Camarones a la Diabla

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Camarones a la Diabla, or Deviled Shrimp, is a flavorful Mexican dish made with shrimp in a bright red chile sauce. Ready in under 10 minutes, this delicious recipe makes the perfect main course for any lunch or dinner.

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Living in Southern California, I’m extremely blessed to have so many amazing options for Mexican cuisine all around me. From popular hotspots to hole-in-the-wall treasures, Los Angeles is a haven for foodies like myself. I’m often inspired by the food I try at restaurants, so I wind up making my own version at home. Today’s inspiration? Camarones a la Diabla, a delicious shrimp dish that is super popular for good reason.

If I told you that you could make a saucy shrimp dish that was bursting with flavor in under 10 minutes, would you believe me? If the answer is no, get ready to become a believer! This recipe for Camarones a la Diabla consists of shrimp cooked in a simple homemade red chile sauce. It’s quick, spicy, saucy, easy to make, and packed with fresh and savory flavors. We also love these Camarones Al Mojo de Ajo for a non-spicy option.

Of the many seafood and shrimp recipes on my website, this has to be one of my favorites. The spicy red chile sauce has the perfect blend of smoky and spicy flavors and this recipe uses a shortcut to save time. Instead of making the traditional version with dried guajillo and arbol chiles, this recipe uses canned chipotle peppers in adobo to create similar flavors. Looking for the authentic version? Don't worry, we've got a recipe for authentic diabla sauce below.

This dish is paleo, gluten-free, dairy-free, and low carb, meaning it’s fantastic for accommodating large groups of people with a variety of dietary restrictions. Serve it alongside your favorite starch or grain and cooked vegetables or a salad for a complete meal that guarantees to knock the socks off your friends and family.

Looking for more Mexican recipes with shrimp? Try these classic shrimp tacostraditional coctel de camarones, and Camarones Rancheros.

Mexican Camarones a la diabla in a spicy red sauce with rice, cilantro, and limes.

What is Camarones a la Diabla?

Also known as deviled shrimp or diablo shrimp, Camarones a la Diabla is a popular Mexican dish that consists of shrimp cooked in a spicy chile tomato sauce.

It is important to note that this is not an authentic diabla sauce recipe and instead is an easier spin on the classic recipe using readily available chipotle peppers. To make a true Diabla sauce, you will want to make the following sauce instead:

  • 6-8 dried guajillo peppers
  • 2-3 dried chile de arbol peppers
  • 3 Roma tomatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 white onion
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • Cooking oil

Start by lightly toasting the dried chiles in a hot pan until they are lightly browned. Add them to a bowl and cover them with boiling water. Cover and let sit for 15-20 minutes untl softened.

Remove the chiles from the water and add to a blender with tomatoes, garlic, onion, salt, and about ½ cup of water or chicken broth. For a less spicy sauce, remove the seeds from the chiles before blending.

Heat a splash of cooking oil in a large skillet. Add the sauce and bring to a simmer. Cook for 5 minutes.

Key Ingredients

To make this flavorful recipe, you will need the following key ingredients:

  • Shrimp: I recommend using large shrimp because they take slightly longer to cook and I like to give the shrimp some time in the diabla sauce without having to worry about them overcooking. For the sake of convenience, make sure to get peeled and deveined shrimp.
  • Chicken broth: Feel free to swap out for vegetable broth if needed.
  • Fresh tomatoes: I prefer to use fresh Roma tomatoes in this dish, but you can also use canned crushed or diced tomatoes.
  • Chipotle peppers: You will want to get the kind that come packed in adobo sauce, not the dried kind. The sauce adds a ton of great flavor to the peppers.
  • White onion: I love the sharp bite this ingredient adds! Don’t worry about how you chop it up. We will be blending it into the sauce, so size doesn’t matter.

Spicy deviled shrimp in a bowl served with fresh cilantro, white rice, and lime juice.

Customize your Camarones a la Diabla

Here are some of my top tips and tricks to help you make this dish:

  • If you’re not sure about the spice level, start by blending one chipotle pepper with the other sauce ingredients and taste it to decide if you want to add another.
  • When adding salt to taste, add only a little at a time, tasting as you go. This ensures that you won’t make the mistake of over-salting the dish.
  • If you find that the sauce is too spicy, add another fresh tomato or a tablespoon of ketchup.
  • You can use dried peppers if needed, just make sure to rehydrate them first by steeping them in a pot of hot water for about 20 minutes.
  • I like to keep this dish simple to let the natural flavors stand on their own, but feel free to add any seasonings you like. Cumin and chili powder are popular choices.
  • For a beautiful pop of color, garnish with sliced jalapenos or fresh cilantro just before serving the dish.

How to Store Leftover Shrimp

If you find yourself with leftovers of this delicious dish (it’s rare, but it happens!), you can store the sauce with the shrimp in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 72 hours. I highly recommend making more sauce than you need, because the leftover sauce can be used all week long in a ton of different ways! I like to add diabla sauce to my eggs, salads, tacos, and burritos.

To store leftover diabla sauce, transfer it to an airtight bag or container and store it in one of two ways:

  • In the fridge for up to 5 days.
  • In the freezer for up to 6 months.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below you will find the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about making these yummy Mexican shrimp.

Also known as deviled shrimp or diablo shrimp, Camarones a la Diabla is a popular Mexican dish that consists of shrimp cooked in a spicy chile tomato sauce.

I typically like to serve this dish over rice with black beans and corn tortillas, but you can pair it with anything you like. Some of my favorite options include roasted potatoes, cooked vegetables, and a bed of greens. They are also really tasty as lettuce wraps.

Diabla sauce is great for a lot of different dishes. Outside of this recipe, some of my favorite foods to pair with diabla sauce include burritos, tacos, salads, potatoes, and eggs.

If this dish isn’t spicy enough for your red hot palate, feel free to add another chipotle pepper or a few dashes of your favorite hot sauce. Be sure to taste as you go so it doesn’t become too spicy!

Mexican shrimp in a spicy chile sauce served in a bowl with rice and cilantro.
The Recipe
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Camarones a la Diabla

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  • 3 roma tomatoes, halved (or ¾ cup crushed tomatoes or undrained diced tomatoes)
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 onion
  • 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (adjust to your liking, I use 3)
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1.33 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined (large is best)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

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Add the tomatoes, garlic, white onion, chipotle peppers, and chicken broth to a blender. Blend until smooth. Taste and season well with salt. If the sauce is too spicy, you can add more tomatoes.

Tomatoes, chipotle peppers, onions, and garlic in a blender.

Heat a large skillet with olive oil over medium high heat. Add the shrimp in a single layer and cook for 1 minute.

Shrimp cooking in a skillet.

Add the diabla sauce and stir to coat. Lower the heat and cook for 3-4 minutes until shrimp is opaque and sauce is simmering. Remove from pan and serve.

Shrimp cooking in diabla sauce in a skillet.


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Nutritional Facts
Serving Size: 3/4 cup
Amount Per Serving
Calories 216
Calories from Fat 72
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 8g
Saturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 243mg
Sodium 302mg
Total Carbohydrate 6g
Dietary Fiber 2g
Sugars 3g
Protein 32g

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.

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About the author Meet Kristen McCaffrey
Hi, I’m the cookbook author, recipe developer, and food enthusiast behind Slender Kitchen. I am obsessed with making healthy food that is easy to prepare and absolutely delicious. Meal planning is my secret weapon and I hope I can make meal time easier for you with our tried and tested recipes and foolproof meal plans. Learn More
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