These Grilled Shrimp Tacos are smoky, a little spicy, and bursting with fresh flavors! The creamy sriracha lime sauce just takes them over the top. Easy to cook the shrimp indoors too, in case the weather doesn’t want to cooperate!
This is one of my Seafood recipes I know you’ll want to keep on hand!
If there’s one food I’m almost always in the mood for, it’s tacos… okay, and pizza… but today we’re just talking about tacos!
Seafood is so fun to eat in the summer, mostly because it just feels light and summery, or at least it does to me.
These shrimp are tossed in a “marinade” of sorts, just some oil (I prefer vegetable or avocado since they have high smoke points and won’t burn as easily), and taco seasoning. I use marinade in quotations because it looks similar to a marinade, but the shrimp doesn’t have to sit in the mixture for any length of time, like with a traditional marinade.
You can choose to make your own seasoning (which I highly recommend, and will link to that recipe down in the recipe card), or choose your favorite store-bought variety.
From there, you can add additional seasonings, like a smoky ancho chile powder, or a chipotle chili powder, or leave it traditional with just the taco seasoning.
After a quick bit of time on the grill, the shrimp are ready to be tossed with your favorite taco toppings, added to your favorite type of tortilla, and devoured!
How to make grilled shrimp tacos?
This is just an overview; the full ingredients and directions are in the recipe card toward the bottom of this post.
- Combine sriracha sauce ingredients. Cover and chill until ready to serve.
- Prepare grill and “marinade”. Preheat grill to medium high and pat shrimp very dry. Combine oil and taco seasoning in a bowl.
- Add shrimp and toss.
- Thread shrimp onto skewers. Or you can use a grill basket.
- Grill. The shrimp only needs a couple of minutes on each side. Then add the tortillas and grill for about a minute.
- Assemble and serve.
Adding the raw shrimp to skewers might seem unnecessary since you’ll be eating the shrimp in tacos, but it has an important purpose. Shrimp are small enough that they may accidentally fall in between the grill grates. Skewering them prevents that from happening. If you have a grill basket, that could be used instead of skewers. Trust me, you won’t want to lose any of these delicious shrimp!
Variations of this recipe
- No grill required – no grill or rainy weather? No problem! Skip the skewers and heat a heavy bottomed skillet over medium high heat. Add a small drizzle of vegetable oil, then add taco-seasoned shrimp to the skillet in a single layer. Depending on the size of your skillet, this may need to be done in batches. Cook a minute or two per side, until shrimp is opaque and curls into a “C” shape.
- Spicy – to increase the heat and spice level, add some cayenne pepper to the taco seasoning, increase the sriracha in the sauce, and/or use serrano peppers instead of jalapeños.
- Mild – for a milder taco, make sure you’re using a mild taco seasoning, and decrease the amount of sriracha in the sauce. You can also skip adding the jalapeños to the tacos.
- Tortillas – if you’re not a fan of corn tortillas, you can use flour tortillas instead. Just note that most flour tortillas, even soft taco sized, are a little larger than corn tortillas, so you may not get as many tacos.
- Sauce – we love the creamy sriracha lime sauce on these tacos, but you can use an avocado crema, avocado ranch, or any sauce you’d like!
- Toppings – the best part about tacos is the sheer amount of toppings options! Our favorites are jalapeno, avocado, and a creamy sauce of some kind, but some cotija cheese, salsa, guacamole, etc are great options.
The beauty of grilling shrimp is how quickly they cook! The extra large raw shrimp used in this recipe is perfectly cooked after grilling for approximately 2 minutes per side.
It’s not recommended to grill already cooked shrimp, since they’ll get overcooked. Overcooked shrimp are rubbery and have a very chewy texture.
I like to use extra large shrimp for this recipe, which have a count/pound of 26-30. You can use any size you’d like, however the grilling time will vary based on the size of the shrimp.
Making shrimp tacos ahead of time
This recipe tastes best when made right before serving, however, parts of the recipe can be made ahead.
The creamy sriracha lime sauce can be made and stored in the refrigerator.
The toppings can be prepped and refrigerated ahead of time.
Then just grill up the shrimp, and assemble the tacos!
Assembled tacos aren’t great to store, but any leftover grilled shrimp can be stored well.
Cooked shrimp should be stored in an airtight container and eaten within 3 days.
Did you make this? Be sure to leave a review below and tag me @the_chunky_chef on Facebook and Instagram!
Creamy Sriracha Lime Sauce
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- 2 Tbsp mayonnaise
- 1 1/2 tsp sriracha more or less, depending on the heat level you prefer
- juice of half a lime
- 2 lbs. peeled and deveined extra large shrimp if using frozen, thaw them first
- 2 1/2 Tbsp vegetable or avocado oil
- 2 Tbsp taco seasoning (about one 1 oz packet) homemade or store-bought
- corn tortillas
- thinly sliced cabbage or coleslaw mix
- grilling skewers
- chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 fresh jalapeños sliced thinly
- 2 large avocados pitted, peeled, and chopped
- lime wedges
- Combine all sriracha sauce ingredients in a small mixing bowl. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Preheat grill over MED HIGH heat. While grill is preheating, pat shrimp very dry with paper towels.
- Combine vegetable oil and taco seasoning in a bowl, then add shrimp and stir gently until well coated. Thread shrimp onto skewers.
- Brush grill grates lightly with vegetable oil and grill shrimp skewers for approximately 2 minutes, then flip them over and grill another 2 minutes.
- Remove shrimp from grill and let the skewers rest on a plate. While the shrimp is resting, add the tortillas to the grill, cooking for about 30 seconds per side.
- Remove shrimp from the skewers and assemble tacos. In a tortilla, add a layer of cabbage/slaw mix, top with a few shrimp, then drizzle with creamy sriracha sauce (that you made in step 1), and any additional toppings you'd like (jalapeños, cilantro, avocado, etc), and serve with a lime wedge or two for squeezing over the tacos.
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- Recipe makes enough for 6 people to have approximately 2 tacos (assuming about 4 shrimp per taco).
- It’s recommended to remove the tails of the shrimp, which can be done either before or after cooking. You can also look for shrimp to buy that already have the tails removed. Just make sure they’re peeled and deveined.
- Calorie count listed does not include the tortillas, as some people prefer to double up with corn tortillas, or use flour, so that will be up to you.
- If grilling isn’t an option, omit the skewers and heat a heavy bottomed skillet over medium high heat. Add a small drizzle of vegetable oil, then add taco-seasoned shrimp to the skillet in a single layer. Depending on the size of your skillet, this may need to be done in batches. Cook a minute or two per side, until shrimp is opaque and curls into a “C” shape.
The Chunky Chef is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.