Cheesy Shrimp and Grits

A classic Southern dish you can make at home in minutes, Cheesy Shrimp and Grits is a creamy, comforting bowl of happy. Cheesy grits are topped with a healthy helping of tender shrimp swimming in a slightly spicy cream sauce that will keep you digging in for more.

Watch the video showing you how to make Cheesy Shrimp and Grits, then scroll to the bottom of this post and print out the recipe so you can make it at home!

Bowls of Cheesy Shrimp and Grits

I spent years visiting Hilton Head, SC visiting my mother in law.  It was kind of a luxury having a relative that lived smack dab in the middle of  “low country.”  When I was a teenager, I had the chance to spend two weeks right outside Charleston and that’s when my love affair with the south began.  So, it had been almost 15 years before I was able to get down there again….but after that I was a frequent visitor biking along the coast while the Spanish moss blew in the breeze around me.

It’s a magical place with equally magical food, if you ever have the chance to visit…you must go.  One of my favorite things to eat every time I visited was Shrimp and Grits.  And everywhere you order it…it’s just a little bit different.

Bowls of Cheesy Shrimp and Grits

Everyone has their own take on Shrimp and Grits.  Even me, I love my grits to be extra creamy and loaded with cheese….hence, Cheesy Shrimp and Grits. A lot of places skip the cheese and you can too, but try it with the cheese and I promise you you’ll love it.

The sauce is slightly creamy but not overly thick. It’s the perfect blanket for your shrimp, not too heavy….not too light.  Just right.  And I used yellow cornmeal grits….you can use white if you prefer but I love the vibrant yellow color it adds to the dish.  It’s like a bowl full of southern sunshine…but with shrimp and bacon and other goodness just ready for you to dig into. Drooling yet?

Cheesy Shrimp and Grits

Cheesy Shrimp and Grits couldn’t be easier to make.  I like to make the grits first so they’re perfect and smooth.  They take a few minutes of your attention at the beginning but the result is a velvety smooth bowl of heaven.

The shrimp and gravy comes together in about 15 minutes making this an easy weeknight dinner that will transport your tastebuds on a mini vacation.

bowl of cheesy shrimp and grits

I can guarantee you’ll want to add this recipe to your weekly meal rotation.

Here are a few more shrimp recipes you might enjoy:

Super easy and ready in minutes, this easy Cheesy Shrimp and Grits recipe is the ultimate comfort food. From
5 from 13 votes

Cheesy Shrimp and Grits

The best Shrimp and Grits recipe- super creamy and cheesy!

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword grits, Shrimp, southern
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 931 kcal



  • 2 cups low fat milk
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal grits
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter
  • 1 cup shredded white cheddar cheese


  • 4 slices bacon, chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds shrimp, peeled & de-veined
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley



  1. In a large pot over medium heat, add the milk, water and salt. Bring to a simmer.  Whisk in the grits and continue whisking until they begin to thicken. (This will help eliminate lumps.)  Continue to cook the grits for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thickened.  Stir in the butter and cheese. Cover and set aside.


  1. In a large skillet, cook the bacon over medium-high heat until crisp. Transfer to a paper towel lined platter using a slotted spoon to drain.
  2. Return the skillet to the heat and add the shrimp to the pan. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes on each side.  Transfer the shrimp to a platter and keep warm.

  3. Add the onions to the skillet and cook until softened.  Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute.  Sprinkle the cornstarch over the onions/garlic and cook for an additional minute.  Whisk in the chicken stock and cook until the sauce begins to thicken.  Whisk in the cream, butter, cayenne pepper, hot sauce, salt and pepper. Continue cooking until the sauce starts to thicken more.  Return the shrimp to the pan and cook for 3 to 4 minutes- making sure not to overcook the shrimp.  Stir in the bacon, green onions and parsley.


  1. Spoon about 1 cup grits onto a plate and top with 4 to 5 shrimp. Pour about 1 cup gravy over the shrimp. Repeat with remaining grits and shrimp.  Serve immediately.

Recipe Video

Nutrition Facts
Cheesy Shrimp and Grits
Amount Per Serving (1 serving)
Calories 931 Calories from Fat 486
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 54g 83%
Saturated Fat 30g 150%
Cholesterol 586mg 195%
Sodium 2735mg 114%
Potassium 708mg 20%
Total Carbohydrates 53g 18%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Sugars 9g
Protein 56g 112%
Vitamin A 45.5%
Vitamin C 25.7%
Calcium 67%
Iron 27.9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
More seafood recipes...
Kellie Hemmerly

Meet The Author: Kellie Hemmerly

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  • Edmanie wrote:

    i will be using this recipe from now on, so delicious!! perfect recipe very flavorful!

  • Scott Brown wrote:

    I did everything to a tee and it was amazing! Thank you!

    I did make one very small change where I added saute andoullie sausage. WHOA!

    Amazing! Thank you again!

  • Beth wrote:

    Absolutely, perfect! Creamy and delicious, favorite version to date!

  • Dave Leresche wrote:

    This one ranks right up there as one of my top all time favorites! I substituted Jimmy Deans Pork Sausage for the bacon, halved the pepper and hot sauce, and combined the shrimp and sausage with the other goodies in the pan. I’m making this one again!!

  • Stephanie wrote:

    Shrimp and Grits have always intimidated me, I love how they taste, but I haven’t made them yet. I am going to try them now!

  • Toni | Boulder Locavore wrote:

    It looks really good!

  • Erin wrote:

    I love shrimp and grits and the cheese puts this over the top in the best possible way!!

  • Joanne wrote:

    This is exactly how shrimp and grits should be. So good!

  • Kristen wrote:

    My southern friends agree, this recipe is for keeps!! Thank you for a great recipe.

  • Jennifer Farley wrote:

    This is one of Jeff’s absolute favorite meals! We can never get enough shrimp and grits!!!

  • lc wrote:

    love this recipe!

  • Cathy @ Noble Pig wrote:

    A staple in my kitchen!

  • Melissa Sperka wrote:

    Love shrimp and grits any time of day!

  • Raenell wrote:

    Congratulaions !! I saw your magazine at the grocery check out !

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      What magazine are you referring to?