This Mexican shrimp cocktail is bursting with the most delicious Mexican flavor of jalapeno, tomatoes, avocados, lime, and a vibrant zesty hot pepper shrimp cocktail sauce. It’s like a shrimp cocktail meets a caesar cocktail and merged the best of both worlds!
Your guests will love having their own individual cups with cocktail spoons or with a side of tortilla chips for dipping into that delicious sauce.
Serve this at your Christmas party or for Cinco de Mayo alongside Mexican cheese dip, another favorite around here, as a starter to these easy slow cooker pot roast tacos. A festive feast for any occasion!
Also including instructions on a Homemade Clamato Juice, but for convenience sake, you can absolutely use store-bought. Use fresh or frozen-thawed shrimp, adjust the heat to your liking, and serve with or without cilantro. There are plenty of ways to customize what may be the best Mexican shrimp cocktail recipe you’ll ever have!
It’s served cold which means it’s great for summer garden showers too! It’s a refreshing starter for those looking to serve something a little different than your ordinary shrimp cocktail. The zing in the flavors comes together in a magnificent bite that your guests won’t be able to get enough of.
Ingredients Needed for Easy Shrimp Cocktail
- Raw shrimp peeled and deveined – Use fresh or thawed from frozen. See below for cooking instructions.
- Ripe tomatoes chopped – The riper the tomato, the juicier it is. The tomato juice is a welcome addition.
- Cucumber finely chopped – Fresh, crispy, crunchy cucumber adds a humble yet delicious component.
- Jalapeno seeded and finely chopped – The seeds are the hottest part, removing them allows you to control the heat a bit more, making it milder, but still adding great flavor.
- Red onion finely chopped – Sweeter and less pungent than other types of onion, so eating it raw is delicious and not overwhelming.
- Tomato & clam juice cocktail (Clamato Juice) – Use store-bought or make your own (homemade-recipe below).
- Ketchup – Adds a little color and a sweet acidic note to compliment the other tomato flavors.
- Freshly squeezed lime juice – A vibrant pop of citrus brightens everything up.
- Fresh cilantro + more for serving chopped – Cilantro adds a herbaceous element for sure, but I get not everyone loves it. Take it or leave it.
- Hot sauce – This link is to my favorite kind but you can use what you have. Add it to taste.
- Ripe avocado chopped – Ripe avocado is much creamier and easier to eat.
How to Cook Shrimp for Shrimp Cocktail
Step 1: Raw shrimp is grey in color and doesn’t take long at all to cook. You want to keep an eye on it because overcooked shrimp can have a rubbery texture.
Step 2: Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add shrimp to boiling water and cook for about 2-3 minutes. The shrimp will turn pink once it has been cooked.
Step 3: Transfer shrimp to a plate to cool and reserve 5-7 shrimp for garnish. Place extra shrimp on a plate. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the fridge until you’re ready to use them.
Step 4: Chop the rest of the shrimp into tiny bite-size pieces.
How to Make Homemade Clamato Juice
Combine unsweetened tomato juice, clam juice, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, lemon juice, onion powder, and black pepper in a jar.
Mix well with a spoon (or cover with a lid and give the jar a shake). Store covered in the fridge until you’re ready to use it.
How to Make Mexican Shrimp Cocktail
Step 1: In a mixing bowl, whisk together the clamato juice, ketchup, lime juice, cilantro, and as much hot sauce as you desire.
Step 2: Into this bowl, add cooked chopped shrimp, tomatoes, cucumber, jalapeno & red onion. Gently mix until ingredients are well combined.
Step 3: Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and transfer to the fridge to chill for a minimum of 1 hour. Make this up to 3 hours ahead and serve chilled straight from the fridge.
Step 4: Serve inside clear glass. Garnish the rim with reserved cooked shrimp and cilantro and a side of tortilla chips for dipping into the sauce. Enjoy!
- For quick convenience use store-bought already cooked shrimp and thaw from frozen.
- I prefer making Clamato juice from scratch because I find the flavors much more fresh and vibrant. Feel free to use store-bought if you prefer.
- Clamato juice can be found at your local grocery store.
- For a little extra crispy crunch, add ½ cup of finely chopped celery to your shrimp cocktail.
- Serve with some extra wedges of lime in case anyone wants to squirt a little more.
How to Thaw Frozen Shrimp Quickly?
If you’ve forgotten to thaw the shrimp in the fridge overnight, don’t worry we’ve all been there.
Here’s a trick! As counterintuitive as it may seem, thawing them in cold water is actually the fastest way! Submerged the package of shrimp in a bowl of cold water, replacing the water every 30 minutes.
Ways to Use Leftover Shrimp
If you have more than enough shrimp for your cocktail and you’re looking for some inspiration on ways to use up the rest of them for more great appetizer ideas, start here:
Easy Shrimp Cocktail Recipe
- 1 lb large raw shrimp peeled and deveined
- 1 cup ripe tomatoes chopped
- 1 cup cucumber finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons jalapeno seeded and finely chopped
- 1/2 cup red onion finely chopped
- 1 1/2 cup tomato & clam juice cocktail (Clamato Juice) store-bought or homemade-recipe below
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 1/4 cup freshly sueezed lime juice
- 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro + more for serving chopped
- hot sauce to taste
- 1 large ripe avocado chopped
Clamato Juice Recipe
- 1 cup tomato juice unsweetened
- 1/2 cup clam juice
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Clamato Juice Recipe
- To make homemade Clamato Juice, combine all ingredietns in a jar. Mix well with spoon. Cover and refrigirate until ready to use.
How to Cook Raw Shrimp
- To cook raw shrimp, bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Once water starts boiling add shrimp and cook for about 2-3 minutes. Transfer shrimp to a plate to cool.
- Reserve 5-7 shrimp for garnish, by placing them on a plate, covering with plastic wrap and placing them inside the fridge until ready for use.
- Chop the rest of the shrimp into tiny bite-size pieces.
How to Make Shrimp Cocktail
- In a mixing bowl, wisk until everything is combined - Clamato juice, ketchup, lime juice, cilantro and hot sauce to taste.
- Into this bowl add cooked chopped shrimp, tomatoes, cucumber, jalapeno & red onion. Gently mix until ingredients are well combined.
- Cover and chill inside the fridge for about 1-3 hours before serving. Right before serving stir in 1 chopped avocado. Serve inside clear glass. Garnish with reserved cooked shrimp and cilantro. Enjoy!
- Thaw frozen raw shrimp in a cold water or by placing the bag in the fridge over the night.
- Feel free to buy already cooked shrimp for this recipe and thaw them in the cold water.
- Feel free to purchase store bought Clamato Juice at your local grocery store (I prefer making mine from scratch).
- If you like celery, add 1/2 cup of finely chopped celery to the Shrimp Cocktail, for that extra kick.
Q. Do YOU like this Shrimp Cocktail Recipe?
Let me know in the comments below, I would love to hear from you!
Thank YOU for YOUR Comment, Share & Recipe Review!
Quote of the Day!
Thank you, Ruby!
Freaking amazing!! Just the recipe I wanted. Took me back to Mexico.
THANK YOU, JANZIE! SO GLAD YOU LIKE IT AS MUCH AS WE DO!
The shrimp cocktail was so good. I will use it in my regular rotation!!!
It is our favorite recipe for shrimp cocktail, I am so happy you like it too, Desi!