How many calories in a boiled shrimp salad?

Shrimp salad made with boiled shrimp can be a tasty and nutritious light meal, but many dieters wonder, just how many calories are in a serving? In this comprehensive guide, we will discuss the typical calorie count per serving of boiled shrimp salad, as well as tips for lightening up the dish to slash calories without sacrificing taste.

Quick Answer

The total calories in a serving of boiled shrimp salad depends on the specific ingredients used in the recipe. However, on average, a one-cup serving of boiled shrimp salad contains approximately 165 calories. This estimate is based on boiled shrimp, mayonnaise, celery, lemon juice, and seasoning.

Calories in Boiled Shrimp

The main ingredient that contributes the bulk of calories in boiled shrimp salad is the shrimp itself. Here is a look at the calorie count of boiled shrimp:

  • 3 ounces (85 grams) of boiled shrimp: 84 calories
  • 4 ounces (113 grams) of boiled shrimp: 112 calories
  • 5 ounces (142 grams) of boiled shrimp: 140 calories

As you can see, boiled shrimp is relatively low in calories. Shrimp is a lean source of protein that contains minimal fat and carbohydrates.

Shrimp Nutrition Facts

Here is the full nutrition breakdown for 3 ounces (85 grams) of boiled shrimp:

Nutrient Amount
Calories 84
Protein 18 g
Carbs 0 g
Fat 1 g
Sugar 0 g
Fiber 0 g
Sodium 168 mg

As you can see from the nutrition information, shrimp is very low in fat, carbs, and sugar. It gets the majority of its calories from protein. Shrimp is also a good source of certain nutrients like selenium, vitamin B12, and phosphorus.

Calories in Mayonnaise

After shrimp, the next highest calorie ingredient in boiled shrimp salad is typically mayonnaise. Mayonnaise contains about 90-100 calories per tablespoon, depending on the brand. Here are the nutrition facts for a tablespoon of regular mayonnaise:

Nutrient Amount
Calories 90
Total Fat 10 g
Saturated Fat 1.5 g
Carbs 0 g
Protein 0 g
Sodium 75 mg

As you can see, mayonnaise gets the majority of its calories from fat. Just one tablespoon contains nearly 11 grams of total fat. So cutting back on the mayo can help lighten up the calorie count of shrimp salad.

Low-Calorie Mayonnaise Alternatives

Here are some lower-calorie alternatives you can use instead of regular mayonnaise in shrimp salad:

  • Greek yogurt: About 35 calories per tablespoon
  • Avocado: About 50 calories per tablespoon
  • Light mayo: Around 35 calories per tablespoon
  • Vegan mayo: 20-60 calories per tablespoon

Substituting one of these lower-calorie options can help trim a significant number of calories. For example, using 2 tablespoons of Greek yogurt instead of regular mayo would slash around 110 calories.

Calories in Other Ingredients

In addition to shrimp and mayonnaise, boiled shrimp salad also typically contains ingredients like celery, lemon juice, spices, and seasonings. Here is a breakdown of the calories in typical amounts of these additional ingredients:

  • 1 stalk celery, chopped: 6 calories
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice: 4 calories
  • Seasonings like dill, paprika, salt, and pepper: Less than 5 calories

As you can see, these additions provide very minimal calories to the dish. Celery is low-calorie and packed with fiber and nutrients. Lemon juice adds bright flavor for barely any calories. And most spices and seasonings contain almost no calories.

Higher Calorie Add-Ins

Some variations of shrimp salad have higher calorie mix-ins like:

  • Chopped hard-boiled egg: about 80 calories per egg
  • Diced avocado: around 115 calories per cup
  • Crumbled bacon: 55 calories for 2 slices
  • Chopped red onion: 10 calories per tablespoon

While these ingredients can certainly add more flavor and texture, they will also add to the total calorie count. To keep calories to a minimum, stick mainly to the core ingredients.

Putting it All Together

Now that we have looked at the calories in each component, let’s put it all together to get an estimate for the full salad.

