Foodie Friday barbecue shrimp sandwiches can be super quick right off the grill, especially if you go for store-bought b-b-q sauce. Notice, there is very little fat and you can control the sugar through your choice of barbecue sauce.

Kathy Whyte/ WNBF News
Kathy Whyte/ WNBF News

Barbecue Shrimp Sandwiches (Prep. time: 20 minutes. Add about 50 minutes if making the barbecue sauce from scratch.  Recipe is for two sandwiches.)

24 raw, medium shrimp (thaw, peeled, deveined)

1/2 C. barbecue sauce (homemade recipe below or favorite jar brand)

1 Tb. olive oil

Shredded lettuce

Sliced onion

Hamburger or sandwich rolls

1/3 C. Melted butter

2 tsp. garlic powder


Homemade Barbecue Sauce

2 C. ketchup

1 C. water

4 Tb. paprika

1 tsp. cumin

¼ tsp. ginger

½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

¼ C. very finely minced (red) onion,

½ Tb. vegetable oil

1 clove garlic grated or run through a garlic press

¾ C. light brown sugar (packed)

½ C. red wine vinegar

salt/ pepper

3 Tb. honey

2 drops liquid hickory smoke

1 Tb. sesame oil 

In a 2 quart sauce pan, over medium-high heat, warm vegetable oil and sauté minced onion until tender, stir in the cumin, ginger, red pepper and paprika. Heat and stir to release the oils.  Stir in the ketchup, salt, pepper, water and vinegar.  Add in the honey, hickory smoke and sesame oil a little at a time for each so you can control the final flavor.  Simmer on low about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.


Mix the barbecue sauce with an additional 1 Tb. olive oil.  Toss the shrimp in the sauce and allow to sit 10 minutes to up to an hour. Pre-heat grill to medium high.  String shrimp on metal skewers (12 shrimp per sandwich, fewer if using larger shrimp). Put sliced onions onto heavy duty aluminum foil with the edges folded up to make a tray. Drizzle with a little olive oil and place on the grill before starting to cook the shrimp.  Cook until translucent and soft.   Melt butter and stir in the garlic powder.  Brush garlic butter on rolls. Grill shrimp about 2-3 minutes per side until shrimp is pink and releases easily from the skewer.  Put the rolls on the grill, butter-side down just before turning the shrimp.  Assemble sandwiches with lettuce, onion and additional barbecue sauce and tomato if you like.  Serve with a side of macaroni, potato or other favorite salad or side dish. (Search my recipes for a really good vegan coleslaw recipe that would also go well with this.  I don’t even like coleslaw and I actually ate it!)

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