Mexican Shrimp Cocktail (+ Stuffed Avocados)
Mexican Shrimp Cocktail stuffed into avocados with tons of veggies in a spicy sauce. Serve Mexican Shrimp Cocktail with tortilla chips or stuff into avocados – sure to become a summer dinner favorite! Just 7 grams of net carbs in this dinner recipe!
Say what?! Mexican shrimp cocktail stuffed avocados are everything. Hands-down the best warm weather no-cook dinner.
Those buttery, delicious avocados are cut in half and filled with a simple combination of shrimp, cucumbers, tomatoes, onions, jalapenos, and a tomato-based spicy, tangy sauce. Okay, so you could also call this Mexican-style shrimp ceviche, only I’m terrified when shrimp cooks in lime or lemon juice, so like a chicken, I always use cooked shrimp to begin with.
To be completely honest with you, this was supposed to be a recipe for shrimp cocktail stuffed avocados. You know, the kind of American shrimp cocktail that consists of just shrimp and cocktail sauce. The idea quickly expanded into Mexican shrimp cocktail stuffed avocados where vegetables play a decent enough role. Not only do these avocado boats look prettier with all that veggie color, but they also make for a beautiful appetizer at a party. And I’ll also add that they contain just 7 grams of net carbs and a whopping 14 grams of fiber.
Talk about nice and filling!
What’s the difference between ceviche and shrimp cocktail?
Mexican shrimp cocktail typically starts with cooked shrimp and is a combination of a sweet, spicy, and tangy tomato-based sauce with lots of chopped vegetables. Ceviche usually starts with raw shrimp or fish and isn’t as hearty as a shrimp cocktail.
Ingredients for coctel de camarones:
- Shrimp: You can cook your own shrimp at home or purchase them precooked, it’s entirely up to you. If I’m cooking them at home, I like to peel and devein the shrimp. Then I’ll heat a pot of water to boiling, add in some lemon juice, and a generous sprinkle of kosher salt, and poach them for no longer than 45-60 seconds depending on the side. Remove the shrimp to an ice water bath and let them chill out. Chop them into bite-sized pieces.
- Tomatoes: I typically use Roma tomatoes here, but it’s totally up to you! Dice them into the same size as the shrimp. Substitutions for Roma tomatoes would be cherry or grape tomatoes. Tomato juice mixes with the cocktail sauce, hot sauce, and horseradish and makes the most flavorful mix!
- Cucumbers: Crunchy cucumbers add freshness to the mix.
- Red Onions: Add a bit of a bite that works beautifully with sweet shrimp.
- Jalapenos: You can also use serrano peppers for this recipe. Make sure to remove the seeds and ribs if you’re worried about the heat level!
- Cilantro: Adds freshness to the dish. If you aren’t a fan of cilantro, you can leave it out if you’d like.
- Cocktail Sauce: Cocktail sauce adds a bit of that horseradish-y kick. Feel free to use a splash of clamato juice instead of the cocktail sauce if that’s more your thing. Ketchup will make a decent substitute and has similar ingredients. Especially if you up the cayenne and the hot sauce by just a tad bit. I do find the horseradish also helps provide that flavor profile we all love about shrimp cocktail, so definitely add that too!
- Hot Sauce: You can use Valentina, Tapatio, Cholula, or any other hot sauce you typically have at home. Use a couple of dashes or more if you prefer a spicier shrimp cocktail!
- Lime juice: Ceviche and Mexican shrimp cocktail needs that hit of acid to balance out the heat and the sweetness of the shrimp.
- Cayenne pepper or horseradish: These ingredients add a kick! The cayenne pepper can be limited if you’re worried about the spice level.
- Salt and Pepper: These are pretty self-explanatory!
- Avocados: You can dice up the avocados and then add them to the shrimp cocktail if you’re serving this with tortilla chips or saltine crackers. For parties, I’d serve them in avocado halves as an appetizer or a light summer dinner!
