Shrimp and grits is a classic Southern dish that combines the rich flavors of seafood with the comforting, creamy texture of grits. This dish is not just a meal, it’s an experience that brings together the best of Southern cuisine in a bowl.
The Magic of Shrimp and Grits
The magic of shrimp and grits lies in its simplicity and the harmony of its ingredients. The dish starts with a base of cheesy, buttery grits, which are then topped with juicy shrimp, crispy bacon, and sautéed peppers. The result is a comforting, hearty meal that’s quick to prepare and sure to satisfy.
Grits are a staple in Southern cuisine. They are made from corn and have a texture similar to creamy polenta. Grits are versatile and can be served sweet or savory, making them a perfect base for a variety of dishes.
Preparing Shrimp and Grits
Preparing shrimp and grits is a straightforward process. While the grits are simmering, you can prep and fry the shrimp. The dish comes together quickly, making it an ideal choice for a weeknight dinner or a casual get-together with friends.
Serving Suggestions for Shrimp and Grits
Shrimp and grits is a rich and filling meal on its own. If you’re looking to add a side, consider something light like a simple tossed salad or some cornbread or dinner rolls to sop up the leftover butter from the shrimp.
Ingredients for Shrimp and Grits
For the shrimp:
- 4 slices of bacon, chopped
- ⅓ cup of onion, diced
- ⅓ cup of green bell pepper, diced
- 1 pound of shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1 teaspoon of Old Bay seasoning
- ½ teaspoon of garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons of fresh parsley, chopped
For the cheese grits:
- 2 cups of chicken broth
- 2 cups of water
- 1 ½ cups of shredded cheddar cheese
- ¼ cup of butter
- ½ teaspoon of garlic powder
- 1 cup of grits
Step-by-Step Instructions for Shrimp and Grits
- In a medium saucepan, add water, chicken broth, and garlic powder. Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat. While whisking, slowly add the grits. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 18-20 minutes or until the grits are thick and creamy. If you’re using quick-cooking grits, reduce the cooking time to about 10 minutes.
- While the grits are cooking, chop the bacon and add it to a large skillet. Cook over medium-high heat until crispy. Remove the bacon from the skillet, reserving the drippings in the pan.
- Reduce the heat to medium and add the onions to the bacon grease. Cook until slightly softened, stirring occasionally, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the bell peppers and cook until tender, about 3 minutes more. Remove the peppers and onions from the pan and set aside.
- Toss the shrimp with garlic powder, Old Bay seasoning, and salt & pepper to taste. Add the shrimp to the skillet and cook for 2-3 minutes per side. Add the onion mixture, lemon juice, and parsley and stir to combine.
- Once the grits are cooked, remove them from the heat and stir in the cheese, butter, and salt to taste.
- To serve, spoon the grits into a bowl and top with the shrimp mixture. Spoon any sauce from the pan over the top. Garnish with crumbled bacon, parsley, and lemon wedges. Enjoy your shrimp and grits while they’re hot!
Remember, shrimp and grits is a rich and filling meal on its own. If you’re looking to add a side, consider something light like a simple tossed salad or some cornbread or dinner rolls to sop up the leftover butter from the shrimp. Enjoy your homemade Southern comfort food!
What are grits made of? Grits are made from corn. They can be served sweet or savory and are a staple in Southern cuisine.
How long does it take to prepare shrimp and grits? The total preparation and cooking time for shrimp and grits is about 30 minutes, making it a quick and satisfying meal option.
What can I serve with shrimp and grits? Shrimp and grits is a hearty meal on its own. If you want to add a side, consider a simple tossed salad or some cornbread or dinner rolls.
Can I use quick-cooking grits for this recipe? Yes, you can use quick-cooking grits for this recipe. However, the cooking time will be reduced to about 10 minutes.
What type of shrimp is best for shrimp and grits? You can use any type of shrimp for this recipe. However, medium to large-sized shrimp are often preferred for their meaty texture and flavor.
Can I make shrimp and grits ahead of time? Yes, you can prepare the components of the dish ahead of time. However, it’s best to serve the dish immediately after cooking as the grits will thicken and change in texture as they cool.
Shrimp and grits is a classic Southern dish that’s easy to prepare and packed with flavor. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a beginner in the kitchen, this recipe is a great way to bring a taste of the South into your home.