lemon juice and a heap of chopped fresh dill. The roasted shrimp and peas are paired with toothsome Israeli couscous, which is toasted to bring out its nutty flavor. The couscous matches up almost perfectly in size to the green peas, so you can scoop everything up in big, easy bites.

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Chili, Lemon, and Basil Shrimp with Israeli Couscous

This dish has a bit of a kick to it, depending on the amount of chili flakes you use. I love it spicy and hot; it goes great with a cold beer! There’s a zing from the lemon in both the couscous and the shrimp, a hot punch from the chili flakes, and that sweetness from the basil. It’s so fast, so easy.

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Roasted Lemon Oregano Shrimp
A fast and fancy, Greek-inspired recipe to serve over pasta, rice, couscous, or all on its own.
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Grilled Shrimp Recipes

Need to get dinner on the table fast? It doesn’t take long for shrimp to soak up smoky flavor from the grill. Pro-tip: If you’re grilling jumbo shrimp or bigger, run two skewers through them, so they don’t spin off and fall into the coals.

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Shrimp Skewers

I dare you to find a quicker-cooking or more versatile dinner than grilled shrimp. Skewered shrimp and thin slices of lemon are brushed with garlicky melted butter and grilled until tender and pink. Eat them straight from the skewer as an appetizer, or serve atop a salad or tucked into a roll for the main course. Anyway you eat them, these citrusy garlic-butter grilled shrimp will be on your plate in mere minutes.

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Firecracker Shrimp Skewers
Grilled shrimp with a glossy, sticky, and spicy marinade.
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Grilled Shrimp and Vegetable Grain Bowls
Think of grilled grain bowls as the grown-up version of the hobo packets you might have made at sleep-away camp.
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Spicy, Smoky Grilled Shrimp

This recipe was adapted from Cook’s Illustrated by my brother-in-law, an excellent cook who has made this shrimp for our family many times. There are a couple of secrets that make it great: One, you brine the shrimp for about 30 minutes to help them stay especially juicy on the grill. Two, you serve them with melted garlic butter for dipping.

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Grilled Shrimp Skewers with Chimichurri
An herby, garlicky chimichurri sauce doubles as both the marinade and a dipping sauce for these easy shrimp skewers.
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Lemon Garlic Butter Shrimp and Asparagus Packets

Shrimp on the grill is the very best shrimp there is — it cooks quickly and picks up smokiness and char. But you don’t have to limit yourself to simple shrimp skewers. Here, we’re taking inspiration from pasta and lemon garlic butter shrimp for a no-mess packet dinner you’ll crave all summer long.

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Quick & Easy Shrimp Skillets, Stir-Fries, and Sheet Pan Dinners

You’ve chosen a dinner winner when you can go from cooking in the kitchen to sitting down to the table with your plate in mere minutes.

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Honey-Garlic Shrimp
Tender shrimp tossed with a sticky honey-garlic glaze can be on the table in 10 minutes.
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Garlic Butter Shrimp
A fast and easy skillet recipe for shrimp in garlic butter sauce.
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Shrimp Boil Skillet
Ditch the big pot and cook everything quickly in a skillet instead.
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Lemony Roasted Shrimp and Asparagus
This vibrant sheet pan dinner comes together quickly thanks to a bag each of Trader Joe's frozen shrimp and asparagus.
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Easy Shrimp Scampi
A quick 15-minute recipe for classic shrimp scampi, complete with juicy shrimp and a buttery lemon sauce.
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Shrimp Fried Rice
An easy, customizable fried rice with juicy shrimp, veggies, and scrambled eggs.
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Five-Ingredient Creamy Garlic Shrimp
A quick-and-easy, one-pan recipe for creamy garlic shrimp.
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Greek Shrimp and Spaghetti Squash Pasta
This 30-minute spaghetti squash dish is inspired by the bright flavors of the Mediterranean.
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15-Minute Shrimp & Veggie Stir-Fry
A quick, weeknight-friendly recipe for shrimp stir-fry with bell peppers and snow peas.
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Easy Shrimp & Veggie Stir-Fry
A classic stir-fry of shrimp and broccoli made weeknight-friendly with the aid of the freezer.
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Easy Sheet Pan Chili Garlic Roasted Shrimp and Broccoli
This easy sheet pan supper is flavored with a combination of soy sauce and ginger and amped up with just one simple addition: chili garlic sauce.
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Shrimp Salads and Rolls

Bite-sized shrimp are lean and meaty — the perfect complement to a veggie-packed bowl or roll.

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Shrimp & Arugula Salad with Preserved Lemon Dressing
This recipe has just three ingredients apart from the dressing, but each plays a crucial role in filling it out into a satisfying side salad.
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Jicama Shrimp Salad

Take a vacation south of the border on your lunch break when you pack yourself this chopped jicama and shrimp salad. It is a feast for the eyes, with a rainbow of cheery colors and textures.

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Baja Shrimp Taco Salad
A recipe for easy taco salad piled with roasted shrimp, dressed in a tangy lime crema, and finished with avocado and crushed tortilla chips.
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Avocado Stuffed with Spicy Shrimp over Spring Greens

This lovely, clean recipe epitomizes spring and summer cooking. It can be put together in less than 10 minutes, and it works brilliantly as either an appetizer or a light lunch.

