Layered Shrimp Spread

This is one of my favourite appetizers to make when giving a dinner party. It can be made ahead, and it looks so pretty and tastes delicious. It requires no cooking, just assembling and some minor chopping and stirring. Back in the day it was served in pie dishes, and made with canned shrimp. I updated it, including using frozen shrimp that I thaw, rinse and drain. Be sure to serve it with good sized sturdy crackers, so your guests can scoop up a shrimp easily.


  • 1 ⁄ 2 cup sour cream (full fat or light)
  • 8 ounces (1 package)  cream cheese – softened – can use light cream cheese as well
  • 1 ⁄ 4 cup  mayo (again full fat or light)
  • 1 package frozen shrimp, thawed, rinsed and patted dry with paper towel
  • 1 cup seafood cocktail sauce – can use a store bought kind (I like PC brand) or your own homemade
  • 1 cup or so of your favourite cheese – I like a cheddar – finely shredded
  • 1 sweet pepper (yellow or orange) chopped
  • green onions or chives – chopped
  • 1 tomato, seeded and diced

Pick a pretty dish with a slight rim to make this in.

Mix the sour cream, cream cheese and mayonnaise together and spread in dish.


Gently spread cocktail sauce over top.


Now scatter the cheese on top.


Next: the peppers and tomato. You can add some salt and freshly grated black pepper on top of the veggies.


Almost there! Scatter the shrimp over top. Make patterns. Do it randomly. Cram as many on there as you can.


Lastly, sprinkle on the green onions or chives. Cover and chill.


When serving, use a teaspoon to remove any watery-ness that may have accumulated. Wipe the edges clean. Serve with crackers. Eat right away or refrigerate for one more day.



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