Cajun Shrimp and Cheesy Grits
Fresh shrimp, sauteed in a buttery, savory sauce of onions, peppers and garlic, with a touch of tomato paste and creole spices, ladled over creamy, cheesy grits. Heart warming goodness from the South!
Servings Prep Time
6Servings 20Minutes
Cook Time
20Minutes
Servings Prep Time
6Servings 20Minutes
Cook Time
20Minutes
Ingredients
Herb and Spice Blend
For the Cheese Grits
Instructions
  1. Peel, de-vein and the rinse shrimp; pat dry; sprinkle on 2 tablespoons creole seasoning and set aside. Slice the onions and green peppers and chop the garlic. Measure out all other ingredients. Prepare the grits.
Prepare the Grits
  1. Bring 2 cups of water to a heavy boil. Grate cheese and set aside.
  2. Add kosher salt and gradually whisk or stir grits into boiling water, stir or whisk until grits are dispersed and not lumpy.
  3. Lower the heat to a simmer, cover pot and simmer for about 15 minutes. Get started on the shrimp while these cook.
  4. Remove the lid, stir well and taste. If al dente, add the butter and Gruyere cheese. Stir vigorously to combine all ingredients until smooth and creamy. If the grits are a little hard still, leave a low fir on for another 5 minutes.
  5. Replace the cover, remove from heat and let sit until the shrimp are ready.
Prepare the Shrimp
  1. Place a large saute pan or cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Melt 4 tablespoons of butter until bubbly.
  2. Add sliced onions and peppers-sautée until soft, about 5–6 minutes
  3. Add garlic, green onions and about ¾ of the Herb and Spice Blend, mix well and continue to sauté until aromatic-about 2 minute.
  4. Increase heat to high and add the shrimp; sauté for about 2 minutes, turning over midway through.
  5. Add the tomato paste and mix it in very well while continuing to saute another 2 minutes (approximately).
  6. If needed, deglaze the pan with a little of the stock before moving on to the next step.
  7. Mix in about ½ to ¾ cup of the seafood stock (reserve the remainder), the lemon juice and the Worcestershire. When that’s mixed in, add 2 tablespoons of butter. Shake the pan back and forth and continue to simmer as the butter melts and the sauce thickens slightly. Don’t over cook the shrimp, no more than about 5 minutes.
  8. Taste a few times to check if it needs more spices, remember the shrimp will soak up some spice so its OK to be a little over spiced at this stage. Add more of the reserved Herb and Spice Blend or stock, if needed.
  9. Stir the cheese grits vigorously then place a healthy spoonful in a shallow bowl or plate, spoon the shrimp over the cheese grits and serve immediately.
Recipe Notes

If you are buying head-on shrimp, you’ll need to buy about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds to end up with 1 pound after the shells are removed.

If you can’t find seafood stock, just substitute chicken stock and it will be just fine.

Substitute Quick Grits if you want them done a little quicker! Just follow the directions on the package.

Gruyere cheese is creamy when melted and a slightly sharp. Try some sharp or mild cheddar cheese if you prefer, or no cheese at all.

I always think its best if you grate your own cheese, but if you are crunched for time, or just prefer, use some pre-grated cheese.

Many commercial creole seasonings and stocks contain salt, some have quite a bit. This recipe was developed a stock that contains salt and a creole seasoning that does not contain salt. Whatever you use, make sure you taste while cooking before adding salt so you get it the way you like it.