The California Shrimp Louie Salad

By Sally Cameron on May 06, 2012

Dairy Free, Fish & Seafood, Salads and Dressings, the daniel plan

She taught me to scramble eggs, make perfect white sauce and chicken soup. How I miss being in the kitchen with my mom. In her memory, I’m making her favorite shrimp salad for Mother’s Day – the California Shrimp Louie Salad. The best thing you can give your mom on Mother’s Day is your time. Don’t spend all day in the kitchen. Prep this salad ahead of time and spend time with her by being present. She won’t be around forever.

Shrimp Louie Salad |

The California Shrimp Louie Salad

If you asked my mom where she wanted to go for lunch, she’d say The Fish Company. She always ordered the seafood and avocado Louie salad. In her honor, I’ve created my version of the recipe using the classic components.

This shrimp salad is a west coast classic and it’s easily assembled for a terrific Mother’s Day lunch. You’ll spend minimal time in the kitchen. Gather your ingredients the day before, hard boil a few eggs, make the dressing and you’re practically ready. 

Easy Assembly, Healthy Salad

Often done with pricey Dungeness crab, bay shrimp is an economical option for this salad. Cooked bay shrimp are available at most seafood counters and markets. They also come cooked and frozen, ready to go by quick thawing under cold water.

hardboiled eggs |

For this salad you’ll need sturdy lettuce greens like romaine, tomatoes, hard-boiled eggs, avocado, shrimp and the traditional dressing. I like to add crisp, sweet Persian cucumber slices and a few asparagus spears for crunch and color. For perfect, easy-to-peel hard boiled eggs see this post.

Herb Roasted Cherry tomatoes|

The Dressing

According to The Food Lovers Companion, classic Louie dressing is a combination of mayonnaise, chili sauce, cream, scallions, green peppers, lemon and seasonings. My variation uses Vegenaisemy favorite mayo for it’s light, clean taste. I skip the green peppers (because my family won’t touch them) and skip the cream. The scallions or chives are added to the dressing or sprinkled on top of the salad as garnish.

To give the dressing some kick, I use Sriracha or Tabasco. This dressing is so good that while we were shooting the photo I couldn’t stop dipping cucumber slices in it and eating them, so it works as a good dip for raw veggies too.

This Mother’s Day relax together, share old memories and create new ones. And by all means, take photos. lots of photos.

Nutrition Facts
California Louie Shrimp Salad
Amount Per Serving
Calories 302 Calories from Fat 126
% Daily Value*
Fat 14g22%
Saturated Fat 3g19%
Cholesterol 472mg157%
Sodium 953mg41%
Potassium 754mg22%
Carbohydrates 11g4%
Fiber 6g25%
Sugar 4g4%
Protein 33g66%
Vitamin A 2559IU51%
Vitamin C 24mg29%
Calcium 226mg23%
Iron 5mg28%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Shrimp Louie Salad |
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California Louie Shrimp Salad

This classic west coast shrimp salad is easily assembled for a terrific lunch, brunch or picnic. Gather your ingredients the day before. Hard boil some eggs, wash the lettuce, and make your dressing. A crusty roll or garlic toast make a nice accompaniment. The dressing makes a great dip for raw veggies too. For a smooth, creamy dressing, skip the celery and sprinkle the chives over the salad.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword Louie, salad, Shrimp
Servings 4 servings
Calories 302kcal


Louis Dressing

  • 1 cup Vegenaise or your favorite mayonnaise
  • 3-4 tablespoons ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped celery
  • 1 large garlic clove finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1-2 teaspoons hot sauce, Sriracha or Tabasco horseradish works too
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons milk of choice to thin the dressing if desired


  • 3 hearts of romaine lettuce
  • 1 pound cooked small shrimp
  • 4 hard boiled eggs
  • 16   sweet grape tomatoes or 4 Roma tomatoes quartered
  • 1 large avocado quartered and sliced
  • 3-4 Persian cucumbers or 1 English cucumber sliced thin
  • 12 spears of asparagus optional, but nice
  • 1 lemon cut into wedges
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped chives


  • Make the dressing a day ahead, cover and refrigerate. Hard boil eggs, cool, peel and refrigerate.
  • Wash romaine leaves and wrap loosely in paper towels placed in a zip bag to remain crisp. For asparagus spears, snap off the ends. Drop into boiling salted water and cook for 2 minutes depending on their thickness, or until crisp but tender when pierced with a sharp paring knife. Chill in a bowl of ice water immediately to stop the cooking process. Drain and refrigerate.
  • The day of serving, chop romaine leaves across for the salad base. Save a few leaf tops for a nice presentation if desired. Place romaine on a plate or in a shallow bowl. Top the greens with sliced avocado, tomatoes, egg quarters, and asparagus spears. Toss the shrimp with a little dressing. Place on top of the salad. Serve extra dressing on the side. If you want to thin the dressing for pouring, use a little milk.


Calories: 302kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 472mg | Sodium: 953mg | Potassium: 754mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 2559IU | Vitamin C: 24mg | Calcium: 226mg | Iron: 5mg
  1. Jamie - May 7th, 2012

    I don’t even know where to start with this lovely post. What a beautiful thought to make this dish your mom loved…and what a fantastic recipe. As a shrimp lover, this dressing is amazing! I wish I lived close enough to my mom to be able to share a dish like this with her.

  2. Madonna - May 7th, 2012

    My nephew orders this anytime we can find it on a menu. Guess I will have to make it for him. Sriracha is a nice touch. Yum.

  3. Rachel - October 16th, 2016

    Surprising my hardworking beautiful daughter with this dish tomorrow on her day off. thankyou lord.

  4. Sally Cameron - October 16th, 2016

    How sweet of you Rachel! Hope you have a wonderful day together tomorrow.

  5. BARBARA MEDLIN - April 15th, 2017

    I am a transplant from the S.F. bay area and LOVED Crab Louie’s!! I recently was given some canned Crab and made some Louie Dressing. Can I freeze it?

  6. Sally Cameron - April 15th, 2017

    Hi Barbara, i would say not. This is one thing best made and enjoyed fresh. Such a good salad with either crab or shrimp!

  7. Tom Devine - July 18th, 2018

    Excellent recipe, easy to make and great to eat. Thanks!
    Your mom would be proud of you!

  8. Sally Cameron - July 23rd, 2018

    Thanks Tom!

  9. Richard Vocke - April 20th, 2020

    I was born and raised in San Francisco and this is by FAR the best Louie dressing I have ever had. I made it exactly as printed and it was amazing. Will become a regular in our dining rotation.

  10. Sally Cameron - April 21st, 2020

    Wow Richard!Thanks for making my day! So glad you’re enjoying it!

  11. Leslie - June 19th, 2020

    This is a lovely recipe! I cannot get enough of it. I am sad that asparagus is not in season Linder so I can continue to enjoy this deliciousness!

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