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Jerk Shrimp with Rice and Peas

By Linda Gassenheimer
From Tribune News Service

Scallions, thyme, allspice and (most important of all) scotch bonnet are the essential ingredients in jerk cooking. Jerking is a long process of spicing and cooking meat and fish over an open fire. We can enjoy jerk flavors without the long preparation and cooking times using prepared jerk seasoning.

Rice and peas are an important part of Sunday in Jamaica. This is a very simple rice and peas dish to go with the Jerk Shrimp. Although it’s not authentic, it captures the island flavor.

Helpful Hints

You can find diced fresh onions and tomato in the produce section of the supermarket.
You can find minced garlic in jars in the produce or condiment sections of the supermarket.
A quick way to slice scallions is to snip them with a scissors.
Rum is called for in the jerk shrimp recipes. Water can be substituted.
Do not overcook the shrimp. They will become rubbery.


Start rice and peas.
Make shrimp.
Finish rice.

Shopping List

To buy: 3/4 pound medium peeled shrimp, 1 bottle jerk seasoning, 1 package long-grain white rice, 1 package frozen petite peas, 1 small bottle light rum, 1 container diced fresh onion, 1 container diced fresh tomatoes, 1 medium jalapeno pepper, 1 bunch scallions

Staples: canola oil (or substitute), minced garlic, fat-free low-salt chicken broth, salt, black peppercorns.

Jerk Shrimp

Recipe by Linda Gassenheimer


3/4 pound medium peeled shrimp
1 teaspoon canola oil (or substitute)
1/4 cup fresh diced onion
2 tablespoons light rum
1 tablespoon jerk seasoning
1 cup fresh diced tomatoes


Heat oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté 2 minutes. Add shrimp, rum, jerk seasoning, and tomatoes. Cook 2 minutes. Add salt to taste and serve over rice and peas.

Yield 2 servings.

Per serving: 262 calories, 49 calories from fat, 5.5 g total fat, 0.8 g saturated fat, 1.9 g monounsaturated fat, 258 mg cholesterol, 266 mg sodium, 10.3 g carbohydrate, 2.4 g dietary fiber, 3.7 g sugars, 36 g protein.

Exchanges: 1/2 carbohydrate, 5 lean meat.

Rice and Peas

Recipe by Linda Gassenheimer


2 teaspoons canola oil (or substitute)
1/2 cup fresh diced onion
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 cup long-grain white rice
1 cup fat-free low-salt chicken broth
1/2 cup frozen petite peas
1 medium jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 scallions, sliced (1/3 cup)


Heat oil in a medium nonstick skillet and sauté onion about 1 minute. Add garlic and rice and sauté 1 minute. Add chicken broth. Bring to a simmer, cover and let cook 10 minutes. Add peas and jalapeno pepper and cook another 5 minutes or until the rice is cooked through. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle scallions on top.

Yield 2 servings.

Per serving: 281 calories, 48 calories from fat, 5.3 g total fat, 0.5 g saturated fat, 3 g monounsaturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 333 mg sodium, 50.5 g carbohydrate, 4.5 g dietary fiber, 4.1 g sugars, 8.1 g protein.

Exchanges: 3 starch, 1 vegetable, 1/2 fat.

From “Fast and Flavorful: Great Diabetes Meals from Market to Table” by Linda Gassenheimer, published by the American Diabetes Association. Reprinted with permission from The American Diabetes Association. Gassenheimer’s latest book is “Simply Smoothies: Fresh & Fast Diabetes-Friendly Snacks & Complete Meals,” published by the American Diabetes Association. To order either book call 1-800-232-6733 or at 2023 Tribune Content Agency, LLC

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