Creole Rice With Shrimp

Father’s Day is fast approaching.  If you can, be sure to give your dad a hug, visit, or phone call.

I have a lot of fond memories of my dad, many of them food related.  Not only was he an accomplished cook, he was also quite the fisherman.  Northwest Florida (also known as The Florida Panhandle and The Emerald Coast), with its bayous, Choctawhatchee Bay, and the Gulf of Mexico, provided plenty of places to fish.  I remember catches of mullet, flounder, crabs, and shrimp.  He loved fishing so much that after retiring from his job, he got a commercial fishing license that allowed him to sell fish and shrimp on a small scale basis.

He would often make a traditional jambalaya that would include freshly caught shrimp and smoked sausage.  Jambalaya is a dish that probably originated in Louisiana.  Along with smoked sausage and seafood, it includes the trinity of onions, bell peppers, and celery.  There are two versions of the dish, Creole and Cajun.  Creole includes tomatoes and Cajun style does not.

If possible, buy USA wild caught shrimp rather than farm raised shrimp from foreign countries.  I have found wild caught Gulf of Mexico shrimp (frozen of course) at my local grocery store.  In my opinion, they have a better flavor than farm raised.

Buying wild caught Gulf shrimp also helps support the shrimp industry in the Gulf Coast states.

My recipe for Creole Rice With Shrimp is a take on a traditional jambalaya and brings back memories of my dad and his Southern cooking.  It is a tasty and very easy recipe to make.  The rice is so good with its spicy tomato flavor that I often serve it as a side dish with whatever entree I’m cooking.

Creole Rice With Shrimp

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup chopped green pepper
1/4 cup chopped red pepper
1/2 garlic clove, minced
1 (14.5 ounces) can diced tomatoes (fire roasted if available)
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 cup uncooked long grain rice
2 cups water

1 pound raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
3 tablespoons olive oil
McCormick Cajun Seasoning (or any brand)

For the Rice

Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium high heat.  Add the onion, green and red peppers and sauté until the onions are translucent.  Add the garlic and continue cooking for about one minute longer.  Turn off the heat.  Add the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, salt, pepper, thyme, cayenne, rice, and water.  Stir to combine and bring to a boil over medium high heat.  Reduce heat.  Cover and simmer until rice is tender about 25 minutes.  When the rice has almost finished cooking, prepare the shrimp.  Garnish with chopped green onion, if desired.

For the Shrimp

Sprinkle the shrimp lightly with Cajun seasoning.  In a large skillet, add 1/4 cup of olive oil and heat until hot.  Add the shrimp and sauté 4-5 minutes or until pink and opaque.  Serve along side the Creole Rice.  

1.  If desired, add 1/4 cup chopped celery to the onion and pepper mixture.
2.  I’m not promoting Florida tourism, but here is an interesting article about Northwest Florida:  7 Interesting Things to Know About Northwest Florida.
3.  Below is a photo of beautiful Blue Mountain Beach located between Destin and Panama City Beach.  Photo is courtesy of a family member.

What favorite food memories do you have of your dad?



  1. Sounds delicious! I buy wild caught shrimps, too, nowadays. And I agree, they taste better. I’d like to invite you to join Fiesta Friday if you haven’t. It’s a weekly Link Party/blog hop. You’ll definitely meet super friendly and welcoming bunch of mostly food bloggers there. It’s a lot of fun! 😄

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