Why do shrimp turn pink when they are cooked?

Image by Manfred Richter from Pixabay

Question from Jon Harman

Like other crustaceans, prawns and shrimp are encased in an exoskeleton. Placing them in boiling water loosens proteins called crustacyanin on their surface, revealing a reddish-pink exoskeleton pigment known as astaxanthin hidden underneath.

Answered by James Horton for Brain Dump in How It Works issue 125.

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