BBQ Shrimp and Grits

These New Orleans-style BBQ Shrimp and Grits don’t involve barbecue sauce…but this recipe is a New Orleans classic for a reason!  Talk about delicious comfort food!

These New Orleans-style BBQ Shrimp and Grits don't involve barbecue sauce...but this recipe is a New Orleans classic for a reason!  Talk about delicious comfort food!It’s no secret that I love New Orleans.  We all have our favorite cities, right?  It might be the city where you grew up.  Or it might be a small town where you spent summers visiting grandparents.  I definitely have several towns and cities that I count among my favorites, and New Orleans is right up there near the top of the list.  I didn’t grow up in New Orleans.  Heck, I didn’t even grow up in Louisiana.  However, I did grow up in the southeast, and I did move to Louisiana shortly after college.  From the football to the general Southern charm to even the ghost stories, I love everything about south Louisiana.  Oh, and I haven’t even mentioned the food yet!

These New Orleans-style BBQ Shrimp and Grits don't involve barbecue sauce...but this recipe is a New Orleans classic for a reason!  Talk about delicious comfort food!When I was down in NOLA earlier this year, I noticed a number of famous quotes posted around the city.  One of my favorites is from Bob Dylan:

Bob Dylan New Orleans

And Tennessee Williams sums it up nicely with this one.  (No offense to Cleveland here.  I actually like Cleveland…but it’s not New Orleans!)

New Orleans Tennessee Williams

Another favorite (although I can’t seem to find this photo in my iPhone folder) is from Mark Twain:

“New Orleans food is as delicious as the less criminal forms of sin.” ~Mark Twain

I couldn’t agree more, Mr. Twain.  I couldn’t agree more.

These New Orleans-style BBQ Shrimp and Grits don't involve barbecue sauce...but this recipe is a New Orleans classic for a reason!  Talk about delicious comfort food!BBQ Shrimp and Grits

Speaking of New Orleans food, this recipe for BBQ Shrimp and Grits is a keeper!  This is quintessential New Orleans food at its best, and you don’t even have to travel to NOLA to get it.  (Although I do highly recommend traveling to NOLA!)  There are several thoughts that come to mind with BBQ Shrimp and Grits.  First, BBQ sauce.  Nope, no BBQ sauce in this recipe.  Next, grilled.  Nope, this recipe is made entirely on the stovetop.  BBQ Shrimp and Grits actually has nothing to do with barbecue, but it is a New Orleans favorite!

These New Orleans-style BBQ Shrimp and Grits don't involve barbecue sauce...but this recipe is a New Orleans classic for a reason!  Talk about delicious comfort food!BBQ Shrimp and Grits involves shrimp sauteed in a Worcestershire sauce and then served over a pile of cheesy grits.  This recipe is comfort food at its finest!  BBQ Shrimp is often served by itself or perhaps with a side of rice.  I opted for grits here because they’re (1) delicious and (2) the perfect way to catch all of that delicious sauce that comes with the shrimp.

Grits sometimes get a bad rap.  I get it.  I’ve had some bad grits before.  But to say you don’t like grits is like taking a bite of powdered eggs and proclaiming you don’t like scrambled eggs.  One bite of good grits, and you’ll understand why they’re a staple in so many Southern recipes.

These New Orleans-style BBQ Shrimp and Grits don't involve barbecue sauce...but this recipe is a New Orleans classic for a reason!  Talk about delicious comfort food!For these BBQ Shrimp and Grits, I used my go-to grits recipe that involves jalapenos and shredded cheese.  (Sometimes I add bacon, but I omitted it this time since the shrimp have so much flavor.  But I doubt anyone would complain if you add some bacon to these grits!)  I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do.  Whenever I’m craving some good Creole food, this recipe is near the top of the list.  Enjoy!

Did you make this BBQ Shrimp and Grits recipe at home?  Leave a comment.  Or snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog)!

Looking for more classic Cajun and Creole recipes?  Check out these other favorites:

Cajun Fried Shrimp
Shrimp Etouffee
Cajun Dirty Rice
Cajun Grilled Shrimp w/ Spicy Dipping Sauce
Cajun Spiced Pecans

These New Orleans-style BBQ Shrimp and Grits don't involve barbecue sauce...but this recipe is a New Orleans classic for a reason!  Talk about delicious comfort food!

