Spicy Shrimp Tacos Recipe

5 from 2 votes
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Spicy shrimp tacos are a great way to change up your typical fish taco. While we also make blackened fish tacos with cod or even blackened salmon tacos, shrimp offers a nice change of pace that’s very easy to cook. Shrimp cook in a matter of minutes, making this a delicious and low-effort meal that’s ready in 20 minutes or less.

Spicy Shrimp Tacos Recipe

The secret to this recipe is in the shrimp seasoning. Dry-rubbed shrimp, blackened in a medley of spices until golden. The paprika, chili powder, cayenne, and garlic give these shrimp tacos a nice smokey and mildly spicy punch.

My shrimp tacos are wrapped in toasted corn tortillas along with shredded cabbage, fresh cilantro, and homemade avocado salsa—it’s an incredibly delicious and fresh-tasting dish.

If you enjoyed this recipe, try my carne asada tacos, skillet flank steak fajitas, and my easy chicken birria tacos next! All of these tacos pair deliciously with a side of my cilantro lime rice.

Seasoned shrimp for shrimp tacos

Toasting the Corn Tortillas

My favorite way to eat tacos or fajitas is with toasted corn tortillas. If you have a gas range, place the tortillas directly on the grates and fire up the burner. Cook on medium-low heat for about 15 seconds per side, flipping with a metal spatula. You can also accomplish this right on the grill.

The edges of the tortilla will start to char and crisp and the center will be soft, warm, and pliable. If you’ve run into ripping or tearing corn tortillas, this will remedy the problem and make them much more sturdy and flavorful. This can also be done with flour tortillas.

Salsa de Aguacate  (Avocado Salsa)

Salsa de aguacate literally translates to avocado salsa. It’s nearly identical to guacamole in terms of ingredients but blended into a spicier creamier sauce instead of mashed into guac.

I make salsa de aguacate in a food processor or blender and pulse until smooth. Add additional water by the tablespoon if the sauce is too thick. If you don’t have a blender, a NutriBullet or Ninja Single Serve blender works like a charm (this is what I use 99% of the time).

Spicy Shrimp Tacos Recipe

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5 from 2 votes

Spicy Shrimp Tacos Recipe

Servings: 10 tacos
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Dry-rubbed shrimp blackened in a medley of spices served with toasted corn tortillas, shredded cabbage, fresh cilantro, and avocado salsa.

Ingredients 

  • 1 pound large shrimp, raw, peeled, deveined, and tails removed (I used size 31/40)
  • 1 package 6-inch corn tortillas
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Finely shredded white or cabbage, cole slaw mix works well
  • Fresh chopped cilantro, for topping
  • 1-2 limes, cut into small wedges

Shrimp Seasoning

  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Salt, to taste

Avocado salsa (salsa aguacate)

  • 1 avocado, peeled, seed removed
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/3 cup cilantro, leaves removed from stem
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 lime, juice squeezed
  • 3 –4 jalapeno slices, seeds removed (optional)
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions 

For the avocado salsa

  • combine all ingredients in a blender. Pulse until smooth and creamy. Add additional tablespoons of water if too thick. You want the salsa to be thin enough to slowly drizzle off a spoon. Consistency should be similar to creamy ranch dressing.

For the shrimp tacos

  • Prepare all your shrimp taco toppings and set aside. Mix the dry rub ingredients together in a small bowl. Mix and set aside.
  • Remove the tails from the shrimp and pat dry with a paper towel. Season all over liberally with salt. Add the dry rub and toss until the shrimp are fully coated. They should be heavily seasoned.
  • Heat oil over medium-high heat in a cast iron skillet or pan. Once warm, add the shrimp and cook for 1-2 minutes per side, or until golden brown and no longer transparent. If using larger or jumbo shrimp they may take a little longer.
  • Serve tacos with warm/toasted tortillas. Fill with a small handful of cabbage, 3-4 shrimp, chopped cilantro, and a nice drizzle of avocado salsa. Squeeze a lime wedge over each taco before eating. See note below on toasting corn tortillas.

Notes

My favorite way to eat tacos or fajitas is with toasted corn tortillas. If you have a gas range, place the tortillas directly on the grates and fire up the burner. Cook on medium-low heat for about 15 seconds per side, flipping with a metal spatula. The edges of the tortilla will start to char and crisp and the center will be soft, warm, and pliable with irresistible flavor. If you’ve run into ripping or tearing corn tortillas, this will remedy this problem and make them much more sturdy. This can also be done with flour tortillas.
The recipe calls for raw shrimp because using precooked shrimp tends to dry them out if heated.

Nutrition

Calories: 588kcalCarbohydrates: 26.5gProtein: 53.5gFat: 32.7gSaturated Fat: 10.1gCholesterol: 469mgSodium: 580mgFiber: 9.9gSugar: 2.1g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Dinner/Lunch
Cuisine: Mexican
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About Shawn Williams

My name is Shawn, author behind Kitchen Swagger. I'm a food & drink enthusiast bringing you my own simple and delicious restaurant-inspired recipes.

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