FoodTok Has Arrived and It Is Here to Stay

TikTok– the viral app known for its dance routines and "broken" millennial humor is also home to some fantastic food content and handy-dandy cooking hacks. 

Whether you find yourself being ordered around by a suburban mother (@cookingwithshereen), or being hyped up by a young chef showing off some simple kitchen know-hows (@newt), this side of TikTok, dubbed “FoodTok,” has some incredible must-try recipes to make at home.

Some of these inventive and unique meals include Gigi Hadid’s Spicy Vodka Pasta, a Chick-Fil-A Crunchwrap Supreme, and Crispy Hot Cheeto Chicken Wings.

Recently, I came across a viral TikTok recipe that garnered 3.9M views and 734.4K likes, and after viewing it for myself, I knew I had to make it.

The deciding factor? The classy orange appearance and downright crunch of the jumbo shrimp.

Posted by Cal Reynolds (@calwillcookit), this Bang Bang Shrimp Pasta appears remarkably savory and crispy. One passionate viewer even commented “I’ll sell my soul for the recipe I’m begging you.”

However, this recipe may not be as beginner-friendly as Reynold's made it out to be.

The Difficulties: 

Whether it’s because of Instagram’s platform or Reynold’s poor directions, it isn’t automatically revealed how difficult this TikTok recipe is to make. 

My first struggle with this meal was figuring out how many different batters/mixes there are because there are a lot.

One sauce, one wet batter, one dry batter, and a Panko breading– all thrown together in one mass paragraph with no distinguishing factors. This made it extremely difficult to read and locate all of the individual ingredients necessary for this recipe.

Because Reynold's did not clarify what each mixture was used for, nor did he provide pictures of what the end result should look like, this caused mass confusion when bringing this Bang Bang Shrimp Pasta to life. 

Finally, it was briefly mentioned somewhere in the middle of the directions to toss the shrimp in an unidentifiable amount of the chilled sauce. However, because this instruction was so small, I read right over it and did not toss my shrimp. 

This was extremely aggravating after I plated my pasta, took a bite of my shrimp, and wondered where the bang was. 

After mentally cursing Reynold's in my head and throwing my shrimp back in the extra sauce I had, I finally re-plated my pasta and chowed down. 

My Verdict: 

Though this pasta tasted absolutely incredible, Reynold's TikTok recipe was very tough to understand and far too vague for a beginner chef like me to follow. 

I found it challenging to locate the ingredients, differentiate between the batters, and figure out how to follow the mass lump of instructions in the order that they are shown. 

Nevertheless, I thought this pasta had unbelievable flavor and was extremely tasty. So, I decided to rewrite this TikTok recipe so it's rated 'E' for everyone. 

Bang Bang Shrimp Pasta

  • Prep Time:40 mins
  • Cook Time:30 mins
  • Total Time:1 hr 10 mins
  • Servings:2
  • Medium


  • 1/2 lb peeled and deveined jumbo shrimp
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 large egg
  • 2-3 tablespoons sriracha sauce
  • 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • Optional salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Canola oil for frying
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley
  • 1/2 lb linguine pasta
  • 3/4 cup mayo
  • 5 tablespoons sweet chili sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons rice vinegar
Lauren Wood
  • Step 1

    For the sauce, combine 3/4 cup mayo, 5 tablespoons sweet chili sauce, 2 tablespoons honey, 1-2 tablespoons of sriracha sauce, and 2 teaspoons of rice vinegar into a small mixing bowl. Stir until well-blended and place in fridge to thicken.

    Natsuko Mazany
  • Step 2

    Next, peel and devein a 1/2 lb of jumbo shrimp. If you are a beginner chef, this means to get rid of the outer shell and accompanying legs and tail. Dry on a paper towel before continuing.

    Lauren Wood
  • Step 3

    To make the wet batter, combine 1 cup buttermilk, 1 large egg, and 1 tablespoon sriracha sauce into a medium mixing bowl. Mix together.

    Lauren Wood
  • Step 4

    For the dry batter, combine 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup cornstarch, and a dash of salt and pepper in a small mixing bowl. Stir together.

    Lauren Wood
  • Step 5

    Next, pour the dry batter into the wet batter and stir until well-combined. This will be used to coat the shrimp later on in the recipe.

    flour, dough, egg, bread, milk, dairy product, batter, cream, pastry, sweet, cake mix
    Hailey Almsted
  • Step 6

    For the breading, combine 1 cup Panko bread crumbs, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon dried basil, 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, 1/2 teaspoon paprika, and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper. This will be used as the "crunch factor" for the shrimp.

    Angela Pizzimenti
  • Step 7

    Before frying the shrimp, boil a pot of water for the linguine. Follow the directions on the box or cook to your liking. Make sure to save some of the pasta water once the noodles have finished boiling. This will be used to thin the sauce later on in the recipe.

    pasta, spaghetti
    Alex Frank
  • Step 8

    In a large frying pan, fill the bottom with at least 1/2 an inch of canola oil. Bring to a medium-high heat.

    Yasmeen Anchia
  • Step 9

    Next, completely dip the shrimp into the batter. Make sure to coat every inch of it before placing the shrimp into the Panko mix.

    Natsuko Mazany
  • Step 10

    After coating the shrimp in batter and Panko, place it into the oil and cook for 1 minute and 30 seconds on each side (or until a golden-brown color).

    Lauren Wood
  • Step 11

    Remove sauce from fridge and add half to drained linguine. Turn on medium heat and slowly add pasta water until desired consistency. Add 1/4 cup parsley to the pasta and stir.

    Lauren Wood
  • Step 12

    Toss shrimp in the remaining half of the sauce and stir until well-coated.

    Natsuko Mazany
  • Step 13

    Finally, plate the pasta with shrimp over the top. Garnish with extra parsley and serve.

    Lauren Wood