Engagement Anniversary Dinner: Shrimp ‘n Grits

12 Apr

Happy Friday! Today is April 12th which means Austin and I have been engaged for a year. It flew by but it has also been dragging. I can’t wait for our day to get here already!!!

We got engaged while we were vacationing in Charleston, South Carolina last year.


This was right before it happened. I was unsuspecting!

The tastiest meal I had while down there HAD to be the famous Hominy Grill’s Shrimp ‘n Grits.


Sooooo good.

That was my first time ever eating grits and ever since then we’ve been hooked! Shrimp ‘n grits is a regular on our weeknight menu since it is quick and delicious. Of course I’ve doctored the recipe with some healthy substitutions! Tonight I decided to commemorate our engagement making this meal. Needless to say mine is no Hominy Grill’s…..but if you’ve never had it your should try it!

Shrimp ‘N Grits (Two Ways)

4-5 strips  bacon

1/2 bell pepper, diced

1 jalapeño, minced

1 medium onion, diced

2 garlic cloves, minced

3/4 cup chicken broth

2 tbsp tomato paste

Spices: 1/4 teaspoon of each salt, pepper, garlic salt, curry powder

1/2 tbsp Siracha

3/4 lb uncooked shrimp, peeled and deveined


I use Quaker Quick Grits- mixed with 1 tbsp butter and some cheese!

OR for a healthier version, use rutabaga or celery root puree in place of the grits:

Blend in a processor: 1 cup cooked rutabaga or celery root, 2 tbsp coconut milk, 1/4 cup chicken broth, 2 garlic cloves, salt and pepper.

1. Cook your bacon in a large skillet and set aside, keeping the fat in the pan. If you using the healthy version, start boiling your rutabaga or celery root here.

2. Sauté the green pepper, onion and garlic in the bacon fat until soft.

Photo 1                                                    

3. At this point, you should start your grits if you’re using real grits.

Photo 2

3. Drop your shrimp in the pan and cook until they start turning pink. Add salt and pepper and other spices.

4. Add your tomato paste, siracha and chicken broth to the pan and stir to mix. The ‘sauce’ should be thick.

5. If you’re using real grits, mix in your cheese and butter here. If you’re using the healthy version, puree your cooked rutabaga or celery root with garlic, coconut milk, chicken broth and salt and pepper.

Photo 1

Real ‘cheese grits’

Photo 5

Fake ‘rutabaga’ grits- still yummy!

6. Top your grits with the shrimp mixture, then crumble bacon on top. Enjoy this southern favorite!

Photo 3

Austin would not let me get a picture of his grits plate but it sure looked delicious! You should definitely try this meal! Yum!

What are your favorite southern foods? If you’re from the south please share recipes!!!


6 Responses to “Engagement Anniversary Dinner: Shrimp ‘n Grits”

  1. quartercenturysouthernliving April 12, 2013 at 9:37 pm #

    This is a fantastic way to celebrate a year of being engaged!! Thanks for offering the recipe 🙂

  2. di @ life of di. April 13, 2013 at 8:13 am #

    I have no Southern food recipes for you 😦 I would love to learn more though! We hit New Orleans on our honeymoon and I wanted to stay a couple of more days just to indulge in all the delicious looking foods/desserts/drinks! YUM

  3. Courtney April 13, 2013 at 12:59 pm #

    These look delicious! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  4. cookingfortheotherhalf April 14, 2013 at 3:51 pm #

    This is such a cute post! I think it’s awesome that you celebrated your engagement anniversary. 🙂

    • Andrea @Pencils and Pancakes April 14, 2013 at 4:27 pm #

      Well we acknowledged it…..begrudgingly since I am incredibly impatient waiting for our actual wedding day!

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