Spicy Grilled Shrimp Skewers

Grilling intimidates me. Compared to other types of cooking, you don’t have nearly as much control over the heat, especially if you’re grilling over a campfire. Usually, I do my best to leave the grilling to someone else. Since we started Dirty Gourmet, however, I’ve been experimenting with grilling. You can’t have a camp cooking blog and be afraid to cook over a campfire!

On our trip to the Carrizo Plain, I decided I would probably be able to manage grilling shrimp—they’re small, so they cook quickly, and it’s easy to tell when they’re done. While Emily made Skillet Enchiladas, Mai-yan and I grilled spicy shrimp skewers on the campfire. I had brought along shrimp but what I hadn’t figured out was what I would flavor the shrimp with. I figured we would have enough ingredients around camp that I could just throw together to make a marinade, and I was right. Earlier in the day, Mai-yan had made her Chipotle Turkey Bacon Sandwiches, and there was half a can of chipotles left. We also had a bunch of limes from the lime tree in my backyard. Limes and chipotles seemed like the perfect match, so I combined them along with some olive oil for the marinade.

The result was delicious! The shrimp were smoky from both the chipotles and the fire, but nicely balanced by the lime. We ate the spicy grilled shrimp skewers while the enchiladas finished cooking. Since they’re skewered, you can eat them by themselves, right off the skewer. They would also be perfect in shrimp tacos.

If you’re intimidated by grilling, this is probably the best recipe I know to start with. It only takes a few ingredients, and the actual grilling part is done in a matter of minutes. Plus you’ll be warm by the campfire instead of chained to your camp stove.

Spicy Grilled Shrimp Skewers


4 servings

Prep Time / Cook Time


Activity Guide

Bike Touring, Car Camping


  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1-2 chipotles, minced
  • 1 pound uncooked medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • pinch of salt


  • Campfire or grill
  • Foil
  • Long tongs
  • Large bowl or zip top plastic bag
  • Skewers


  1. If you’ll be using a campfire, start it first.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a bowl or zip-top plastic bag. Marinate for about 30 minutes.
  3. Thread shrimp onto skewers.
  4. Place a grate over the coals in your campfire. If your grate doesn’t have legs, rest it on some rocks. Cook the shrimp directly on the grate (or barbeque), turning once with tongs, for 2-3 minutes per side, or until they turn pink and opaque. If you don’t plan on eating the shrimp right away, wrap them in foil to help keep them warm. Enjoy!

5 thoughts on “Spicy Grilled Shrimp Skewers

  1. I have always been afraid to grille too… and I have been camping for 30 years. This is nicely written, and it makes me feel inspired to grille something this weekend in Joshua Tree. Keep the yummies coming.

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