Shrimp Tacos with Cilantro Sauce

These quick and easy shrimp tacos are a fast dinner recipe for weeknights or entertaining, and taste stunning drizzled in a creamy cilantro sauce!

Shrimp tacos with cilantro sauce

Is there anything better than shrimp tacos? And it’s not just the flavor: to me it’s their vibe: carefree and celebratory. They bring back memories of a trip to Mexico with Alex and my family years ago. Combine shrimp tacos with chips, salsa, and frozen margaritas and we can’t think of much better. (Except please also add bean dip. Please and thank you!) What I love about this easy shrimp tacos recipe is that it’s both fast dinner recipe for weeknights and entertaining: making it a double whammy. Keep reading for this delicious shrimp tacos recipe!

Related: If you’re looking to fire up the grill, try our Grilled Shrimp Tacos!

How to make shrimp tacos

How to make shrimp tacos

Of course, there’s a myriad of ways to make shrimp tacos! For this recipe, we were looking the quickest way to make the most delicious easy shrimp tacos recipe out there. So basically, this recipe is a triple threat: simple, delicious, and healthy too!

Because time is of the essence, the cooking method here is to saute the shrimp on the stove with minced garlic and a few spices. It takes only 2 to 4 minutes to cook! This method of how to cook shrimp is very customizable and works outside of tacos too. Thought the flavors are Mexican-style, they’re not so distinctive they wouldn’t work for serving with rice or couscous, or over a salad.

Another way this shrimp tacos recipe saves time: the taco sauce takes only 5 minutes and doesn’t even dirty a blender! To make it even speedier, we’ve cut out the traditional coleslaw, which can involve lots of chopping and mixing. Instead, thinly slice some cabbage and red onion, and then just spritz it with a lime wedge when serving. It’s a shortcut we use again and again in tacos!

This all results in one seriously delicious shrimp tacos recipe. The shrimp is juicy and savory, spiced with Old Bay and cumin, the cabbage is crunchy and limey. And the creamy cilantro sauce, almost like a ranch dressing with chopped cilantro, brings it all together. Honestly, I might want to change my answer to the question “What’s the last meal you want to eat” to this recipe…!

Related: 10 Best Vegetarian and Vegan Tacos

Shrimp taco sauce

How to char tortillas

One more taco trick for these easy shrimp tacos! Charring your tortillas warms them and adds a delicious charred flavor. You can do this if you have a gas range. Place a tortilla on the grates above an open gas flame on medium heat for a few seconds per side, flipping with tongs, until they are slightly blackened and warm. (If you don’t have a gas stove, here are a few other ways to warm your tortillas.)

Shrimp in pan

How to buy sustainable shrimp

Finally, a little note on how to buy sustainable shrimp. Alex and I try to buy sustainable seafood where possible. In researching how to buy sustainable seafood, Alex and I have learned to look for wild-caught fish if possible. Also if you live in the US, look for US caught if you can. 90% of the seafood we eat in the US is imported. Imported seafood runs the risk of being overfished, caught under unfair labor practices, or farmed in environmentally harmful ways.

Also, how your fish is caught matters. Look for hook and line as one example of a sustainable gear type. Bottom trawling is considered the most destructive and least sustainable method.

Easy shrimp tacos recipe

And that’s it: how to make shrimp tacos!

This recipe was a huge hit in our house (especially with our 2 year old!) Dress it up with frozen margaritas and it’s simply sublime. Let us know what you think in the comments below!

Looking for more healthy seafood recipes?

Outside of these shrimp tacos, here are a few more healthy seafood recipes:

Shrimp tacos recipe

This shrimp tacos recipe is…

Gluten-free, dairy-free, and pescatarian.



These quick and easy shrimp tacos are a fast dinner recipe for weeknights or entertaining, and taste stunning drizzled in a creamy cilantro sauce!



  • 1 recipe Creamy Shrimp Taco Sauce
  • 2 cups thinly sliced green cabbage
  • 1/4 small red onion
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 pound large shrimp, thawed and deveined (peeled or unpeeled)
  • 1 tablespoon Old Bay
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges, divided
  • 8 tortillas
  • Cilantro, for garnish


  1. Make the Creamy Shrimp Taco Sauce.
  2. Thinly slice the green cabbage. Thinly slice the red onion and place it in a bowl with cold water (this removes a bit of the strong onion flavor); drain before serving.
  3. Mince the garlic. Pat the shrimp dry. In a medium bowl, mix the shrimp with the Old Bay seasoning, cumin, salt, and garlic.
  4. In a large skillet, heat the butter on medium high heat. Cook the shrimp for 1 to 2 minutes per side until opaque and cooked through, turning them with tongs. Spritz with juice of the two lime wedges.
  5. If desired, char the tortillas by placing them on an open gas flame on medium for a few seconds per side, flipping with tongs, until they are slightly blackened and warm.
  6. To serve, place the cabbage and red onion in a tortilla, then top with shrimp. Squeeze with the juice of 2 lime wedges, then top with the taco sauce. Serve immediately.

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Mexican

Keywords: Shrimp Tacos, Easy shrimp tacos recipe, How to make shrimp tacos