Ruth Chris Steak House Barbecue Shrimp

From the tables of Louisiana to fancy steakhouses to your kitchen, those who love seafood and robustly seasoned recipes can’t go wrong with these barbecue shrimp. But don’t be fooled – there’s no grill or barbecue sauce required!

homemade Ruth's Chris Barbecue Shrimp in a bowl

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What is barbecue shrimp?

When we refer to barbecue shrimp in this unique recipe, we’re not talking about the cooking technique or the equipment. It all takes place indoors on your stove, without the need for extra equipment or long cook times. The dish is a regional specialty in Louisiana, known for its flavorful Cajun and Creole recipes. And with a recipe like this, even big-time steakhouse chains like Ruth Chris take notice. 

Barbecue shrimp earn their name from their robust, spicy-heavy flavor, resulting from ingredients like cayenne pepper, Tabasco and Worcestershire sauces, and garlic. 

What makes Ruth Chris Steakhouse Barbecue shrimp so good 

If that description of what produces the delicious steakhouse shrimp flavor isn’t enough to get your taste buds tingling, there’s more. This heat is tempered with plenty of butter and sophisticated notes of white wine to create a truly one-of-a-kind flavor. Chopped green onions also provide a crunchy bite and a hint of freshness to the mix. 

Why you’ll love this recipe

Home cooks will love this recipe for various reasons, including that it provides a much more affordable way to satisfy that craving than a trip to a real Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse.

The barbecue butter that provides the vibrant seasoning can be made ahead for convenience, while cooking the shrimp themselves takes just a few minutes. This makes it an excellent choice for quick weeknight dinners without sacrificing taste.  


Don’t be intimidated by the list of ingredients. Most may already be sitting in your kitchen, while the others are typically affordable and easy to find at any grocery store or supermarket.

  • Butter
  • Black pepper
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Paprika
  • Salt
  • Whole dried rosemary leaves
  • Fresh garlic
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Tabasco sauce
  • Olive oil
  • Shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Green onions
  • Dry white wine

It’s easy to make some simple substitutions if necessary. The spice mix can be tweaked according to your preferences or what you have available. Meanwhile, those looking to avoid using alcohol can sub in an equal amount of chicken or vegetable stock with a dash of vinegar or lemon juice for acidity. 

Ruth Chris barbecue shrimp ingredients

How to devein shrimp

What looks like a thin black vein down the back of a shrimp is actually the shrimp’s digestive tract, which is filled with grit. This grit is responsible for the dark color.

If you hate deveining shrimp or are in a rush, keep in mind that the vein isn’t harmful if eaten. Instead, it’s simply a matter of personal preference and aesthetics, as many think their shrimp look better without the vein. 

If you choose to devein, use a sharp paring knife to make a slit along the back of the shrimp. Then, use the blade to lift out the vein. Those who eat a lot of shrimp may want to invest in a dedicated deveining tool, which can simplify and speed up the process even further. 

How to make steakhouse barbecue shrimp

Whipping up a batch of steakhouse barbecue shrimp can be split into two phases. The first involves making the barbecue butter mixture.

  1. Allow the butter to sit at room temperature to soften.
  2. Combine the softened butter with the spices, garlic, rosemary, sauces, and water in a mixing bowl. 
  3. Beat using an electric mixer on high speed until well blended, about three minutes. Chill this mixture in the fridge.

Next, cook the shrimp. 

  1. While the sauce cools, preheat a large saute pan to high and add the olive oil. Add shrimp and saute for one to two minutes on the first side before flipping.  
  2. Lower the heat to medium, then flip the shrimp and add the sliced green onion. Cook for another one to two minutes.
  3. Add the white wine, then continue cooking until the liquid has reduced by half.
  4. Add a cup of the barbecue butter mixture from the fridge. Reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring frequently. 
  5. Remove from the heat when the shrimp are fully cooked.

Serve this tasty dish immediately in a preheated bowl to keep it warm. 

a bowl of homemade Ruth's Chris barbecue shrimp

What to serve with barbecue shrimp

With a mouthwateringly saucy dish like this, many cooks look for something to sop up the incredible flavor. Slices of crusty bread like sourdough are a favorite choice for many, while others may prefer a scoop of steakhouse barbecue shrimp over rice or grits. 

For other sides, think back to this dish’s steakhouse origins. A fresh salad can contrast the robust flavor of the shrimp and sauce, whether you opt for a lighter Italian dressing or a creamy bleu cheese or ranch.

Baked, fried, or mashed potatoes also go well with this recipe, providing a starchy companion that can take on any desired flavor. You can even choose creamed spinach, steamed broccoli or asparagus, sauteed mushrooms, and more. 

