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Nick’s Chipotle Grilled Shrimp with Black Bean Salsa

Chipotle Grilled Shrimp with Black Bean Salsa
(Dedicated to the memory of Nicholas Rhodes 7/3/26 – 3/21/12)

(Updated March 2012:  When I started my blog in 2005, one of the first people who shared a recipe with me was Nick Rhodes, the father of my good friend Mary.  Nick passed away suddenly this week at the age of 85.  Nick was still active and very involved in life, and he will be greatly missed.)

When my friend Mary told me her Dad was going to send me a recipe for the blog, I was sure it would be good. After all, Nick was a great cook; I had tasted his Pastitsio at Christmas, and it was fabulous. When Nick sent me this recipe for Chipotle Grilled Shrimp with Black Bean Salsa, I couldn’t wait to try it, and I wasn’t disappointed. Nick told me he originally tasted this at the El Dorado Hotel in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and after a few tries at home he came up with this recipe.

Now the recipe has been on the blog for years, and it’s been overdue for a better photo than the ones I took with my first point-and-shoot camera. Through the years, I’ve made two changes in how I make this compared to the recipe Nick gave me: I use ground Chipotle powder instead of a chipotle chile, and leave out the white beans in the salsa. Those changes are noted in the recipe (along with Nick’s version, so if someone has the recipe bookmarked they can tell what the original recipe was.)

Combine marinade ingredients and marinate shrimp in the refrigerator (but not more than an hour or two, or the acid ingredients in the marinade will start to “cook” the shrimp.)

Try not to skip the tomatillos in the salsa if you can get your hands on some. I was very happy that I had tomatillos in my garden, and used them to make the salsa you see in the photo.

Nick’s Chipotle Grilled Shrimp with Black Bean Salsa
(Makes 4 servings with some salsa left over)

16-20 medium raw shrimp, shells removed and deveined (enough shrimp for 4 people, I used 31-40 size shrimp)
1/4 tsp. ground chipotle chile powder (Nick used 1 canned Chipotle pepper, seeds removed and diced small)
1 clove garlic, minced (1/2 tsp. minced garlic)
hot pepper flakes to taste
2 T lemon juice
2 T olive oil
dash cayenne pepper (optional – I leave it out)
salt/pepper to taste


Put shrimp in small ziploc bag. Mix marinade ingredients and pour over. Marinate shrimp in refrigerator 1-2 hours.

To cook, preheat gas or charcoal grill to high. (I spray the grill with non-stick spray) Thread shrimp on skewers. (Pinch shrimp together and put the skewer through in two places so they don’t “spin” on the grill.) Grill until firm to the touch and completely opaque. (This only takes about 3-4 minutes, don’t overcook.) Serve shrimp with black bean salsa.

Black Bean Salsa

1 can (15 oz.) black beans, rinsed well
(Nick also used 1 can white beans. I leave out the white beans but use the same amount of other ingredients.)
2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped in 1/4 inch dice (2/3 cup diced tomato)
1/2 cup white onion, chopped in 1/4 inch dice
1/4 cup green pepper, chopped in 1/4 inch dice
1/4 cup red pepper, chopped in 1/4 inch dice
(You can also use 1/2 cup same color peppers)
1 clove garlic, minced (1/2 tsp. minced garlic)
1 can Mexican tomatillos, drained and chopped in 1/4 inch dice
(I used three small fresh tomatillos, can also use green tomatoes)
1/4 tsp. ground Chipotle chile powder (Nick used 1 canned Chipotle pepper, seeds removed and diced small)
chopped cilantro with stems, to taste
(I used the whole bunch, but I love cilantro)
1/4 tsp. hot pepper flakes
3 T olive oil
3 T red wine vinegar
salt/pepper to taste

Drain black beans into a colander and rinse until no more foam appears. Let beans drain while you chop other ingredients. (I blot them dry with a paper towel if they seem very wet.)

Chop tomatoes, onions, peppers, and tomatillos, aiming for same size cut. Put into bowl and add other ingredients and stir a few times to combine. Chill 1 hour before serving. Serve salsa with Chipotle grilled shrimp.