BBQ Shrimp and Grits

These New Orleans-style BBQ Shrimp and Grits don't involve barbecue sauce...but this recipe is a New Orleans classic for a reason!  Talk about delicious comfort food!
5 from 11 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 787kcal

Ingredients

For the Grits

  • 2 jalapenos ribs and seeds removed, diced
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • cups quick-cooking grits
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • 2 cups hot water
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • cups shredded cheddar cheese

For the Shrimp

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • ½ cup diced yellow onion
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 Tbsp Cajun seasoning
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • ½ cup Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • pounds large raw shrimp peeled and deveined
  • chopped green onions

Instructions

For the Grits

  • Using a large saucepan with a lid, add olive oil and place over medium-high heat. Once hot, add diced jalapenos. Sauté, stirring occasionally, for 5-6 minutes, or until jalapenos have softened.
  • Add grits, salt, chicken stock and hot water; stir until well combined. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally.
  • Stir in cream and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 16-18 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until grits are tender and have thickened. Remove from heat, cover and keep warm. (Note: Cheese will be added later.)

For the Shrimp

  • Using a medium saucepan, add olive oil and place over medium-high heat. Once hot, add onion, garlic, Cajun seasoning and smoked paprika. Sauté, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add lemon juice, chicken stock, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper; stir until well combined. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and continue cooking for 30 minutes.
  • Transfer mixture into a large skillet and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, for 12-15 minutes, or until mixture reduces to ~¼ cup of sauce.
  • Add heavy cream and bring mixture to a simmer.
  • Once simmering, add shrimp and cook for 6-8 minutes, or until fully cooked.
  • Meanwhile, add shredded cheese to grits and stir until cheese has fully melted. (Note: If necessary, add a splash of water to the grits to loosen them up.)
  • To serve, divide grits onto plates. Use a slotted spoon to transfer shrimp onto grits. Top shrimp with several spoonfuls of sauce. Garnish with chopped green onions before serving.

These New Orleans-style BBQ Shrimp and Grits don't involve barbecue sauce...but this recipe is a New Orleans classic for a reason!  Talk about delicious comfort food!

 

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33 Comments

  1. Lil S and I were just discussing a good-venture to NOLA with a friend of mine who is from there and then I see this fantastic recipe!
    You make a great point with the powdered eggs vs scrambled eggs comparison for grits- good grits are delicious especially paired with some tasty bbq shrimp!
    Hoping y’all have a great weekend- happy birthday to Laura!

    1. Haha! Great minds think alike, huh, Shashi? I love New Orleans food, and BBQ shrimp & grits is a classic. Funny that it doesn’t actually include BBQ sauce, though! I say make a batch of these at home and continue that discussion of heading down to NOLA soon!

  2. 5 stars
    I definitely wouldn’t complain if you added bacon! This is one big ol’ bowl of comfort food that hubby and I would devour! We have yet to visit New Orleans but would love to. I’m all about food when we travel so and love getting inspired. Have to get this one on the menu soon. No going wrong with all those rich, comforting flavours. Happy weekend to ya 🙂

    1. Haha! You and me both, Dawn. Bacon makes everything better, right?? This is a classic New Orleans recipe, and I definitely say you should put it on the list soon. You can enjoy it while planning your trip to NOLA! 🙂 <--See what I did there. Haha!

  3. Hi David! I love a nice bowl of shrimp and grits! You know I’m a big fan of Cajun/Creole food! I usually saute the shrimp in the rendered bacon drippings and spices. Yeah, I do add bacon! I’ll definitely be trying this version soon. Enjoy your fall weekend my friend!

    1. Yes, definitely put this version on the list of things to make soon, Dorothy! It’s a good one – one of my favorites in fact! And yes to the bacon. You can’t ever go wrong with more bacon! 🙂

  4. 5 stars
    I’ve always wanted to go to NOLA, it seems like such a cool city. I’ve also always wanted to try grits, but given how much they seem to be revered in the South, I almost don’t want to try them unless I’m visiting there in case I mess it up! Do grits go by any other name? I doubt I’ll find grits in the UK!

    1. So I totally understand your point about grits, Matt. They sometimes get a bad rap, but once you’ve had properly made grits, you’ll understand why they have that revered status. Mimi is right. Polenta would be a good substitute if you can’t get grits over there. Grits are a bit finer ground, and that changes the overall texture…but it’s close enough given that grits aren’t really a thing over there. If you try these with polenta, let me know what you think!

  5. I never had grits till we visited Charleston, and I’m so glad I did. In fact, I ordered shrimp and grits. It’s really a magical combination. Your dish looks beautiful.

    1. Shrimp and grits is one of my favorites, and I love Charleston food! I also love New Orleans food, and BBQ shrimp and grits is a classic…even though there’s no BBQ sauce involved. Crazy, huh? Thanks, Mimi!

  6. 5 stars
    Oh honey! My MIL grew up in Gulfport so you can bet that shrimp and grits is pure comfort food in this house. And to think I never ate grits until I married my husband. Took me a long time to learn how to make them right but there is no going back now! Just a perfect combo here!

    1. Oh heck yeah! Gulfport is the real deal when it comes to southern cooking! You’re right about grits, too. Once you figure out how to make them the right way, holy cow! 🙂 Thanks, Abbe!

