Shrimp and Grits

Shrimp and Grits is a classic southern dish with a delicious and easy grits recipe topped with a creole shrimp and bacon mixture in just 45 minutes.

Shrimp is a favorite on the site, especially our Classic Fried ShrimpShrimp Scampi and Easy Shrimp Stir-Fry which are three of our most popular dishes on the site!

Shrimp and Grits
SHRIMP AND GRITS

Shrimp and Grits is one of my family’s favorite southern recipes. I mean don’t get me wrong, I’m all for beignets and po boys, but a really great shrimp and grits is a dark horse winner.

It’s creamy, savory grits topped with spicy creole seasoned shrimp and crispy bacon. You can actually enjoy this for breakfast or dinner, depending on your preference. In the southern US, you’ll find it both ways. This is a great recipe to serve for brunch on the weekend, something different from your usual french toast dish!

HOW TO MAKE SHRIMP AND GRITS SOUTHERN STYLE

There are a lot of different ways to make shrimp and grits, most of it coming down to the seasoning and grits recipe. You can use a basic seasoning, or a spicy cajun seasoning depending on what region you’re making this from. You’ll also find recipes where the grits are cooked in milk entirely. A lot of southern grits recipes include cheddar cheese and cream or butter.

Cheesy grits is one of the few times when it is acceptable to mix shrimp and cheese. Here is a really basic southern shrimp and grits.

  • Boil broth or milk over medium heat, then add grits and cook until creamy.
  • Add a splash of heavy cream, salt, pepper, and 1 ½ cups cheddar cheese. Stir until cheese is melted.
  • Cook the bacon in a large skillet, then remove from pan and cook the seasoned shrimp in the bacon drippings.
  • Serve bacon and shrimp over cheesy grits.

CREOLE SEASONING RECIPE

  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt

Mix everything together in a small bowl and save in a closed container at room temperature.

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN GRITS AND POLENTA?

Polenta is made from yellow corn and usually has a rougher texture, while grits are white corn (aka hominy) and turn out more creamy in texture.

Grits will really take on the flavor of whatever you’re cooking it in, in this case chicken broth. Polenta will take on the flavor, but not as well because it has a lot of flavor on its own.

Just to be clear, you can serve shrimp over either of these and it would be amazing. If I’m using polenta I’ll usually serve this for dinner, and grits would be for breakfast.

Easy Shrimp and Grits with Creole Seasoning

MORE SHRIMP RECIPES

TIPS FOR MAKING SHRIMP AND GRITS

  • You can make this dish with other types of seafood, like catfish or codfish.
  • If you don’t have bacon, you can make this dish with leftover ham, diced salami, spicy sausage, or pork roll. Chop up and cook in the skillet just like you would for the bacon.
  • Add vegetables to this dish like tomatoes, zucchini, bell peppers, or butternut squash. Add them to the skillet with the onions to cook off any extra water.
  • The creole seasoning is already pretty spicy, but you can add chopped spicy peppers if desired.
  • Try to stick with fresh seafood if you can get it, you can’t beat it for flavor.
  • Garnish with a drizzle of olive oil and fresh herbs like parsley or chives.
  • Shrimp cooks really quickly and might be hard to see when covered in seasoning, so be extra careful not to overcook.
  • Serve with lemon wedges so your guests can add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.

Southern Shrimp and Grits

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Shrimp and Grits

Shrimp and Grits is a classic southern dish with a delicious and easy grits recipe topped with a creole shrimp and bacon mixture in just 45 minutes.
Yield 6 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder

Ingredients
 

  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 cup stone-ground grits
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 slices bacon chopped
  • 1 tablespoon creole seasoning
  • 1 pound shrimp peeled and deveined
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1 stalk celery thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1 cup thinly sliced scallions

Instructions

  • Bring the broth, salt and pepper to a boil in a large pot before adding the grits and butter, stirring and cooking for 20-22 minutes or until the liquid is gone.
  • Add the bacon to a skillet and cook until crisp then remove from the pan and add the shrimp and creole seasoning to the pan cooking for 1-2 minutes on each side.
  • Remove the cooked shrimp and add in the garlic, celery and lemon juice cooking for 1 minute before adding the shrimp and bacon back into the pan and stirring to combine.
  • Serve the shrimp mixture over the grits and garnish with parsley and scallions.

Notes

Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.

Nutrition

Calories: 319kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 220mg | Sodium: 1527mg | Potassium: 337mg | Fiber: 1g | Vitamin A: 945IU | Vitamin C: 21mg | Calcium: 138mg | Iron: 2.6mg
Keyword: shrimp, Shrimp and Grits, southern food

Easy Flavorful Shrimp and Grits

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 upcoming cookbook: Dinner, then Dessert โ€“ Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients which is being 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.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.

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Comments

  1. this looks delicious. where do the scallions go in? they are list under ingredients but not in recipe. at the end it says to sprinkle with parsley or chives. could that mean the scallions? thanks for the recipe.

    1. Thanks for catching that! Yes, the last step should read parsley and scallions. I’ve edited it to read correctly.

  2. Very yummy! I used less than a tablespoon for the condiments and it was delicious. This recipe is a keeper.

  3. I’ve made this several times now and have gotten rave reviews each time. I’d like to make this as an appetizer using tasting spoons or 2 oz shot glasses. Any guesstimate as to how many the recipe would yield serving it this way? Each time I’ve made it, I’ve made it for over 100 people so I’m not sure how much one serving would actually be. Thank you!

    1. I haven’t made it to that scale, or appetizer sized, but my gut tells me you would go by how many shrimp you want per portion and go from there. 1lb of shrimp is about 22 pieces. Let me know how it turns out and how you adjusted!

  4. In your instructions you do not state when to add the 4 tablespoons of butter nor whether you add it to the shrimp or the grits. When do you add it and to which part of the recipe?

    Also, in step 1 of the instructions, you still list “water” in “…until the water is gone”.

  5. At what point do you add on the chicken broth in the grits or the shrimp mixture. The recipe mentions water in the preparation of the grits but no mention of the chicken broth as you making the dish

  6. Your shrimp and grits states 1 carbs per serving. Would this be for the shrimp only! What is the carb value for the grits?

    1. Thanks for catching that. The nutritional information didn’t pull in the grits into the calculation. I’ve edited to read correctly now.

  7. My first time making Shrimp and Grits… This is SUPER easy and quick! I halved the recipe and it still worked perfectly. My husband loved it – said it was Restaurant Quality…. not only that but that mine (this recipe) was better than any he has had at s restaurant. ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. When I want comfort food this is one of my go to dishes! Can’t wait to whip this up!