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Creamy Shrimp and Grits Recipe

Creamy Shrimp and Grits are a classic southern dish, and easier than you think to make! This classic southern recipe is perfect for any brunch, lunch, or dinner!

creamy shrimp and grits recipe

Creamy Shrimp and Grits are what most southern home cooks pride themselves on.

Whenever I go to a restaurant that has shrimp and grits on the menu, I’ll order it… To judge it. (I do this with a lot of things…)

First, let me tell you about Shrimp and Grits!

shrimp and grits recipe

Southern Shrimp and grits originated in Africa and were brought to South Carolina by enslaved African Americans. It later made its way to New Orleans, Louisiana, and other southern states.

Along with gumbo, shrimp and grits are one of the most iconic southern dishes!

While there are thousands of shrimp and grit recipes, most all handed down through generations, this is my version.

The shrimp mixture is usually made with either bacon grease, tasso ham drippings, or some other type of fat to make a roux and a creamy sauce.

This recipe creates the perfect comfort food for an easy weeknight dinner without all the fuss! Delicious jumbo shrimp are simmered in a creamy, tomato broth, then spooned over the creamiest grits you’ve ever had!

creamy shrimp and grits

Now, before we get into the shrimp portion of the recipe, let’s chat about grits!

Grits are the comfort food of my life. Most people want chicken soup when they’re sick, I want grits.

Most people who say they don’t like grits have never had GOOD grits. And once you have the real deal, cooked all the way stone-ground grits, you’ll know what you’ve been missing. 

While most recipes call for water, I use a combo of both water and milk. And always choose stone-ground grits. For extra creamy grits, you’ll be cooking them low and slow.

The addition of creamy milk helps give you even creamier grits, leaving that unctuous feeling in your mouth.

Here’s an easy guide to making Goat Cheese Grits!

You can use quick-cooking grits or instant grits, but add extra time to the cooking time.

Frequently Asked Questions About Grits:

What are grits?

Grits are ground corn. You can buy either white corn grits, yellow cornmeal grits, or quick grits.

Can you use milk instead of water?

Yes! I use a combination of water and milk. When you use just milk watch very carefully, the milk will bubble over just before boiling. Recently I heard someone say they used chicken broth to cook their grits in. I’ve never done that, but feel free to give it a try!

What is the secret to good grits?

Salting your water. More butter than you can imagine. And lots of love. LOTS of love.

What cheese can you add to grits?

Cheddar cheese, cream cheese, or parmesan cheese.

recipe for creamy shrimp and grits

How to Make Shrimp and Grits:

Ingredients You’ll Need for This Recipe:

  • Goat Cheese Grits Recipe
  • Fresh Shrimp
  • Onion
  • Green Bell Pepper
  • Champagne or White Wine
  • Tomato Confit
  • Whole Milk

Kitchen Equipment You’ll Need:

  • Large Skillet, Large Saute Pan, or Dutch Oven
  • Paper Towels
  • Large Mixing Bowl

When you start to make shrimp and grits remember one thing: make your grits first. You want the grits waiting for you, not the shrimp.

After your grits are mostly cooked and simmering on low heat, you can start cooking your shrimp!

To make your shrimp, first, be sure to devein the shrimp. I prefer to purchase devein shrimp with tails off. There is nothing more annoying than getting a big bowl of shrimp and grits that I have to dirty my fingers getting tails off before a bite!

Pat your shrimp dry with a paper towel, and then add to a big bowl.

Sprinkle your seasonings over the shrimp, and let them marry for about 10-15 minutes.

southern shrimp and grits

This post contains affiliate links.

For this recipe, I used Spicewalla’s Cajun Seasoning Blend. This is a nice spice blend of Garlic, Smoked Paprika, Onion, Spanish paprika, Black pepper, Cayenne Pepper, Thyme, Parsley, and Red pepper. One of the main reasons I love this spice blend so much is because it does not have salt.

Once your shrimp has marinated for 15 minutes or so, get your pan up to medium-high heat.