  7. 5 stars
    Mmm, delicious! This is comfort food for sure. I haven’t visited New Orleans yet, but we have a bar called NOLA not far from where I live, and the food is OH so good! So I know I will love it when I visit also. In the meantime, I will have to whip up your delicious recipe to tide me over 🙂

    1. Interesting! It sounds like you can get some good New Orleans food near you which is so cool. But you still need to plan a trip to NOLA. It’s such a special place. In the meantime, though, these BBQ shrimp and grits will definitely hold you over! They’re a classic for sure! 🙂

  8. Wow, this looks and sounds fantastic, David.

    I actually like grits a lot. It reminds me of polenta but yet it’s different enough to make for an interesting change. Funnily enough I used to have it more often when I was living in New York back in my school days and early professional years. There were a number of southern/soul food joints in the Village I used to frequent, and grits were always on the menu for breakfast. And, of course, shrimp and grits were a popular item in those places, too. What a great combination, although I’ve never tried them “BBQ” style. Now I need to try this. That sauce sounds really tasty!

    Funny thing is, here I am living in metro DC, practically in the southeast (Virginia is a five minute drive away) and I’ve had grits maybe once since I moved here!

    1. Yes! I’m glad you mentioned polenta here, Frank. Mimi suggested polenta in response to Matt’s comment above, and she’s right. It’s close enough to grits given that grits don’t exist in the UK, but there is still a difference there. Now you have to go out and get (or just make) some grits! I know Richmond is still a couple hours away, but if you ever get over there make sure to eat at Julep’s downtown. They make a killer shrimp and grits there!

    1. Yes, put NOLA on the list, Valentina! I absolutely love that city, and I would move there in a second if I could. Of course, I’d probably gain about 100 pounds from all the delicious food…haha!

  9. 5 stars
    Lynne is just back from New Orleans, David. She loved it! She was there for a couple of days as well as going to Nashville and Miami. It was a friends 40th birthday so they took a short trip there. Grits is something I’ll need to try next time I make it over there myself, you can’t get it here in the U.K. This looks like a delicious comfort dish.

    1. No way! I didn’t realize Lynne made a trip through the American South. I hope she loved it. I can’t say too much about Miami, but New Orleans and Nashville are both major favorites in my book! I say you make a version of this BBQ Shrimp and Grits for her as a reminder of the trip. 🙂 As Mimi pointed out above, polenta is an acceptable substitute for grits given that they don’t exist over there in the UK.

    1. This recipe is packed with flavor, Dawn! Grits can get a bad rap, but when they’re made the right way, then they are incredible. I hope you get a chance to try this recipe soon!

  10. 5 stars
    There is indeed something magical about N’awlins. I spent a year there in the early 70s and had a blast and also learn the joy of food. I used to order BBQ Shrimp and Grits for lunch at a local joint I was a regular at. But, I never knew why they called them BBQ shrimp. For me, the best part was the creamy Worcestershire sauce mixed with the grits. Thanks for sharing a fine recipe and a great food memory.

    1. Yes! If you don’t discover the joy of food in New Orleans, then there’s no saving you. 🙂 I agree that the BBQ Shrimp title is a bit of a misnomer, but it is what it is. I don’t care what you want to call it, this BBQ Shrimp and Grits is a delicious keeper of a recipe! Thanks, Ron!

  11. nope we don’t have grits, nor do we have shrimp:-) But you know we have prawns, big juicy ones. Grits – a bit like polenta? cornmeal? Yes i’d love to visit new orleans. one day… cheers sherry

    1. Ok, so that’s a fun challenge, Sherry! I think prawns could sub for the shrimp, and I think polenta could sub for the grits. It’s not perfect, but it’s close enough in my book! Let me know if you make that Australian version of this New Orleans classic! 🙂

    1. Yup, go ahead and plan that trip to New Orleans, Kathy. And while you’re at it, plan 2 trips. You won’t be sad about it. 🙂 In the meantime, make a batch of these BBQ Shrimp and Grits. It’s a classic NOLA recipe, and it’s delicious!

  12. 5 stars
    I’ve never been to New Orleans but my daddy’s people are from Georgia, which means I’ve eaten grits my entire life. Living up North, you’d be surprised how many people like them with butter and sugar…like they couldn’t just have a bowl of Cream of Wheat! Shrimp and grits is perfect for a crisp fall day…can’t wait to eat some more!

    1. Hey LayDiva! So first off, you absolutely must put a trip to New Orleans on the agenda. I love that city! The food is amazing, and so is the music, history, culture, etc, etc. 🙂 Second, I hear ya on the grits with sugar! What the heck is that all about!? Grits need shrimp if you ask me! I love this recipe, and I’m thinking I need to make it again soon. Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting!

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