Shrimp and Grits with Bacon

While I have lived in the South for the majority of my life, I really haven’t ever considered myself a Southerner. This is especially true when it comes to my diet; I don’t eat typical Southern foods like greens, crawfish, well-done vegetables, or grits. It’s not that I’m opposed to these dishes, it’s just not what I grew up with or am accustomed to. Therefore, they aren’t things I would think to order in restaurants or try to cook myself. However, I have been experimenting with things outside of my comfort level more and more over the past year.

At a friend’s wedding last November, there was a grits bar. There were two types of grits – cheese grits and grits with shrimp – along with all kinds of toppings. I decided that there was no better opportunity to try grits and quickly fell in love with the shrimp and grits. It’s a combination of foods that I would have never thought to put together but is surprisingly tasty.

As I was browsing through my blogroll, I came across a recipe for Shrimp and Grits with Bacon on Serious Eats. I made a few adjustments to lighten it up, and it turned out fantastic! For my first time cooking grits, and only my second time eating them, I think I did a pretty good job! The recipe is fairly easy but does have multiple steps and took a little longer than I expected, but it was well worth the effort. The grits were incredibly cheesy and creamy and paired well with the salty bacon and shrimp. Each serving is a little high in points, but the grits really stick to your ribs and are nice and filling. Ryan wasn’t a fan; he wasn’t crazy about the consistency of the grits or the turkey bacon but did say the flavors were good. He also said that since I was such a big fan, he would be willing to eat it again, but it wasn’t his favorite dish by far. I give it five stars, and it was just as good reheated the next day!

Shrimp and Grits with Bacon

1 tablespoon light butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups fat free milk
3 cups water
1 cup grits
6 ounces reduced fat cheddar cheese, shredded
4 ounces uncooked turkey bacon
1 pound medium shrimp
¼ cup scallions, chopped

1. Add the butter and olive oil to a saucepan set over medium heat. When the butter has melted, add the onion and cook until soft. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Turn the heat to high and pour in the milk and water. Bring to a boil and slowly whisk in the grits. Turn the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 to 20 minutes. When done, dump in the cheese and stir until it is melted. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

2. Add the bacon to a large skillet set over medium-high heat. Cook until golden browned and crisp. Remove and drain on paper towels. Pour out all but 3 tablespoons of the oil.

3. Set the skillet back over medium-high heat and when nearly smoking, add the shrimp. Cook until pink, about 1 1/2 minutes per side.

4. Scoop some of the cheese grits into a bowl and top with the shrimp, chopped bacon, and scallions. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Source: Serious Eats
4 servings | 9 POINTS


February 24, 2009. Serious Eats.


  1. maggie (p&c) replied:

    Yum…I love grits. Sometimes to improve the consistency I stir in a container of fat free greek yogurt (Fage). Totally creamy without fat, and has a lot of protein, too!

  2. Liz replied:

    Oh, thanks for the tip! I will definitely keep that in mind for next time :)

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