Making my Mexican Shrimp Cocktail Recipe:
- Cook the shrimp. Heat a large pot of water to boiling. Add in a squeeze of lemon (you can toss in the peel too afterwards) and a generous sprinkle of salt. Slowly lower the shrimp into the water and let them cook through for 45-60 seconds or until they’re opaque and curled into a ‘c’ shape. Drain and add them to an ice water bath and let them cool completely. Then, chop the shrimp into bite-sized pieces.
- Mix the Mexican shrimp cocktail. In a large bowl, combine the chopped shrimp, add the tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, and cilantro. Then in a small bowl combine cocktail sauce, jalapeno, hot sauce, lime juice, cayenne, horseradish, salt, and black pepper. Stir until all the ingredients come together. Pour the cocktail mixture over the other ingredients and stir to combine. Then cover and refrigerate the shrimp cocktail for a minimum of 30 minutes so that the flavors all come together.
- Serve it up in avocados. If you’re serving these in avocados, cut them in half and remove the seed. You can scoop out a bit of the avocado so that you can fill it up more if you prefer. I typically just dice and add the scooped avocado to the cocktail mixture. And finally, serve with tortilla chips on the side!
FAQs about this recipe:
You can brush the avocados with a little bit of olive oil, generously sprinkle with some salt, and then throw them on the grill to give them some summer lovin’. Grill marks make everything taste that much better. With this Texas heat, I take my avocados cold straight from the fridge and pile them high with Mexican shrimp cocktail!
Cocktail sauce has ketchup, lemon juice, horseradish, hot sauce, and usually Worcestershire sauce as well.
Creamy avocados piled high with homemade shrimp cocktail. That first bite has a little bit of everything. The heat from the ceviche mellows out nice and smooth on your tongue when paired with the avocado. And hey, I get if avocado boats aren’t your thing. You can easily dice up the avocados, combine them with the rest of the shrimp cocktail ingredients and serve it in a clear glass bowl.
If you like this recipe, you might also like:
- Mexican Shrimp Salad
- Blackened Shrimp Tacos with Smashed Avocados
- Garlicky Hawaiian Shrimp Scampi
- Crispy Baja Shrimp Tacos with Chipotle Mayo
- Mediterranean Shrimp Orzo Salad
Recipe originally shared July 2017, updated August 2023.
- 1 pound cooked shrimp, chopped
- 1 cup chopped tomatoes (I remove the seeds)
- ½ cup diced cucumbers
- ½ cup diced red onions
- 1 jalapeno, deseeded and diced (see notes)
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- 3 tablespoons shrimp cocktail sauce
- 2 tablespoons hot sauce (such as Tapatio or Cholula)
- 2-3 tablespoons lime juice
- 1-2 teaspoons prepared horseradish, optional
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon EACH: kosher salt AND sugar
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 5-6 avocados
- COMBINE: In a large bowl, combine the chopped shrimp, and add the tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, jalapeno, and cilantro.
- MIX: In a small bowl combine cocktail sauce, hot sauce, lime juice, cayenne, 1 tsp horseradish, salt, sugar, and black pepper. Stir until all the ingredients come together. Taste and adjust with more horseradish, sugar, or hot sauce as desired. Pour the cocktail sauce mixture over the chopped ingredients. If you aren’t serving the cocktail in avocados, you can dice 1 avocado and add it to the shrimp cocktail if you’d like. Stir to combine.
- COOL: Cover and refrigerate the shrimp cocktail for a minimum of 15 minutes and ideally, 30 minutes if time allows. This allows all the flavors to come together.
- SERVE: Serve the shrimp cocktail in a bowl with lots of tortilla chips on the side. Or you can serve in avocados. Cut them in half and remove the seed. You can scoop out a bit of the avocado flesh so that you can fill it up more if you prefer. Fill the avocados and serve immediately. Enjoy!
- To make this spicier you can up the number of jalapenos to two or three.
- Like your cocktail saucier? You can up the amount of cocktail sauce you use! I typically like to use ⅓ cup cocktail sauce when I'm serving these with tortilla chips. I use less when I'm serving these in avocados!
Serving Size:1/4th with 1 avocado
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 264Total Fat: 10gCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 5gProtein: 28g
The nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and is just an estimate. To get the most accurate information, please input the ingredients you've used into a nutrition calculator.