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Shrimp and Grits

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  • Prep 15 min
  • Total 45 min
  • Servings 4
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These ain't your mama's grits. Wait, they might be. Eat them and let me know.
by: Bev Cooks
Updated Aug 7, 2014
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  • 2 slices bacon, cut into small chunks
  • 1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano and thyme (total)
  • 1/2 white onion, sliced thinly
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, in their juices
  • 1 cup quick-cooking grits
  • 1 pinch coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce


  • 1
    Toss the shrimp with the paprika and dried herbs. Set aside.
  • 2
    Cook the bacon in a medium skillet over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon from pan and set aside, leaving the bacon fat in the pan.
  • 3
    To the pan add the shrimp. Sear on one side for 2 minutes. Flip and sear 30 more seconds to a minute. Remove from pan, set aside and cover.
  • 4
    Back in the pan, add the onions. Saute in the bacon fat until they start to soften, 4 minutes. Add the garlic and bloom 30 seconds. Add the tomato paste to the pan and caramelize in one spot for 30 seconds. Then toss with the onions and garlic to coat.
  • 5
    Add the diced tomatoes and 1/4 cup water to the pan. Season with salt and pepper, cover and simmer on medium-low while you get the grits going.
  • 6
    Bring 3 cups of water to a boil. Add the grits and turn down the heat. Cover until creamy, whisking occasionally. When creamy, add the butter.
  • 7
    Finally, add the hot sauce to the tomatoes and stir to combine.
  • 8
    Serve grits with a few shrimp and a good spoonful of the sauce. Garnish with parsley if desired.

Nutrition Information

No nutrition information available for this recipe

More About This Recipe

  • Hey, guess what! Grits are not gross.

    I used to think of grits as a slimy sloppy Southern breakfast that I would have to share with an alligator. And I'm from the South! Well, not the DEEP DEEP South, but Arkansas. Close enough.

    I've had polenta a gazillion times of course, but grits. . . oh GRITS. They're made from corn and/or hominy, so they have these rustic masa-y tones that make the back of your throat want to relax and light incense.

    And then when you top the gorgeous mess (with butter in it, yessss) with seared paprika shrimp and a drizzle or 35 of this rich tomato sauce with onions and garlic? AND SPRINKLED BACON?




    I'm moving in with the alligators. I don't even care.

    Looks like a lot of stuff, but it ain't no thang. Shrimp, grits, tomatoes, butter, bacon, onion, garlic, hot sauce, paprika, dried herbs, tomato paste, yes yes yes.

    Go ahead and toss the shrimp with the paprika and dried herbs.

    Get your bacon all rendered. Remove from the pan and set aside. And maybe taste a bacon bit to, you know, make SURE it tastes right.

    Add the shrimp to the pan and sear sear sear. Nothing in life is more beautiful.

    Once you remove the shrimp, add the onions and garlic and tomato paste and get it all coated and perfectly caramelized. I can barely breathe just remembering this.

    In go the tomatoes, with a smidge of water. Simmer simmer simmer. While is this going, cook your grits. Which is SO easy. So easy that I forgot to photograph it because I had my head over the skillet enjoying a lovely tomato steam bath.

    The grits cook quickly in some boiling water for about 5 minutes. Then you toss in some butter and all possibilities in life open up.

    A dash of hot sauce goes into the tomatoes, last second. Which will rule.

    And then you serve the grits with as much or as little shrimp as you like, a nice spoonful of the tomato sauce and a good sprinkling of that reserved bacon. That is, if you haven't eaten it all by now. Which was me. Maybe.

    Aaaaand you have this.

    And this.

    I might need to have this whole "not being able to breathe" thing checked out.

    More Grits Recipes

    Chili Grits Recipe
    Sausage and Cheese Grits Casserole Recipe
    Cheesy Grits Recipe

    The closest Bev will ever get to an alligator is if she were to wear alligator skin shoes. And even that idea gives her hives. For more musings, visit her blog Bev Cooks and her Tablespoon profile.
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