Add in your butter, and allow it to get foamy.

shrimp and grits recipe

Place your raw shrimp in one layer in the pan, as best as possible.

Cook the shrimp until just almost cooked through and remove it from the pan, and set it to the side.

To the hot pan, reduce the heat to medium heat, and add diced onion and diced green peppers.

Allow the onion and peppers to cook until soft and starting to brown.

Once the onion and peppers are soft and beginning to brown, you’ll grate a couple of garlic cloves into the pan. I like using a Microplane.

Stir this around, and then add in a cup of champagne or white wine, scraping up the bits on the bottom of the pan.

Add in a few spoonfuls of tomato confit, swirl in some whole milk, heavy cream, or half and half.

Then, add your shrimp back in. Allow this to simmer for a few minutes before serving over a steaming bowl of cheesy grits.

You could garnish with green onions if you want!

Other Garnishes:

  • Dashes of Hot Sauce
  • Crisp Bacon
  • Fresh Parsley
  • White Pepper

If you’ve never been to the low country of South Carolina and had this amazing dish, you’ve got to go. This recipe will do, but nothing beats the amazing shrimp of the Carolina coast, in one of my favorite shrimp recipes!

What to Serve with Shrimp and Grits

A simple salad, like this Prosecco Vinaigrette Salad, is perfect! You don’t need much — shrimp and grits are definitely an all-in-one meal!

creamy shrimp and grits recipe
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Creamy Shrimp and Grits Recipe

  • Author: Sweetpea
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 25
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 8 1x
  • Category: main dish
  • Method: stove top
  • Cuisine: southern

Description

Creamy Shrimp and Grits are a classic southern dish, and easier than you think to make! This classic southern recipe is perfect for any brunch, lunch, or dinner!


Ingredients

Scale

You’ll need this recipe for Goat Cheese Grits

Shrimp:

  • 1.5 lbs raw, peeled, and deveined shrimp
  • 1 tsp Kosher Salt
  • 2 tsp Cajun Seasoning
  • 2 TBS Butter
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves – grated
  • 1/2 cup tomato confit – see notes
  • 1 cup champagne or white wine
  • 1 cup whole milk, heavy cream, or half and half

 


Instructions

  1. To make your shrimp, first, be sure to devein the shrimp. I prefer to purchase devein shrimp with tails off. There is nothing more annoying than getting a big bowl of shrimp and grits that I have to dirty my fingers getting tails off before a bite!
  2. Pat your shrimp dry with a paper towel, and then add to a big bowl.
  3. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of salt and 2 teaspoons of cajun seasoning over the shrimp, and let them marry for about 10-15 minutes.
  4. Once your shrimp has marinated for 15 minutes or so, get your pan up to medium-high heat.
  5. Add in your 2 tablespoons butter, and allow it to get foamy.
  6. Place your raw shrimp in one layer in the pan, as best as possible.
  7. Cook the shrimp until just almost cooked through and remove it from the pan, and set it to the side.
  8. To the hot pan, reduce the heat to medium heat, and add diced onion and diced green peppers.
  9. Allow the onion and peppers to cook until soft and starting to brown.
  10. Once the onion and peppers are soft and beginning to brown, you’ll grate a couple of garlic cloves into the pan. I like using a Microplane.
  11. Stir this around, and then add in a cup of champagne or white wine, scraping up the bits on the bottom of the pan.
  12. Add in a few spoonfuls of tomato confit, swirl in one cup of whole milk, heavy cream, or half and half.
  13. Then, add your shrimp back in. Allow this to simmer for a few minutes before serving over a steaming bowl of cheesy grits.

Notes

TOMATO CONFIT:

  • 1-pint cherry or grape tomatoes
  • 2 shallots, skin removed and sliced
  • 8 garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 8-10 basil leaves
  • 1 cups olive oil

Add all ingredients to a baking dish with a lid, and roast in a 350˚ oven for 1.5 hours.

Keywords: creamy shrimp and grits

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