Cajun Garlic Shrimp Recipe & Pairing

Developed over centuries of adapting to different environments, living off of the land, and cooking what was available, Cajun cuisine has become one of the boldest (and yummiest) we can think of! These Cajun Garlic Shrimp are impossible to resist.

Canadian Origins to Cajun Cuisine

The Acadian people settled in the maritimes as early as the 1600s, and adapted French peasant-style recipes to work with anything they could catch or gather near their settlements. This meant hearty stews of meat and veg cooked in a single pot – and would have featured Atlantic cod, lobster, salmon, potatoes and carrots. 

In 1755, after refusing to pledge allegiance to the British, the Acadians were forced to leave Canada. Many made their way to the Southern United States and settled in Louisiana, where they again adapted their simple dishes to include anything that they could catch or gather in their new environment. This meant shrimp, crawfish, catfish and even alligator became their new seafood staples, and instead of potatoes and carrots, they started to use rice and bell peppers – and even cayenne!

But wait – thought we were talking about Cajun food, not Acadian food? Try saying ‘Acadian’ with a French accent – sounds kind of like ‘Cajun’, right? Now you know a little bit about our Maritime history in Canada, and where this delicious hearty and spicy Cajun dish comes from. Now you can try it for yourself!

Cajun Garlic Shrimp

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Recipe by WineCollective Course: StarterCuisine: CajunDifficulty: Easy
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Deliciously garlicky, buttery, and slightly spicy shrimp: this is no delicate seafood dish. A fuller-bodied white blend would make for an exuberant wine pairing. This is a starter that comes together in minutes.

Make sure not to overcook the shrimp: they should be opaque but not chewy.


  • 2 tbsp soy sauce

  • 1 tbsp brown sugar

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil

  • 1 tsp Cajun seasoning

  • 1 tsp smoked paprika

  • 1/2 lemon, juiced

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 2 tbsp butter

  • 500 g shrimp, peeled

  • salt and pepper, to taste

  • 1 spring onion, thinly sliced

  • 1 lime, in wedges


  • Whisk together soy sauce, brown sugar, oil, Cajun seasoning, smoked paprika, garlic, and lemon juice.
  • Melt butter in a medium-sized frying pan. Over medium heat, add the sauce and whisk together until it thickens a bit.
  • Season shrimp with salt and pepper. Add them to the pan and cook until they are no longer translucent. Don’t overcook!
  • Garnish with spring onion slices and serve with a wedge of lime.

Wine Pairings

  • Il Poggione Bianco di Toscana
    Vermentino is a fantastic complement to Chardonnay, lending refreshing acidity and minerality to Chardonnay’s fruit-driven weight. The absence of oak makes this bright and vibrant, with plenty of juicy fruit flavours and just a hint of citrusy zest.

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Want to continue to tantalize your taste buds with bold food flavours and wines that make them bolder? This recipe is one of four bold dishes that celebrate loud and exuberant flavours. Try out these Honey-Soy Glazed Chicken Thighs next!

If you are feeling bold, join WineCollective today. You’ll get a selection of curated wines that are only available to WineCollective members delivered to your door each month, accompanied by wine pairing suggestions so that you can continue to explore new and exciting flavour experiences.