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Four zesty grilled shrimp skewers with jalapeño pesto & grilled corn salsa stacked on top of a gray speckled ceramic plate & garnished with lime wedges. A small jar of jalapeño pesto also sits on the plate ready for dipping or drizzling. The plate sits atop a light gray & white surface.

Zesty Grilled Shrimp Skewers with Jalapeño Pesto

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 6 reviews
  • Author: Jess Larson
  • Prep Time: 35 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: serves 4
  • Category: Main Dishes, Appetizer Recipes
  • Method: Grilling & Smoking
  • Cuisine: American, Mexican & Tex-Mex Inspired
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Description

Beautiful jumbo shrimp seasoned with a zesty garlic & lime marinade, skewered & grilled until perfectly charred, & finished with bright & spicy jalapeño pesto sauce. Grilled shrimp skewers are the ultimate quick & easy summer meal – enjoy them on their own, tossed in pasta, piled on tacos or salad, or make them for the perfect summer appetizer for your next backyard BBQ!


Ingredients

Scale

for the zesty shrimp skewers:

  • 1 1/2 pounds jumbo shrimp (U/16-25), peeled & deveined
  • 1 large, juicy lime, zested & juiced
  • 1 large, juicy lemon, juiced
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
  • 3 tablespoons avocado oil
  • 1 teaspoon honey or agave
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • up to 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • kosher salt & ground black pepper, to season
  • 68 stainless steel or bamboo skewers (soaked in water at least 20 minutes prior to assembly)

for the jalapeño pesto:

  • 1 cup cilantro leaves & tender stems (roughly 2 ounces)
  • 1/3 cup shelled pistachios
  • 1 jalapeno, deseeded as desired & roughly chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 lime, zested & juiced
  • 1 lemon, zested & juiced
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • kosher salt & ground black pepper, to seasonZesty grilled shrimp skewers with jalapeno pesto ingredients arranged on a light gray and white textured surface – raw jumbo shrimp, garlic, lime juice & zest, lemon juice, agave, ground cumin, cayenne pepper, kosher salt, ground black pepper, & avocado oil.

Instructions

  1. Preheat the grill: Prepare your grill for medium-high direct heat grilling, 550-600 degrees F. If using a Solo Stove Grill, empty one All-Natural Charcoal Grill Pack over top the charcoal grate. Arrange the charcoal in a pile, distributing 4-6 Solo Stove Starters into the base of the pile. Light the starters & set the cooking grate on the grill. The grill will be hot in 15-20 minutes, when the charcoal appears ashy & you can’t hold your hand over the grate for more than a couple of seconds. Meanwhile, as the grill preheats, prep the shrimp & pesto. [gallery columns="2" size="full" ids="18316,18317"]
  2. Marinate the shrimp: Meanwhile, as the grill preheats, marinate the shrimp. Add the shrimp to a large mixing bowl with the lime zest & juice, lemon juice, garlic, avocado oil, honey or agave, ground cumin, & cayenne pepper (if using). Season with 1 teaspoon kosher salt & ground black pepper as desired. Toss to combine. Set aside to marinate for at least 15 minutes or cover & set in the refrigerator to marinate for no more than 1 hour.Raw jumbo shrimp in a large glass mixing bowl, marinating in a zesty garlic & lime marinade. The bowl sits atop a gray & white textured surface.
  3. Make the jalapeño pesto: Meanwhile, as the shrimp marinate, prep the jalapeño pesto. Place all listed ingredients except olive oil in a food processor. Season with 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt & ground black pepper as desired. Pulse to combine. Scrape down the sides of the food processor as needed. With the processor running, slowly stream in the olive oil. Set aside, or transfer to an airtight container & store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. [gallery columns="2" size="full" ids="18303,18304"]
  4. Prep the shrimp skewers: Just before grilling, thread the marinated shrimp on skewers. It is helpful to skewer each piece of shrimp in two places, once near the head & once near the tail (pictured).Multiple skewers of zesty marinated jumbo shrimp are stacked on top of an aluminum baking sheet. The baking sheet sits on top of a white & light gray textured surface.
  5. Grill the shrimp skewers: Transfer the shrimp skewers to the grill. Grill over direct heat for 2-3 minutes per side, just until the shrimp is pink in hue & no longer translucent.A close up of four grilled shrimp skewers and a cob of sweet corn grilling on top of a Solo Stove Grill. The grilled shrimp are becoming opaque & developing a golden brown char from the grill.
  6. Serve the shrimp skewers immediately, with a generous spoonful of jalapeño pesto. You can enjoy them on their own, pile them on tortillas or a rice bowl with all your favorite taco night fixings, toss them into jalapeño pesto pasta, & more. Have fun with it & enjoy!Zesty Grilled Shrimp with Jalapeño pesto & grilled corn salsa on top of a white ceramic plate & garnished with lime wedges. The plate sits atop a light gray & white surface, next to a bunch of cilantro, a few loose cilantro leaves, a small jar of jalapeño pesto, & a couple of squeezed lime wedges.


Notes

  • Quick Grilled Corn Salsa (pictured): A simple add-on for your grilled shrimp skewers, especially since the grill is already on! Lightly coat 3 ears of sweet corn (husked) with avocado oil, & grill a few minutes per side until charred. Slice the kernels from the cob, & finely dice 1/2 red onion & 1 medium jalapeño. Add everything to a small bowl with a handful of roughly chopped cilantro. Stir & season with freshly squeezed lime juice, salt & ground black pepper to taste. 
  • Storage, Reheating, & Freezing:
    • Shrimp skewers are best enjoyed the day you grill them, though leftovers will keep, stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, for up to 2 days. Enjoy leftovers cold, or reheat on the stovetop just until warmed through.
    • Jalapeño pesto is much more make-ahead friendly. Store jalapeño pesto in an airtight container or jar in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. It’s also a wonderful freezer staple for summer. To freeze, transfer the jalapeño pesto to a freezer safe container (these are my favorite!) for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator a day before you’d like to use it. 
  • 20-Minute Meal Prep: Nearly all of the active prep work for these grilled shrimp skewers comes from prepping the shrimp skewers marinade & jalapeño pesto. Prep either or both in advance for a great head start on your grilled shrimp skewers dinner – it’ll take 20 minutes, tops:
    • Prep the shrimp skewer marinade according to Step 2 of Recipe Directions, above. Store in a jar or airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. The day you’d like to make grilled shrimp skewers, all you have to do is toss the shrimp into the marinade – quick & easy! (10 minutes active prep)
    • Prep the jalapeño pesto according to Step 3 of Recipe Directions above. Store in a jar or airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. (10 minutes active prep)