How to store leftovers

If you and your fellow diners manage not to devour the entire amount, storing your leftover Ruth Chris Steakhouse shrimp is quick and easy. First, allow the shrimp and the sauce to cool down to near room temperature. Then, package the shrimp in an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator. For quality and food safety reasons, leftovers should be enjoyed within two days.

In general, we don’t recommend freezing leftovers due to changes in the texture and quality of ingredients once frozen.   

How to reheat

There are two ways to bring leftover barbecue shrimp back to life: in the microwave or on the stovetop.

The microwave is the faster of the two, generally taking only a minute or two. Cover the shrimp in a microwave-safe vessel and heat it in 30-second intervals until warmed. 

However, many feel the stove provides better results, achieved simply by adding the shrimp and sauce to a skillet and heating over medium-low until ready to eat. This typically takes five minutes or less, depending on the quantity you’re reheating. 

homemade barbecue shrimp in a skillet

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homemade Ruth's Chris Barbecue Shrimp in a bowl

Ruth Chris Steak House Barbecue Shrimp

Barbecue shrimp makes a delicious appetizer or entree.
4 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Cajun
Keyword: Barbecue Shrimp, Ruth Chris Barbecue Shrimp
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 1184kcal


  • 1 pound butter
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon whole dried rosemary leaves (measured, then finely chopped)
  • ¼ cup garlic chopped
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
  • teaspoons water
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 pound shrimp (16-20 count), cleaned, peeled and deveined
  • ¼ cup green onions chopped
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 4 slices sourdough bread for serving


Shrimp Barbecue Butter

  • Soften butter at room temperature of 70-80 degrees. Place butter in a mixing bowl and add black pepper, paprika, cayenne pepper, salt, garlic, rosemary, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, and water. 
  • Whip the butter mixture on high-speed setting for 3 minutes or until well blended. Refrigerate to about 40 degrees. 

The Shrimp

  • The shrimp recipe will use 1 cup of the barbecue butter; reserve the extra for another use.
  • Pour olive oil into a preheated saute pan. Add the shrimp and saute on one side for 1-2 minutes. (Don’t crowd the shrimp; you might need 2 pans. A 12-inch pan will hold 1 pound of shrimp.) 
  • Lower heat to medium, turn the shrimp and add the chopped green onion. Cook for an extra 1 to 2 minutes. 
  • Add white wine and cook until reduced to 1/4 cup. Stir in 1 cup of the refrigerated barbecue butter, turn heat down to low and cook, stirring frequently, until shrimp are just done (white throughout but tender and moist – about 1 1/2 minutes). Be careful not to overcook the shrimp. 
  • Serve immediately in a warm bowl.


Calories: 1184kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 98g | Saturated Fat: 59g | Cholesterol: 529mg | Sodium: 2660mg | Potassium: 296mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 2895IU | Vitamin C: 9.7mg | Calcium: 246mg | Iron: 5.2mg

This recipe is from the San Antonio Express-News.

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of's Dining Out in the Home, and's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Laura

    I have not tried this version of BBQ shrimp, but Ruth Chris has the actual recipe on their website and it differs in the amount of ingredients used. Just an FYI in case you want to give theirs a try and see how it differs in taste.

    • Stephanie Manley

      Thank you for this. Can I just say, that in my experience restaurants will not post the actual recipe they use in the professional kitchen? They will post something similar, but not exactly the same. Years ago, Olive Garden used to post a recipe that had six egg yolks in it, Alfredo does not contain eggs. I’ll check out their recipe though! Thank you.

  2. Mholliday8986

    Was REALLY good and spot on flavor-wise. We ate at Ruth’s Chris’ on the fourth of July, so the flavor was very much still in my mind. BUT I thought my version of it wasn’t as creamy as the restaurant version. I even added 2 Tbs. of flour mixed with 1/4 c. of half and half. It helped a little but it still wasn’t the texture/thickness I was expecting. ALSO, I will add the onion before the shrimp next time and saute in the oil. I had several raw onion chunks.

    Also, they served it with garlic mashed potatoes… kind of a play on shrimp and grits as an entree. I used the tips on this site to help me make mine:

  3. Mke_02130

    Cooked this for a girls night in a few weeks ago, and have had it twice since. Even my kids love it. Have never heard of the restaurant, but if the rest ofthe food is as good as this, that’s probably a good thing!

    • Stephanie Manley

      This is an expensive and very good steak house. Cooking my favorite restaurant recipes at home, especially when it comes to the really expensive ones!

  4. Jekcontracts

    OMG…sounds just like it! Although, there are a couple of ingredients that I would not have guessed would be included. Will be trying this so soon! Thanks…

4 from 2 votes

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