How to make authentic Aguachile (aka Camarones en Aguachile), a flavorful Mexican appetizer, similar to ceviche, where shrimp is marinated in lime juice, but with the addition of chiles and cilantro. A simple and delicious appetizer that is low-carb and keto-friendly. Video. Love Seafood? Check out our 50+ Best Fish Recipes including this Amazing Ceviche Recipe!

Authentic Aguachile Recipe! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

Whatever is rejected from the self, appears in the world as an event. ~Carl Jung

Ever since we got back from Mexico, I have been chomping at the bit to share this delicious Aguachile Recipe with you!

One of my favorite things to eat in Mexico, along with ceviche, is Aguachile. Ceviche and Aguachile are similar in that both are fish or shrimp, “cooked”  in lime juice. But Aguachile takes it a step further by adding blended chiles and cilantro to the mix, giving it this vibrant green color and spicy deliciousness!

Aguachile literally means “chili water,” and this is what flavors the shrimp in this recipe. Spicy and full of flavor- I find this so incredibly addicting… and I can’t wait for you to try this!

Watch how to make Aquachile! | 60-sec video

 aquachile Instructions (step-by-step)

Authentic Aguachile Recipe! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

Step 1: Cut the shrimp in half, removing its tail and any veins. This makes for easier eating and faster marinating time. If using very small shrimp, you can butterfly them, leaving one side attached if you prefer, but I find just cutting them in half is easiest and fastest.

Here I’ve used frozen, raw, peeled shrimp – 21-25 per pound size, that I’ve thawed.

An authentic Mexican recipe for Aguachile with Shrimp! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is sliced in half, and cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

Step 2: Place in a shallow bowl or baking dish and squeeze with lime juice, enough to coat them well. Metal can react with the lime so use a glass or porcelain dish where shrimp have room to marinate in a single layer. Stir in a pinch of salt.

An authentic Mexican recipe for Aguachile with Shrimp! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is sliced in half, and cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

Let the shrimp marinate for 20 minutes, turning them over halfway through so each side gets in contact with the lime juice.

Authentic Aguachile Recipe! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

You will know the shrimp are “cooked” when they turn a soft pink hue. Notice the color difference from above.

Step 3: While the shrimp marinate, prep the red onions.

An authentic Mexican recipe for Aguachile with Shrimp! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is sliced in half, and cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

Thinly slice the red onions, or use a mandolin. I used a quarter of a red onion for this Aguachile Recipe. Generously salt, cover with water. Add a splash of white vinegar to brighten the color of the onion.

An authentic Mexican recipe for Aguachile with Shrimp! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is sliced in half, and cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

Step 4: Make the aguachile marinade. Blend fresh chilies ( jalapeño or serranos) with cilantro, garlic, lime juice and salt. Blend this until it is smooth and bright, vibrant green.

Authentic Aguachile Recipe! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

Step 5: Combine. By now the shrimp has cured (has turned pink). Leaving the lime juice in the shrimp, pour the Aguachile Marinade over the shrimp, stirring it in.

An authentic Mexican recipe for Aguachile with Shrimp! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is sliced in half, and cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

Authentic Aguachile Recipe! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

Scatter with the drained onions, stirring them in a bit too, saving some for the top.

An authentic Mexican recipe for Aguachile with Shrimp! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is sliced in half, and cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

Add cucumber and cilantro and refrigerate covered until ready to serve. Top with avocado right before serving- which adds a delicious creaminess to counterbalance the acid.

How to serve Aguachile

Aguachile is best served nice and cold, so refrigerate until serving.

Authentic Aguachile Recipe! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

Serve the Aguachile with avocado, tortilla chips or mini tostadas. Or if going grain-free, plantain chips work too!

Authentic Aguachile Recipe! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

To temper the heat of this Aguachile recipe  –  add fresh avocado slices- which I failed to take a picture of here, but you could add upon serving. Simple lay slices of avocado overtop.

Authentic Aguachile Recipe! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

I hope you love this Aguachile Recipe as much as we do- it is always a hit at a party!  Let us know what you think in the comments below!

