This shrimp ceviche cocktail is my husband’s favorite! He doesn’t rave about recipes often, but this is one he loves so much he’ll drink the sauce when all the shrimp are gone. He’s got a thing for sauces!
Ceviche is a popular Latin American appetizer and is usually made with lime juice, onions, and peppers. This version has a tomato base, but it’s not like a shrimp cocktail.
This shrimp ceviche cocktail is based on a Mexican version that adds sliced tomato and ketchup to the mix of onions, peppers and lime juice. The contrast between the acid in the limes and the sweetness of the ketchup is fantastic. And then there’s the heat from the habanero peppers to push it over the top. Habanero peppers are a hot chili pepper used in Cuban cooking. You’ll want to get them when they are ripe (orange in color). If you can’t find habaneros, you can use jalapeños.
Use Cooked Shrimp For This Ceviche
Ceviche is usually raw fish that is cooked in lime juice. But shrimp ceviche is often cooked and then mixed with lime juice and other ingredients. My son worked in restaurants for many years, and while fish ceviche can be raw, they always cooked the shrimp before making the ceviche because it contains some harmful bacteria.
You only need to cook the shrimp for about 1-2 minutes, depending on size. Then dunk them in an ice bath to keep them from overcooking. It’s important not to overcook them, so your ceviche tastes fresh and light, with just enough bite without being rubbery. You can tell when they are done because they turn pink and start to curl into a C-shape.
For this recipe, I used 21-25 count shrimp and cooked them for 2 minutes. But you can use any size you like.
How To Prepare Shrimp Ceviche Cocktail
Preparing ceviche is super easy. You just chop everything, squeeze some limes and mix it all together. The trick to preparing this shrimp ceviche is to use a mandoline to thinly slice the red onions and tomato. While you can eat it right away, I like to let the ceviche sit overnight to soften the onion and meld the flavors.
I use large shrimp for this recipe because the sliced vegetables can be rather large compared to smaller shrimp. But it’s good with medium shrimp too. It really depends on your preference.
Also, it really helps to soak the red onions in a cold bath for a while to remove some of the bite. I start soaking the onions before I get started with peeling the shrimp or cutting the veggies. They also soften a bit more when you let the ceviche sit for a few hours or overnight.
Ceviche Stuffed Tostones Cups
I love to serve this citrusy ceviche in tostones cups. It’s one of my favorite ways to enjoy these little appetizer cups made from fried green tostones. The warm crunch of the tostones cups complements the spicy, limey ceviche for a terrific balance of flavors and textures. It also looks so crazy impressive when you serve it. You can follow this recipe to make the tostones cups from scratch. You may also find the tostones cups in the freezer section. Look for the Goya brand.
Other Great Ways to Serve Shrimp Ceviche
If you can’t make the tostones cups, you can serve this ceviche with plantain strips that you can easily find in your grocery store’s chip aisle. Tortilla cups are also another fun way to serve this ceviche.
But shrimp ceviche cocktail is tasty on its own and can be served in a cocktail glass with extra cilantro or in little tasting spoons. However, you decide to serve it, eat it with friends. They are so much tastier that way!Print
This Shrimp Ceviche Cocktail recipe is easy to make and is a great, refreshing appetizer for summer parties! I like to serve them with plantain chips or tostones cups, but they are also wonderful with tortilla cups.
2 pounds large shrimp
1 medium red onion
1 medium vine ripened tomato
2 habanero peppers
1 navel orange
1/4 cup ketchup
1 bunch cilantro
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Prepping the Shrimp: Peel and deveined the shrimp. Set a pot of salted water to boil.
Prepping the Onions: While the water boils, thinly slice the red onion using a mandoline . Then place the red onions in a ice-water bath to remove some of the bite. Set this aside.
Cooking: Get a bowl of water and ice ready for the cooked shrimp (you’ll need to get the cooked shrimp to cool immediately). Once the water on the stovetop is boiling, add the shrimp and cooke for 1-2 minutes. The shrimp should turn pink and curl into a C-shape. Immediately remove them from the water add to the iced water.
Prep the rest of the veggies: While the shrimp cools and the onions are soaking, cut the rest of the vegetables.
- Thinly slice the tomato using a mandolin (discard the ends).
- Remove the seeds and ribs from the habanero peppers and finely chop (be careful not to touch your eyes or mouth when handling the peppers).
- Chop the cilantro until you have about a 1/2 cup. You may want to add more or less to taste, and you’ll also want to add some fresh cilantro right before serving.
- Juice the limes and the orange, reserve the juice and discard of the fruit.
Mixing: In a large bowl, mix the ketchup, olive oil and lime and orange juices. Add the shrimp and the veggies. Mix and salt to taste.
Let it sit for 4 hours or overnight. Garnish with more cilantro before serving.
Serve with plantain chips, tortilla cups or stuff the shrimp in tostones cups.
If you can’t find habanero peppers, use jalapeño peppers. Also, if you don’t like a lot of heat, you can omit the peppers or add a small amount, to taste.
You can eat the shrimp ceviche cocktail right away, but it tastes better if you let it sit for a while. The onions and tomatoes also soften a bit more as it sits.
You really need a mandoline to get the thin slices that are best for this ceviche. I’ve tried to thinly cut the onions and tomatoes, but they were still too chunky and overpowered the shrimp.
Don’t skip soaking the onions in a cold bath, it really helps to remove some of the bite of the onion.
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