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Kicking things up today with my 15 Minute Cajun Hot Honey Butter Shrimp. Peppery, smoky, garlicky, and buttery, this cajun style shrimp is pan-seared with plenty of lemons and served with sweet and spicy southern-style hot honey. Spoon this buttery shrimp over creamy polenta with pan-seared peppers or sautéed spinach for a complete dinner that’s so simple, and mouth-wateringly delicious. Major bonus? This shrimp dinner is made in just about 15 minutes, using simple pantry ingredients. Perfect for busy nights when you just need something quick and delicious.

overhead photo of 15 Minute Cajun Hot Honey Butter Shrimp on serving plate with spoon

I hope you all had a lovely weekend and enjoyed some time celebrating your mom. Did you mix up some fun cocktails, bake a pie or a cake, have a family dinner via Zoom? Whatever you did, I hope you had a great weekend. Today’s post was meant to be a salad, and you’ll still be seeing that salad, probably later this week, but you know? After a very relaxed Mother’s Day weekend, that no one wanted to see end, this fun southern-inspired cajun shrimp just makes Monday a little more enjoyable.

So kickin’ southern style cajun shrimp it is.

The honest truth… was going to make something completely different with the two-pound bag of frozen shrimp in my freezer. But then at the last minute, I switched gears and I made this southern-inspired shrimp instead. It was my best idea of the week.

Yes, this shrimp is simple as can be and comes together in fifteen minutes flat. But don’t let that fool you, this skillet shrimp is such an incredibly flavorful meal.

raw seasoned shrimp in bowl before cooking

Here’s how to make this cajun shrimp.

This is simple. First things first, if you enjoy cooking shrimp regularly, make sure your freezer is well-stocked with frozen shrimp. Having a few bags on hand will save you on nights when you need to cook something other than chicken, and you also need dinner fast.

Thaw out the shrimp and make sure to pat it dry before seasoning. This is key for a nice and crispy shrimp. Toss the shrimp with a good amount of cajun seasoning (you can use my homemade seasoning in the recipe notes, or store-bought). Then add a heavy pinch of black pepper.

Heat your skillet over high heat. Sear the heck out of those shrimps, then add in plenty of (salted) butter, garlic, and fresh thyme too. Oh and lemon! You can’t forget the lemon. And now, you’re done. YUP, that’s it. Simple – Simple.


overhead photo of 15 Minute Cajun Hot Honey Butter Shrimp in skillet with spoon

Well wait, you need the sauce.

Yes, the sauce. It’s the reason I created this recipe. It’s inspired by the famous Nashville Hot Chicken and it’s the same sauce I use on my southern oven fried chicken. It’s spicy but balanced with a touch of sweetness. The classic way to add sweetness to this spicy sauce is with brown sugar, but I prefer using honey for better flavor and texture.

The shrimp has a bit of a kick, so the honey sauce is the perfect sweet balance…and it’s delicious. It’s one of my favorites sauces, and everyone else’s too. Which is why I’ve used it in both the chicken and this shrimp.

overhead photo of 15 Minute Cajun Hot Honey Butter Shrimp on serving plate

My serving suggestions.

I debated back and forth about whether to provide you with a side for this recipe. But in the end, I went with keeping it simple so you could take your pick of sides. But I want to at least provide you with my suggestions.

My choice of a side for this southern shrimp is extra creamy polenta. All you need is polenta, butter, and a pinch of black pepper. Sometimes I like to stir in fresh herbs or a little parmesan, either way, nothing can beat out a bowl of creamy polenta. Especially with such a saucy shrimp dinner like this one. It’s the BEST.

My second choice is steamed rice, but guys make the polenta. It takes ten minutes tops and it’s just so good.

For my vegetable of choice? Pan seared red and orange bell peppers with spinach tossed in at the very end. I’d add a little fresh basil or thyme, then finish with lemon. When the summer corn is in high season, that would be delicious too!

And there you have it, dinner is complete. All in probably twenty to thirty minutes time including cooking the shrimp. So do you see…this is the best idea for Monday night dinner. Then add a fun drink, I’d go with something bourbon, like maybe my blueberry smash. There’s no reason not to have an amazing Monday night, and this is how you do it up.

PS. I forget to add that you should serve this shrimp with crusty bread for scooping up all that amazing sauce. Really, it’s so delicious.

overhead close up photo of 15 Minute Cajun Hot Honey Butter Shrimp on serving plate

Looking for other quick-cooking shrimp dinners? These are all nice options…

Saucy Garlic Butter Shrimp with Coconut Milk and Rice Noodles

Cajun Pepper Shrimp with Creamed Corn Orzo

Sheet Pan Hawaiian Pineapple Shrimp Tacos with Creamy Jalapeño Special Sauce

Lastly, if you make this 15 minute cajun hot honey butter shrimp, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

15 Minute Southern Hot Honey Butter Shrimp.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories Per Serving: 345 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.


Hot Honey


  • 1. Pat the shrimp dry, then toss with the cajun seasoning and a large pinch of pepper.
    2. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add the shrimp and cook until pink, about 2 minutes per side. Add the butter, garlic, thyme, and lemon zest. Continue to cook the shrimp in the butter until the garlic begins to caramelize and turns a light golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice.
    3. To make the spicy honey sauce. Melt together the honey, butter, cayenne, chili powder, paprika, and a pinch of salt. 
    4. Serve the shrimp topped with flaky salt and drizzled with spicy hot honey sauce. I like to serve over polenta and/or with a side of crusty bread.


Homemade Cajun Seasoning: mix 2 1/2 tablespoons smoked paprika, 2 tablespoons garlic powder, 1 tablespoon onion powder, 1 tablespoon dried oregano, 1 tablespoon dried thyme, 1 tablespoon chili powder, 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper, 1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt, and 1 tablespoon black pepper. Makes 3/4 cup. 
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  1. Loved this dish Tiegan! Quick and easy and so much flavor! I also made the sautéed mini peppers with spinach, served with rice and it was the perfect dinner! This is probably the fourth recipe of yours that I’ve tried, all were great and just visually look so impressive, like I’ve spent way more time and effort in the kitchen, so thank you so much! Looking forward to trying many more!

    1. Hey Susan,
      Awesome!!🌼 I love to hear that this recipe turned out well for you and appreciate you giving it a try! Thanks so much for your kind message and trying so many recipes! xT

  2. Just curious about the shrimp cooking time. I would typically do 4 mins total fir the shrimp and this looks like they could be cooking fur 9-10 mins. Insight?

    1. Hey Mary,
      Hmmm, I’m not sure where you are seeing the 9-10 minutes….you are cooking 2 minutes per side in step 2, so a total of 4 minutes and then an additional 1 to 2 minutes at the end of step 2, so 5 minutes total:) I hope this helps! xT

  3. 5 stars
    Quick and delicious! I needed a simple recipe with the ingredients I had on hand and this fit the bill perfectly. Polenta makes a great accompaniment.

    1. Hey there,
      Fantastic!! I love to hear that this recipe was a winner, thanks for trying it out! I hope you had a great holiday weekend!?