Costco Shrimp Tempura - Kirkland Signature
COSTCO SHRIMP TEMPURA
Product Name: Kirkland Signature Tempura Shrimp
Quantity: 30 Count
Location Within Costco: Frozen Food Aisles
Price Per Shrimp Tempura: $0.60
These Costco Shrimp Tempura are awesome. The price per pound is higher than most other Costco frozen food items, but these tempura shrimps are worth it. They are delicious, cook easily, and hit the spot. One of my new favorite frozen seafoods. Worth a buy!
Value - 8/10
Convenience - 9/10
Taste - 9/10
Nutrition - 7/10
CFDB Score - 9/10
- Extremely tasty
- Very crispy breading
- Easy to cook
- Ok nutritional profile
- Tempura batter is a little thick
Kirkland Signature Tempura Shrimp at Costco
Costco sells their own Kirkland Signature Tempura Shrimp for $17.99. You get 2.54 pounds of crispy tempura shrimp and savory dipping sauce. The tempura shrimp can be found in the freezer aisle near some of the other Asian cuisine items such as the frozen ramen bowls, wontons, or Costco potstickers.
Costco also sells P.F. Chang’s Kung Pao Tempura Shrimp.
Tempura Shrimp is a Japanese delicacy often enjoyed in sushi bars and is a staple of Japanese cuisine. Costco’s Tempura Shrimp is hand battered and is crispy on the outside with firm and flavorful shrimp on the inside. The tempura shrimp can be used as a snack, an appetizer, or even as a meal when paired with a side of rice and vegetables.
Costco Cost Comparison - Tempura Shrimp
Costco’s tempura shrimp cost $17.99 for a 30 pack. This breaks down to $7.08 per pound or $0.60 per hand battered shrimp. Compared to any Japanese restaurants, this an amazing price for frozen tempura shrimp. Japanese restaurants will likely charge double or even more likely triple the price for this shrimp.
The big competitor to Costco’s shrimp tempura isn’t Sam’s Club but instead is Trader Joe’s. Trader Joe’s offers 1 pound of tempura shrimp for $7.99. Each box comes with 10 tempura shrimp that cost $0.80 each. For a size comparison, each of Costco’s tempura shrimps weighs about 1.16 ounces, while each of Trader Joe’s shrimps weigh 1 ounce. Costco comes out ahead in price and size, so therefore is a winner in value.
Target also sells tempura shrimp. They sell a half pound box for $6.99 or $13 per pound. That is nearly double the Costco price. Safeway/Tom Thumb sell the same box of Tempura shrimp that Target does, and they charge a retail price of $9.99 or a sale price of $5.99. Either way, we’re looking at $12 per pound minimum.
Kirkland Signature Shrimp Tempura Review
One thing that I really like from frozen food companies, is when they provide resealable bags. This is especially true at Costco, because of the size and quantity of their products. It can be hard to finish 30 Kirkland Signature Tempura Shrimps in a reasonable time.
Not only did Kirkland Signature provide a resealable bag, they provided a heavy duty resealable bag that actually looks quite nice and fits the tempura shrimp perfectly. The bag holds its shape and protects the fragile tempura shrimp while significantly improving the look. This is without a doubt the best resealable bag for a frozen food product that I have ever seen.
The Kirkland Signature Tempura Shrimp, even in their frozen state, look absolutely wonderful. The shrimp are long, about 3 inches in length and fully covered in quality tempura batter. The only thing exposed is the shrimp’s tail. It’s obvious that this is going to be a high quality product.
I opted as per usual, to cook the Costco tempura shrimp in the air fryer. The air fryer instructions are simple, but I did pull my shrimp out a few minutes early. The shrimp crisped up nicely, and they were done in about 6-7 minutes instead of 8.
Coming out of the air fryer, the tempura battered shrimp look just as beautiful as you would imagine them to look. The color was a perfect golden brown and all the crinkles and ridges were super crispy. The tail of the shrimp aka “the handle” was spot on and for presentation Kirkland Signature’s Tempura Shrimp gets a 10/10. One of the best looking frozen foods I’ve seen in all of Costco.
