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The Collaborative Kitchen: Low Country Shrimp & Grits


I found a love for grits at an early age and became known as the “grits girl” in my family. My grandmother gave me the best shirt one year for Christmas…on the front of the shirt was printed GRITS, and on the back it said, “Girl Raised In The South.”

There is nothing more southern than shrimp and grits, which is why it is one of my favorite foods. This recipe takes delicious to another level by adding fancy “gouda grits.” Really any cheese will work, so feel free to mix it up with your favorite cheeses! This dish is a great way to try something new and get your protein needs met. Another reason I like this dish is because we often talk to patients with eating disorders about “condensing”, which means trying to combine several exchanges to reduce the volume of the meal. Cheese grits is a good way to get starch, protein, and fat exchanges in ½ cup volume.  Add a little salt and pepper to taste, and this will surely become your new favorite food whether you were raised in the south or not!  Enjoy!

Alice Merritt, MPH, RD, LDN, CEDS

Dietetic Manager, Veritas Collaborative


Low Country Shrimp & Grits

6 shrimp = 1 pro; 1/4 cup sausage = 1 pro; 1/2 cup sauteed  veg = 1 veg; 1 cup grits = 2 starch; 1/2 cup gouda cheese = 1 pro; 2 tsp butter = 2 fat


  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 12 each jumbo shrimp, peeled
  • 4 ounces Andouille sausage, diced
  • 1 cup red onion, cut into thin strips
  • 1 cup red pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 1 cup yellow pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, cut in half
  • 2 tbsp parsley, chopped
  • 4 ounces white wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp butter, unsalted, cut in cubes
  • 10 ounces milk (1 1/4 cups)
  • 1/4 cup quick-cooking grits
  • 1/2 cup Gouda cheese, grated
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • Salt and pepper as needed

Shrimp Directions

Pat the shrimp dry with a paper towel and season with salt and pepper.

Heat canola in saute pan (a 12″ cast-iron skillet or nonstick pan) on medium high and add shrimp, sausage and onion. Cook approximately 1 minute and add the pepper. Cook 2 to 3 minutes.

Add tomatoes and parsley. Cook until shrimp is 75% cooked through. Add white vinegar and bring to a boil. Reduce vinegar by about half and fold in butter. Season as desired with salt and pepper. Serve in a hot bowl over very “gouda” grits.

Gouda Grits Directions

Have the cheese, butter, salt and pepper ready before adding the grits as it is important to continuously stir the grits till the end.

In a 4-quart pan bring the milk to a simmer over medium-high heat. Add the grits and bring back to a simmer. Whisk for 5 minutes. Add cheese and butter and cook for another minute while whisking. Season as desired.