This festive and easy Shrimp Cocktail Appetizer Bites recipe takes only minutes to make, but they look like you slaved for hours. Plus they're cheap and cheerful which makes them perfect for this (or any) holiday gathering.
What makes these easy shrimp cocktail appetizer recipe so enticing (besides how festive they look) is that you can pop an entire appetizer into your mouth leaving no mess behind.
That said, what makes this shrimp cocktail appetizer so dangerous is that you can pop an entire appetizer into your mouth, followed by a second, and then a third...(I'm sure you get my gist). 😉
**Please Note - The printable recipe card with detailed instructions, complete ingredient measurements, and nutritional information for making festive Shrimp Cocktail Appetizer Bites is available near the end of this post. OR Click on the "jump to recipe" button (found above) to be taken directly to the printable recipe.
The ingredient list:
**Note - The following lists of ingredients plus kitchen tools and equipment contain affiliate links (highlighted in blue) for your consideration and shopping convenience. #CommissionsEarned
- Phyllo Cups (found in the dessert freezer section of the market)
- Precooked Shrimp
- Cream Cheese
- Lemon zest
- Cocktail Sauce (store-bought or homemade)
- Old Bay Seafood Seasoning
- Fresh Parsley
- Salt and Pepper
Kitchen tools and equipment needed:
- Cutting Board
- Chef's Knife
- Medium Bowl
- Mixing Spoons
- Measuring Cups and Spoons
- Large Zip-top Bag
- Lemon Zester
- Baking Tray
- Serving Tray
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Why this shrimp cocktail appetizer bites recipe works:
If you've never purchased the little phyllo cups in the market before, I strongly urge you to look for them.
They're especially great during the holiday season when appetizers and party foods seem to be where everyone's focus is when it comes to entertaining.
Or maybe that's just me. I LOVE a good appetizer!!
Since the phyllo cups are already baked and flaky, all you need to do is fill them with whatever your heart desires.
Within minutes you're ready to impress your guests without having spent very much time or effort!
How's that for a great holiday gift?!!
Why you'll love this recipe:
Another thing you'll love about these easy Shrimp Cocktail Appetizers is that they're relatively inexpensive to make.
Since there are 15 phyllo cups per box, you'll only need (approximately) 5 medium to large shrimp (chopped), and approximately ½ cup of cocktail sauce.
Of course, if you're making more than 15 you'll need to increase the amount of shrimp and sauce accordingly.
Making your own homemade cocktail sauce is easy!
For the recipe I'm sharing today, I've made a homemade cocktail sauce.
However, please feel free to use your favorite variety of store-bought cocktail sauce if that is your preference.
Having said that, there are only three ingredients in my homemade cocktail sauce;
- Prepared Horseradish (add as much or as little as you like)
- Smoked Paprika
Save money and make your own at home. You'll be glad you did!
The easy instructions:
- In a medium bowl, stir together the room temperature cream cheese, mayonnaise, black pepper, and Old Bay seafood seasonings.
- Add in the lemon zest and set aside.
- Remove the tails from the pre-cooked shrimp and chop.
- To make the cocktail sauce stir together the ketchup, horseradish and smoked paprika in a small bowl.
- Place the phyllo cups on a tray or platter.
- Add the cream cheese mixture to a sandwich-sized zip-top bag and work the mixture into the corner.
- Use scissors to snip off the top of the bag and pipe about a tablespoon of the cream cheese mixture into each phyllo cup.
- Add a dollop of the cocktail sauce on top of each of the cream cheese mixture, and top each with a small mound of the chopped shrimp.
- Garnish each with a bit of fresh parsley. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Relax and enjoy!
Additional appetizer recipes:
- PUMPKIN SAGE PINWHEEL APPETIZERS (pictured below) from (yours truly) Kudos Kitchen
"With a savory filling of pumpkin, cream cheese, bacon, and sage, these pumpkin crescent pinwheel appetizers are always a hit when it’s time to party."
- ARTICHOKE CHEESE WONTONS from The Fresh Cooky
- GOAT'S CHEESE CHRISTMAS WREATH WITH PISTACHIOS AND DRIED CHERRIES (pictured below) from (yours truly) Kudos Kitchen
"This Goat Cheese Christmas Wreath with Dried Cherries and Pistachios is as festive looking as it is delicious."
- CAVIAR AND SMOKED SALMON CREAM CHEESE DIP from Just a Little Bit of Bacon
- GRINCH GUACAMOLE (pictured below) from (yours truly) Kudos Kitchen
"With a few simple ingredients and some easy instructions, you can warm the hearts of your family and friends with this gloriously easy to make realistic looking Grinch Guacamole."
