Cajun Shrimp and Grits

This Cajun Shrimp and Grits recipe makes a flavorful meal for any time! Starring Gulf shrimp, andouille sausage and creamy grits, this saucy entree is perfect for tailgates, at-home date nights or even a Mardi Gras gathering. Makes 4 servings, but can easily be doubled.

Love Cajun recipes? Don’t miss Chicken and Sausage Gumbo, Instant Pot Red Beans and Rice and Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya!

Overhead image of a cup of Shrimp and Grits

The photos and recipe for this Cajun Shrimp and Grits recipe were originally published on March 3, 2014. The post was updated in January 2021.

Shrimp and Grits is a classic Southern dish, and you can find it all over the South, especially places that are nearby an ocean.

Every region has its differences in ingredients, but we all agree that the star of this dish is fresh shrimp and a sauce that sit atop creamy, decadent corn grits.

In South Carolina, many recipes for shrimp and grits call for bacon. I’ve read several recipes that add cheese to the grits, too.

join our party!

get our latest recipes delivered to your inbox every week — plus all my entertaining tips and tricks!

    We respect your privacy. Unsubscribe at any time.

    In South Louisiana, Cajun recipes for shrimp and grits call for tasso ham or andouille sausage. And in this recipe here, we use the andouille to add spice, flavor and a bit of fattiness to this comforting entree.

    Why I love this recipe:

    This shrimp and grits recipe is one of our all-time favorites, and for good reason: It’s easy enough to make on a weeknight, but it’s also wonderful to dress up for a gameday situation or even a Mardi Gras gathering.

    The shrimp are perfectly spiced, and the sauce they’re served in adds creaminess, a bit of fattiness and heat without being overwhelming.

    The corn grits are creamy—but not too creamy—and soak up the shrimp sauce. Please note that they are not creamy cheesy grits, so if that’s what you are looking for, you need to find a true cheese grits recipe.

    And while this isn’t a recipe from a Cajun grandmother, it sure tastes like something you’d taste from a grandma’s kitchen. They are a classic Southern comfort food for a reason and this is one of our favorite shrimp recipes!

    More Louisiana recipes you should check out: Instant Pot Gumbo | Turkey Sausage Jambalaya | Crawfish Etouffee | Slow Cooker Red Beans and Rice | Baked Boudin Balls

    Looking for another type of dinner? Head on over to my Dinner Recipe Index for some ideas!

    Collage showing a close up of a bowl of shrimp and grits and a place setting with a glass of water

    What you need to make this Cajun shrimp and grits recipe

    The Speckled Palate participates in affiliate programs. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a commission from qualifying purchases. Please refer to my disclosure page for more information about these affiliate programs.

    Let’s talk ingredients!

    In addition to the tools above, you’re going to need some ingredients to make this recipe, too! Chances are, you might already have some of them in your fridge or pantry. Scroll down to the recipe card for the full measurements and instructions.

    Here’s what you need:

    • Shrimp — preferably Gulf shrimp! You can peel and devein them yourself or purchase shrimp from the store that are already prepared… but they need to be raw! I like to use large or jumbo shrimp, but any size shrimp works.
    • Salt-Free Creole Seasoning — or another Creole seasoning blend. You can also use Cajun seasoning. The key is this should have a combination of black pepper, cayenne pepper (or red pepper flakes), garlic powder, onion powder, etc. to pack in so much flavor.
    • Kosher salt — or another medium grain salt, like sea salt
    • Extra virgin olive oil — or another neutral oil
    • Garlic — there is no substitute for this. I love to chop my own, but the pre-minced kind from the store also works.
    • Andouille sausage — since we’re dicing this, you want to use smoked andouille. However, if you can find fresh, you can remove it from its casing and cook it that way, too!
    • Dry white wine — sauvignon blanc and pinot grigio are good here because you want to avoid a sweeter white wine, like a muscato, or an oaked white wine, like many chardonnays
    • Seafood or vegetable stock — to make the sauce for the shrimp. If you can find seafood stock, I highly recommend using that.
    • Fresh parsley — we use this as garnish for the dish. You could also dice some green onions or scallions as a garnish, too.
    • Unsalted butter — this pat of butter adds a little creaminess to the recipe at the tail end
    • Milk — we keep whole milk on hand in our house, but you can use whatever you’ve got on hand.
    • Chicken broth or stock — to hydrate the grits. I like to use stock instead of water because it gives more flavor to the grits. You can use homemade chicken stock or the kind from the store.
    • Stone-ground grits — you can use white or yellow corn grits, but I prefer the yellow ones from Bob’s Red Mill. The type of grits you use in this recipe matters. I do not recommend using instant grits or quick grits.

    How do you make shrimp grits from scratch?

    Cook the grits

    In a large saucepan, combine the chicken stock and milk. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium-high heat. Do not bring it to a boil! This will scald your milk, so please, please, please keep an eye on these.

    When simmering, whisk in the grits and season with salt and pepper.

