Grilled Cajun Lemon Shrimp Recipe


Grilled Cajun Lemon Shrimp is a zesty and flavorful dish that brings a taste of the South to your table. Perfect for summer barbecues or a quick weeknight dinner, this recipe features succulent shrimp marinated in a blend of Cajun spices and fresh lemon juice, then grilled to perfection. Whether you are a seafood lover or looking to try something new, this dish is sure to impress.

Overview of the Recipe

Grilled Cajun Lemon Shrimp combines the tangy freshness of lemon with the bold, spicy flavors of Cajun seasoning. The shrimp are marinated to absorb all the flavors, then quickly grilled to achieve a smoky char. This dish is not only delicious but also quick and easy to prepare, making it ideal for any occasion.

History and Origin

Cajun cuisine originates from the French-speaking Acadian people who settled in Louisiana. Known for its robust flavors and use of local ingredients, Cajun food often features seafood, a staple in the region. Grilled shrimp, infused with Cajun spices and lemon, highlights the best of this vibrant culinary tradition.


  • 1 1/2 pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional, for extra heat)
  • Lemon wedges (for serving)


Preparing the Shrimp

  1. Peel and Devein: Begin by peeling and deveining 1 1/2 pounds of large shrimp. Rinse them under cold water and pat dry with paper towels.

Making the Marinade

  1. Whisk Ingredients: In a large bowl, whisk together 1/4 cup of olive oil, 1/4 cup of fresh lemon juice, 2 teaspoons of Cajun seasoning, 1 teaspoon of paprika, 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon of onion powder, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper (if using).

Marinating the Shrimp

  1. Coat Shrimp: Add the shrimp to the bowl with the marinade, tossing to coat evenly.
  2. Refrigerate: Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld.

Preheating the Grill

  1. Preheat: Preheat your grill to medium-high heat.

Grilling the Shrimp

  1. Thread on Skewers: Thread the marinated shrimp onto skewers.
  2. Grill Shrimp: Grill the shrimp for 2-3 minutes per side, or until they are pink and opaque.


  1. Serve Immediately: Remove shrimp from the grill and serve immediately with lemon wedges on the side.

Serving Suggestions

Grilled Cajun Lemon Shrimp pairs beautifully with a variety of sides. Consider serving it with a fresh green salad, coleslaw, or a simple rice pilaf. For a more hearty meal, it can be accompanied by grilled vegetables or a creamy pasta salad.

Pairing and Serving Suggestions

  • Vegetables: Grilled asparagus, bell peppers, or corn on the cob.
  • Starches: Rice pilaf, couscous, or quinoa.
  • Salad: A crisp green salad with a light vinaigrette or a tangy coleslaw.

Variations of the Recipe

  • Spicy Shrimp: Increase the amount of cayenne pepper or add a dash of hot sauce to the marinade for extra heat.
  • Garlic Lemon Shrimp: Add more garlic powder or fresh minced garlic for a stronger garlic flavor.
  • Herb-Infused: Incorporate fresh herbs like parsley, cilantro, or thyme into the marinade for a different flavor profile.

Health Benefits

  • High in Protein: Shrimp is a great source of lean protein, which is essential for muscle growth and repair.
  • Low in Calories: This dish is relatively low in calories, making it a healthy choice for those watching their intake.
  • Rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Shrimp provides essential omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial for heart health.


  • For the best flavor, use fresh lemon juice rather than bottled.
  • To prevent the shrimp from sticking, make sure your grill is well-oiled and preheated.


Can I use frozen shrimp?

Yes, you can use frozen shrimp. Just make sure to thaw them completely before marinating.

How do I know when the shrimp are done?

Shrimp are cooked when they turn pink and opaque. They should also be firm to the touch.

Can I cook the shrimp in the oven instead of grilling?

Yes, you can bake the shrimp at 400°F (200°C) for 8-10 minutes, or until they are cooked through.


Grilled Cajun Lemon Shrimp is a delicious and easy-to-make dish that is perfect for any occasion. The bold Cajun spices combined with the fresh lemon juice create a mouthwatering flavor that will have everyone coming back for more. Whether served as an appetizer or a main course, this recipe is sure to become a favorite in your household. Enjoy the vibrant tastes of the South with this delightful grilled shrimp dish.

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