BBQ Cajun Shrimp

4 Servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes

BBQ Cajun Shrimp is a New Orleans favorite made with butter, lemon, tomatoes and spices for the perfect messy delicious shrimp dish you’ll crave all summer long!

We love easy shrimp recipes like Kung Pao ShrimpEasy Honey Garlic Shrimp and Spicy Louisiana Shrimp Dip.

BBQ Cajun Shrimp BBQ Cajun Shrimp

BBQ Cajun Shrimp, bring home a bit of New Orleans flavor with the spices, garlic, Worcestershire sauce and lemon butter spooned over some crispy baguette slices. You can also substitute the spices for a pre-made cajun spice mix if you’d like too, but I still recommend adding all the fresh garlic even if your spice blend contains garlic powder.

We love Cajun flavors, like Easy Cajun Jambalaya Pasta and Easy Jambalaya (Chicken, Shrimp and Andouille) so making a bbq shrimp was the a no brainer for us. We love slicing up some fresh bread, scooping piles of shrimp on top then spooning over all the delicious butter.

I promise you, this butter. There are NO WORDS. Just drool.

It’s so full of flavor, and for all the additional ingredients that get added to the mix it still is distinctly a butter flavor. So rich, spicy, lemon and garlic flavored. The shrimp come alive with these flavors.

Lemon Garlic Cajun Shrimp

Why melt the butter so slowly?

We literally melt the butter so slowly that we melt away the tomatoes and cook them down until the butter is a beautiful shade of red from the tomatoes and paprika. Cooking it so slowly allows all the spices to really flavor the butter without allowing the butter to brown/burn.

How do you make homemade Cajun seasoning?

  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¼ teaspoons dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoons dried thyme
  1. Mix all the ingredients together and store in a covered container for up to three months

This is a great mix to use if you’re looking to ditch the store bought mixes. It uses spices you probably already have in your pantry. 

What makes the flavors so authentically New Orleans?

The reason we look to the south for this recipe (which is nothing like a typical “BBQ Shrimp”) is a butter sauce with Worcestershire sauce and lemon juice. You can be creative about the cajun seasonings you want to use since you may have a jar of this in your cupboard.

New Orleans recipes are not shy about cooking with fats. In jambalaya they use butter and sausage fat. Many of the dishes are deep fried like po’ boys. So cooking a pound and a half of shrimp with a cup of butter isn’t crazy for those from the region.

You can of course edit the sauce as you’d like. But if you cut back the butter too much you are going to lose the magic of this sauce. I’d recommend making an alternate shrimp recipe if you lose more than half the butter. The flavors are just too different.

Second, don’t skip the Worcestershire sauce though, it is the classic flavor of the dish. I know many people will substitute soy sauce for Worcestershire sauce, I promise you it is not a good idea.

BBQ Shrimp In the Oven:

To a foil lined sheet tray add all the ingredients and cook at 425 degrees for 8-10 minutes.

BBQ New Orleans Shrimp

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BBQ Cajun Shrimp

BBQ Cajun Shrimp is a New Orleans favorite made with butter, lemon, tomatoes and spices for the perfect messy delicious shrimp dish you'll crave all summer long!
Yield 4 Servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 4 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1 roma tomato chopped finely but without seeds or juices
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds shrimp peeled and deveined (any size works here)
  • parsley chopped for garnish


  • Add the butter to the pan on medium-low heat with the garlic, tomatoes, lemon, Worcestershire sauce, bay leaves, sweet paprika, cayenne pepper, kosher salt and black pepper and let it melt together on low heat for 5-7 minutes while the tomatoes melt.
  • Remove the bay leaf.
  • When the juice of the tomatoes seems to have evaporated you're ready to add the shrimp.
  • Raise the heat to medium-high and add the shrimp to the pan, cooking just 1-2 minutes on each side.
  • Serve with additional lemon wedges, parsley and crusty bread if desired.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 601kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 48g | Saturated Fat: 29g | Cholesterol: 550mg | Sodium: 2576mg | Potassium: 315mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1845IU | Vitamin C: 25.4mg | Calcium: 282mg | Iron: 4.5mg
Cajun Butter Shrimp
Lemon Garlic Cajun Shrimp

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

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  1. This looks really good but I’m confused. You list a homemade Cajun Seasoning recipe above but then it’s never used in the cooking Instructions below. When do you use the homemade Cajun seasoning, or is that not part of the BBQ Cajun Shrimp recipe? I’d love to try this!

    1. Sorry for the confusion. The Cajun seasoning in the post is just a recipe in case you don’t want to use a store bought seasoning mix to use for other things. The recipe card is written to make the BBQ Cajun Shrimp recipe. Hope this helps to clear things up. Enjoy!

  2. The flavor is really good but 2 teaspoons of salt made it very salty. Is it really only one tomato? I added four more because it was so salty and I wanted to salvage the sauce. I will definitely make again with less salt but I am asking if you could confirm that it really is only one tomato. Thank you.

    1. The is by nature a salty dish. You can definitely cut back on the salt and add more tomatoes if that’s more to your liking. Hope this helps for next time.

  3. I got excited seeing this recipe. My wife and I went to New Orleans on our honeymoon. We discovered Mr B’s Bistro on Royal in the Quarter. We decided to try the BBQ Shrimp.
    Oh my Lord! Can you say shrimp “crack”. Your recipe has all of the original ingredients; except, perhaps, the tomato. I just don’t remember it. We’ve been back to Mr B’s many times. Now, with your great sharing, we can have it at home.
    Thank you very much!

  4. To start. I’m a salt fiend.
    In the initial ingredients you mention a half teaspoon of salt.
    In the recipe, you say 2 teaspoons.
    When I made it, I went by the recipe at the bottom without realizing the inconsistency. I used 2 teaspoons of salt and it was inedible without scraping the sauce off the shrimp.
    The rest of the flavours were incredible. I will be doing this again many times, just with the salt adjusted.

  5. I halved this recipe and even with the 1/2 cup of butter and tomato my sauce was more on the liquid side despite simmering the sauce for 10-15 minutes to get the liquids to evaporate. Maybe it will thicken more as it cools? Still, it was tasty. Thank you for sharing!

  6. This sounds fantastic. I love all the Cajun flavors is this easy, but flavorful dish.