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Easy Shrimp Ceviche
A simple shrimp ceviche for beginners that is made with poached shrimp instead of raw and finished with tomato, avocado, and cilantro.
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Shrimp and Avocado Summer Salad Rolls

Roasted shrimp, chunks of avocado and crisp romaine are wrapped up and dipped in a creamy miso-tahini dressing for a cool, satisfying summer lunch or dinner.

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Hearty Shrimp Recipes with Rice and Other Grains

Serve well-seasoned shrimp atop creamy cooked grains or nestled in a stovetop casserole for a cozy and comforting night in.

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One-Pot Mediterranean Shrimp and Rice Pilaf
This vibrant dinner has a little bit of everything: tender rice, protein-packed shrimp, crunchy fresh veggies, and tangy, creamy cheese.
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Weeknight Skillet Paella

This recipe streamlines the paella process, making it a dish you can throw together any night of the week.

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Honey-Garlic Shrimp Stovetop Rice Casserole
Rice, shrimp, and broccoli all steam together in one pot, and are finished with a savory honey drizzle.
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Parmesan Risotto with Roasted Shrimp
A dinner party-worthy recipe for creamy Parmesan risotto that's topped with simply roasted shrimp.
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Classic Southern Shrimp and Grits in Just 30 Minutes
How to make classic Southern shrimp and grits at home in just 30 minutes.
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Garlic Basil Shrimp Farrotto
An easy recipe for a farro risotto with shrimp, garlic, and fresh basil.
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Warm Bulgur and Lentil Salad with Roasted Shrimp

Warm lentil salads are always just the ticket when I want something satisfying yet light. Topped with some easy roasted shrimp, you now have a complete dinner that’s good any time of the year.

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Trader Joe's Creamy Polenta Shrimp Bowl
An easy dinner recipe using a Trader Joe's frozen shrimp, vegetables, and polenta.
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Millet Bowl with Breaded Garlic Shrimp

The bowl’s herbaceous and seafood elements make me think of summer, but the millet and almond’s roasty flavors and the shrimp’s substantial, crunchy panko breading make it stand up to cold weather, too. In fact, we’ve made this millet bowl three times this winter — about as high praise as I could give to any one meal.

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Shrimp Stews and Sandwiches

A tender bite of shrimp becomes a sweet surprise in a spoonful of rich soup or stew. If you’re serving sandwiches, it doesn’t get much better than shrimp stuffed in a French sandwich roll.

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Coconut Curry Shrimp
An quick Thai red curry filled with shrimp, bell peppers, and bok choy that comes together in one pot.
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Shrimp and Corn Chowder

Corn chowder is a classic soup bursting with the sweetness of corn. It’s oh-so-creamy and body warming. When you add quick-cooking shrimp, corn chowder not only tastes great and feeds the soul, but it is also transformed into a complete meal in a single bowl.

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Thai Coconut Soup

The key to this soup is to get the balance of sweet, salty, and tangy right, especially when paired with the richness of the coconut milk.

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Sesame Ginger Shrimp and Cabbage Stew

The star of this recipe is the flavor-packed broth. If you have time to peel the fresh shrimp, use their shells in the broth to extract every bit of their flavor, although it’s not a deal breaker if you use a package of frozen peeled shrimp instead.

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Shrimp Etouffée

The word étouffer means “smothered or braised,” and is a technique often used with crawfish, which come in season during the spring when rain floods the rice fields. Creole cooks make etouffée as well, and however much it may vary from Cajun to Creole and from cook to cook, one constant remains: serving it over a plate of hot rice.

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Vietnamese-Style Shrimp Po' Boy

This is the Vietnamese-inspired po’ boy that we fell in love with in New Orleans’ French Quarter and the one we’re sharing here today.

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Sautéed Shrimp Po' Boys

A deep-fried po’ boy is not usually something I’d attempt in my own kitchen, but this version of it — with quickly sautéed shrimp — is easy enough to throw together on a busy weeknight.

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Shrimp Tacos and Tostadas

You can’t go wrong serving shrimp-topped tortillas. Sweet shrimp pair perfectly with a squeeze of citrus.

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Shrimp and Avocado Tostadas

The tostadas are topped with quickly sautéed shrimp lightly seasoned with spices and lime juice. Last comes the do-it-yourself part: customizing each tostada with your favorite toppings.

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Roasted Shrimp Tacos with Mango-Avocado Salsa

These shrimp tacos here are an ode to those first ones. I like roasting shrimp in the oven because it’s easy and foolproof and Ina Garten-approved, though if you have a grill, by all means grill your shrimp instead.

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5-Ingredient Sheet Pan Shrimp Fajitas
Thanks to a few freezer aisle shortcuts, these 5-ingredient sheet pan shrimp fajitas are on the table in less than 20 minutes.
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Sheet Pan Shrimp Tacos
A fast recipe for shrimp tacos cooked on a sheet pan and topped with cabbage slaw, avocado, and sour cream.
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