Shrimp and Grits with Tomato Sauce is an iconic southern dish that’s perfect for a weeknight meal or Sunday brunch. This easy comfort food is a 30-minute meal that only requires a handful of ingredients.
What’s the difference between grits and polenta?
I only tried polenta and grits for the first time recently. I never had them growing up, and I didn’t even know what “grits” or “polenta” were even made of. For the longest time I also thought they were the same exact thing. While they’re similar, there is a small difference. Polenta is made from grown yellow corn, whereas grits are made from white corn (also called hominy), and polenta is bit coarser than grits are.
They are both delicious, but I happen to prefer polenta, so for today’s shrimp and grits recipe, we’re using polenta. They both have a porridge-like consistency which I happen to love. It just screams comfort food to me. They’re steaming hot and so soft and fluffy, you can happily eat them with a spoon.
Nothing pairs better than shrimp and grits!
My all time favorite combination has to be shrimp and tomato sauce. I simply pan fry shrimp with garlic, remove them from the pan, and then sear a few chopped tomatoes. Simplicity at its finest.
In the meantime the grits or polenta are cooking on the stove top. A huge word of caution – be sure to use a large pot when making polenta or grits because when it starts to boil up and splatter, the burns are incredibly painful. Trust me on this one; I speak from a lot of experience. Stand far away from the pot when whisking the polenta or grits, and do not stick your face right over the pot.
An easy recipe tip to extract even more flavor from the polenta or grits is to boil them in vegetable broth instead of water. For a simpler recipe, just use water and add more flavor via nutritional yeast which makes them nice and cheesy.
For serving, top the polenta or grits with stewed tomatoes and shrimp. An epic southern-themed comfort meal made in under 30 minutes that the whole family will love.
- 1 cup polenta
- 4 cups water
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lb peeled and deveined shrimp
- 4 large tomatoes, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- In a large pot, bring water to a boil. Add polenta, slowly, while whisking to remove any lumps. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 5-6 minutes. Add nutritional yeast and mix. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Heat pan over medium heat, add olive and garlic. Cook until fragrant.
- Add shrimp. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook until cooked through. Remove shrimp from pan.
- To the same pan, add tomatoes and cook for a few minutes until broken down.
- Serve polenta topped with tomato sauce and shrimp.
Home Chef Tip: To make the polenta more flavorful, cook in vegetable broth instead of water.
We hope you love this Shrimp and Grits recipe from SoFabFood Home Chef, Victoria from Avocado Pesto, as much as we do. If you love this recipe, be sure to visit our 30-Minute Meal Section for more easy weeknight meal ideas. For daily recipe inspiration, subscribe to our newsletter, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Pinterest. Enjoy!