In Sonima’s “Recipe by Request” column our friends at the Natural Gourmet Institute in New York City develop healthy meal ideas exclusively for readers. The cajun shrimp dish here was created for Kristin Robinson in Ontario, Canada. She wrote, ” I would like a gluten-free casein-free recipe that even the pickiest eater will eat. Both my son and I need to be on a GFCF diet, and honestly my husband was told he needed to also but he refuses because he says the food just doesn’t taste the same. He works manual labor and wants a wholesome meal at the end of the day and its just not cutting it for him! Please help!”

The chefs at the Natural Gourmet Institute recommend meals that incorporate fresh vegetables, lean protein, and plenty of bold flavors so you don’t miss the foods your diet doesn’t allow. In this recipe, a variety of spices finished with a mojito sauce provide a flavor kick, while eggplant and zucchini add hearty texture, micronutrients, and fiber to the wholesome gluten-free millet base. The instructions below recommend a grill pan but during the summer months you may prefer to fire up the barbecue and cook the shrimp and vegetables outside. You can modify the recipe to include more or less seasoning to fit the needs of picky eaters.

Prepare this dish at home and share your photos of the results on Twitter or Instagram @LiveSonima with the hashtag #RecipebyRequest. You can submit your own request here for a chance to receive a personalized recipe tailored to your favorite flavors and unique lifestyle and dietary needs.

Photo by: Hailey Wist; Styling by Laurie Knoop



Bowl Ingredients
  • 1 cup millet
  • 1 pound jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lime, zested and juiced separately
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided, plus more for grill
  • 2 zucchini, sliced lengthwise into 1/2-inch slices
  • 1 large eggplant, sliced lengthwise into 1/2-inch slices
Mojito Sauce
  • 1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
  • 2 sprigs cilantro
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon peppercorns
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1/3 cup canola oil


  1. In a medium saucepot, bring 2 cups of water to a boil with ½ teaspoon salt. Add millet, turn heat down to low, cover tightly with a lid, and cook until water is absorbed (about 15 minutes). Take off heat and let stand, covered, for 10 extra minutes. Fluff with a fork before serving.

  2. In a bowl, toss shrimp with garlic, lime juice, thyme, onion powder, paprika, salt and pepper, and 1 tablespoon oil; let stand for 10 minutes. Thread shrimp onto metal or soaked wooden skewers. Rub 1 tablespoon oil onto a grill pan and heat over a medium-high flame. Place skewers on grill. Cook until no longer translucent, 5-6 minutes, flipping once halfway.

  3. Toss zucchini and eggplant with remaining 1 tablespoon oil and salt and pepper. Grill until softened, 5-6 minutes, flipping once halfway. Transfer vegetable to a cutting board and slice on a diagonal into 1/3”-thick pieces.

  4. To make mojito sauce, mash together lime zest, garlic, cilantro, and salt and pepper in a mortar and pestle until finely ground. Stir in vinegar. While continually stirring, slowly stream in oil.

  5. To serve, place ½ cup of millet into a bowl and top with grilled vegetables and shrimp. Drizzle with a tablespoon of mojito sauce; serve with extra sauce, if desired.

Nutritional Information

Total Fat
Saturated Fat
Dietary Fiber

4 servings