this recipe

Shrimp has long been a staple of Southern cuisine with classic dishes like Shrimp and Grits, Shrimp Creole and Seafood Gumbo. We've created a Kentucky spin on the diminutive crustacean by deglazing our pan with Maker's Mark® Bourbon. We then simmer the shrimp in the bourbon, along with cream and stock. Served on toasted French bread, this velvety shrimp dish works as an entrée or hearty appetizer. The smoky, mildly briny flavor is rounded out nicely by the notes of vanilla and caramel derived from the Maker's Mark® Bourbon.

Preparation Time

35 minutes

Cook Time

25 minutes

Total Time

1 hour


  • 1 lb. raw gulf or local-to-you shrimp

  • 4 cups water

  • 2 slices bacon, diced

  • 1 white onion, diced

  • 1 red bell pepper, diced

  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced

  • 3 oz. (2 shots)

    Maker's Mark® Bourbon

  • 3 oz. heavy cream

  • 6 oz. shrimp stock (see step 1)

  • French or Italian loaf of bread, toasted

  • Steamed rice (optional)

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The final recipe of cooked shrimp in a small skillet with a fork and lemon wedge.
  • Step 1

    Make shrimp stock

    Peel shrimp and save the shells. Return shrimp to fridge and add the shells to a saucepan with 4 cups of water. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and cook for 20 minutes. Strain stock from shells and reserve.
  • Step 2

    Cook bacon and onion

    In a heavy-bottom pan, combine bacon, red pepper, onion and garlic. Cook over low heat until bacon is cooked through and onion is softened.

  • Step 3

    Add ingredients and cook shrimp

    Carefully add Maker's Mark® Bourbon to deglaze, and then add your heavy cream and shrimp stock. Bring to a boil and add shrimp. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 2–3 minutes until shrimp is just cooked through. Remove from heat.

  • Step 4

    Serve, garnish and enjoy

    To serve, divide toasted bread and rice. Then, top with bourbon shrimp. Add fresh parsley for garnish if desired.

A bottle of Maker's Mark bourbon whisky behind a tall glass with a Bourbon Bloody Mary over ice and a pickle, celery, and lime garnish. A small bowl of lime slices is to the left.

Bourbon Shrimp

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Fire bad

Leave the flambé to the professionals and play it safe. When adding alcohol to a pan, be sure to turn off or remove your pan from the heat.

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Lighten up

For a lighter version of this dish, you can skip the cream and add more stock and a pat of butter. Serve over rice or pasta.

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Stock up

Freeze shrimp, lobster and other crustacean shells to make stock at a later date. Seafood stock is awesome in fish stews and seafood pasta dishes.

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Tips, Tools and Techniques 

Once you've mastered this dish, try experimenting with the techniques used here on other recipes. Deglazing is a method you'll use over and over again. With recipes that call for a wine, brandy or sherry deglaze, Maker's Mark® might make a nice enhancement. The caramel and vanilla flavors of your favorite bourbon add delicious nuance to savory and sweet dishes alike. Maker's Mark® works particularly well with ingredients like brown sugar, pecans, vanilla, chocolate, mint, apples, pears and peaches — and in meat dishes that use ham and pork. It's great in sauces, marinades, brines, glazes, cakes, pies, truffles and cookies.

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A photo of the classic Maker's Mark bourbon whisky bottle.