Grilled Caribbean Jerk Shrimp {2 ways!}

Grilled Caribbean Jerk Shrimp {2 ways} -

I think I like fish and seafood more and more with each passing year. At least that’s what my seemingly constant cravings have been telling me. Especially when it comes to shrimp. No lie, I can’t get shrimp off my mind lately!

So you can only imagine the smile that came to my face when our family showed up for a casual dinner date at our friends’ home late this summer…and they treated us to an appetizer of Caribbean jerk shrimp. BIG shrimp. And they were super flavorful, with just the right amount of spice and happy tingle. I was in heaven.

Of course, I had to figure out how to do this at home, to get the same deliciousness as the pre-marinated shrimp that our friends had treated us to.

Grilled Caribbean Jerk Shrimp {2 ways} - www.afarmgirlsdabbles.comSo I concocted a marinade while Blake soaked a wood plank in beer and lit the Weber. We managed to do away with a couple cold beers and a bowl of pistachios while we waited for perfectly hot white coals. Then we laid the shrimp on the barbie.

Pretty, huh?

Grilled Caribbean Jerk Shrimp {2 ways} -

This plank of Grilled Caribbean Jerk Shrimp was so fun to set on the table, a treat for my parents who were visiting for a few days. When grilled on the plank, the shrimp cook slower and turn out a bit saucier, with a hint of smoke. Simply fabulous.

Grilled Caribbean Jerk Shrimp {2 ways} -

But we weren’t done with this Caribbean jerk shrimp recipe just yet. Both Blake and I yearned for a bit more kick to the marinade. And I wanted to test the shrimp grilled right on the grates, for a drier feel and a little crispy char. So I swapped out the jalapeño used in the first round for a pretty little habañero, and altered some of the spice mixture. Blake grilled them just a few minutes per side, directly on the grates, to utter perfection. And we enjoyed one amazing plate of shrimp. No further recipe tweaking necessary.

Grilled Caribbean Jerk Shrimp {2 ways} -

As a tantalizing appetizer, gorgeous salad topper, or main entrée star, this Caribbean jerk shrimp from the grill is one memorable course to any meal. Please let us know if you give this a try!

Grilled Caribbean Jerk Shrimp {2 ways!}

Yield: 4 servings


  • 1 lb. raw jumbo shrimp (16 to 20 per pound), peeled and deveined
  • 1/2 c. vegetable oil
  • 1/2 of a large habanero pepper, seeded and minced (more or less, for your heat preference)
  • 3 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 T. minced fresh ginger
  • 1 T. brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. Mexican oregano
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. allspice
  • chopped cilantro, flaky sea salt, and fresh lime wedges for garnish
  • beer for soaking plank, if grilling shrimp on a plank


Place shrimp in a wide shallow bowl. Set aside.

In a small bowl with high sides, combine all ingredients from the vegetable oil through the allspice. Use an immersion blender to completely process until there are no sizeable pieces. Or use a food processor or blender. Pour marinade over shrimp and gently stir to coat evenly. Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours.

to grill shrimp on wood grill plank (for saucier shrimp with a hint of smoke):

Set a large grill plank in a pan with sides and completely cover plank with beer. If the plank wants to float, simply set a bowl or something similar on it to weigh it down. Let soak for 2 hours. Heat a charcoal (using hard wood lump or regular charcoal) or gas grill to medium-high heat (about 475°). If using a charcoal grill, let charcoal get completely hot and white, and then level it out into an even layer. Set soaked plank on grate to get plank hot. When plank starts to crackle, which should take about 3 minutes, set shrimp on plank. Grill 5 to 6 minutes per side, or until shrimp are no longer opaque. Set plank on a pan and serve shrimp straight from the plank. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and a bit of flaky sea salt. Serve with lime wedges for squeezing over the top.

to grill shrimp on the grill grates (for a drier feel, with a little crisp to the shrimp):

Heat a charcoal (using hard wood lump or regular charcoal) or gas grill to medium-high heat (about 475°). If using a charcoal grill, let charcoal get completely hot and white, and then level it out into an even layer. Oil grill grates well. Set shrimp on grates. Grill for 3 to 4 minutes per side, until shrimp are no longer opaque and have a bit of char. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and a bit of flaky sea salt. Serve with lime wedges for squeezing over the top.


from a farmgirl's dabbles

I’m linking up with Cheryl at TidyMom for I’m Lovin’ It (Decorating with Maps).


