French Quarter Shrimp or New Orleans Barbecue Shrimp with a silky garlic and herb butter sauce that begs for crusty bread.

bowl of french quarter or barbecue shrimp

One of our favorite restaurant’s is Gumbeaux Cajun Cafe in Douglasville, Georgia. You have to get there early to get a table without waiting two hours, but once you’re seated the food fest begins.

Our favorite dish is the French Quarter Shrimp, the description of which reads, “Large shell-on gulf shrimp are broiled in our very own special garlic, pepper, butter and herb sauce.”

They bring the plate with plenty of sliced crusty bread, which you use to sop up that garlic, pepper, butter and herb sauce—and of course, that’s the best part. I could skip the shrimp and go straight to that sauce.

Recipes abound for barbecue shrimp, although the basic ingredients are usually the same: butter, garlic, herbs. Lots of butter and lots of garlic. I played around with several different recipes until I came up with a version that we think is most like Gumbeaux.

Mine is not as good, but it’s as close as I can get without driving over to Douglasville. And I don’t hear too many complaints, at least until everyone starts to get up from the table and then “Oooh, I’m so full!” That’s when you know something is pretty darn good.

The key is to use lots of fresh garlic. This is not a dish in which you want to use chopped garlic from a jar. It just won’t have the same punch. Do the work and reap the reward.

lots of garlic cloves for barbecue shrimp

How to Make French Quarter Shrimp

Melt one stick of butter in a large skillet and then saute garlic, onion, parsley, rosemary, oregano, cayenne pepper, black pepper and Cajun seasoning for 2-3 minutes until vegetables soften.

cooking butter and garlic for New Orleans style barbecue shrimp

Add the remaining butter to the pan, along with the beer, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, and hot sauce. Remove from heat and allow to cool just enough so it won’t cook the shrimp.

Pour the sauce over the shrimp. You can use unpeeled shrimp, which is what Gumbeaux uses and most recipes call for, or you can use peeled and deveined, which is what I use.

I know it’s cheating but peeled shrimp are so much easier to deal with when eating.

soaking shrimp in butter for French Quarter Shrimp

You can make this ahead of time and stick the shrimp back in the refrigerator until about 45 minutes before you’re ready to serve. The shrimp will pick up the flavors from the garlic and herbs even more if you can wait a few hours.

Then allow the dish to come to room temperature and place in a 400° oven for about 10 minutes or until shrimp are pink and sauce is heated. You need to serve immediately, so have everything else ready to go.

I usually only add a green salad and sliced bread.

Finished French Quarter Shrimp

Yes, these shrimp are swimming in butter. Yes, this is unhealthy. But it’s also not something you will eat every week or even every month. It’s a special occasion dish, so treat it as such and enjoy yourself!

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5 from 5 votes

New Orleans Barbecue Shrimp

Shrimp broiled in a tangy garlic and herb butter sauce with bread for sopping.
Prep: 4 hours
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 4 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
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  • 4 lbs. shrimp
  • 6 sticks unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup minced garlic
  • ½ cup finely chopped onion
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 12 ounces amber beer
  • ½ tablespoon Tabasco sauce
  • ½ cup Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 bay leaves


  • Melt 1 stick butter in a large skillet.
  • Saute garlic, onion, rosemary, parsley, Cajun seasoning, cayenne pepper, salt and black pepper for about 3 minutes, until onion is softened.
  • Add remaining butter, beer, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, and lemon juice and whisk until well blended. Stir in bay leaves.
  • Allow sauce to cool completely and pour over shrimp. Marinate for at least 4 hours.
  • Allow dish to come to room temperature before cooking. Place in a 400 oven for about 10 minutes or until shrimp is pink and sauce is hot.
  • Serve in a bowl with sauce and lots of crusty bread.


Serving: 8servings, Calories: 668kcal, Carbohydrates: 7g, Protein: 4g, Saturated Fat: 43g, Cholesterol: 182mg, Sodium: 1534mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 2g
Course: Fish
Cuisine: American
Calories: 668
Keyword: barbecue shrimp, french quarter shrimp
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Lucy standing behind a counter with a cheese board and glass of wine.

About the author

Hi, I’m Lucy! I’m a home cook, writer, food and wine fanatic, and recipe developer. I’ve created and tested hundreds of recipes so that I can bring you the best tried and true favorites.

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5 from 5 votes (1 rating without comment)

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Recipe Rating


  1. So going to try this! I love their shrimp. But have moved 9hours away. Thank you for sharing!

  2. 5 stars
    Thanks for this! I live in Marietta and make regular trips to Gumbeaux JUST TO EAT THIS MEAL!!! That and the bananas fosters dessert are the only things I have ever eaten there, but it’s only because they are THAT great! 🙂

    1. Amber, we so love Gumbeaux! And, of course, their French Quarter Shrimp is way better than mine, but this will definitely satisfy your craving when you can’t make it over there. But next time you go, if you are a chocolate lover, try their chocolate bread pudding for dessert…it is so good!

  3. 5 stars
    Thanks for this! I live in Marietta and make regular trips to Gumbeaux JUST TO EAT THIS MEAL!!! That and the bananas fosters dessert are the only things I have ever eaten there, but it’s only because they are THAT great! 🙂