Southern Shrimp and Grits

A classic Southern dish that is great for brunch or dinner. Shrimp and grits is an easy no fuss kinda meal that is full of flavor and very comforting. You can never go wrong with this delicious Southern staple. 

Whenever I see shrimp and grits on a menu the need to order it is extremely high. While this Southern dish is normally served for breakfast it is now served for any meal. I love how this dish is really easy on the budget and makes a lot. Since this meal comes together quickly it is an impressive dish for family and friends that doesn’t really take a lot of work. 

In this recipe

One of the best things about this recipe is that almost all of the ingredients will already be in your pantry. It is made with some very simple ingredients. 

Grits: both yellow and white grits can be used in the recipe based on your preference. I tend to use yellow grits or polenta but either works. 

Bacon: adds a nice smokey flavor to the grits and the fat can be used to add additional flavor to the shrimp. 

Paprika: adds smokiness to the dish. 

Lemon juice: adds some brightness to the dish as well as a nice balance to the richness of the dish. 

Ingredients for shrimp and grits on a wooden cutting board
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How to make the best grits

One of the things that I love about grits is that they are done in about 5 minutes. However if you are like me you want your grits to be more creamy. The best way to make that happen is to add an additional cup of water after the grits have finished cooking. Then continue to cook until your shrimp are done. Once everything else is done and you add your cheese and butter you will be left with some very creamy grits. 

Uncooked cubed bacon in a pan
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Cooked bacon in a pan
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Cooked seasoned shrimp in a pan
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Bacon and shrimp in a pan
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Cheese added to a pot of grits
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Cream cheesy grits in a pot
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Extra crispy bacon

One of the things you want to make sure you do is get that bacon extra crispy. There are a couple of reasons for this. The first of which is to add additional texture to the shrimp and grits. Secondly it will cause most of the fat to render from the bacon. Then you can use that bacon grease to cook the shrimp and add some additional bacon flavor to the dish. 

A bowl of shrimp and grits with a spoon
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Have extra shrimp and grits?

If you happen to have some leftovers you will want to store them separately. The reason for this is when you reheat the grits you will want to add some milk and a little butter to help them keep the same creamy consistency. Then once the grits are cooked gently heat the shrimp to prevent them from getting too rubbery. I will heat them in the same pot as the grits for this exact reason. 

A spoonful of shrimp and grits
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Looking for other shrimp recipes?

shrimp and grits in a white bowl
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Southern Shrimp and Grits

Cheesy grits topped with bacon and shrimp.
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Breakfast, Brunch, Main Course
Cuisine American, Southern
Servings 4 servings
Calories 701 kcal


  • Sauté pan
  • Saucepan
  • Slotted spoon
  • Wooden spoon
  • Bowl


  • 1 pound shrimp peeled and deveined
  • ¼ pound bacon diced
  • 2 cups cheddar cheese shredded
  • 1 cup corn grits
  • ¼ cup green onion chopped
  • ¼ cup butter unsalted
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon garlic minced
  • ½ tablespoon salt
  • ½ tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika


  • Prepare the grits according to package directions adding the salt to the water.
  • While the grits are cooking add the bacon to the sauté pan and cook on medium high heat until crispy brown. About 6-8 minutes depending on the thickness of the bacon. Use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon from the pan.
  • Do not drain the bacon fat and add the shrimp, pepper, garlic, green onions, paprika, and onion powder to the pan and cook on medium high heat until the shrimp are done about 5-7 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  • While the shrimp is cooking add the butter and cheese to the cooked grits and stir until creamy.
  • Add the bacon back to the shrimp and serve in a bowl on top of the grits. Garnish with additional sliced green onions if desired.


Serving: 1servingCalories: 701kcalCarbohydrates: 35gProtein: 43gFat: 43gSaturated Fat: 22gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 288mgSodium: 1168mgPotassium: 502mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 1120IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 491mgIron: 1mg
Nutrition Disclaimer*
Keyword 30 min meals, Cheese, Grits, Shrimp
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
shrimp and grits pinterest pin
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3 thoughts on “Southern Shrimp and Grits”

  1. 5 stars
    I have never made shrimp and grits at home, have only eaten it at restaurants. I really don’t know why, because it seems so simple!

  2. 5 stars
    This is my favorite shrimp and grits recipe. It’s super flavorful and so easy. You can never go wrong with the classic bacon and cheddar flavor!

  3. 5 stars
    This is such a great-looking dish, everything looks delicious and synced with this one! I totally love this, and will definitely make this at home for the family!

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