Learn how to make this light and refreshing Shrimp ceviche recipe that is tossed with fresh pineapple, peppers, lime juice and cilantro for the perfect summer appetizer. Throwing a bunch of parties? Check out my other appetizer recipes for Grilled Oysters with Beer Butter or Shrimp Spring Rolls with Peanut Butter Dipping Sauce!
Since the weather is finally starting to turn, I always get excited about eating things like tacos, ice cream, and shrimp ceviche. It’s the perfect appetizer, or main meal if you want it to be when it’s hot outside. It also serves a lot of people, just like my Shrimp and Clam Boil.
Ceviche is made and served at restaurants across America and if you’ve never taken a stab at making it, I’m going to show you how to do it right from your home so you can serve this delicious shrimp ceviche appetizer to your guests. If you are going be making this often, I suggest purchasing a lemon or lime squeezer.
What Is It
Ceviche, sometimes called cebiche, is a seafood dish where fresh citrus acid such as lemon or lime juice cures the raw fish or shellfish so that it is edible. It’s important to not use old seafood when making ceviche so that you weed out the possibility of getting sick.
The process of the citrus cooking the fish is called denaturation which changes the protein in the fish altering its chemical composition, thus cooking it. I know, I get it, it’s weird and way past my pay grade because I dang near flunked chemistry class in college.
If you’re unsure of what curing means, think of things like cured ham, or cured meats where salt or some kind of acidy brine cooks the meat so you can eat it. While ceviche cooks much quicker, some prosciutto hams can be cured for up to 18 months or more. Popular seafood items to make into ceviche are shrimp, octopus, squid, tuna, snapper bass or halibut.
How to Make Ceviche
Making ceviche, no matter if you’re using shrimp or fish, is really quite a simple process.
1. Place medium diced fresh fish into a bowl and submerge it in freshly squeezed lemon and lime juice.
2. Cover with plastic and let sit in the refrigerator for 2 to 4 hours or until the seafood appears and feels cooked. You do not want to eat the fish raw so be patient.
3. Add in diced vegetables, spices and seasonings and serve.
Making shrimp ceviche is a little bit different than fish ceviche in that it takes just a bit longer to cure. Fish is a little more delicate than shrimp and can cure in about ½ the amount of time. If you decide you want a combination of shrimp and fish, be sure to cure it for the full time to ensure the shrimp is ready to eat and serve.
- Step 1: Devein and shell the shrimp, slice into ½” pieces and add to a bowl.
- Step 2: submerge the shrimp completely in a combination of fresh-squeezed lemon and lime juice.
- Step 3: Cover and cure in the refrigerator for 4 hours or until the shrimp is pink and firm.
- Step 4: Drain the liquid and add fresh-cut vegetables and fruit to the shrimp along with seasonings, spices, salt, pepper, and fresh-squeezed lemon and lime juice.
- Step 5: Garnish with small diced avocado, green onions and alongside some tortilla chips.
How to Serve It
You can simply eat it as is, but they go fantastic as a base for tacos, or as a dip using corn tortillas or fried plantains. Ceviche just screams summer and now you can bring the restaurant to your house and serve it up.
Recipe Chef Notes + Tips
There is an enzyme in pineapple called bromelain which breaks down protein. Essentially if in contact for too long the shrimp will turn to mush so be sure to eat this within 24 hours of serving it.
How to Store: It will hold in the refrigerator for up to 1 day covered in plastic. You cannot freeze this recipe.
More Amazing Appetizer Recipes
Here are some more great appetizer recipes to serve up to your guests:
- Buffalo Wings
- Smoked Salmon Dip
- Loaded Chicken Nachos
- Chips and Restaurant Style Salsa
- Easy Guacamole Recipe
- Beer Cheese Pretzel dip
Shrimp Ceviche Recipe
- 1 pound peeled deveined and medium diced shrimp
- juice 5 limes
- juice 2 lemons
- 1 cup small diced fresh pineapple
- 1 seeded small diced red bell pepper
- 1 seeded small diced jalapeño
- ½ peeled small diced red onion
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 tablespoons sliced green onions
- 1 peeled and seeded small diced avocado
- sea salt and pepper for garnish
- tortilla chips for serving
- Add the shrimp to a bowl and completely submerge in the juice of 4 limes and 1 lemon. Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours or until the shrimp are pink, firm and appear cooked.
- Drain the liquid in the bowl and add in the remaining juice of 1 lime and 1 lemon, pineapple, red pepper, jalapeño, onion, cilantro, salt and pepper, and mix until combined.
- Serve immediately with garnishes and chips.