Classic Low Country Shrimp and Grits Recipe


Shrimp and grits are one of those comfort foods you just know how to make well. Like this low country boil, the recipe depends on low boil to infuse flavours produce this delicious, creamy comfort meal.

All About the Best Southern Shrimp and Grits

Shrimp and grits is one of those dishes that seems like it should be easy to prepare. After all, who doesn’t love shrimp and grits? However, there are many different ways to cook up a great bowl of this classic dish.

The key to making shrimp and grits is having the right grits. There are many varieties out there, each with their own unique flavor profile. You want to choose a grits that suits your palate, whether it’s sweet or savory.

Once you’ve found the right grits, you’ll need to decide what sort of sauce you’d like to use. Some people prefer to simply add butter and salt to the boiling water; others like to add some spices. Whatever you do, don’t skimp on the seasoning!

If you’re looking for a recipe that includes a few extra steps, consider adding ham hocks to the pot. These little pieces of pork provide a rich flavor and texture to the finished product.

Finally, once you’ve got your grits cooked, you’ll want to start building up your shrimp and grits sauce. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can try adding a variety of vegetables to the mix. Corn, peas, okra, tomatoes…the list goes on and on.

And finally, once everything is ready, you can pour your delicious shrimp and grits into bowls and enjoy.

The Shrimp and Grits History

In the south Shrimp and Grits is oh so popular because its straight up delicious, and because of the abundance of the ingredients available in the area.

Originating somewhere in South Carolina and Northern Georgia, the meal originally could only be found in these parts. It wasn’t until the mid 80’s when a high profile food editor discovered the meal and wrote about it, that it’s popularity surged across the country.

Today, you can find this meal in just about any Southern Diner, though there are many interpretations of it.

Why This Recipe Works

Grits are delicious Southern comfort food, and we wanted to make our version even better. We found that cooking the grits in chicken stock gave us creamy grits without being runny. A little butter added toward the end of cooking helped keep the texture light and fluffy. To give the dish some extra flavor, we stirred in a few tablespoons of homemade chicken gravy. A combination of hot sauce and cayenne pepper rounded out the flavors nicely. And since we like to serve our grits with something sweet, we topped ours with a simple syrup flavored with orange zest and vanilla bean paste. If you don’t want to use canned chicken broth, feel free to substitute low-fat, high-quality store-bought broth. You can find uncooked grits near the regular flour in most grocery stores. Serve with a side of sausage gravy and biscuits.

Are the Grits Required?

Nothing beats the taste of homemade grits. I like mine with butter, salt & pepper, and bacon drippings. But you can add anything you want to make your grits your own. Grits are usually served with chicken, pork chops or sausage gravy. If you’re making biscuits, try adding some cheese. Some people like to add cream cheese and cayenne pepper. And don’t forget the hot sauce!

Where do Grits Come From?

The word grits refers to a type of coarsely ground dried cornmeal. The term is derived from the French words gris meaning gray and poudre meaning powder. Originally, the word referred to a mixture of maize flour and water cooked together to make porridge, although today it is typically associated with a breakfast dish consisting of eggs, bacon, sausage, cheese, grits, butter, milk, and sometimes tomatoes.

Grits originated in Africa, and were brought over to America during slavery. In 17th century Virginia, colonists began cooking grits in boiling water, adding salt, pepper, and sugar. By the mid 19th century, grits had become a staple food among poor whites in the South.

In 1836, a New York City newspaper reported that the famous oysterman Henry Perrine served grits as his main course at a banquet he gave for President Andrew Jackson. During World War I, soldiers in France adopted the name “grits” for the meal of hardtack biscuits soaked in hot coffee.

Today, grits are eaten throughout the United States, especially in the southern states. They are most commonly found in restaurants serving soul food cuisine.

What Shrimp Should I Use?

If you’ve ever cooked shrimp, you know how much work it can be. You have to devein them, peel off the shells, cut them into pieces, and cook them. And once you do that, you might want to freeze them for later.

But what about shrimp that come straight out of the freezer? Do you really want to go through all that trouble again? Well, let me tell you something: they taste great. Really good. So why waste your time peeling, cutting, and cooking them when you could buy already prepared ones?

I’m talking about frozen shrimps. These little guys are ready to eat and they’ll save you tons of time. All you have to do is defrost them, season them, and cook them.


Can this be reheated?

This is a dish best enjoyed fresh. If you do have leftover grits, heat them up over low heat in a saucepan with enough water to cover the bottom of the pan. For best results, use a medium-low heat setting and stir often.

But if you do have left overs, they are salvageable. Refrigerate overnight and reheat in a 350°F oven for about 20 minutes.

Can I make it without bacon? Absolutely. Feel free to substitute bacon fat or olive oil for the bacon grease.

You can even omit the shrimp altogether and serve with just cheese and grits.

Classic Low Country Shrimp and Grits Recipe
Delicious Shrimp and Grits Boil
  • 2 Cups Water
  • 2 Cups of Chicken Broth
  • 1 Cup of Shredded Cheese
  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Cup corn grits
  • 5-6 Slices of Bacon
  • 1 Pound of shrimps, peeled and deveined
  • 6 Scallions, sliced
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic
  • Salt
  • Fresh Ground Pepper
  • 2 green onoins, chopped
  • 1 Teaspoon of Oregano
  • ¼ Teaspoon Paprika
  • ½ Cup of Lemon Juice
  1. In a medium saucepan boil water and chicken broth. Season with salt
  2. Reduce heat to a simmer and add grits while stirring for 10 min
  3. Once the grits have soaked up the liquid and are tender, stir in cheese and butter and season with salt and pepper and set aside off heat
  4. In a large saucepan cook bacon
  5. Once cooked, leave bacon fat in the saucepan and remove the bacon and cut into small pieces
  6. In a bowl mix shrimp, oregano, paprika, green onions and garlic
  7. Cook the shrimp mix in the large saucepan with the bacon fat stirring the mix for 3-4minutes until shrimp is just cooked through
  8. Stir in lemon juice
  9. Serve shrimp over the grits, topping with chopped bacon


Share this recipe

About The Author

Hi I'm James. I love to research recipes and experiment changing them up to create something unique and delicious. Bonus points if it's healthy and I can actually get my four kids to eat it. Game on.

Related Recipes

Leave a Comment

Rate this recipe: