Cajun shrimp and rice is a simple, flavorful dish with the perfect amount of spicy heat. Make this recipe for an easy 30 minute meal!
Entree definition: Cajun Shrimp and Rice
Cajun flavors are a staple in Southern cooking, and they pair perfectly with all kinds of seafood and shellfish.
For this recipe, the rice is simmered in a blend of vegetables and seasonings. Then the shrimp is added right at the end to cook.
This means, every bite of this dish is tender and juicy with a burst of Louisiana flavor. Plus, this skillet meal uses just one pan, so there’s no pile of dishes to clean after dinner!
How to make Cajun shrimp and rice
Because everything cooks in the same pan, this skillet shrimp recipe comes together quickly and simmers until done.
INGREDIENT NOTES AND SUBSTITUTIONS
Note: This is just a partial list of ingredients. For the full ingredient list, see the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
- Shrimp – Medium-sized shrimp seem to work best in this Cajun shrimp recipe, but you could easily use a different size if you prefer. Just be sure to adjust the cooking time appropriately.
- Holy Trinity of Cajun Cuisine- that would be celery, onion and green bell pepper.
- Chicken broth – Replace with equal amounts of chicken or vegetable stock if needed.
- Tabasco – Louisiana hot sauce is the closest substitute, followed by Cholula. Tapatio will work in a pinch, but it lacks the tang from the vinegar base of Tabasco.
- Cajun seasoning – I like to use my homemade blend, but any store bought blend will work just fine.
- Apple cider vinegar – Substitute an equal amount of lemon juice or white wine vinegar for similar acidity and flavor.
Watch us make the recipe!
Skillet Shrimp Recipe Video
Prep the ingredients
- Chop the bacon and vegetables.
- Then, peel and devein the shrimp.
- If you’d like, measure out the liquids and spices now to make things easier later.
Saute the bacon and veggies
- Heat the Dutch oven, then cook the bacon until crisp.
- Remove from the pan and drain on a paper towel.
- Next, cook the garlic and vegetables in the leftover bacon fat until softened and fragrant.
Cook the rice
- Stir in the remaining ingredients, except for the shrimp, and bring to a boil.
- Reduce the heat and simmer covered until the rice is just about done.
Finish and serve
- Mix in the shrimp, then cover again and cook until the shrimp are pink and opaque.
- Top with the bacon pieces and parsley before serving.
- Storage – Transfer any leftovers to an airtight container and keep in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days. Or, freeze for up to 3 months and thaw in the refrigerator before reheating.
- Reheating – For the best texture, reheat on the stove until warmed through. It’s possible to heat in the microwave, but do so in intervals so the shrimp doesn’t become rubbery.
- Cookware – If you don’t have a dutch oven, you can use any pot or deep pan with a lid for this skillet shrimp recipe instead.
How to peel and devein shrimp
While eating the vein is harmless, it can look especially unpleasant in larger shrimp.
Removing the shell beforehand is simple to do, and it’s easier to eat once the dish is finished. Plus, the shrimp soaks up all of the flavors from the dish while cooking.
- Carefully remove the shells from all of the shrimp.
- Run a paring knife along the curved back, then use the tip of the knife to lift out the thin, grey vein.
- Pull the entire vein out with your fingers or kitchen tweezers.
- Repeat until all of the shrimp have been deveined. Rinse them under cool water and pat dry.
OTHER ONE PAN MEALS TO MAKE
If you like the flavors in the Cajun shrimp and rice, I know you’ll love my recipe for Cajun Shrimp and Grits.
Or, try one of these other one pan meals that are just as easy to make:
Cajun Shrimp and Rice
- 1 lb shrimp (medium) peeled and deveined
- 1 1/2 tsp Cajun seasoning divided
- 6 slices bacon chopped
- 1 cup onion chopped
- 1 cup green bell pepper chopped
- 1/2 cup celery chopped
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 tsp Tabasco
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup long grain rice
- 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
- 1/4 cup parsley chopped
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- Season raw shrimp with 1 teaspoon of cajun seasoning. Set aside.
- In a Dutch oven, render bacon until crisp. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside on paper towel. Leave bacon fat in pan.
- Add onion, green pepper, and celery and saute for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and cook another minute.
- Add bay leaf, brown sugar, vinegar, hot sauce, cajun seasoning, thyme, salt, rice, and chicken broth. Stir to mix and bring to a boil. Cover with lid, reduce heat to low and simmer for 18 minutes.
- Add shrimp, wine and stir to incorporate. Cover with lid and cook for about 3 minutes. Shrimp should be pink and opaque.
- Before serving add the crispy bacon and a sprinkle of parsley.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.