Pan Fried Prawns in a Bloody Mary Sauce

A Bloody Mary is one of the most famous cocktails in the world. Traditionally consisting of tomato juice, vodka, Worcestershire sauce or Tabasco and served with a stick of celery, it’s one of the easiest cocktails to make at home, and one that lends itself really well to becoming a delicious, easy to make sauce.

The vodka doesn’t give this sauce a strong alcoholic taste, it just adds an interesting depth of flavour. This, along with the smooth, rich passata and warming spices makes for a gorgeous sauce you’ll want to mop up with a piece of bread after you’ve finished. Perfect for these wet, windy, chilly evenings.

This sauce complements prawns wonderfully, but feel free to experiment with different types of seafood, or even chicken. Store any left over sauce in an airtight container in the fridge. Reheat it for a min or so in the microwave and eat with celery sticks or crusty bread like a dip, for a yummy lunch the next day. I don’t recommend reheating any seafood or meat.

Ready in 30 mins – serves 2.


  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 large white onion, finely diced
  • 1 celery stick, finely diced
  • 1 large garlic clove, crushed and finely chopped
  • Half an orange pepper, finely diced (See my tips on Bell Pepper Prep here)
  • 6 cherry/plum tomatoes, cut into halves or quarters depending on the size
  • 30mls of vodka
  • 1 teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of tomato puree
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • A good pinch of cayenne pepper
  • A good pinch of paprika
  • A good pinch of black pepper
  • 1 pouch of Passata (about 390g)
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • A knob of butter
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • 2 handfuls of uncooked prawns
  • 1 teaspoon of oregano
  • 1 teaspoon of basil


  • Put a pan over a medium/high heat and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, the onion and celery.
  • Cook down for 5 mins until the onions are translucent. – Pic 1
  • Add the garlic, orange pepper and the cherry/plum tomatoes and cook for 5 mins until the tomatoes start to break down. – Pic 2
  • Add the vodka, Worcestershire sauce, tomato puree, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, the cayenne pepper, paprika and black pepper and mix well.
  • Cook for 5 mins to warm the spices then turn the heat down a little and add the passata. – Pic 3
  • Let the sauce simmer gently for 10-15 mins, stirring regularly.
  • While the sauce simmers, put a frying pan on a medium/high heat and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, the butter and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice.
  • Once hot, add the prawns, basil and oregano and cook, turning regularly, until the prawns are no longer pink and are starting to char on both sides. – Pics 4 and 5
  • By now the sauce will be ready. It will have reduced slightly and will be thick and flavoursome. – Pic 6
  • Serve with brown rice, the prawns and celery.

If you liked this recipe, you may also like:

Moroccan Style Cod

Stuffed Dough Balls

Patatas Bravas

Pic 1
Pic 2
Pic 3
Pic 4
Pic 5
Pic 6

6 thoughts on “Pan Fried Prawns in a Bloody Mary Sauce

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