These shrimp taco bowls are just what you need for a quick, easy, and flavorful dinner! Juicy shrimp is seasoned to perfection, then served over a bed of fluffy rice with crunchy veggies, creamy avocado, and tangy pico de gallo. Dress it up with your favorite toppings for the ultimate customizable meal!
Shrimp Taco Bowls are a deconstructed take on classic shrimp tacos, meaning they’re even easier to throw together and make your own! These bowls feature succulent shrimp seasoned with spices like cumin, chili, garlic, and cayenne pepper.
We love pairing ours with fresh vegetables and toppings like crunchy cabbage, creamy avocado, sweet corn, and hearty beans. You can stop there or customize your bowls with garnishes and sides like refried beans, tortilla chips, and shrimp taco sauce.
Why You’ll Love Shrimp Taco Bowls
These shrimp taco bowls are incredible for so many reasons! Here are just a few:
- Great for a crowd: Since you can easily substitute any ingredients based on preference or dietary needs, shrimp taco bowls are great for serving a large crowd.
- Balanced meal: These bowls offer a balanced mix of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats.
- Easy to prepare: Making this recipe couldn’t be more straightforward! It’s the perfect choice for a quick and easy meal.
Ingredients & Substitutions
These are the ingredients you’ll need for shrimp taco bowls:
- Shrimp: For the best flavor and texture, we usually use medium-large shrimp (21-25 per pound). You can use frozen shrimp instead of raw, which are often fresher at the time of freezing. Just make sure to thaw and drain them first.
- Lime juice: Provides a burst of tanginess that complements the shrimp. If you don’t have lime, you can substitute it with lemon juice in a pinch.
- Spices: The blend of chili powder, cumin, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, and cayenne pepper gives the shrimp a punchy flavor. You can adjust the spices to suit your preference or use pre-made taco seasoning.
- Rice: We love the flavor of steamed white rice, but you can also use brown rice, quinoa, couscous, or cauliflower rice for a low-carb option.
- Black beans and corn: This creates a hearty and filling element. Feel free to experiment with other beans or fajita veggies, like bell peppers, if you’d like.
- Cabbage and avocado: Add the perfect contrast of crunch and creaminess. You can use romaine lettuce instead of cabbage and omit the avocado if they’re unavailable or use guacamole.
- Pico de gallo: You can use store-bought or homemade pico de gallo. Or, try replacing it with mango salsa or a simple mix of chopped cherry tomatoes and red onions.
How To Make Shrimp Taco Bowls
1. Marinate The Shrimp
Start by coating your shrimp with a mix of lime juice, olive oil, chili powder, cumin, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, and cayenne peppers. We recommend marinating the shrimp for at least 15 minutes to tenderize and infuse them with flavor.
2. Cook The Shrimp
Heat a skillet over medium-high, and make sure it is quite hot before adding the shrimp to achieve a nice sear. Cook the shrimp in a single layer until they're pink and cooked through, but not overdone. If they are overcooked, they will become tough and rubbery.
3. Assemble The Bowls
This is the fun part! Layer in the cooked rice, cabbage, black beans, corn, pico de gallo, avocado, and cilantro. Customize your bowl with any additional toppings or dressings you like.
For an extra charred flavor, you can heat your corn in the skillet you used to cook the shrimp. Also, don’t forget to thoroughly rinse the black beans to remove excess sodium.
Storage & Reheating
If you find yourself with leftovers, you’re in luck! Just follow these simple storage instructions:
- Fridge: Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
- Freezer: It's best not to freeze this recipe since the ingredients won’t hold up well.
- Reheating: Reheat everything in a pan on the stovetop for about 1-2 minutes, or until it’s warmed to your liking.
Meal Prep Like A Pro
Meal-prepping shrimp taco bowls will help you enjoy this flavorful dish all week long with minimal effort. Here are some steps to ensure it’s a success:
- Prepare the shrimp: Start by marinating and cooking the shrimp according to the recipe. Let them cool, then store them in their own airtight container in the fridge.
- Cook the rice: Cook your rice and let it cool before storing it in a separate container. For an added layer of flavor, cook the rice in chicken or vegetable broth.
- Chop the veggies: Shred the cabbage, rinse the beans, drain the corn, and chop any additional vegetables you’d like to include. Store each one in separate containers to maintain freshness.
- Assemble the bowls: When you're ready to eat, heat up your shrimp and rice, then assemble your bowls with the prepped veggies. Add freshly sliced avocado, lime wedges, and a drizzle of your favorite sauces!
Quick Swaps For New Flavors
There are countless ways to mix up your shrimp taco bowls! Here are just a few of my favorites:
- Protein swap: Use a different protein like chicken, tofu, fish, or beef for a different flavor.
- Grain swap: Swap the rice for quinoa, couscous, or cauliflower rice.
- Salad: Try serving the shrimp and toppings on a bed of greens instead of rice.
- Add some cheese: For a punch of umami, try sprinkling feta or Cotija cheese on top.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the most common questions when making these taco bowls with shrimp.
Fresh, medium-large shrimp are great for this recipe because they're not too small to get lost in the other ingredients and not too large to make eating the bowl cumbersome.
Of course! Just make sure to thaw them and pat them dry before cooking.
Pre-cooked shrimp can be used if they’re the only option you have. They don’t absorb the marinade as well and usually become rubbery when they’re reheated. If you can, it’s always best to use raw shrimp and cook them before assembling the bowls.
Shrimp Taco Bowls
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- 1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1 lime, juice
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
- 2 cups cooked white rice
- 1 cup canned black beans, rinsed
- 1 cup corn
- 1 cup shredded cabbage (red or green)
- 1/2 cup pico de gallo
- 1/2 avocado, chopped
- 1/4 cup cilantro
- 1 lime (cut into wedges)
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- Nutritional Information
* 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.
For faster meal prep, use store-bought taco seasoning and salsa.
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