    Reduce the heat, and cover the grits. Cook, while stirring often to reduce clumping, until the liquid is totally absorbed. This will take around 35 to 40 minutes.

    Once the liquid has been absorbed, add the additional cup of stock, taste and then adjust seasonings as needed. You could also add a splash of heavy cream at this point, too, in place of a little stock if you want your grits to be even more wonderfully creamy.

    Sit for a few minutes to absorb the rest of the liquid, and then serve hot.

    Make the Shrimp

    Place the peeled, deveined shrimp in a mixing bowl and season ’em with the Creole seasoning and kosher salt.

    Warm the oil in a skillet over medium heat, then add the andouille in a single layer. Cook until it begins to crisp up.

    Turn down to medium-low heat and add the shrimp and garlic. Cook until the shrimp tails begin to curl and go from translucent to pink, then remove them from the pan using tongs or a slotted spoon.

    Add the wine and parsley, and cook until the liquid is reduced in volume by half, then add the stock and raise the heat. Bring the mixture to a boil, then add back in the shrimp. Reduce the heat and cook until the sauce has reduced in volume by half.

    Remove the mixture from the heat, and add the butter, stirring until it has melted into the sauce.

    Serve the shrimp and gravy over the warm creamy grits, and enjoy! 

    Serve immediately, and enjoy.

    How to store and reheat

    Store the shrimp and grits separate in an airtight container in the fridge for 2-3 days.

    How to reheat: You will need to add a splash of milk or stock to the grits before reheating. Reheat those first in the microwave, then add the shrimp and sauce on top and heat in the microwave until they’re your desired temperature.

    Three cups holding Cajun shrimp and grits on a white platter with spoons

    Frequently Asked Questions

    How do you peel shrimp?

    My shrimp peeling technique involves running my thumb down the belly of the shrimp from where the head used to be to the tail (which is still attached), and gently freeing the shell. You want to loosen the shell from the meat and dispose of it by placing it into a plastic bag.

    When you’re done peeling the shrimp, immediately take this outside and toss it into the trash can because it will stink up your kitchen. (Unless, of course, you’re planning to use it for a seafood stock. In which case keep the shrimp peels in a zip-top baggie, and throw them in the freezer until you’re ready to make the stock.)

    Where did shrimp and grits originate from?

    Shrimp and Grits originated in the United States, but no one knows for sure where it came from.

    What dish goes with shrimp and grits?

    You could easily pair cornbread or greens with shrimp and grits.

    Are grits and cornmeal the same?

    No. While both are made from ground corn, cornmeal is more finely ground and have a powdery texture compared to the coarseness of grits.

    How long does shrimp and grits last?

    The shrimp and grits, stored separately in the fridge, will last 1-2 additional days. I don’t like to let shrimp sit in my refrigerator for longer than that, even though the grits will last longer than them.

    What wine goes with shrimp and grits?

    White wine is traditionally served with seafood dishes. Since this recipe uses a splash of dry white wine, I’d serve whatever you cooked with alongside the shrimp and grits.

    What brand of grits is best?

    Bob’s Red Mill is my personal favorite, but there are so many different brands available. Explore the ones you can find in your area, and see what YOUR favorite is.

    Close up of Cajun shrimp and grits recipe in a white bowl

    Quick tips and tricks to the best creamy grits and Cajun shrimp

    • Purchase the best shrimp you can find! There are lots of different shrimp available at the grocery store, and I always like to talk to the workers at the fish counter to see what’s the freshest. If you’re buying frozen shrimp, look for wild-caught shell-on shrimp. (Also, as a Southern girl, I always purchase shrimp from Gulf of Mexico when I can find it.)
    • If you want your grits to be cheesy and creamier, add 4 oz. of cream cheese after you remove it from the heat. Let the cream cheese melt in, then serve.
    • As the grits stand after cooking, they will become more firm. If you make them in advance, you will need to add additional liquid to them so they don’t become gelatinous.
    • Store leftover shrimp and grits separately in the refrigerator. The shrimp will last 1-2 days in the fridge, so enjoy it quickly!

    Some thoughts on substitutions for this Cajun shrimp and grits recipe:

    • Can’t find smoked andouille? You can use fresh andouille, too. Remove it from its casing and cook it in the pan like you would any other ground meat. Tasso ham is also popular in shrimp and grits, but we cannot find it here in Dallas easily.
    • Dairy free? Use coconut milk or your favorite unsweetened nondairy milk. Instead of adding butter at the end, use your favorite vegan butter substitute to add a little extra creaminess to the sauce.
    A woman holds a glass of shrimp and grits garnished with parsley
    Close up of Cajun shrimp and grits recipe in a white bowl
    Yield: 4 servings

    Shrimp and Grits

    Prep Time: 10 minutes
    Cook Time: 40 minutes
    Total Time: 50 minutes

    This Cajun Shrimp and Grits recipe makes a flavorful meal for any time! Starring Gulf shrimp, andouille sausage and creamy grits, this saucy entree is perfect for tailgates, at-home date nights or even a Mardi Gras gathering.



