Healthy Mardi Gras cuisine – no need to fast!

By: Jodie Shield, RDN

New Orleans Shrimp Creole

Fat Tuesday – who cares? My New Orleans Shrimp Creole tastes amazing and it’s quick and easy to make.  No canned soup for this Cajun casserole.  Make your own roux with unsalted butter, flour and water.  Simply toss in chopped bell peppers, green onions and some savory southern spices – add a splash of hot sauce if you dare. To save time and money, I buy frozen, uncooked peeled shrimp in bulk; then I thaw what I need under running water.  Serve Shrimp Creole over brown rice; add a slice of lemon and sprinkle on some fresh parsley.  For more lean Cajun cuisine try try my Jambalaya and Red Beans and Rice.  And check out my Guilt-Free Gumbo @FitStudio. 

 New Orleans Shrimp Creole 

6 Servings


Prep Time = 10 minutes

Cooking Time = 30 minutes


  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup hot water
  • ½ cup chopped green onions and tops
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • ½ cup green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt, optional
  • 2 whole bay leaves
  • ½ teaspoon crushed thyme
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (16 ounce) package frozen shrimp, thawed and tails removed
  • 1 lemon slice per person optional


  1. In large (13-inch) pan, melt unsalted butter over medium heat.  Blend in flour, and brown, stirring constantly.  Add water gradually; cook until thick, stirring constantly.
  2.  Add green onions, garlic, bell pepper, salt (if using), bay leaves, thyme, cayenne pepper, tomato sauce, and shrimp.  Cover, reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes stirring occasionally.   Remove bay leaves and serve over brown rice.  Garnish with lemon slices and a sprinkle of fresh parsley.

Nutritional Information per Serving (1 cup without rice): 194 calories, 14.5 grams protein, 8.5 grams carbohydrate, 11 grams fat, 6.5 grams saturated fat, 148 milligrams cholesterol, 1 gram fiber, 772 milligram sodium

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About Author


Jodie Shield, M.Ed., R.D., L.D.N. Jodie Shield has been a consultant and spokesperson in the field of nutrition for over two decades. A former national media spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association (1989-1995), she has worked extensively with the Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center and taught nutrition and medical dietetics at the University of Illinois. Currently she is a complemental faculty member of the College of Health Sciences in the Department of Clinical Nutrition at Rush University in Chicago.

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