I have used more frozen food products during the past year than I have during the last decade. Their convenience has grown on me, especially vegetables which require very little preparation. Most surprising is frozen raw seafood. This New Years‘s Eve, I discovered that you can bake frozen prawns! It is not fresh off the boat but satisfying none the less. The key is preparation - defrosting and not to overcook.  I made garlic prawns and squid in the oven. It was my first experience with frozen prawns, a rather satisfying one. They are certainly better suited for making prawn biryani than pre-cooked ones are. For this recipe, I opted for a lemon, rosemary and olive oil marinade. My favoured flavour combination after making lemon and rosemary leg of lamb. I used olive oil instead of butter, under the guise of a healthy start to the year. Served with oven Belgian fries (believe it or not also considered a healthy potato chip) More about that in another post. The perfect compliment to this meal was tapenade and dry white wine.

oven-baked garlic prawns recipe

Can You Cook Frozen Cooked Prawns Without Defrosting?

This is a common question when preparing frozen prawns. Unfortunately, the answer ... better not!. The result will be rubbery overcooked prawns. For best results, I recommend defrosting overnight in the fridge. If the prawns have been frozen for a long time it may require a longer defrosting time. If there are traces of icicles, simply rinse the prawns with cold water then pat dry with a paper towel before marinating. Less excess moisture will allow the prawns to cook in their moisture, resulting in succulent prawns.


How to Make Garlic Prawns with Frozen Raw Prawns

To make this recipe I recommend lots of garlic, chopped in fine pieces or grated, combine with lemon juice and olive oil. Add fresh green chilli or red chilli flakes for added zing.

After defrosting, pat the prawns dry with a paper towel. Rub in grated garlic, sprinkle with salt and rosemary then drizzle with olive oil. Work the added ingredients into the prawns by gently turning over. Allow resting for 15 minutes or so before baking.

prepare baked prwans

I recommend a medium temperature at 150 degrees. I used the fan function in my oven. 

bake frozen prawns in oven

The prawns baked for 10 minutes before turning sides. They turn pink a few minutes after placed in the oven

Oven-baked Garlic Prawns Recipe 

Oven-baked Garlic Prawns Recipe

Oven-baked Garlic Prawns Recipe

Prep time
10 Min
Cook time
20 Min
Inactive time
15 Min
Total time
45 Min
Making garlic prawns in the oven couldn't be easier. Simply defrost, cover in garlic, salt, pepper and rosemary, drizzle with lemon juice and olive oil. Bake and Enjoy!


  • 1 kg frozen tiger prawns
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • 1 whole lemon
  • 50ml olive oil
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • half a teaspoon red chilli flakes or fresh chopped green chilli


  1. Defrost the frozen prawns in the fridge overnight. Rinse pat dry with a paper towel, to remove icicles and excess moisture.
  2. Preheat the oven to 150 degrees Celsius
  3. Juice half a lemon and cut the other half into slices
  4. Prepare the garlic, grate then rub into the prawns.
  5. Add chilli flakes or chopped chilli.
  6. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and rosemary leaves.
  7. Drizzle with olive oil and the juice of half a lemon. Cover with lemon slices.
  8. Work the ingredients into the prawns gently combining.
  9. Place the prawns onto a baking tray lined with baking paper.
  10. Bake for 10 minutes on each side before turning.
  11. Serve immediately with sides of choice. I recommend tapenade for a new taste sensation.



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