Shrimp Kådu

Kådu means soup or broth in Chamorro.  It refers to any type of broth or liquid in your cooked dish, be it soup, gravy, or a stew.

Shrimp Kådu is traditionally made with shrimp that still has the head and shell on, which adds so much more flavor to the dish.  I actually prefer to cook this dish with headless, shell-on shrimp, but you can use shrimp that has been shelled.  One thing is certain, however.  You MUST use raw shrimp in this dish; it just won’t taste the same if you use pre-cooked shrimp.

Fresh green beans, if you can find any, is another “must have” in this recipe.  Don’t used canned green beans.  If you can’t find fresh, frozen will suffice–just do not use canned beans.    Again, it just won’t taste the same.

Tomatoes, on the other hand, can be fresh or stewed.  I tend to use stewed tomatoes, mainly because I don’t really like cooked tomato skins that you’ll get from fresh tomatoes.  The type of tomato you use is entirely up to you.

Give my recipe a try. I think you’ll like it.  🙂



Shrimp Kadu


  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups fresh green beans, cut into about 2″ pieces
  • 1 can stewed tomatoes, drained (cut them smaller if you like)
  • 2 pounds shrimp, uncooked, shell on (no heads)
  • 2 cans coconut milk
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • a squeeze of lime juice (about half a lime)


1.  In a medium soup pot, sauté the onions and garlic over medium heat, just until the onions become translucent.

2.  Add the green beans; cook for about 3 minutes, or until the beans are JUST starting to wilt (do not overcook).

3.  Add the tomatoes and shrimp.  Cook for 5 minutes or until the shrimp is no longer translucent (the shells will start to turn pink).

4.  Add the coconut milk.  There should be enough milk to cover the top of the shrimp; add more coconut milk if you like lots of kådu over your rice (I like my rice swimming in coconut milk kådu, so I use lots of coconut milk when making this dish).  Simmer over low heat until the coconut milk is warmed through — DO NOT bring the kådu to a boil or else the coconut milk will separate and the milk will look like it’s curdled.

5.  Add salt and pepper to taste, then add the squeeze of lime juice.  Stir to combine.  Serve over hot white rice and ENJOY.

My friend, Yvonne, and her daughter made some shrimp kådu — this is their version of the dish, made with shrimp with only the tails on.  Doesn’t it look scrumptious?

Shrimp kadu - Yvonne's

Shrimp Kådu, by Yvonne and Christie

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  1. Erika says:

    I enjoy all of your recipes, Annie. Thank you for sharing them with us. You are a blessing!

  2. Laureen Halwany says:

    Hafa adai Auntie Annie! Thank you for this lovely site. So far I have made chicken keleguen, arroz caldo and I may just attempt the beef soup with glass noodles. I have absolutely loved the end result!! I love how easy the instructions are to follow and the pics to go with each step. Thank you again for bringing a lot of “home” into my home away from home.

  3. Whitney says:

    I love this dish! My mother in law taught me how to make it. I omit the tomatoes though ( not a big fan). We like to add sliced ginger root to the onions and garlic. It tastes amazing!

  4. Michele says:

    oh my goodness. This has always been one of my favorite dishes. When I would come home from college this would be one (of many) that I asked my mom to make. While I make it on my own now, I still – at almost 40 – ask my mom to make it when I visit. It’s always better when she makes it for me. And you must not only use uncooked shrimp, but it MUST MUST MUST have the shell on. It holds all of the flavor before you crack it open over your steamed rice. Anyone cooking it without the shell is missing a key component of this dish’s magic. Just sayin…

    And thank you, Annie, for this web page and recipe blog. It has been the source of reliving happy memories, adventures in foodie experiments, and filling a big void living so far from my mom.

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