Bobby’s Lighter Crab-stuffed Shrimp

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By Bobby Deen

966 Fewer Calories
96 g Less Fat


Crab Filling
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 green bell pepper, finely chopped
3 scallions, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup fat-free cracker crumbs (about 10 crackers)
3 tablespoons fat-free mayonnaise
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 egg white, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
4 drops hot pepper sauce
4 ounces crabmeat, picked over
1 dozen extra-large shrimp, peeled, deveined, tails on
6 slices turkey bacon, each cut lengthwise in half
Steamed brown rice, for serving, optional

Lighter Basil Cream Sauce
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 small onion, minced
1/4 cup dry white wine
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1 cup low-fat (1%) milk
2 tablespoons prepared pesto


Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray a large shallow baking dish with nonstick spray.

To make the filling, heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the bell pepper, scallions, and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Add the cracker crumbs, mayonnaise, zest, juice, egg, mustard, parsley, and hot sauce until blended. Gently fold in crabmeat.

Split the shrimp down the bottom center to tail, being careful not to cut through, open flat like a book, and press lightly to flatten. Remove vein and rinse gently under cold running water; pat dry. Stuff each shrimp with 1 tablespoon crabmeat mixture. Wrap bacon around the shrimp and secure with a toothpick. Place in baking pan and cook until bacon is crisp and shrimp are pink, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, to make the cream sauce, heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally until tender.  Add the wine; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally until most of the wine is evaporated, 2 – 3 minutes. Stir in the flour; cook 1 minute. Whisk in the milk; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sauce just begins to thicken, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat; stir in the pesto.

To serve, arrange 3 shrimp on each plate. Drizzle with Basil Cream sauce. Serve with rice, if using.

Yield:  4 servings
Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 20 min
Difficulty: Moderate

Test Kitchen Tip:
An easy way to peel shrimp is to use kitchen scissors and cut through the shell, leaving the tail intact, and peeling the shell away from both sides of the meat.

Per Serving: (3 stuffed shrimp with 1/4 cup sauce) 288 Cal (42% from Fat, 26% from Protein, 32% from Carb); 18 g Protein; 13 g Tot Fat; 3 g Sat Fat; 5 g Mono Fat; 22 g Carb; 2 g Fiber; 6 g Sugar; 160 mg Calcium; 3 mg Iron; 827 mg Sodium; 64 mg Cholesterol

Original recipe courtesy Paula Deen:  The Lady and Sons Crab-stuffed Shrimp
Lightened Up recipe courtesy of Bobby Deen and the Paula Deen Test Kitchen

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Reader Comments:

I just wanted to say thank you! This such a wonderful idea! I loooooove Paula Deen’s recipes but have started healthier eating habits and this is the perfect way to stick with my new lifestyle and enjoy my old southern ways! Thank you Bobby!

By Krystal Johnson on September 01, 2010

Wow these shrimp look unbelievably good!! And the basil cream sauce, oh my! Can’t wait to try this recipe

By Sinful Southern Sweets on June 02, 2010

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Paula, I love watching you and your family. I miss seeing your show, I watched you everyday. My son lives in Charleston S.C. He took me to the Lady & Sons to eat. Oh my goodness! People are always telling me that I look just like the cooking lady Paula Deen. I always tell them that you are my hero. May God Bless You Mary Ann
Mary Ann Tharp in A Summer of Burgers on August 15, 2014 at 10:48 pm

Add a few spoonfuls of parmesan cheese to the flour and cornmeal breading and it kicks the tomatoes up another notch. Bev
in Crispy Fried Green Tomatoes on August 15, 2014 at 10:33 am

I just bought Paula's Peach Salad Dressing and wondered if anyone has a good recipe that they use it in?
Melissa in Taste Testing 101 on August 13, 2014 at 8:36 am

Congrats Bobby. Loved the family picture miss you Paula on TV will be watching online. Jack is getting big. Looks like his mom but Matt aka moose has your face. Your eyes cheeks hair even falls to his face like yours except to the left. Good luck on your next venture. You give us other 60+ yr women strength to move on. Keep up the good work.
Carol Bryant in Love at Last on August 11, 2014 at 6:12 pm