Shrimp Over Creamy Polenta

Tender, flavorful Shrimp over Creamy Polenta is an easy and delicious seafood meal. Our creamy and cheesy polenta is amazingly delicious and loaded with parmesan and pecorino cheeses. Paired with garlicky shrimp, makes the perfect dinner for a busy weeknight, and is elegant enough for guests. This is an Italian version of Shrimp and Grits and it is exquisite!


This recipe for Shrimp over Creamy Polenta…

  • It is a quick dinner that’s very easy to pull off and extremely flavorful. 
  • Tender shrimp are quickly sautéed in a skillet with some garlic, crushed red pepper flakes, Dijon mustard, wine, and lemon juice. 
  • Served over our creamy polenta that’s loaded with parmesan and pecorino cheeses. So yummy!
  • This seafood dish will serve 2 to 3 people, but you can easily double all the ingredients for more servings.  

Best of all – it’s ready in under 30 minutes. 

I have to tell you – it is FABULOUS!


Shrimp Over Creamy Polenta by


Already cleaned shrimp saves time…

The other day, I bought some large shrimp from our local seafood market.  For a few pennies more, I had them cleaned and devein for me. 

It was definitely worth it.

The Best part? The instant polenta takes about 5 minutes to cook, then it’s ready to serve. 

This easy recipe will make dinner a snap! 😉

A white plate with a serving of shrimp and polenta. by

Ingredients Needed for Shrimp over Creamy Polenta:

For this easy recipe, you will need the following ingredients:

For the Creamy Polenta: 

How to make our Shrimp Over Creamy Polenta?

This recipe is only 2 Easy-To-Follow Steps... (*Full recipe card on the bottom!)

The First Step: is to make the polenta… 

1. Whisking it with butter and grated cheeses, including some salt until it’s creamy and smooth.  This will take about 3 to 4 minutes with Instant polenta.  Then cover and leave it on the stove to keep warm. 

4 Photos of shrimp cooking in a skillet.   by

The Second Step: is to cook the shrimp... 

2. Heat a medium-sized skillet and toss in the olive oil, minced garlic, and crushed red pepper flakes.  Sauté to fragrant, about 1 minute.  (I realized the small skillet was too small and switched to an 8-inch size instead)

3. Then toss in the shrimp and follow the directions in our recipe card below. 

4. The shrimp will cook while the additional ingredients are added to make the sauce.  No need to overcook them.

READY TO SERVE: Spoon the polenta into a serving platter or in a small baking dish and transfer the shrimp over the polenta, including any remaining sauce from the skillet.  Garnish with some chopped green onions on top. Then serve immediately.  

Shrimp Over Creamy Polenta by

Cook’s Notes and Tips…

  • Always give your cleaned shrimp a good rinse under running cold water. Then allow them to drain in a colander. 
  • After drained, transfer the shrimp onto a dish layered with paper towels, this will help absorb any excess water from them.
  • If you plan to make this dish for a small dinner party, you can make the polenta and transfer it to a small slow cooker or crockpot to keep it warm.  This way, it will stay heated on your counter, until you are ready to cook the shrimp.

Can we use “regular” polenta instead of Instant?

Yes, you can. For (non-instant) polenta, you will need some time to simmer it while whisking it often, and at least 20 minutes or so until it is fully cooked. It is more labor, but it can be done.

What Sides to Serve It With?

Any of these easy sides will work with our shrimp and polenta dish:

Shrimp Over Creamy Polenta by

Shrimp over a creamy polenta is a delicious combination.

Winter is still here. No matter where you live, frigid temperatures always call for comfort food. 

Why not create a cozy atmosphere with a spectacular dish to serve for dinner and one that can be ready in no time? 

Serve with some crusty bread and a bottle of any chilled dry white wine, and enjoy this meal.

So give it a try, you won’t be disappointed.


More Delicious Shrimp Dinner Ideas…

Yield: 2 to 3 servings

Shrimp Over Creamy Polenta

Shrimp Over Creamy Polenta by

Shrimp Over Creamy Polenta is very easy, and it's extremely flavorful and delicious. Best of all it's ready in under 30 minutes.  Perfect for a weeknight dinner or date night.  This is an Italian version of Shrimp and Grits and it is exquisite!

Prep Time 8 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 28 minutes


  • 1/2 pound of large shrimp - already cleaned and deveined
  • 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large garlic clove - minced
  • 1/8 tsp. of crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp. of Dijon mustard (with seeds)
  • 2 Tbsp. dry white wine
  • 1/2 of a large lemon juiced (about 2 Tbsp.)
  • dash of smoked paprika
  • one chopped green onion, as a garnish


  • 1/2 cup of instant polenta or cornmeal
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter - room temperature
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated Locatelli pecorino cheese


    First, Make the Polenta:

    1. In a medium-size saucepan, heat 2 cups of water.
    2. When water comes to a low boil, turn off the heat and slowly pour in the polenta and continue to whisk until it is fully incorporated and it's smooth and creamy.
    3. Then whisk in salt, butter, and both kinds of cheese. Continue to whisk until it's fully combined and creamy. Taste and adjust the salt, if needed. Cover and keep on the stove to keep warm.

    Cook the Shrimp:

    1. In a medium-size skillet, heat on moderate heat, add the olive oil, minced garlic, and crushed red pepper flakes. Sauté the garlic and pepper flakes for 30 seconds or more to fragrant the oil.
    2. Toss in the shrimp. Sauté the shrimp for about 1 to 2 minutes per side, or until they turn pink.
    3. Lower the heat, and add the butter and Dijon mustard.
    4. Pour in the white wine and stir with a wooden spoon to help deglaze the sauce.
    5. Immediately following, add in freshly squeezed lemon juice over the shrimps. Add a dash of smoked paprika over the shrimps, and simmer for an additional 1 minute.
    6. Turn off the heat and taste the sauce. Season with freshly cracked black pepper to taste.

    To Serve:

    1. Check to see if the polenta is still hot. If you need to, you can reheat on the stove-top for a minute or so. Then transfer the polenta to a serving dish or platter.
    2. Transfer the shrimps over the creamy polenta and spoon all the remaining sauce over the shrimps and sprinkle with chopped green onions. Serve immediately.
    3. Serves: 2 to 3 servings

    Nutrition Information:


    3 servings

    Serving Size:

    1 serving

    Amount Per Serving: Calories: 390Total Fat: 22.9gCarbohydrates: 13.3gFiber: 1.2gSugar: .2gProtein: 28.1g

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    Baking dish with shrimp and polenta by

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    Thanks for stopping by!

     xo Anna and Liz

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    1. The shrimp portion of the recipe didn’t list butter as an ingredient. Should the butter from the polenta portion be divided or how much extra is needed?

      1. Hi Cynthia, and yes, the butter is for the polenta portion. Did I miss that in the instructions? I will go in and edit that. Thanks so much for bringing that to my attention. Enjoy the recipe and have a great day!