Aguachiles, or Shrimp in Spicy Green Chile Sauce, surrounded by crackers, lime and decorative Mexican tablecloth
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5 from 12 votes


Aguachiles is made up of juicy, succulent shrimp marinated in a delicious and spicy green chile sauce. Light and full of bold flavors. This Mexican food classic will impress your guests and delight your palate.
Prep Time1 hr 10 mins
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Course: Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 4
Calories: 150kcal
Author: Maggie Unzueta


  • 1 lb raw shrimp
  • 1 1/2 cup lime juice (divided)
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 cucumber peeled and sliced
  • ¼ red onion thinly sliced
  • 4 serrano peppers stem and seeds removed
  • ½ bunch cilantro


  • Peel and devein the shrimp.
  • Cut the shrimp open in a butterfly. (You can also chop them up into 1-inch pieces).
  • Add 1 cup of lime juice and salt to shrimp.
  • Cover with plastic wrap.
  • Place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, remove the stems from the serrano peppers. Then, slice them in half.
  • Remove the seeds from the peppers.
  • Add the serrano peppers, cilantro, and remaining lime juice to the blender.
  • Blend until smooth.
  • Taste for good measure.
  • (Salt was added to the shrimp, but you might want the sauce to have salt too).
  • Take the shrimp out of the refrigerator.
  • Add the cucumber and red onion to the shrimp.
  • Pour the sauce all over the shrimp, cucumber, and onions.
  • Mix well.
  • Cover with plastic wrap again and return to the refrigerator.
  • Marinate for 30 minutes.
  • Serve with saltines or tostada.
  • Optional: you can top with avocado slices.



Buy shrimp that have already been cleaned. It will save on time. They cost more, but it’s totally worth the price.
Best way to thaw shrimp is to overnight in the fridge. Or, place the shrimp in cold water for 15 minutes.
When making aguachile and ceviche, the seafood undergoes a process called denaturation. The lime marinade chemically “cooks” the seafood, making it safe to eat.
Next time you’re at a grocery store, compare prices. Key limes tend to be cheaper than regular limes.
Use 2 key limes for 1 lime. 
If you are not 100% convinced about “cooking” the shrimp in lime, here are some other things you can do:
  • Put the shrimp in hot water, and let them sit in the water for 5 minutes.
  • Or, you can boil the shrimp for 1 minute.
If you can't find serrano peppers, you can use jalapeños. 
Remove the stems from the cilantro, leaving only the leaves for a less herby flavor.
Whenever seafood is cooked in acid, the texture will degrade.
  • If you are using very fresh ingredients, it can last in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  • If not, try to eat the Aguachile within 24 hours.


Calories: 150kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 286mg | Sodium: 885mg | Potassium: 327mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 170IU | Vitamin C: 37.5mg | Calcium: 188mg | Iron: 2.7mg