Authentic Aguachile Recipe! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

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How to make authentic Mexican Aguachile! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. Flavorful, simple and sooooo delicious! #aguachile #shrimp #verde #ceviche #Mexican

Aguachile Recipe

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.9 from 41 reviews
  • Author: Sylvia Fountaine
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 45
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 6-8 1x
  • Category: Appetizer
  • Method: Marinated
  • Cuisine: Mexican
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Description

An authentic Aguachile Recipe with Shrimp! Similar to ceviche, shrimp is sliced in half, and cooked in a mixture of lime juice, chiles and cilantro. A flavorful, simple and delicious appetizer! Serve with cucumber, avocado and tortilla chips.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1 pound raw shrimp (peeled and deveined, tails removed) ( or sub scallops- see notes)
  • 12 large limes
  • generous pinch salt
  • ——
  • 1/4 of a red onion, very thinly sliced ( use a mandolin)
  • generous pinch salt
  • splash white vinegar ( optional, to brighten color)
  • water to cover

Aguachile Marinade:

  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice ( 2-3 limes) ( see notes)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 cup cilantro, packed (half of a large bunch) tender stems OK
  • 2 jalapeños, sliced in half lengthwise
  • 1 serrano chili, sliced in half lengthwise ( optional for extra spicy)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Optional garnishes:

  • 1 1/2 cups sliced Turkish or English cucumber
  • avocado slices
  • radish slices
  • drizzle olive oil
  • cilantro leaves
  • tortilla chips or mini tostadas

Instructions

Slice the shrimp in half (lengthwise) and remove any veins or tails.  Place in a shallow serving dish in one layer if possible. Squeeze with enough lime to cover the shrimp- which will cook the shrimp, turning them slightly pink. Sprinkle with a little salt. Turn shrimp over as needed to cook both sides in the lime juice – this will take about 20-30 minutes.

Thinly slice the red onion, place it in a bowl and season generously with salt. Pour just enough water to cover the onions. Optional: Add a splash of white vinegar to enhance and bring out the red color of the onion.

Make the Aguachile Marinade: Place the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth, for a full minute, scraping down sides as necessary. If you have excess lime juice marinating the shrimp you can use some of this in the blender to make your ½ cup.

Pour the aguachile marinade over the shrimp and toss to coat. Drain the onions and scatter them over top, mixing them in slightly. Add cucumber or radishes if you like. Refrigerate 30 minutes or up to 4 hours. This is best served cold!

When ready to serve, taste ( I like to taste on a tortilla chip) adjusting the salt. Add avocado slices to the top, scatter with fresh cilantro and an optional drizzle of olive oil.

Serve with tortilla chips or mini tostadas on the side.

Enjoy one of my favorite Mexican dishes!!!


Notes

Feel free to sub thinly sliced raw scallops for the shrimp! ( ¼ inch-⅓ inch thick)

TIP: Limes have different acidity levels. I always try to pick limes that are ripe ( less acidic) and slightly soft to the touch. Or I let them ripen for a few days on the counter before using. Before using roll them on the counter pressing down hard with your palm to get them even more juicy!

If raw shrimp makes you squeamish, feel free to try this with cooked frozen shrimp (thawed). It is not “real”authentic Aguachile -but it will give you an idea of the flavor and perhaps embolden you, the next time to use raw shrimp. 😉  Cut them in half the same way, as they are easier to eat and pile on a chip.

The acid in the lime truly cooks the shrimp and you can witness this,  with the color change.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: With 1 avocado ( ½ cup serving)
  • Calories: 95
  • Sugar: 1.8 g
  • Sodium: 360.8 mg
  • Fat: 3.2 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0.6 g
  • Carbohydrates: 5.5 g
  • Fiber: 2.1 g
  • Protein: 12.4 g
  • Cholesterol: 91.2 mg

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Comments

  1. BEST RECIPE!! EASY RECIPE!! My bf and I are obsessed. Sometimes I make it as a snack. Sometimes it’s lunch. Sometimes it’s an app.






