Shilpa Shukla was born in Bihar and brought up in New Delhi. Her brother Tenzin Priyadarshi (originally Priyadarshi Shukla) is a renowned monk and is currently the Buddhist Chaplain at MIT. Her father N.K. Shukla is a senior Income Tax official.
Shilpa did her schooling from Delhi Public School, RK Puram and college from Miranda House, University of Delhi.
The actress is married to Mohit Tripathi, whom she met in the Asmita Theatre Group and has settled in Mumbai with him.
Before her movies she was part of the theater group called Asmita Theatre Group. Her most popular plays are Mahesh Dattani's Final Solutions and Tara, Ashok Lal's Ek Mamooli Aadmi, Govind Deshpande's (GPD) Antim Diwas, Neil Simon's Log-Baag and Girish Karnad's Rakt Kalyan (Taledanda).
In 2003, she made her debut with Khamosh Pani, a Pakistani film which was released in India too. This film brought her many awards in award festivals like Locarno International Film Festival, Nantes Three Continents Festival Karachi and International Film Festival.
Her next film was Sudhir Mishra's Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi(2004), starring Shiney Ahuja and Kay Kay Menon. She then played a wife's role in an Indian drama film Frozen (2007). Shilpa came into the limelight only after her award winning performance in Chak De India(2007) and won the Stardust Awards: The New Menace for this movie. Shilpa played Advocate Nandita Prakash in a Mithun Chakraborty starrer Chal Chalein(2009).
Shilpa's next film is a multi starrer named Season's Greetings(2009) directed by Vicky Chopra.
Shukla also participated in a dance show called Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa on Sony Entertainment Television which brought her more popularity.