- ROSEMARY AND THYME SPICED NUTS from A Farm Girl's Dabbles
- SHRIMP COCKTAIL APPETIZER BITES (pictured below) This is the place!
Below is the printable recipe card along with the exact ingredient measurements and nutritional information for making today's super fast and easy seafood appetizer.
⭐If you've made this recipe, or are excited to make this recipe, I'd appreciate it if you'd take a moment to leave it a star rating on the recipe card, along with a comment of why you rated as you did.
Google loves ratings and will show my recipes to more people if they have them. Thank you. 🙂
Printable Recipe Card
Shrimp Cocktail Appetizer Bites
- 1 box phyllo cups 15 per box
- 2 ounces cream cheese softened to room temperature
- 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
- pinch black pepper
- ⅛ teaspoon Old Bay seafood seasoning
- ¼ teaspoon fresh lemon zest
- 4-5 large pre-cooked shrimp peeled, tails off, deveined, and chopped finely
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
For the homemade cocktail sauce;
- ½ cup ketchup
- 1 tablespoon horseradish or according to your taste
- ¾ teaspoon smoked paprika
- In a medium bowl, stir together the cream cheese, mayonnaise, black pepper, Old Bay, and lemon zest.
- Spoon the cream cheese mixture into a corner of a sandwich size zip top bag.
- Use scissors to snip off a small corner of the plastic bag.
- Pipe approximately ½ tablespoon of the cream cheese mixture into each phyllo cup.
- To make the cocktail sauce;
- Stir together all the cocktail sauce ingredient in a small bowl.
- Top each cream cheese stuffed phyllo cup with a dollop of cocktail sauce and some of the cooked and chopped shrimp.
- Sprinkle the chopped, fresh parsley over top and serve immediately, or refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Serve chilled and enjoy!
I sincerely hope you've enjoyed this recipe for easy Shrimp Cocktail Appetizer Bites as much as I've enjoyed bringing it to you.
This post may contain affiliate links which won’t change your price but will share some commission.
Can I make these ahead of time?
You can, but I wouldn't do them too early on. Maybe just a day, and then cover them well and refrigerate.
Any longer and I'd be worried that the phyllo cups would get soggy bottoms. I don't know this for a fact,
but I wouldn't want to chance it. I hope this helps.
Nancy Tetterton says
These are delicious. I am taking them to 2 Thanksgiving celebrations. And easy!
Wonderful to hear, Nancy!
Thanks for letting me know and also for the 5-star review!
Have a deliciously festive holiday season,
Pamela Carley says
I'm about an hour away from a grocery store and I love this idea as an appetizer... just trying to figure out how to put it together on crackers? Any suggestions?
This was so goooood. I used the block cheese softened, we really enjoyed this. I will not only make it again I will email it to my sister, I know that they will enjoy this as well. Thanks. This is a recipe worth keeping.
I made this recipe for a football party at my home and the guys LOVED them.
Deborah A Good says
Renee I am so making these for the holidays, they look amazing, just the thing for Holiday celebrations.
Thanks, Deborah! I know you’ll love them! Enjoy! 🙂
Perfect for the holidays! My family loves these!
I'm going to try making these for Thanksgiving. Can I use light cream cheese? tysm
You sure can, Cindy! Enjoy!!
This recipe is perfect for our upcoming family party. Do you have other recipes for the phyllo cups? They are great, and I will be looking for them at the store this week. I appreciate your well-written blog of this recipe!!!
Nice talking with you on the phone today. Here's the link I was telling you about for the Lemon Meringue Tartlets; https://kudoskitchenbyrenee.com/lemon-meringue-tartlets/
You can find the phyllo cups in the frozen dessert area of any grocery store. Fill them with anything that doesn't require oven time.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! xo
I also love using phyllo cups to make appetizers, and these look so delicious and colorful! I love the addition of the cocktail sauce too - for a nice kick. Will be making these for sure, thank you so much for sharing! 🙂
It's is my pleasure, Dini. I'm glad you'll be making these delicious appetizers! You'll love them.
My hubby is always asking for shrimp so these were a perfect fit! I love the combo of the shrimp with the rich cream cheese/mayo mixture.
These will make your husband very happy! 🙂
Richa Gupta says
I love anything with Shrimp and these look amazing!
I do too, Richa! Glad you like them!
Erin Clarkson says
Yum these look amazing!!
They are, Erin. I hope you'll try them!
Lindsay @ The Live-In Kitchen says
Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes) says
Cool appetizer anytime of the year!! Thanks for sharing!!!
This is true. Thanks for visiting.
Rene, I Love the festive colors, and these are sure to be a hit on our holiday table!
Thank you, Hadia! I'm sure you'll be a rock star with your family and friends!