Creamy Shrimp and Grits is one of those dishes that speaks to your soul! In terms of comfort food, it’s hard to beat! You get really sweet and tender shrimp, rich creamy grits, with unctuous helpings of cheese and for a kick, some hot sauce!
I cant begin to tell you how much I love this dish. Even among the Lowcountry- in the South, there are different approaches to it. Among South Carolina and Georgia, it’s seen on breakfast and lunch menus, but down by Louisiana, you can see it more as a dinner dish.
It works either way.
When we went to New Orleans last December, we ate plenty of shrimp and this was perfect for a late dinner, with the stick to your ribs goodness that keeps you warm in the winter.
How to make it:
It’s all about developing the flavors here. If you want smooth and creamy grits, then my suggestion is milk, add 4 cups of milk per cup of grits. It will take a little while to cook- all of 5 minutes, but once it starts to soften, you can add cheese, herbs, and a little bit of butter.
For the shrimp, I quickly cooked them in a cast iron skillet (affiliate link) with the head and shell on. This does two things: protect the flesh of the shrimp, and the shell imparts its own flavor into the meat. So you really get this big bold umami, flavor for the shrimp.
It really is amazing. If you’ve never cooked shrimp with the shell on, it’s a little bit of work, but so worth it for flavor!
Besides the standard grits and shrimp, the dish can take many forms depending how you dress it up. For breakfast, I really recommend adding a sunny side up egg on top. The the yolk becomes a sauce over the grits making it even richer.
For a more cajun shrimp and grits feel, add andouille sausage (Affiliate link) to the mix. The fiery spice in the sausage stands up great to the creaminess. I had private clients request shrimp and grits recently with Andouille sausage because it reminds them of home- Atlanta.
But for now, I’m going to go explore the bottom of this bowl.
This Creamy Shrimp and Grits recipe is one of those dishes that speaks to your soul! Its southern comfort food that’s perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner. One bite and you wont forget this instant classic
1 cup chopped Bacon
1 diced onion
4 cups Milk
1 cup stone ground grits
2 tbsp Paprika
1/2 cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese
1 tsp Cumin
3 head on jumbo shrimp (but any shrimp works, add to taste)
2 tsp chopped Scallions
1 tbsp Butter
2 tbsp Heavy Cream
In a pan, render bacon fat and add onions to saute until they are translucent.
Add Milk, cumin and paprika and combine. Bring to a simmer, and add the grits, stirring with a whisk constantly to avoid lumps.
Add the cheese, and cream, stir until combined and mixture thickens. Top with butter to finish.
For The Shrimp
In a hot cast iron skillet with butter, add the shrimp and sear on both sides. If Jumbo shrimp is with the shell on, it will take about 45 seconds per side.
Serve on a separate plate if the shell is on the shrimp.
It helps to have a separate plate to place the discarded shells after peeling the shrimp. If the shrimp do not have shells, serve on top of the grits.
For more aromatic grits: omit the cheese, sauté onions and garlic until translucent and blend into the milk. Then cook the grits in the milk and onion mixture for a sweeter flavor. Ridiculous with shrimp.
Keywords: Creamy, Shrimp, Grits, Creole, Cajun,
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A little about me
I’m a chef and a former psychologist. I spent years studying how we experience food to make the best eating experiences possible- and I show you how to eat well on this site. I host secret popups in Miami, FL teaching people how to approach good food that’s never been done before.