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South Beach Suggestions:
Everything in this dish is perfect for any phase of the South Beach Diet, or any other low-glycemic eating plan. Serve with something like Spicy Mexican Slaw with Lime and Cilantro for phase one. For phase two or three, you could switch the coleslaw for Roasted Butternut Squash with Lime and Rosemary.

More Grilled Shrimp to Try:
Soy-Grilled Shrimp and Asian Vegetables from Kalyn’s Kitchen

Moroccan Grilled Shrimp and Vegetable Skewers from Steamy Kitchen

Marinated Grilled Shrimp from Good Eats ‘n Sweet Treats

Grilled Shrimp and Asparagus on Polenta from Iron Stef

Shrimp and Mango Kebabs from Cooking with Amy

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24 comments on “Nick’s Chipotle Grilled Shrimp with Black Bean Salsa”

  1. This looks completely yummy. A great variation would to make shrimp tacos with low carb tortillas and use some of the salsa on it.

  2. To lower the carb count in the salsa, how about using only one type of beans and then use the Black Soy Beans for the black beans. They have a lot less carbs and less starch. Not too easy to find in the stores though. I usually find them in health food stores or supermarkets that have a health food section. They are canned by folks at Westbrae and also Health Valley.

    This looks really good. I love shrimp.

    Congrats on your losing 41 lb. That is terrific. I found that eating low glycemic made me lose weight very quickly. Now I Somersize and love it. I can eat so much and still lose weight. It is lower in glycemic index and yet you can still have carbs – just complex carbs.


  3. This recipe was originally posted in October 2005, and the two comments above are from the original post.

  4. I love this salsa. I am a very big fan of black beans. Unfortunatelly i have not yet been able to find tomatillo around there. will keep looking.The shrimps are such a great accompaniment to this lovely salsa – well, they play quite a major role really.; o )

  5. This looks so good. I love chipolte. And hubby is a shrimp addict.
    I think we will see a rise in popularity of black beans as they are considered a “super food”. Lots of nutrients packed in there, like blueberries.
    I wish we got tomatillos here in Southern Ontario. I long to try them. I didn’t know they came in cans though, maybe there is hope.

  6. Valentina and Natashya, the tomatillos come in 14.5 oz. cans and larger sizes here, similar to canned tomatoes. In the U.S. they will be often placed near the Mexican foods though, not by the canned vegetables. Good luck finding them; the flavor is really unique but unripe tomatoes is a pretty good substitute.

  7. I like this idea of making a salsa with black beans — it makes it a real side dish and not just a salsa/topping. the tomatillos look like a wonderful touch, too — it’s such a unique ingredient.

  8. This looks like a killer recipe. I love chipotle and shrimp. Thanks for reposting it.

  9. Chipolte is a great seasoning – that black bean salsa looks like it could even make a meal on its own!

  10. Love tat type of foods.Luscious salsa.

  11. glad you updated this so I could discover it 🙂

  12. YUM!! All of my favorite flavors!

  13. They are looking mouth watering dear.

  14. You had me at “chipotle”. Can’t think of anything nicer than these shrimp!

  15. The Black Bean Salsa is DELICIOUS. Only two of us in my house and this never goes back into the refrigerator because there is never any left. Haven’t tried the shrimp yet but will the next time we purchase it. Thank you!

  16. Sending good thoughts to your friend Mary and her family during this time. The shrimp and salsa are such a lovely legacy.

  17. So sorry about the loss of Mary's father.
    These recipes sound wonderful. Thank you for reposting.

  18. Thanks Lydia and Debby. Nick was such a charming guy; I enjoyed many fun dinners with him along with Mary and Ken.

  19. What a nice recipe to remember Nick by.

  20. Thanks Tom; Nick really was a wonderful cook. I had just given him a bottle of Sherry Vinegar for his 85th birthday.

  21. This looks like a delicious recipe, and what a great way to remember someone.

  22. Thanks Deborah. I hope Nick would be pleased.

  23. I had this page bookmarked a while before but my notebook crashed. I have since gotten a new one and it took me a while to locate this! I also really like the template though.

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