If the fictional character Bubba from the movie Forrest Gump had his way, every day would be National Shrimp Day. A connoisseur of all different types of the crustacean, and every which way to cook them, he’d probably be disappointed that National Shrimp Day is only held once a year on May 10. Luckily his shrimp legacy carries on with a restaurant in his name: The Bubba Gump Shrimp Company operates 40 restaurants around the world.
Shrimp fans all across the country can come together to honor their love for the shellfish, commonly called the “fruit of the sea.” Shrimp are interesting characters, and some can even glow in the dark! Elvis Presley even once sang a song about them, crooning, “If I should live to be ninety, I will never forget the little shrimp and the song he sang as he jumped into the net.” In the United States, shrimp is eaten more than any other type of seafood, so of course it deserves its own day! Grill em, fry em, or eat em cold. Try them on a sandwich, on a salad, or one by one in some delicious cocktail sauce. Whatever you do, take some time to celebrate!
Why We Love National Shrimp Day
A. Shrimp taste great AND are good for you
These little guys pack a big nutritional punch. They are high in protein (and flavor!), and low in calories. Shrimp is a good source of zinc, and vitamins B6 and B12. They are full of Omega-3s, fighting inflammation and improving eye health! They are even a good source of selenium, which promotes brain function and a healthy immune system!
B. They come in all different shapes and sizes
If you’re looking for a little variety, then shrimp is for you. Pre-cooked, cooked, or even frozen, you can find shrimp to meet your every cooking need. Rock shrimp have a hard shell, and look like a tiny lobster tail. Tiger shrimp can sometimes be found at nearly a foot long, and offer a more chewy taste. And don’t forget about the traditional pink shrimp that give you a mild, sweet taste.
C. They’re a nice alternative for Meatless Mondays
If you’re trying to cut back on your meat, but are still ok with fish, shrimp is a great way to switch up your menu! They’ll taste great, and help you promote heart health! Try them on a salad of leafy greens, or over a plate of pasta. Cook them in a dish of paella! You can even skewer them into a kabob and grill ‘em up!
How to Celebrate National Shrimp Day
1. Have a shrimp feast
There are endless options when it comes to shrimp recipes. For National Shrimp Day, have each of your friends bring over a different shrimp dish, and give prizes for the best: most original, tastiest, and even “most shrimpy!” If you’re trying to win a top spot at the party, go with something that will wow your guests. Try shrimp scampi pasta or a yummy shrimp risotto.
2. Take a shrimp fishing tour
Channel your inner-Bubba and get out there on the water! Boat charters all along the coast offer excursions to catch some shrimp all for yourself! You’ll start early in the morning and stay out all day, throwing out nets to catch the little critters. Then, you’ll get to take home what you caught!
3. Cheer on the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp
That’s right! The Miami Marlins’ Double-A affiliate team celebrates this special day all season long with their new Shrimp name. While they used to be called the Jacksonville Sons, their new moniker seems a lot for fun and they’ll use it for the first time for the 2017 Season! The team is the longest- playing in the Southern League’s history, and has seen such notable teammates as Nolan Ryan and Alex Rodriguez!