31 Responses to “Grilled Caribbean Jerk Shrimp {2 ways!}”

  1. #
    Tieghan — September 20, 2013 at 7:57 am

    Mmm! I love caribbean jerk anything!! These shrimp look so good!

  2. #
    Erin | The Law Student's Wife — September 20, 2013 at 7:58 am

    Oh my goodness, I need to find a way to fit a BBQ grill into my apartment, just to make these! Love the 2 ways and how you kicked up the marinade.

  3. #
    Kim @ Sand & Sisal — September 20, 2013 at 8:00 am

    Oh my… these look amazing! Guess I know what I’ll be making this weekend! Pinned it!

  4. #
    Maria — September 20, 2013 at 8:30 am

    Love the seasoning!

  5. #
    Sommer @ ASpicyPerspective — September 20, 2013 at 8:39 am

    This sounds amazing! Great grilling recipes!

  6. #
    Mom — September 20, 2013 at 9:08 am

    So glad I can attest to the awesome flavor of these shrimp.
    They are so-o-o yummy!

    • Brenda replied on September 24th, 2013 at 2:10 pm

      Thanks, Mom! Now we need to treat you to Version #2, grilled right on the grates! :) xo

  7. #
    Kathy - Panini Happy — September 20, 2013 at 9:56 am

    Mmm…I love plank grilling! The crispier version looks amazing too. :-)

  8. #
    Jill — September 20, 2013 at 11:55 am

    Oh this is amazing…and the beer soaked plank? LOVE THAT TOO.

  9. #
    Bree (Skinny Mommy) — September 20, 2013 at 2:18 pm

    Both of these look absolutely delicious and perfect for a party. I love the idea of beer soaking a plank–must try that!

  10. #
    Laura (Tutti Dolci) — September 20, 2013 at 11:38 pm

    I love grilled shrimp, the jerk marinade sounds so good!

  11. #
    Angie | Big Bears Wife — September 23, 2013 at 9:12 am

    mmm those shrimp look wonderful!

  12. #
    Wickey @ Fire & Flavor — September 23, 2013 at 10:21 am

    Looks awesome. Great photography.

    You might like to try another plank species next time. Maybe alder: It my favorite w/ shrimp. Keep up the good work.


  13. #
    Angie — September 23, 2013 at 12:08 pm

    We love shrimp and jerk seasoning! A Jamaican chef was telling me they used allspice wood when they grill too. I haven’t been able to find it yet though, still looking!

    • Brenda replied on September 24th, 2013 at 1:58 pm

      That does not sound like a choice I’ve seen, would love to try it!

  14. #
    Jen — September 23, 2013 at 10:02 pm

    This is a must try! Thanks!

    • Brenda replied on September 24th, 2013 at 1:57 pm

      Hope you like it, Jen – nice to hear from you! :)

  15. #
    Miss @ Miss in the Kitchen — September 23, 2013 at 10:29 pm

    My boys were just begging for shrimp, this is just what they would love.

  16. #
    Tara @ Unsophisticook — September 25, 2013 at 10:01 am

    I always grill shrimp on skewers, but I’m definitely trying a plank next time!

  17. #
    Megan {Country Cleaver} — September 27, 2013 at 9:16 am

    We just got a new grill last weekend and we have yet to use it! I think I know what we’re breaking it in withhhhh!!!! Yeah, I mean THESE!

  18. #
    Amanda — September 27, 2013 at 4:38 pm
  19. #
    Rebecca | It's Not Easy Eating Green — March 6, 2014 at 1:09 pm

    I just made up this marinade for tonight’s Caribbean-themed supper. It’s so good, I was licking it off my fingers! Thanks for the great recipe!

    • Brenda replied on March 6th, 2014 at 2:07 pm

      Excellent! :)

  20. #
    Holly — May 2, 2014 at 2:02 pm

    I just made this and it was wonderful! I couldn’t get habaneros at my local grocery, so I settled for serranos. I also decided to leave the shell on to preserve some of the shrimp’s juiciness. Otherwise, I followed the recipe as written and I am very satisfied with the results. Thank you! :)

    • Brenda replied on May 4th, 2014 at 7:21 am

      I’m so happy to hear this, Holly – thanks for coming back to let me know. I have been craving this shrimp lately…must make soon!!


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