Mexican Shrimp Ceviche

Tostadas are one of my favorite Mexican street foods and my favorite kind of tostada is with shrimp ceviche! It’s healthy, super refreshing, and really easy to make. 

There are many different ways to make ceviche, and it’s not just a Mexican thing! Many other countries make their own version of ceviche including Peru, Chile, Ecuador, Philippines, and I have even seen a Thai shrimp dish that reminds me very much of ceviche. 

Ceviche can also be made with other seafood such as white fish, octopus, scallops, clams, oysters, and even mushrooms for vegan ceviche.

This ceviche is a family recipe!

My Tio always brings a huge tub of this to our family functions and it does not last long. I am so thankful he is allowing me to share this delicious recipe!

In my family we just call this “ceviche” but I know there will be some people who want to call it aguachile. Neither are wrong, but there are subtle differences between the two in terms of ingredients and “cooking” methods. I would say it is somewhere in the middle, but keep in mind that aguachiles are a type of Mexican ceviche from Sinaloa. 

Ingredients:

  • Shrimp- you can use any kind of seafood you want, but shrimp is my favorite. Sometimes I make it with a 50/50 mix of shrimp and white fish. 

  • Lime & lemon juice- this is what gives ceviche such a refreshing, tangy flavor and also “cooks” the shrimp.

    Obviously we aren’t actually doing any cooking, but did you know that heat and citric acid are both agents of denaturation? Just like with heat, lime juice can break down the proteins in shrimp. It only take 15-20 minutes for this process and you’ll know it’s done when the shrimp is pink on the outs and white & opaque in the center.

  • Fresh veggies- cucumber, tomato, red onion, & cilantro

  • Avocado- The creaminess from the avocado works really well to balance out the sourness from the lime juice.

  • Peppers- traditionally it’s just chopped jalapeños added to ceviche, but I also like to blend up some Serrano with cilantro and lime juice for a bit more kick and better flavor- very similar to how aguachiles are made. In my opinion, this is not that spicy! I would rate it a 3/10 for spice. 

  • Tostada- ceviche goes really well on a tostada, or you can use tortilla chips. My family also likes to eat ceviche with Riz Crackers. I’m not sure if this is common or a just my family.

  • Seasoning- I’m using mostly Tajin to season the ceviche, but you will also need just a pinch of salt. If you don’t like your ceviche too tangy/sour, you can also add a bit of sugar to balance it out. 

  • Clamato (optional)- If you don’t want to use Tajin, the more traditional way is to use Clamato. It will add a touch of sweetness as well so you can skip the sugar is using Clamato. 

What’s different about our ceviche:

Tajin! My family LOVES Tajin and we put it on everything. I mean everything. So it wasn’t a huge surprise when I found out it was my Tio’s secret ingredient. I wish I had thought of it myself! 

Tajin is a popular Mexican condiment made with dried chili peppers, dehydrated lime, and sea salt. I personally love it most on fruits, but its uses are versatile and limitless.  

If you’re not too keen on using Tajin to season the ceviche, a more traditional option is to use a little Clamato. This will add a touch of sweetness to balance the sour lime, so you can skip the sugar if you decide to use Clamato.

Is the shrimp raw? Is it safe to eat?

I really wish I could give you a straight answer, but from my research it seems like the experts do not fully agree. 

My whole life I’ve been taught that lime juice “cooks” the shrimp or fish. Obviously we aren’t actually doing any cooking, but did you know that heat and citric acid are both agents of denaturation? Just like with heat, lime juice can break down the proteins in shrimp. After a few minutes, you can physically see the shrimp changing color and texture. It becomes opaque and firms up a bit. 

So to answer the question, it is not raw! But consume at your own risk if you are worried about safety. I always use the BEST quality of shrimp I can find, usually Tiger Shrimp from the seafood market (or white fish).

How to eat ceviche

My family likes to eat ceviche with either tostadas or Ritz crackers! I highly recommend trying it with Ritz crackers. I know it sounds weird but it’s really, really good. 

I also recommend adding avocado, but as a topping and not actually added to the ceviche. If you add avocado into the ceviche, it will start to get mushy and disintegrate over some time. But if you’re planning to eat all of it right away, you can add the avocado. 

It is also really common to top with some hot sauce and cocktail sauce! 

Mexican Shrimp Ceviche

Ingredients
  

  • 1 lb shrimp peeled & deveined
  • 1 cup lime juice about 10 limes
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 roma tomatoes
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 4 serrano peppers
  • 1 jalapeno
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 tbsp tajin or clamato
  • salt to taste
  • sugar to taste optional

Instructions
 

  • Prepare the tomatoes, red onion, cucumber, and jalapeno pepper. You need to remove the seeds fromt the jalapeno, tomatoes, and cucumber, then chop everything into small pieces. I removed the skin from the cucumber as well.
  • Squeeze the limes and lemon until you have about 1 cup of fresh juice. This usually takes about 10 limes and 1 lemon.
  • Roughly chop the cilantro and serrano peppers, then add them to a blender with a little juice, pinch of salt, and a pinch of sugar if you don't like it too sour. The sugar will balance it out. Pulse a few times- you still want to see some cilantro pieces intact.
  • Cut the shrimp into smaller pieces- whatever size you want.
  • Add the blended cilantro/serrano, the rest of the lime juice, cucumbers, and onion then mix well and make sure everything is submerged in the juice. Do not add the tomatos yet or the shrimp will take longer to "cook." Let this marinate in the fridge for 15-20 minutes.
  • After 15-20 minutes, the shrimp should be pink on the outside and white/opaque in the center. If it's still translucent, let it sit a bit longer.
  • Add the Tajin (or Clamato juice). If using Clamato, you may want to add bit more salt to taste.
  • Add the tomatoes. If you plan to eat everything right away, you can add some diced avocado as well. I do not recommend adding them at this point unless it will all be eaten right away, because it will get mushy. I usually top my ceviche with avocado slices at the end.
  • Mix well.
  • Serve right away with tostadas, tortilla chips, or ritz crackers. Top with avocado slices. Can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days, but the texture of the shrimp will change over time so try to eat it faster than that.
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This Post Has One Comment

  1. Gao

    5 stars
    Loved it so much!! My boyfriend LOVES ceviche and I wanted to try to make it for him. This recipe was a hit! He was confused with the ritz I got but after he had one bite – it was basically gone lol

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