Recipe Review

Do Yourself a Favor and Make Cheesy Butternut Squash Shrimp and Grits for Dinner

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I can never manage to keep frozen shrimp in the house, because as soon as I bring them home, I always wind up cooking and eating them immediately. I particularly love to cook up a batch of spicy shrimp, which go particularly well with some deliciously cheesy grits. This version adds butternut squash for a fantastic fall take on the classic that’s quick enough for any weeknight. 

Instead of peeling and dicing a whole butternut squash, the author used Trader Joe’s “Butternut Squash Zigzags,” which are basically just chunks of crinkle-cut butternut squash, pre-cut and in a bag so you can cook them how you like.

You’ll first boil the squash until it’s tender. Remove the squash with a slotted spoon, but don’t throw away the water. Use the leftover squash-boiling water to cook the grits, which will give them extra color and flavor. Pour the grits into the boiling water in a slow, steady stream. Whisk while you add the grits, to help prevent lumps. Keep whisking for a minute, then lower the heat and let it simmer until the grits thicken. 

While the grits cook, purée the cooked squash in a blender or food processor until it’s smooth, just as if you were making baby food. Sauté a pound of shrimp in olive oil. Season the shrimp with garlic powder, paprika, salt, and cayenne pepper and cook them until they’re opaque. Shrimp cook quickly, so keep an eye on them while they cook. 

Stir the squash purée into the cooked grits along with butter and a cup of shredded cheddar cheese. The cheese will melt into the grits and make them really delicious. Serve the grits in a bowl topped with the peppery shrimp. 

Get the recipe: Butternut Squash Shrimp and Grits from The Kitchen Prep Blog

Credit: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn

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