Cajun Spiced Shrimp

Dietitians love learning! We support students along their journey writing and teaching about food and nutrition. Let us introduce this blog's author: UBC nutrition undergraduate student Celesete Cardoz

As an active student with a busy schedule I enjoy being challenged with finding creative, quick, and nutritious recipes to fuel my day. I enjoy simple recipes that showcase fresh ingredients, but also love to use spices to create layers of flavour; and take lots of inspiration from my Indian background. I grew up in the kitchen, where I learned from my father who was a chef himself; I enjoy my time in the kitchen and find it quite therapeutic. That being said, with school, work, training and so on, I focus on recipes that support an active lifestyle but don’t require lots of preparation.

Cajun Spiced Shrimp

Cajun Spiced Shrimp

A little planning can go a long way. In this case, choosing a quick cooking protein allows the rest of the meal to fall into place around it - think shrimp tacos in place of the usual chicken or beef tacos. Changing one main component of a staple meal can help keep meal routines interesting but streamlines meal planning through a busy week.

Not only quick cooking, shrimp are also high protein and low fat; 100 grams of shrimp provide 21 grams of protein, and just 2 grams of fat. That is not to say that fat should be feared. Olive oil is a monounsaturated fatty acid, containing oleic acid, which has positive effects on cholesterol both increasing HDL cholesterol and decreasing LDL cholesterol, otherwise known as ‘good’ and ‘bad’ cholesterol. The right kinds of fat will benefit your health, as they help uptake of Vitamins A, D, E, and K, and fat provides the building blocks of your hormones. A little bit of fat goes a long way to contribute to a satisfying experience when you eat because it bolsters flavour and satiety. 

This spicy shrimp pairs perfectly served over brown rice or quinoa with a big kale salad, or wrapped in a corn tortilla with some fresh toppings - think cherry tomatoes, cilantro, and arugula. However you chose to eat, you can be sure that from preparation to cooking time, you can be ready to eat and out of the kitchen in less than 20 minutes. 

Cajun Spiced Shrimp
Recipe adapted from Erin Clarke  at
Serves 4


  • 1 lb. shrimp, shelled and deveined
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • ½ tsp. dried thyme
  • ½ tsp. cayenne powder
  • ¼ tsp. sea salt
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper 
  • ¼ lemon – squeeze over shrimp before baking


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line baking tray with aluminum foil or silpat   
  2. Mix olive oil, paprika, thyme, cayenne, salt, and black pepper
  3. Toss shrimp in spice mixture until evenly coated
  4. Lay shrimp flat, over baking tray and bake for 5-6 minutes 

Nutrition Facts (grams per serving): Calories: 100, Carbohydrates: 0.5, Fibre 0, Sugar 0, Fat: 3.5, Protein: 28

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do! 
~ Celeste