  2. This is a FABULOUS version of aguachiles! Great as is on chips for appetizers. For a spin as an entree, we used tostadas or tostones with a light mayonnaise spread on the tostada before loading on the aguachile and strained a little of the juice off. Was terrific!






  3. Never made an aguachile recipe before, but love ceviche. I’ve made this twice in two weeks! The sauce is incredible- i find myself dipping whatever’s around into the dish, even after the shrimp are gone. Delicious and simple!






  4. Made this on a beach vacation with fresh, raw shrimp. It was very good. Served with tortilla chips and avocado garnish. A bit acidic, so might try the advice of letting the limes sit for a bit before use. It was a super crowd pleaser—we ate it with pina coladas and the sweet of the colada was a nice complement to the acid. Making again today with frozen, raw shrimp! Thanks!






  5. I’m looking forward to making this, but I’m wondering if I can make it the night before. Is there any reason why that would be bad? Obviously I’d add the fresh garnishes the day of.






    1. Letting the shrimp – or any raw seafood – sit in lime or lemon juice overnight will “overcook” it making it tough and chewy and tend to make it bitter as well.

    2. I made it the night before, and while not as good as same day (as mentioned shrimp get tougher) was still delicious.






  6. Lovely! Thank you for sharing. May I make a suggestion? I live in Mexico and my friend here for 14 years, is Mexican and he make ceviche and all the fish and shrimp dishes. I will ask him to make this for us. What he does is one more step, after the shrimp or fish is finished “cooking”, empty the lime juice and squeeze the juice from the shrimp (he uses a colander) then add fresh lime juice. The squeezed out juice is “used” and the taste with the fresh juice is very different. mmmm I’m hungry, let’s eat!

  7. Amazing!!! I added extra garlic, one more Serrano and a couple drops of olive oil. So good next time I will add some radish garnish






  8. I followed this beautiful recipe, swapping in cubed salmon for the shrimp for more of a fish ceviche and it was FABULOUS! I’m always on the hunt for “no-cook” recipes to make on hot summer days and this fits the bill. It also satisfies on many levels of flavor and texture, using healthy ingredients. That’s my favorite approach to cooking. I’ve been following Feasting At Home for years and have had many delicious meals to show for it. Thank you, Sylvia!






  9. Is 11g of net carbs per half cup serving really Keto Friendly though? Not for me, at least.. that would be the majority of my carb allowance for the day leaving me wanting heavily on the caloric side.

  10. This was incredible, the flavors are perfectly balanced, and my husband could not stop eating it! And it was very rewarding to learn how to “cook” shrimp in lime juice! I found the shrimp prep took me longer than expected, but it was well worth it. We ate it with toasted ciabatta bread, and that turned out very well. I can’t wait to share this dish with my husband’s family!






  11. My family enjoyed this recipe. We cut the shrimp up to pieces so we could scoop it with a chip as an appetizer. I’m already thinking of making this with fish and adding mango to it. Thank you!






  12. I have not tried this yet. I was talking with a friend yesterday, she is making a family recipe for the holidays! Said she would bring a copy of it, so excited to compare the two and try them. I love ceviche so I know I will love this!

  13. I’ve been making this recipe for about 2 months a few times. Tastes very authentic. Only thing I do different is I use literally like 20 limes to completely cover the shrimp in a bowl and make it super juicy (dont know how you can get by with only 2). I also add a tablespoon of sugar to cut down the bitterness of the limes. And add a little black pepper to the marinade. Thank you for this!






  14. Just finished making this and it is delicious! My father-in-law whose Mexican said it takes really good like tradition Aquachiles! Thanks for sharing






  15. Loved it! I diced all the topings and mixed them with the shrimp! Also cooked the shrimp before placing them in lime.






  16. Can’t wait to try this! Love the scale. I’m terrible at doubling or worse tripling recipes. Great feature! Thank you.






      1. Hi…. so do you drain the lime juice from the shrimp before adding the blended sauce? Thank you! Can’t wait to make some.

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