    • 1 ½ lbs. Gulf shrimp, peeled and deveined
    • 2 teaspoons Tony Chachere's Salt-Free Creole Seasoning
    • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
    • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    • 4 garlic cloves minced
    • ½ cup smoked andouille sausage, diced
    • 4 tablespoons fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
    • ½ cup dry white wine
    • 1 cup seafood stock, (vegetable works, too)
    • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter


    • 2 ½ cups milk (whole, 2% and nonfat work)
    • 3 cups chicken stock
    • 1 cup stone ground grits
    • Salt and pepper to taste


    Make the Grits

    1. In a large saucepan, combine 2 cups of chicken stock and the milk. Over medium-high heat, bring the mixture to a simmer. (You don't want to bring it to a boil and scald your milk, so be sure to keep an eye on the mixture!)
    2. Whisk in the grits, then season generously with salt and pepper to taste.
    3. Reduce the heat to low, then cover and cook, stirring often to reduce clumping, until the liquid is absorbed. This will take around 35 to 40 minutes.
    4. Once the liquid has been completely absorbed, add the additional cup of stock, then adjust seasonings as needed.
    5. Let sit for a few minutes to absorb the rest of the liquid, then serve hot.

    Make the Shrimp

    1. Place the peeled and deveined shrimp in a large mixing bowl and toss with the Cajun seasoning and kosher salt.
    2. Warm the olive oil over medium heat, then add the andouille. Cook until golden brown, about 3-4 minutes.
    3. Lower the heat to medium-low. Add the shrimp and garlic to the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the shrimp go from translucent to light pink.
    4. Remove the shrimp from the pan, and place on a plate.
    5. Add the wine and parsley to the pan, and cook until the wine reduces in volume by half.
    6. Next, add the stock. Turn up the heat, and bring the mixture to a boil.
    7. Return the shrimp to the sauce, and reduce the heat to medium. Cook until the sauce has reduced in volume by half. (This should take just a few moments.)
    8. Remove from the heat, then stir in the butter. Continue stirring until it has melted and incorporated in the sauce.
    9. Spoon the sauce over the shrimp and grits, and garnish with more parsley, if desired.
    10. Serve immediately, and enjoy.


    Recipe adapted from Jennifer Chandler's Simply Suppers.

    If you want your grits to be cheesy and creamier, add 4 oz. of cream cheese after you remove it from the heat. Let the cream cheese melt in, then serve.

    As the grits stand after cooking, they will become more firm. If you make them in advance, you will need to add additional liquid to them so they don't become gelatinous.

    If you can only find fresh andouille, simply cut it out of the casing, and cook it in the pan like you would ground beef or ground turkey.

    You may use any kind of milk here. If you're looking for something more decadent, go with whole milk or coconut cream.

    Recommended Products

    As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

    Nutrition Information:


    4 servings

    Serving Size:

    1 serving

    Amount Per Serving: Calories: 681Total Fat: 31gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 438mgSodium: 4492mgCarbohydrates: 30gFiber: 1gSugar: 5gProtein: 62g

    Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.

    How much did you love this recipe?

    Follow me on Instagram for more content, and share a photo of your creation with the hashtag #speckledpalate!

    A woman with dark curly hair wearing a black tank top in front of a white wall

    About the Author:

    Erin Parker is a Southern gal living in Texas with her husband and two daughters. She started The Speckled Palate to share what she was cooking as a newlywed… and over the years, it’s evolved to capture her love for hosting. Specifically, the EASIEST, lowest key entertaining because everyone deserves to see their people and connect over good food. Learn more about her

    Similar Posts

    Before leaving a comment or rating, ask yourself:

    • Did you make the recipe as directed? If you didn’t or made an ingredient swap, please do not leave a rating. Recipe results are not guaranteed when changes have been made.
    • Is your comment helpful to others? Rude or hateful comments will not be approved. Please remember that this website is run by a real person.
    • Are you complaining about ads? I develop these recipes and provide them to you for free. Advertising allows me to continue to do so at not cost to you. It is also unavoidable on the internet and in everyday life. If you want recipes without ads, please purchase a cookbook or borrow one from your local library.


    1. You know, I have never done anything whatever for Mardi Gras, and have never even heard of Lundi Gras before! I mean, it’s clear from context, but still. And now that I’m looking at this, I’m not sure I’ve ever actually had shrimp and grits before either. YIKES. I need to get to the store and grab some shrimp immediately!

      1. For what it’s worth, I didn’t know what Lundi Gras was until I spent the day with my friend’s family! Either way… you definitely need to try shrimp and grits because it is one of my FAVORITE Southern dishes. It’s so comforting and warm! And I hope you feel the same way once you try it out!

    2. Gaaaawl I could really use a cup o’ shrimp and grits right meow! This recipe looks enticing with so much flavor! Your photos are beautiful, m’dear!

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *