Spicy Shrimp and Goat Cheese Grits

Spicy Shrimp and Grits from thelittlekitchen.net

The other day I received a card in the mail that contained some sad news. Someone very special to me passed away in February. It was his daughter writing me to give me the news. He was very special to my family and me. And so was his wife, she passed away seven years ago. Growing up in Florida, with grandparents living in California, this couple were my surrogate grandparents. We actually called them Grandma and Grandpa. They would proudly show strangers and friends alike photos of our family declaring, “look at my grandkids!” They were Caucasian and we’re not (I’m Vietnamese-American). I think a couple of times, someone said they don’t look anything like you. And I think she put them in their place. You had to know her, I’m writing this right now and it makes me laugh out loud.

It took me a while to sit down and write a card back to their daughter. I found myself getting really emotional when I first received the card and when I was writing her back.

How do you put into words…your parents had a profound effect on my childhood. They played a crucial role in my upbringing and are a huge part of who I am today. I told her my only regret is that I didn’t go visit him in Pittsburgh before he passed on (they moved back to Pennsylvania when Grandma was declining in health about eight years ago). I really wish I did. But I know they know how special they were to me. There was a period in time when my mom was a single mom, with six children, it was a struggle. Grandma and Grandpa sometimes brought over bags and bags of groceries. My mom didn’t ask them to, they just did it.

Grandma took me on shopping trips to TJ Maxx and Marshalls, I have fond memories of her telling us not to touch anything. LOL And to pick out just one thing, she gave us a budget and it had to be under that amount and she would buy it for us. As a child, this meant so much to me. In high school, they took us to softball practice and picked us up. I remember them spending Thanksgiving and Christmas with us even.

They were special to me because they were there for us when our biological grandparents couldn’t physically be there for us. Never asking for anything in return, they gave their time, money and love to us as if we deserved it and then some. They taught me unconditional love and that love does not have to come from blood relatives to be true. My grandpa taught me patience (I’m still working on it haha) but he was so patient with grandma, no matter what. Grandma taught me not to take crap from anyone. I love them and I miss them. I feel so grateful and lucky to have them as a part of my family.

Spicy Shrimp and Grits from thelittlekitchen.net

Prep the shrimp and toss with dijon mustard.

Spicy Shrimp and Grits from thelittlekitchen.net

It just so happened that I just enough spreadable butter left in the tub so I used the tub to make the spicy sriracha butter for the shrimp.

Spicy Shrimp and Grits from thelittlekitchen.net

Curtis is literally obsessed with Land O Lakes® Butter spreadable butter, we can’t keep enough of it in the house. It makes it really easy to make a spicy butter or a compound butter…and no more torn bread/toast!

Spicy Shrimp and Grits from thelittlekitchen.net

When I went to make these amazing grits from the Ravenous Pig cookbook, I realized I didn’t have any chicken broth. So I substituted it with water and butter. These grits came out amazing…so that’s how I will make these grits from now on…with heavy cream, water and butter.

Spicy Shrimp and Grits from thelittlekitchen.net

The grits are done and ready for…

Spicy Shrimp and Grits from thelittlekitchen.net

Olive oil and goat cheese. I changed up their recipe to use olive oil instead of bacon fat…you can use bacon fat if you want.

Spicy Shrimp and Grits from thelittlekitchen.net

Done and creamy. And guess what? It reheats fairly nicely too. Just add a few drops of water and microwave. Same thing if you left it sitting for too long before serving, add some water, mix thoroughly and reheat. You’re good to go.

Spicy Shrimp and Grits from thelittlekitchen.net

Cook the shrimp in a cast iron skillet and brush on the spicy sriracha butter.

Spicy Shrimp and Grits from thelittlekitchen.net

Grandma and Grandpa weren’t true southerners since they were from Pennsylvania but I think they would have gotten a kick out of this recipe.

This is now my go to shrimp & grits recipe…I know you’ll love it. If you’re completely against goat cheese, try sharp cheddar instead.

If you make any of recipes and decide to share them on instagram or twitter be sure to tag me @thelittlekitchn and use the hashtag #thelittlekitchenrecipes! I love seeing your posts and photos!

Spicy Shrimp and Goat Cheese Grits Recipe

Yield: 2 servings

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes


Goat Cheese Grits

  • 1 cup heavy cream

  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter

  • 1/2 cup corn grits (I used Bob's Red Mill yellow corn grits)

  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil (use a really good tasting one)

  • 2 Tablespoons goat cheese

  • kosher salt and pepper

Spicy Shrimp

  • 2 teaspoons sriracha chili sauce

  • 1 Tablespoon Land O Lakes® Butter with Canola Oil

  • 1/2 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined (about 10 to 12 shrimp)

  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard

  • fresh parsley, chopped

  • cooked bacon, chopped (optional)


  1. Prep the butter (mix spreadable Land O Lakes® Butter with Canola Oil with the sriracha chili sauce in a small bowl. Peel and devein the shrimp (I left the tails on). Add dijon mustard to shrimp and toss to coat.

Goat Cheese Grits

  1. Add cream, 1 cup water and butter to a small saucepan and bring to boil.

  2. Add grits, lower heat to medium and cook until grits are tender, about 8 to 9 minutes (be sure to whisk occasionally so that don't stick and cook evenly).

  3. Turn off heat. Add olive oil and goat cheese and mix. Season with salt and pepper. Remove saucepan from heat.

Cook the shrimp

  1. Heat a cast iron skillet on medium high for 3 to 4 minutes. Add shrimp to skillet and cook for about 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until shrimp is cooked. After turning shrimp, brush sriracha butter mixture onto the shrimp.

  2. Add grits to a soup bowl, top with shrimp, parsley and bacon.

Grits adapted from Ravenous Pig (a must visit restaurant if you're ever visiting Orlando!)

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Spicy Shrimp and Grits from thelittlekitchen.net

Just a note, I do have an ongoing relationship with Land O’Lakes and have done sponsored posts with them but this one is not a sponsored post. I always like to share with you my favorite products and brands. And pssst there are affiliate links in this post. Thanks!

42 Responses to “Spicy Shrimp and Goat Cheese Grits”

  1. 1
    Joanne @ Fifteen Spatulas — April 14, 2014 @ 7:23 pm

    I can’t imagine how hard it would be to write that note. It is amazing what an effect other people’s kindness can have on our lives. Hugs xoxo


    • Julie Deily replied: April 14th, 2014 @ 7:27 pm

      Thank you, Joanne. I know you know how much of an effect it has on you. Huge hugs to you!


  2. 2
    Annie — April 14, 2014 @ 7:25 pm

    I’m so sorry for your loss. Your story got me a bit teary eyed because I can relate so much. Because my mother’s family lives in the Philippines, I’ve never known my biological maternal grandparents.. but my cousin’s mother in law treated me like her own, showing off pictures, giving me lots of love and time in the world. She has put many people in their place when it came to me looking different (She is Russian/Jewish, Grandpa is White). I’m so lucky to still have them, this post makes me want to visit them this weekend. Thank you for sharing!!


    • Julie Deily replied: April 14th, 2014 @ 7:28 pm

      Thank you, Annie. Yes, please go visit them this weekend and give them a huge hug from me! :)


      • Annie replied: April 14th, 2014 @ 7:29 pm

        You’ve got it!


  3. 3
    Penny @ The Comfort of Home — April 14, 2014 @ 8:03 pm

    This sounds wonderful!


  4. 4
    Martha Richitelli — April 14, 2014 @ 8:38 pm

    Julie…….you have my sympathy on your loss. I was so touched by your column. I too was fortunate enough to have someone like that in my life when i was young; she taught mer so much( I didn’t realize at the time), and I think of her so often. Sometimes the “family” we choose, or that chooses us, can be the best family we could hope for. And, while I am sad for you, I am also happy for you, that you have such great memories of your surrogate grandparents.

    Hi to Curtis, and I am glad to see Charley doing so well.


  5. 5
    Meghan Cooper — April 14, 2014 @ 9:34 pm

    OMG Goat Cheese Grits are my FAVORITE! Tupelo Honey Cafe makes the most amazing ones that got me hooks on them.


  6. 6
    Amy @Very Culinary — April 14, 2014 @ 10:50 pm

    Well, I came here to write how desperately I want this dish. But now I am sad for you…I’m so sorry for your loss. Life is so unkind sometimes :/


  7. 7
    Tieghan — April 14, 2014 @ 11:40 pm

    I am so sorry for your loss. That letter must have been so hard to write, I cannot even imagine. Hang in there and thanks for sharing your story.


  8. 8
    Medeja — April 15, 2014 @ 6:04 am

    Really great recipe and your story about grandma and grandpa.. I am sorry for your loss.


  9. 9
    Tina @ Mademoiselle Gourmande — April 15, 2014 @ 8:26 am

    What a touching blog post. I am very sorry for your loss. But then again you only feel the pain if those people were really special during their time with you. You should, as you are, be grateful for the wonderful time with them and the great memories you have because of them.
    We always have to remind ourselves to appreciate and enjoy the time we have with such special people around us. Keep your head up.


  10. 10
    Chelsea @ Gal on a Mission — April 15, 2014 @ 9:01 am

    I am so terribly sorry about your loss! I must say that these grits looks delicious!


  11. 11
    Sommer @ASpicyPerspective — April 15, 2014 @ 9:18 am

    This is savory goodness at it’s best! I can’t wait to dive into a plate of these grits! Pinned!


  12. 12
    Becca from ItsYummi! — April 15, 2014 @ 9:41 am

    Oh Julie, I’m so very sorry for your loss. My prayers go out to you. I can’t leave without telling you what a gorgeous dish this is, though! <3


  13. 13
    Kelly Senyei | Just a Taste — April 15, 2014 @ 10:08 am

    So, so sweet, Julie. I’m so sorry for your loss, but this is such a beautifully written post :) And those shrimp… those SHRIMP. Count me in!


  14. 14
    danielle — April 15, 2014 @ 11:06 am

    They sound like such giving and thoughtful people. This recipe has my mouth watering – looks amazing.


  15. 15
    Claire Gallam — April 15, 2014 @ 11:14 am

    I am so so sorry Julie :(


  16. 16
    Sandy @ Reluctant Entertainer — April 15, 2014 @ 11:17 am

    Touching post, Julie. My kids have surrogate grandparents who they love dearly! Sorry for your loss. Recipe sounds fantastic!!!!


  17. 17
    Laura (Tutti Dolci) — April 15, 2014 @ 12:14 pm

    So sorry for your loss, but what a sweet tribute to such a special couple. Your grits look incredible!


  18. 18
    Maria Tadic — April 15, 2014 @ 12:33 pm

    This looks SO good. I love shrimp and grits! It’s probably one of my all time favorite meals. And this one looks super easy – especially the grits. I need to make this ASAP! Yum!


  19. 19
    Jodee Weiland — April 15, 2014 @ 12:45 pm

    I love this dish, and I love spicy! This looks delicious…thanks for sharing!


  20. 20
    Connie — April 15, 2014 @ 2:08 pm

    I’m sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine how difficult it must have been to write back to Grandpa’s daughter, but I think what you wrote here is pretty special, a great tribute to a person who was a wonderful influence in your life growing up. Also, the dish looks delicious! Best wishes to you and your family during this difficult time.


  21. 21
    Lisa @ Garnish with Lemon — April 17, 2014 @ 8:37 am

    What amazing people to have in your life! You are so lucky to have had them as a part of your childhood, losses like that are heartbreaking. But this shrimp looks absolutely fabulous. I adore goat cheese.


  22. 22
    naomi — April 17, 2014 @ 12:05 pm

    I’m so sorry to hear the sad news! I’m sure southerner or not, they would have loved this. It looks delish!


  23. 23
    Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabbles — April 18, 2014 @ 8:26 am

    You know just how much I love this recipe. I just printed it off, yummers! Also, I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of someone so special in your life. Your “grandparents” sound like real gems, blessings.


  24. 24
    Doreen O. — April 18, 2014 @ 7:08 pm

    So sorry to hear this news. I’m sure they are both proud of you and they left an imprint of goodness in you — so no matter what, people live on in others.

    I had the day off today and had to try this. It was nothing short of amazing. I used instant cheese grits because that’s all I had and they turned out good. The shrimp butter and sauce is like crack. Now I need to look on your site to find more ways to use the chili sauce.


  25. 25
    Meghan — April 18, 2014 @ 8:57 pm

    I’m sorry for your loss, Julie. This was a lovely post and it sounds like you were lucky to have such wonderful people in your life and they were lucky to have you! Fantastic dish too!


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  27. 26
    Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love. — April 20, 2014 @ 2:32 am

    I’m sorry for your loss, Julie! These grits sure do look amazing! Love the goat cheese!


  28. 27
    ATasteOfMadness — April 20, 2014 @ 11:52 pm

    I am so sorry for your loss. A little over a year ago that I lost my grandparents. They died within a month of each other. My heart goes out to you.


  29. 28
    Caroline {TheBarbeeHousewife} — April 21, 2014 @ 10:09 am

    This looks amazing and easy. It has all of my favorite flavors, I can’t wait to try this!


  30. 29
    Meg @ The Housewife in Training Files — April 21, 2014 @ 6:30 pm

    Saying a prayer for you! Just think both of your Grandparents are watching over you every day now :) And just as they would have loved this spicy dish…I know my family will love this recipe and think of you and them while cooking it and enjoying it! Cheers!


  31. 30
    Alice // Hip Foodie Mom — April 22, 2014 @ 8:47 pm

    Julie, what a sweet post!! I love knowing that people like that exist in the world. . and through their love and actions, they affect people like you! sounds like your bond with grandma and grandpa was a very special one! thank you for sharing with all of us!


  32. 31
    bev @ bevcooks — April 25, 2014 @ 9:23 am

    This looks AWESOME. My face will fit in that, right?


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  35. 32
    Karen — June 13, 2014 @ 1:04 pm

    I just saw this post…don’t know how I missed it…oh my God…the recipe…amazing. I was born and raised in SC by Pennsylvanian parents. Because of that, I didn’t know what grits were until I spent the night with a classmate in 2nd grade. They are now a staple in my house. This looks so good, and love goat cheese. A nice twist over the cheddar, so standard. I also love the sriracha butter spread! Yum. Anyway, I am so sorry for your loss and your “grandparents” seemed so special and sweet. It is hard to convey how much someone like that meant to you. That was very nice that their daughter let you know too. Anyway, love landolakes butter, and love you blog! Hope your dogs are well and glad you are feeling better finally too.


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  37. 33
    Jan — July 6, 2014 @ 8:49 pm

    Just made this for dinner. Seriously amazing food.


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