Smoked Shrimp and Grit Cakes


Southwestern shrimp cake with no mayo.

Cook Time:
40 mins
Additional Time:
1 hrs 30 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs 10 mins
8 servings


  • 8 large shrimp, peeled and deveined

  • ½ fresh lime, juiced

  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder

  • ½ teaspoon celery salt

  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika

  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • ½ teaspoon ground dried chipotle pepper

  • ½ fresh lime

  • 1 ½ cups water

  • ½ cup quick-cooking grits

  • 1 tablespoon half-and-half, or as needed

  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, finely chopped

  • 1 tablespoon adobo sauce from chipotle peppers

  • ¼ cup finely chopped cilantro

  • 1 tablespoon butter

  • ½ red onion, finely diced

  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed

  • 2 ¼ cups panko bread crumbs, divided

  • 1 cup olive oil for frying, or as needed


  1. Prepare the smoker according to manufacturer's directions.

  2. Place shrimp, juice of half a lime, garlic powder, celery salt, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, and ground chipotle powder in a bowl, stir to coat shrimp, and marinate in refrigerator for at least 1 hour.

  3. Transfer shrimp to a large piece of aluminum foil, fold the foil over the shrimp, and fold the edges over several times to make a packet. Cut several slits in the top of the aluminum packet.

  4. Place the aluminum packet of shrimp onto the rack in the smoker. Place remaining lime half onto the rack. Smoke the shrimp and lime until shrimp are cooked through, 20 to 30 minutes.

  5. Remove aluminum packet and lime half from smoker; cut each shrimp into 4 pieces and transfer to a large bowl. Squeeze the juice from the smoked lime over the shrimp.

  6. Bring water to a boil in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in grits, reduce heat to low, and simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir half-and-half into the grits until they are are workable and the consistency of mayonnaise.

  7. Stir chopped chipotle pepper, adobo sauce, and cilantro into the grits; set grits mixture aside.

  8. Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat; cook and stir red onion in the hot butter until translucent, about 4 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Allow onion and garlic to cool; stir into the smoked shrimp.

  9. Mix cooked grits into smoked shrimp; stir 1/4 cup panko crumbs into the mixture to make it stiff enough to hold its shape. Chill for 30 minutes to 1 hour to allow mixture to set up.

  10. Pour remaining 2 cups panko crumbs into a shallow bowl. Scoop about 2 tablespoons of the grits mixture, form into a small patty, and lightly press into the panko crumbs to coat both sides. Set patties aside.

  11. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat until oil shimmers.

  12. Pan-fry the grits cakes until golden brown on both sides, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Keep finished patties warm while remaining cakes finish cooking.

Editor's Note:

The nutrition data for this recipe includes the full amount of the panko crumbs. The actual amount of the crumbs consumed will vary. We have determined the nutritional value of olive oil for frying based on a retention value of 10% after cooking. The exact amount will vary depending on cooking time and temperature, ingredient density, and other factors.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

366 Calories
31g Fat
24g Carbs
7g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 366
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 31g 39%
Saturated Fat 5g 25%
Cholesterol 36mg 12%
Sodium 308mg 13%
Total Carbohydrate 24g 9%
Dietary Fiber 0g 1%
Total Sugars 0g
Protein 7g
Vitamin C 3mg 16%
Calcium 16mg 1%
Iron 1mg 4%
Potassium 69mg 1%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.