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Living in South Texas we have had our fair share of tacos and honestly, we have never met a taco we didn’t like including these shrimp tacos with mango salsa. We always have a bag of shrimp in the freezer for those nights when we need a quick and easy meal after a busy day. This recipe comes together in less than 30 minutes and is the perfect Taco Tuesday dinner.
Key Ingredients and Substitutions
Along with the shrimp and mango salsa, you only need a few common pantry staples for our easy shrimp tacos.
The complete ingredient list and measurements are listed in the printable recipe below.
Shrimp are not all created equal, and the choices could be confusing or overwhelming. Options include fresh or frozen, head-on or already shelled with the head-off, brown, white, or pink, and a variety of sizes. The right choice all comes down to your personal preference and the type of recipe you are making.
- What shrimp to use? You will want to use shrimp that have been peeled and deveined with the tails off. We used large 20/25 shrimp. You can substitute for jumbo or smaller shrimp but that will impact the required cooking time. All shrimp cook relatively quickly and 30 seconds can make the difference between undercooked and dried out and rubbery.
- Fresh or Frozen? Don’t be fooled into thinking that you are getting shrimp that just arrived off the fishmonger’s boat. The vast majority of shrimp is frozen at sea before being delivered to the distributor or retailer. So when you see the display that says “fresh” it more than likely isn’t. So buy your favorite shrimp even if it is frozen.
- How to defrost frozen shrimp? You can defrost shrimp quickly in a cold water bath for 25-30 minutes. Change out the water every 7-10 minutes. Or if you plan ahead they will defrost in the refrigerator in 5-7 hours.
While the shrimp are the star of this dish, the mango salsa is what takes it to the next level. You will want to ensure the ingredients are fresh for the best mango salsa. Our recipe for fresh mango salsa includes mangos, cucumbers, purple onion, habanero, red peppers, cilantro, fresh lime juice, and spices. It is light, refreshing, and not too spicy but adds a tangy freshness to the tacos.
How to Make Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa
Here are the quick step-by-step instructions with visuals; you can find the full instructions with the exact ingredients in the recipe card below.
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Pro-tip: Save some shrimp for a quick on-the-go lunch. This shrimp is great on top of your favorite salad.
1. Prepare the shrimp: In a medium-size bowl combine the chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, salt, and black pepper. Pat dry shrimp with a paper towel and then add to spices. Toss to combine and let sit for 10-15 minutes.
2. Cook the shrimp: Heat the olive oil in an 8-10 inch skillet over medium-high heat. Once olive oil is shimmering, add shrimp in a single layer and let cook for 1-2 minutes. Flip shrimp and let cook for approximately 2-3 more minutes. Shrimp are cooked once they have turned opaque white with slight pink accents. Remove the shrimp from the pan and set them aside.
3. Assembly: Over an open gas stovetop flame on medium/low heat corn tortillas until lightly charred on the edges (approximately 10 seconds per side). Place 3-4 shrimp in each taco and then top with mango salsa, a drizzle of creamy cilantro avocado dressing, and some fresh cilantro. You can also add some fresh slices of avocado or a scoop of guacamole if you prefer. And our make-ahead freezer margaritas or strawberry margaritas go perfect with tacos.
Note: Tortillas can also be heated on a medium-size skillet or griddle until golden brown in some spots (approximately 30 seconds per side).
Recipe Tips and Notes
- The mango salsa can be made up a day in advance and stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container.
- These are not spicy shrimp tacos so you can definitely add a little more chili powder or even a some cayenne if you like a little heat.
Frequently Asked Questions
Shrimp can be reheated but be careful of overheating as shrimp will turn rubbery. Heat at 30-second intervals in the microwave until warm. Or toss them in a skillet for 2-3 until warm.
The shrimp will last 2-3 days in the refrigerator when stored in an airtight container.
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Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa
This recipe may contain paid affiliate sales links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Please see my full disclaimer policy for details.
- Combine chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, salt, and black pepper in a medium-sized bowl.
- Pat shrimp dry with a paper towel and add shrimp to spices. Toss to combine and let sit for 10-15 minutes.
- In a 10-12 inch frying pan, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
- Once olive oil is hot, add shrimp in a single layer and let cook for 1-2 minutes. Flip shrimp and let cook for approximately 2-3 more minutes. Shrimp are cooked once they have turned opaque white with slight pink accents.
- Remove shrimp from skillet and set aside.
- Over an open gas stovetop flame on medium/low heat corn tortillas until lightly charred on the edges (approximately 10 seconds per side). Place 3-4 shrimp in each taco and then top with mango salsa and a drizzle of creamy cilantro avocado dressing, if desired.