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Cajun Pepper Shrimp with Creamed Corn Orzo

My best friend and I have a bit of an inside joke about “miracles”. The backstory isn’t worth sharing (or technically mine TO share), but it stuck. We get some good laughs with all the miracles we dream up…that, of course, aren’t actually miracles. (You do know that 2 girlfriends can be totally wretched together, right?)

I did, however, text her last night to say first, to make this recipe and second (only somewhat kidding), that it would be a miracle if the leftovers made it through the night.

As for my crew, they’ve been on a bit of a dinner hiatus. The girls seem to never be hungry for dinner, but breakfast? Holy batman. The other day, my 3-year-old put away a piece of French toast, TWO bananas, and 3 chicken sausage links. And some milk, of course. I mean, TWO bananas?! This is also my child who requests Caesar salad for lunch every day for the past month.

“Meal planning” is quickly turning into this unpredictable game of how much should I actually prepare. If they’re hungry and like the meal, I might as well be feeding a few linebackers. If they’re not hungry and/or not interested in what’s being offered, they eat like birds…while I’m stuck eating the same meal on repeat for the next 7 days.

Please tell me it’s not just me who has these issues…

That said, there’s sometimes these magical moments (I won’t call them miracles!) where I make something that is bomb diggity, my kids are hungry enough to eat, and therefore, the dinnertime isn’t a disappointment to either them, or me, or worse, both of us.

I’ll say this about this meal: prep your stuff ahead of time. It’s kind of like making Pad Thai– it all comes together quickly and in working with high heat, you want the char and the toasty-ness, but if you’re fiddling around with ingredient prep, you can quickly have a disaster on your hands. So, prep the ingredients and prepare to be amazed. It is on account of a miracle alone that those leftovers made it through the night. That said, they were fought over at breakfast as to who would get to enjoy for lunch!

Cajun Pepper Shrimp with Creamed Corn Orzo
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 5 servings (1 cup orzo with ~5 shrimp and 2+ oz sausage)
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 4 ears corn kernels, cut from the cob
  • 2 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • ¼ tsp salt and black pepper
  • 1 cup dry orzo pasta
  • ⅓ cup dry white wine
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • ½ cup canned coconut milk
  • ½ cup (2 oz) finely shredded Asiago cheese
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • 1 lb large shrimp, peeled and deveined, tail on or off (about 24 shrimp)
  • 1 Tbsp cajun seasoning
  • 12 oz Cajun-style Andouille sausage links, sliced into rounds
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 bell peppers, sliced
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or grated
  • ¼ cup fresh basil roughly chopped
  1. To make the orzo, heat butter in a large sauce pan over medium-high heat. Once melted, add the corn, thyme, salt, and pepper. Cook 5 minutes or until the corn is golden. Stir in the orzo and cook until toasted, about 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add the wine to the skillet and de-glaze the pan. Add the broth and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 8-10 minutes until the orzo is al dente. Stir in the coconut milk and Asiago; stir well and cook until heated through.
  3. Meanwhile, toss together the shrimp and cajun seasoning together in a bowl; set aside.
  4. Heat a large skillet over high heat. Add the sausage and brown all over, about 5 minutes. Add the peppers and stir. Cook for 5 minutes or until the peppers are soft and tender; remove the sausage and peppers from the skillet to a plate.
  5. Return the skillet to high heat and add the olive oil. Add the shrimp and sear on both sides until pink, about 2-3 minutes. Add the butter and garlic; toss to coat and cook until the garlic is fragrant, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat and stir in the basil, lemon juice, and reserved sausage and peppers.
  6. To serve, spoon the orzo onto plates, top with shrimp and peppers.
Recipe from Half Baked Harvest
Nutrition Information
Serving size: ⅕ recipe Calories: 604 Fat: 27.0 Carbohydrates: 53.2 Sugar: 5.4 Fiber: 4.6 Protein: 36.0 Cholesterol: 169

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