Unfortunately, Costco’s tempura shrimp look better than they tastes. Don’t get me wrong, these are very delicious, but there are flaws. First, I’ll talk about the positives. The seasoning is great and as a whole, the product is delicious. The shrimp is moist, flavorful and had a nice blend of saltiness with a touch of sweetness.
Costco Shrimp Tempura Batter Flaws
The tempura batter was also good. It wasn’t as light, crispy, or as fluffy as I would have liked, but it isn’t bad considering this is a frozen food item. My first complaint with the product is that there is too much batter. Costco’s shrimp tempura batter is too thick and makes the shrimp appear larger than it really is.
As you can see in the picture, there is a lot of tempura batter for a medium sized shrimp. You can notice with each bite that the ratio of tempura to shrimp is just a little off. It doesn’t ruin the taste and the shrimps are not egregiously battered, but it is noticeable.
The second major flaw is that tempura batter on the shrimp is a little dry. This could be due to the air fryer which has a propensity to dry out food, or it could be because of the thicker batter. Most tempura shrimp is made with a light fluffy batter which is thinner than Costco’s shrimp tempura’s.
Kirkland Signatures shrimp tempura does come with a dipping sauce. The best way to heat the sauce is by defrosting the bag in a small bowl of warm water. The sauce itself is savory but light in flavor. There is a little bit of sweetness that does pair really well with the Costco tempura shrimp, but does not fully counteract the occasional dryness of the tempura batter.
Overall Costco’s shrimp tempura is fantastic. Some of my favorite Costco frozen seafood options are the salmon burger patties and the tortilla crusted tilapia, and I think these shrimp tempuras can stand toe to toe with those items.
Costco Tempura Shrimp Cooking Instructions
Kirkland Signature offers only two methods to heat their tempura shrimp. You can either bake them in the oven or cook them in the air fryer.
Oven Method Heating Instructions
- Heat Oven to 400°F (205°C)
- Remove Kirkland Signature Tempura Shrimp from the bag.
- Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet.
- Place in the oven and bake for 7 to 8 minutes.
- Flip the shrimp and cook for another 7 minutes.
- Do not overcook the shrimp tempura from Costco.
Kirkland Signature Shrimp Tempura Air Fryer Cooking Instruction
- Heat air fryer to 375°F (190° C).
- Remove Kirkland Signature Shrimp Tempura from the bag.
- Arrange desired number of pieces in a single layer on a tray or basket.
- Place in air fryer and cook for 4 minutes.
- Flip the Costco shrimp tempura and cook another 4 minutes.
- Do not overcook ( I personally like cooking the shrimp tempura for 4 minutes and then flipping and cooking for an additional 2 minutes only)
Air fryer models vary; so adjust cook time appropriately.
Kirkland Signature Tempura Shrimp Nutritional Information
One serving of Tempura Shrimp from Costco is 3 shrimp and contains 290 calories. There are 12.5 grams of fat, 34 grams of carbohydrates, and 9 grams of protein. The carb to protein ratio is a little higher than I like to see and I would rate this as an average nutritional profile for a frozen food from Costco.
Individually each Costco shrimp tempura contains 96 calories with 4 grams of fat, 11 grams of carbs, and 3 grams of protein.
And for sodium, you are looking at 460mg per serving or 20% of the daily recommended value. I’ll be eating around 2 servings of shrimp tempura at a time, so that’s going to be close to 1000 mg or 40% daily value.
There are 5 packets of dipping sauce that is included in the box of Costco shrimp tempura and each serving is half a packet or 1 Tbsp. Each serving of savory dipping contains 20 calories with 0 grams of fat, 6 grams of carbs, and 0 grams of protein. Kirkland Signature gives one full pack of dipping sauce for every 6 shrimp tempura.
The Costco Tempura Shrimp really surprised me. These hit on presentation and taste. The batter can be a little thick at times, but the taste is great and pairs well with the savory and sweet dipping sauce. For $17.99, this item is a winner and gets the Costco Food Database seal of approval.