OK, I know it seems like its jalapeño week here at Braised in a Kitchen, but I promise this is the last jalapeño recipe for a while. Maybe. But trust me when I say that these jalapeno cheddar shrimp and grits are, as Richard says, deeeee-licious. And this dish is so cozy and comforting – perfect for your chilly fall evenings 🤗.
As a true Southern gal I love shrimp and grits 😍 and these jalapeno cheddar shrimp and grits take everything to the next level. And don’t worry – even if you don’t like spicy foods (like me 🙋🏻♀️) this dish is definitely not too spicy. But, if you are really in to spicy foods (like my awesome younger sister, Maggie) then you can definitely crank up the heat by keeping the seeds in the jalapeños. Win-win.
Although to be totally fair, Mags does not like shrimp so she probably wouldn’t go for shrimp and grits, no matter how many jalapeños you put in it. I think her dislike of shrimp stems back to when she was really little and she ate an entire shrimp – shell and all. She didn’t realize you weren’t supposed to eat the shell. So I get it.
So a few recipe notes:
- I almost always get the peeled and deveined shrimp at the store – it saves so much time and yuckiness 😂
- You can use white or yellow cheddar cheese for this dish but I have found that there is something especially creamy and delicious about white cheddar cheese
- For some wow-presentation factor be sure to save 4 whole shrimp to top your bowls 🦐
To meal prep the jalapeno cheddar shrimp and grits:
While this dish does not do well with a ton of advanced prep, there are a few things you can do make this meal come together faster!
- Dice up the veggies up to 4 or 5 days in advance – this can be done over the weekend if you are going to have the shrimp and grits during the week
- Fry the bacon up to 4 or 5 days in advance and store in the fridge; save the grease from the bacon and store in a separate container in the fridge as well
- Make the grits the night before – prepare the grits but don’t add the cheese (that will make them rubbery when you reheat them); to reheat prepared grits you made need to stir in a little water or veggie broth to get them back to a smooth, creamy consistency
- Have the cheese grated and ready to go – this can also be done on the weekend, store the grated cheese in the fridge for up to 2 weeks
Jalapeno Cheddar Shrimp and Grits
For the Grits
- 2 c chicken or veggie broth
- 2 T butter
- 1 c grits
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 1/2 c cheddar cheese shredded, white or yellow
For the Shrimp
- 6 slices bacon
- 1/2 c onion diced
- 1 jalapeno seeded and diced
- 1 T fresh garlic minced
- 1 lb peeled and deveined shrimp
- 1/2 lemon juiced
- 1/4 c chopped scallions
- 2 T fresh parsley, minced OR 1 T dried parsley
- cayenne to taste
For the Grits
- In a medium saucepan over high heat, heat the broth and butter to boiling.
- Slowly stir in the grits. Reduce heat to simmer and simmer for 12 to 15 minutes. Stir in salt, pepper, and cheddar cheese. Set aside.
For the Shrimp
- In a large and deep saucepan fry the bacon slices over medium-low heat. Drain bacon slices on paper towels, crumble and set aside.
- Turn up the heat under the bacon grease to medium. Add the onion, jalapeno, and garlic and sautee until onion is translucent – about 5 minutes.While the veggies are cooking roughly chop up your shrimp, saving 4 whole shrimp to top your dinner bowls.
- Once the veggies are cooked add the shrimp, scallions, and cayenne (if using). Sautee just until shrimp are cooked through – shrimp will be white and opaque, about 8 to 10 minutes. Squeeze lemon juice over shrimp mixture.
- Stir shrimp mixture into cheddar grits. Stir in 2/3 of the crumbled bacon. Divide the shrimp and grits evenly among 4 large bowls, top with remaining bacon, parsley, and one whole shrimp each. Enjoy!
🥓 + 🦐 + 🧀 = 😋
If you make these jalapeno cheddar shrimp and grits…
Please share your results – leave a comment below and post a photo on Instagram with #braisedinakitch for a chance to be featured in my Instagram stories!