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grilled shrimp on skewer

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    Basil Garlic Marinated Grilled Shrimp Skewers with Jalapeno Honey Sauce

    skewered shrimp with basil

    Have an Bunch of Basil From the Garden? I created this Recipe for Basil Garlic Marinated Grilled Shrimp Skewers with Jalapeno Honey Sauce with Excessive Bunches of Basil in Mind. Marinating Shrimp in Basil, Vanilla, and Garlic before Skewering and BBQing over a Grill makes for a Great Healthy Summertime Appetizer (or a tasty leftover lunch when tossed with pasta!)

    If you’re looking for a recipe on how to cook shrimp skewers, you have come to the right place. Keep reading below for several tips and tricks to keep your shrimp skewers, juicy, flavorful, evenly and easily cooked. A quick 20 minutes is all it takes to marinate and infuse head-on shrimp with the sweet flavors of basil and vanilla with an added kick of garlic. This recipe uses a quick garlic basil oil marinade sprinkled with fresh vanilla specks to flavor head-on shrimp before being slid on bamboo skewers and cooked over a BBQ grill. Jalapeno Honey Sauce adds a punch of sweet and spicy flavors, that brings the hidden spice notes of the herb basil out, and front and center. 

    raw grey shrimp with green basil

    Head on shrimp is a great option for grilling. The extra fat stored in the shrimps head adds extra tenderness to the quickly cooked shellfish. The deeply perentrating marinade adds loads of flavor in a short time, making the shrimp kabobs both succulent and flavorful

    Vanilla works wonders in this marinade, adding to the sweetness that is already abundant in the shrimp. Basil has a subtle sweetness to it’s flavor profile as well, pairing perfectly with the combination of basil and vanilla. An added kick of fresh garlic pulls the spice notes out of the herby basil and makes the flavor combinations in this recipe really pop. This recipe instructs you use 2 skewers on either side of the shrimp, this stops the shrimp from flipping when cooking, and makes grill time a breeze. Freshly squeezed lemon juice has 2 purposes in the recipe instructions. Make sure to squeeze the lemons after cutting the jalapeno, the acid in the lemon juice removes the spicy oils left from chopping the pepper on cutting boards and hands. The fresh lemon also cuts through the heat of the jalapeno in the sauce, creating a a spicy and sweet balance to the sauce.

    fresh green basil leaves
    pink shrimp kabobs with green sauce

    Basil Garlic Marinated Grilled Shrimp Skewers with Jalapeno Honey Sauce

    A quick marinade of basil, vanilla and garlic infuses head on shrimp with an herby, sweet flavor bringing the taste of summer into your tongue. These skewers come together quickly and are a crowd pleaser. The added fat in the shrimp heads keeps the rest of the shellfish tender and succulent. A finishing touch of spicy sweet jalapeno, honey and lemon drizzle gives these kabobs a real kick. This recipe is fun, bright and full of punchy flavors. This is a great appetizer on it's own or a great entree when peeled and thrown into spaghetti.
    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 10 minutes
    Marinade Infusing 20 minutes
    Total Time 40 minutes
    Course Appetizer, dinner, Lunch
    Cuisine seafood
    Servings 2 People


    • 4 Bamboo Skewers soaked in water
    • Food Processor


    Shrimp Marinade

    • 1/2 Pound Head on Shrimp Medium Size, about 10 shrimp
    • 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
    • 1 Cup Fresh Basil About 20 leaves
    • 2 Cloves Fresh Garlic
    • 1 Vanilla bean
    • Sprinkle Salt

    Jalapeno Honey Drizzle Sauce

    • 1 Jalapeno Pepper
    • 1/2 Tsp Honey
    • 1 Tbsp Reserved Basil Mixture
    • 1 Half Lemon


    Basil, Vanilla Marinade

    • Chop garlic into large chunks and place in food processor.
    • Remove basil from stems and shred leaves lightly with hands before placing into food processor with garlic.
      green fresh basil elaves
    • Pour olive oil into food processor and process until a fine texture is achieved.
      *Reserve 1 tablespoon of basil garlic mixture for the finishing drizzle*
      Pour mixture into medium bowl.
    • Slice open vanilla bean and scrape the pods contents into basil mixture. Add salt and mix thoughly.
    • Add shrimp to bowl and mix with spoon to cover with marinade mixture. Let chill in fridge for 20 minutes.
      While the shrimp marinates, mix up the Jalapeno Honey Drizzle.
      raw shrimp in bowl with basil marinade
    • Slide shrimp onto skewers, placing 1 bamboo stick on either side of the shrimp, this will stop the shrimp from flipping while grilling.
      raw grey shrimp on bamboo sticks with green basil

    Honey Jalapeno Sauce Drizzle

    • Slice jalapeno and remove seeds. Chop into small pieces. Place pieces in small bowl.
    • Squeeze lemon juice into bowl, adding reserved basil mixture and honey. Mix ingredients together and set aside.
      green jalapeno honey sauce in silver bowl

    Grill the Shrimp Skewers

    • Place shrimp on grill in indirect heat, not over open flame and cook on each side for 5 minutes.
    • Remove shrimp skewers from grill. Snap heads and peel shrimp before drizzling or dipping into Jalapeno Honey Sauce.
      grilled shrimp skewers
    Keyword basil with shrimp recipe, bbq seafood appetizer, Grilled shrimp kabobs, head on shrimp recipe, shrimp skewer recipe
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