Golden crisp baguette slices topped with sweet and smoky BBQ shrimp, basil pesto, salty feta, and chopped fresh cilantro. Crispy, fresh, slightly sweet and smoky. You don’t want to miss this combo of flavors!
I made an appetizer for us today! Because it’s Friday, sun is shining, and feels like today is a perfect day for BBQ Shrimp Crostini. You will want to make these ASAP! It’s a whole lot of flavors on one small crispy crostini that comes together in the most delicious way ♥
The concept is really simple here.
6 LAYERS OF FLAVOR:
- crisp crostini
- basil pesto
- BBQ shrimp
- thinly sliced shallots
- crumbles of feta
- fresh cilantro
You start off with preparing the crostini. I used a french baguette that I sliced into 20 slices, then drizzled with olive oil, and baked for about 13 minutes. Cool before adding the toppings or your crostini will soak in all the pesto and you’ll end up with a mushy crostini. ← not good.
Then make the BBQ shrimp. I included couple tips in the recipe on cooking the shrimp. It’s not hard at all but it’s also easy to overcook the shrimp. In a nutshell, you want to pat dry the shrimp to remove any moisture. Make sure your pan is really hot before you add the shrimp. You want the shrimp to sizzle on contact. In first half of cooking, you’re cooking the shrimp just until light pink on both sides. They will be raw on the inside. Once you add the BBQ sauce, you want to cook the shrimp 2-3 minutes longer until the shrimp is cooked through and the sauce is heated.
Once you have the crostini and shrimp ready, you can assemble the toppings. I made my own basil pesto. If you have time, I so recommend you spend the extra 5 minutes to make the pesto because the flavor is incomparable to anything from the store! Be generous with the pesto. You want about an equal ration of pesto to the shrimp.
Then add the shrimp, thinly sliced shallots, sprinkle of feta, and plenty of fresh chopped cilantro. If you’re a spicy lover (like I am!) you can add a sprinkle of red pepper flakes.
Crisp crostini with hint of basil pesto, smoky + sweet shrimp, and salty feta. Then a hint of cilantro and spiciness. They are amazingly good and go fast! Make sure you have plenty of good company to share these with. I hope you enjoy them as much as we have ♥
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- 1 French baguette, sliced ¾-inch thick slices (for 20 slices total)
- 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
- 1¾ lbs. large shrimp, peeled + deveined
- juice ½ large lemon
- ¾ cup prepared classic BBQ sauce
- ½ tsp. red pepper flakes, plus more for sprinkling (optional)
- ¾ - 1 cup prepared basil pesto
- 2-3 shallots, halved + thinly sliced
- ½ - ¾ cups crumbled feta
- fresh cilantro, chopped
- olive oil
- salt + pepper
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Arrange baguette slices on a large rimmed baking sheet. Lightly drizzle both sides with olive oil. Bake until golden crisp, flipping halfway, about 13-18 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool completely before adding the toppings.
- While the crostini are baking, prepare the shrimp. With a paper towel, pat dry the shrimp and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- In a large skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat. Once the butter is melted and skillet is hot, add shrimp and cook 1-2 minutes per side or just until the shrimp is lightly pink on the outside.
- Stir in the lemon juice, BBQ sauce, and red pepper flakes. Cook for additional 2-3 minutes or just until the shrimp is cooked and sauce is heated through. Make sure not to overcook the shrimp or it will turn rubbery! Immediately remove the pan from the heat.
- To assemble the crostini: top each crostini slice with generous amount of pesto, shrimp (making sure to get some of the sauce), shallots, feta, and cilantro. If desired, add a sprinkle of red pepper flakes before serving.
- Best when served immediately.
*I used a stainless steel skillet to prepare the shrimp, so if you're using a non-stick skillet the cooking time may slightly vary
*Make sure your skillet is hot before adding the shrimp. Shrimp should sizzle on contact.
*The minute the shrimp begins to curl you want to start tasting for doneness as the shrimp cooks really quickly and it's easy to overcook it
*Cool crostini slices completely before adding the toppings
*Taste the crostini for salt and pepper before serving
*Crostini has a slight spiciness. If you want less spicy, use ¼ tsp. instead of ½ tsp. red pepper flakes
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Nutrition information is based on a serving size of 2 crostini