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Southern Shrimp and Grits with honey-roasted peanuts in a serving dish

Southern Shrimp and Grits with Roasted Peanuts

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 4 reviews
  • Author: Karen
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 20
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Category: Fish & Seafood
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Southern American
  • Diet: Gluten Free


Shrimp and grits are down-home Southern comfort food. Cheesy grits with colorful shrimp gravy and topped with honey-roasted peanuts. Easy recipe and good for the soul.


Units Scale


  • 3 1/2 cups of water
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup white corn grits or 1 cup yellow corn grits (aka polenta); Quick 5-Minute NOT 1 Minute instant grits*
  • 6oz cheddar cheese, grated – white cheddar cheese if using white grits**
  • 4 green onions, trimmed and thinly sliced; half used in grits and half used as a garnish
  • 1 Tablespoons butter, preferably salt-free
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper

Shrimp Sauce

  • 1 pound raw (uncooked) shrimp, medium size (approximately 40 ) peeled and deveined*** see note below on frozen uncooked shrimp
  • 2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil for cooking shrimp
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil for cooking mushrooms
  • 8 ounces white mushrooms, quartered
  • 6 ounces roasted red peppers, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 11oz vegetable juice (V-8 Juice); preferably low sodium or tomato juice
  • 4 Tablespoons honey-roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped


  1. Cook Grits. In a medium saucepan, bring water to a boil. Add salt and slowly whisk in grits. Reduce heat to low and constantly whisk, ensuring the grits are smooth. Stir for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in cheese, and half the green onion, butter, and pepper. Cover and set aside. If grits get too thick, add hot water, 1 Tablespoon at a time.
  2. Cook Shrimp. If using frozen shrimp, follow the directions to thaw. Pat shrimp dry with paper towels and season with 1 teaspoon (half) of the Cajun seasoning. Place a medium skillet over high heat and add 1 Tablespoon of olive oil. Add half the shrimp to the pan and sear on one side for 2 – 3 minutes; flip and cook an additional 1 – 2 minutes. Set aside by placing it on a plate or serving dish. Repeat with remaining shrimp. Cook shrimp until the color is uniform white with some pink and red accents and no translucent gray remains.
  3. Add Vegetables. In the same skillet (do not clean), add 1 Tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms to the hot pan and occasionally stir until browned, about 5 – 6 minutes. Add vegetable juice, red peppers, and the remaining Cajun seasoning (to taste) and cook for 1 – 2 minutes.
  4. Add Shrimp. Stir in remaining butter and shrimp, and heat ingredients for a minute.
  5. Plate. Scoop 1/4 grits into a pasta bowl and top with 1/4 the shrimp gravy.
  6. Garnish with green onion and peanuts.


This recipe is inspired by Home Chef, a wonderful meal kit delivery service.

*I do not recommend using instant grits that cook in 1 minute. Do not substitute cornmeal or cornflour for the grits.

** If using white grits, it’s nice to use a white cheddar

***Frozen raw (uncooked) shrimp is a great option if you cannot get fresh. Look for wild-caught American Shrimp. It will come from the coastal regions from which this recipe began – NC, SC, GA, FL, LA. Some packages will request thawing overnight and some will have quick thaw directions by placing shrimp in a colander and running cold water. If you cannot find an affordable price for wild-caught American shrimp, look for sustainable farm-raised.

Equipment needed: medium saucepan for grits; medium skillet for shrimp sauce.

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