how to clean prawns

how to clean prawns

How to Clean Prawns

Are you a seafood lover who enjoys cooking fresh prawns? Cleaning prawns can be a daunting task, especially if you are not familiar with the process. However, with a few simple steps, you can learn how to properly clean prawns, ensuring that they are safe and ready to be cooked. In this article, we will guide you through the process of cleaning prawns, giving you the confidence to tackle this essential skill in the kitchen.

Step 1: Gather the Necessary Tools

Before you begin cleaning prawns, it is important to gather all the necessary tools. This includes a sharp knife, a cutting board, a bowl of cold water, and a colander. Having these tools readily available will make the cleaning process much more efficient.

Step 2: Remove the Head

The first step in cleaning prawns is to remove the head. Hold the prawn firmly by its body and firmly twist the head off, disposing of it properly. If desired, you can save the prawn heads to make a stock or flavor a seafood-based recipe.

Step 3: Peel the Shell

Once the head is removed, it is time to peel the shell off the prawn. Start by grasping the shell near the head and gently peel it back towards the tail. You can also use a paring knife to make a small incision along the back of the prawn to easily remove the shell. Be sure to keep the tail intact, as it adds an attractive presentation to your cooked prawns.

Step 4: Devein the Prawn

Deveining prawns is an optional step, but it is highly recommended. The “vein” is actually the digestive tract of the prawn and can contain grit or sand. To devein the prawn, make a shallow incision along its back and use the tip of your knife or a deveining tool to remove the vein. Rinse the prawn under cold water to ensure all debris is removed.

Step 5: Rinse and Pat Dry

After peeling and deveining the prawns, it is crucial to give them a thorough rinse under cold water. This will wash away any remaining shell fragments or impurities. Once rinsed, gently pat the prawns dry with a paper towel before using them in your favorite recipe.

Step 6: Store or Cook Immediately

Cleaned prawns should be either cooked immediately or stored properly to maintain freshness. If cooking right away, follow your chosen recipe. If you plan to store the prawns, place them in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.


Cleaning prawns may seem like a challenging task initially, but with practice, it becomes easier and quicker. By following these simple steps, you can ensure that your prawns are clean and safe to eat. So don’t hesitate to try out those delicious prawn recipes, knowing that you have mastered the art of cleaning prawns!

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