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Raise your hand if you ate too many cupcakes this past weekend.

Um….why am I the only one with my hand raised?

BBQ Shrimp Salad – quick, healthy and delicious to the rescue.

Have you tried BBQ Shrimp before? SO good and quick to make.

This isn’t a recipe so much as an assortment of stuff from the refrigerator. You can add and subtract ingredients depending on your tastes and also what looks good and fresh in your store. Just don’t skip the BBQ Shrimp or you’ll be sorry.

Here’s what you need:

Shrimp, Lettuce, Cucumber, Tomato, Marinated Artichoke Hearts (yum), Dressing, BBQ Sauce, Olive Oil, Salt & Pepper (not pictured) OR whatever looks good at your store….avocado would be great. Blue cheese crumbles, yes please.

To make life easier for grilling, I’m using skewers for my shrimp. Soak them in water for a few minutes before you cook so that they don’t burn up on the grill.

You could also use one of those handy little grill baskets if you have one. If you don’t have a grill or if your grill is snowed in, you can also roast/bake the shrimp on a foil lined sheet pan in a 400 degree oven.

I have about 1 pound of extra large shrimp which I have peeled and de-veined. Poke the shrimp onto the skewers so that they will lie flat on the grill. I like to go through both ends of the shrimp to be sure that they are securely on the skewer.

Season the shrimp skewers with a little olive oil, salt and pepper.

Don’t forget to oil and season both sides.

Since the shrimp will cook very quickly, it’s a good idea to get everything else for the salad ready.

Grab whatever veggies you have on hand and chop them up. I had a cucumber and a tomato but bell peppers, avocados, or celery would also be good.

I also have a little jar of marinated artichoke hearts. Someone needs to monitor me at all times around marinated artichoke hearts or I’m likely to eat an entire jar before the salads are made.

It’s really become weirdly confessional in here today, hasn’t it?

Pre-heat your grill or oven and then put the shrimp skewers on when the grill is good and hot.

Depending on the heat of your grill, these will cook VERY quickly — only 2 or 3 minutes needed per side. You know they are ready when they turn pink and the edges begin to curl up. Flip them over and cook the other side.

Grab some of your favorite BBQ sauce and give the cooked shrimp a light coating of sauce. I want to be able to taste the flavor of the shrimp so I only use a very thin layer of sauce.

When both sides have cooked and been sauced up, rescue your shrimp from the grill. Be sure not to overcook the shrimp. Only a few minutes are needed so that they stay plump and juicy.

If you haven’t been eating cupcakes all weekend, you might also consider cooking the shrimp wrapped in a little slice of bacon. SO good….but it does take some of the healthfulness out of the salad when you start adding pork products.

Meanwhile, wash and dry your greens and toss them in a big bowl with the dressing of your choice.

Normally I don’t buy the lettuce in a bag but you could definitely tell that it was a Monday after a long holiday weekend at my store. The regular heads of lettuce looked sad, wilted and pathetic. I like to use a combination of greens — romaine, baby lettuce, spinach, red lettuce, etc.

I’m also using this great dressing

It’s all natural and also very tangy….not weirdly sweet like most poppy seed dressing. In fact, I hated poppy seed dressing until I tried this kind. Ranch or blue cheese would also be great with the BBQ Shrimp.

Load up your plates with salad greens and veggies and then top with your delicious shrimp. You can leave them on the skewers or just pile them up in the middle.

If you’ve resolved to eat healthier in this new year, try a big, fresh BBQ Shrimp Salad!

Oh, these shrimp are also GREAT on flatbread pizza and in quesadillas.

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