Tequila Lime Shrimp with Bell Pepper Salsa

After I had a very dark experience with tequila during my college years, it hasn’t really been my drink of choice. However, once you cook off the bitterness from the alcohol, even cheap tequila can add an oaky, rich and bright element to a dish. It’s no secret that lime and tequila go together like salt and pepper. So, I wanted to use them to season one of my favorite seafoods and create a delicious sauce.

I made this tequila lime shrimp with bell pepper salsa on Instagram a few months ago. However, now that it’s Cinco de Mayo, I had to bring it back and write it up. I originally served it over a cheesy polenta (which I highly recommend you do as well.) However, the shrimp and salsa really can go on any grain, vegetable or tortilla, so I figured that’s what I would focus this recipe on so that there’s not too much happening.

If you want to watch the entire demo from polenta to plating, head to my Instagram and go to the Tequila Shrimp Emoji highlight, where you can watch the entire thing.

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tequila lime shrimp with bell pepper salsa

Tequila Lime Shrimp with Bell Pepper Salsa

Bright, citrusy and flavorful tequila lime shrimp paired with a spicy and zesty bell pepper salsa. Serve on whatever you want, but either way, this tequila lime shrimp is bringing the party to your dish!
Course Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Mexican
Servings 2


  • Food processor


Bell Pepper Salsa

  • 1 bell pepper can use two for color, but you'll have leftovers
  • 1 jalapeño seeds removed or kept, depending on heat preference
  • 1 shallot can sub for 1/2 red onion
  • Juice of 1 1/2 lime
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • Cilantro to taste
  • Pinch of salt to taste

Tequila Lime Shrimp

  • 1 lb shrimp fresh or thawed
  • 1/4 cup tequila
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp salt or to taste
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Olive oil for pan (can sub another oil of your choice)


Bell Pepper Salsa

  • Add all of the salsa ingredients to a food processor and pulse until your desired consistency is reached. Adjust salt, lime and spice to your taste. Set the salsa aside.

Tequila Lime Shrimp

  • In a bowl, mix together the lime juice, tequila, 2 tbsp olive oil and salt until fully combined.
  • Lay the shrimp out on a paper towel and pat them dry. Lightly sprinkle both sides of the shrimp with salt.
  • Season a skillet with olive oil and heat on medium high until the oil is shimmering.
  • Place each shrimp into the skillet, making sure none of them overlap. If you can't fit all of the shrimp, follow all of the steps below with half of the shrimp, and then repeat the steps with the second half.
  • Sear the shrimp for about 1-2 minutes until the side on the pan is pink, crispy and golden brown. Then, flip the shrimp so the other side will cook. While the second side cooks, pour half of the tequila lime mixture into the pan and let it reduce as the shrimp cook. The sauce should thicken and the shrimp should be fully cooked within 2 minutes. Once the sauce is thickened and the shrimp are cooked, remove them from the heat. Repeat these steps with any other shrimp that is left. Set the cooked shrimp aside.
  • There will be a little more sauce left in the pan. Keep that in the pan and add the rest of the tequila lime mixture. Cook on medium high heat until the sauce reduces.
  • Plate the shrimp however you prefer and top with some more sauce. Serve with the salsa on the side or on top as a garnish. Serve immediately and enjoy!
Keyword bell pepper salsa, cinco de mayo, old bay shrimp tacos, tequila lime sauce, tequila lime shrimp, tequila shrimp

14 thoughts on “Tequila Lime Shrimp with Bell Pepper Salsa”

  1. 5 stars
    Love love this shrimp – I’ve been making it over the last few months fairly regularly. We use it for tacos – and that sauce is 👌🏻

  2. 5 stars
    This shrimp recipe is delicious! I made these shrimp and put it in tacos and it was the perfect flavor. The sauce is also great because you can totally play with the consistency to really jazz up any dish!

  3. 5 stars
    Tried this recipe today & it was so easy to make & tasted way better than I expected while cooking 😀 Thank you for your great recipe! Delicious!!

  4. 5 stars
    So I went ahead and made the tequila lime shrimp and they are AMAZING! I made them for Cinco de Mayo and used them for a quesadilla…and I have to say, it is life changing! They were so good that my non-shrimp eating boyfriend couldn’t keep his hands off them! These are a MUST!

  5. 5 stars
    Really yummy! Make with cheesy polenta/grits, and also as tostada toppers (loved!). Thanks for the inspo!

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