For a typical single-serving shrimp salad with about 1 cup of chopped shrimp, 2 tablespoons of mayo dressing, 1 stalk of celery, lemon juice and seasoning, the total calorie count comes to approximately:

  • Shrimp (4 oz): 112 calories
  • Mayonnaise (2 tbsp): 180 calories
  • Celery: 6 calories
  • Lemon juice: 4 calories
  • Seasoning: less than 5 calories
  • Total: Around 165 calories per serving

The exact total will vary based on the specific amounts of each ingredient. But in general, a reasonable one-cup serving of boiled shrimp salad contains about 165 calories.

Lower Calorie Options

Here are some simple ways to lighten up shrimp salad to reduce the calorie count even further:

  • Use light mayo or Greek yogurt instead of regular mayonnaise
  • Increase the ratio of shrimp to mayo dressing
  • Add more low-calorie vegetables like celery, cucumbers or tomatoes
  • Use just a squeeze of lemon instead of heavy-handed lemon juice
  • Season with herbs instead of creamy dressings
  • Skip any fatty mix-ins like cheese or egg yolks

With these easy tweaks, you can enjoy a lighter shrimp salad with around 130 calories per serving or less.

Nutrition Benefits

In addition to being relatively low in calories, boiled shrimp salad offers several nutritional benefits. Here are some of the top nutrients found in this salad:

  • Protein – High quality protein from shrimp to help build muscle, repair cells and feel full.
  • Vitamin C – Immunity boosting vitamin C from lemon juice and celery.
  • Vitamin K – Important for blood clotting, provided by mayo and shrimp.
  • Selenium – Antioxidant selenium from shrimp.
  • B Vitamins – Various B vitamins from shrimp and mayonnaise.

So in addition to being light in calories, boiled shrimp salad delivers a nice dose of nutrients like protein, antioxidants, and essential vitamins and minerals.

Weight Loss Friendly Tips

Here are some extra tips for enjoying boiled shrimp salad as part of a weight loss diet:

  • Watch portion sizes and stick to a serving of around 1 cup
  • Bulk up the salad with extra veggies to add volume and nutrients
  • Eat it as a light lunch paired with a broth-based soup
  • Use it in lettuce wrap as a lower carb option
  • Pair it with a side salad instead of dense carbs like bread
  • Opt for balsamic vinegar instead of creamy dressings for the side salad
  • Stay hydrated by drinking water with lemon

By carefully controlling portions, adding low-calorie bulk, and choosing healthier side dishes, boiled shrimp salad can be part of an effective weight loss meal plan.

Common Questions

Is shrimp salad healthy?

Yes, shrimp salad can be a healthy option when made with nutritious ingredients like boiled shrimp, celery, lemon juice, and light dressing or mayo. The combination provides lean protein, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants without too many calories, fat, or carbs.

Is shrimp salad good for weight loss?

Shrimp salad can be an excellent choice for weight loss diets when portion sizes are controlled. Sticking to about 1 cup serving containing around 165 calories or less provides protein to help you feel satisfied on fewer calories.

How many calories should a meal have to lose weight?

To lose weight at a reasonable pace of 1-2 pounds per week, aim to eat 500-1000 calories less than your body burns each day. So if your maintenance is around 2000 calories, aim for meals of 300-500 calories each for weight loss.

Is shrimp salad low carb?

Yes, shrimp salad is naturally low carb since it contains no grains or starchy vegetables. A typical recipe gets minimal carbs from the mayonnaise or dressing and lemon juice.


Boiled shrimp salad is a tasty low-calorie dish that can be part of a healthy weight loss diet when portion sizes are controlled. While calories depend on the specific recipe, a serving of around 1 cup typically provides about 165 calories. You can make shrimp salad even lighter by increasing the ratio of shrimp to mayo, using Greek yogurt instead of regular mayonnaise, skipping high-calorie mix-ins, and pairing it with low-calorie side dishes.

In addition to being waistline-friendly, shrimp salad delivers a hefty dose of protein, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. With its stellar nutrition stats and ability to satisfy hunger on fewer calories, boiled shrimp salad can be a smart choice for losing weight without sacrificing flavor.

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