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Shrimp Tacos with Cilantro-Lime Sour Cream

These Shrimp Tacos are an absolute flavor explosion! Loaded with spicy shrimp, tomatoes, fresh avocado and THE BEST Shrimp Taco Sauce they get rave reviews every time! 

Who doesn’t love tacos? To me they just scream summer time. Perhaps it is all of the bright flavors or the fact that they go so well with a cold bottle of beer. Either way, these shrimp tacos are definitely the perfect summer time supper.

They are quick, easy and tasty. They also showcase some of my favorite flavors: cumin, chili powder, cilantro and lime.

Overhead photo of shrimp tacos with cilantro cream sauce on white plate.

The combination of spices in this seafood tacos recipe can make the shrimp a little spicy. Have no fear though; the coolness of the cilantro-lime sour cream sauce balances out the flavor nicely.

DES’ TIP: If you do want to tone the spice down a little bit, you can cut the amount of chili powder in half and omit the cayenne pepper.

Shrimp cooking in a cast iron skillet.

How do you make the BEST Shrimp Taco Sauce?

Finally, let’s talk about THAT SAUCE shall we? The cilantro lime sour cream that graces the top of these tacos is scrumptious. It is simply sour cream, cilantro, cumin and a little lime. It couldn’t be easier to make and is the PERFECT sauce for shrimp tacos.

Drizziling cilantro lime sour cream on shrimp tacos.

How do you make shrimp tacos?

Follow the step by step photos and instructions below to see just how easy these are to make!

STEP 1: Season shrimp. Toss to make sure that all shrimp is coated in seasoning. Cover and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes.

STEP 2: Sauté shrimp until pink and opaque. This will take about 5 minutes. Be careful not to overcook the shrimp or it will be rubbery.

STEP 3: Make cilantro lime sour cream by mixing together all ingredients in a bowl.

STEP 4: Heat a thin layer of oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Cook corn tortillas until soft. About 30 seconds per side. Fold into taco shape.

DES’ TIP: You don’t need a lot of oil to fry the tortillas, just enough to lightly coat the bottom of the skillet. Cooking them this way gives a subtle crunch.

Toppings for shrimp tacos.

To assemble the tacos, I layer the shrimp and cilantro cream sauce with lettuce (you could top with with cabbage too for some extra crunch!), diced tomatoes and diced avocado. It really helps make these tacos the perfect summer time meal.

I have been making this easy tacos recipe for years, and they are a hit with the whole family and friends each and every time. A quick glance at the comments section and you’ll see even more rave reviews like this one from Donna: 

“This was so delicious! Family loved it..the sauce is divine. Thank you..will definitely be a family favorite.” – Donna

If you want to add even a little more summer flare, you could grill the shrimp in these tacos and make grilled shrimp tacos. It wouldn’t take long to do. Just a few minutes on the grill and you’re good to go.

Shrimp tacos with Cilantro Lime Sour Cream are THE perfect taco for all your summer gatherings.

While these tacos are pretty hearty, if you’re looking for a full on taco party, I mean who isn’t? You’ll want to serve some sides. Chips, salsa and guacamole  are always a must.

If you want to spice things up, you could drizzle some habanero hot sauce over the top. And of course, any good taco party is going to have beans. Black beans are one of our favorite options. Or if you have a little extra time, you could try these slow cooker refried beans.

Finally, you’ll need something to wash it all down with, right? How about some Strawberry Jalapeno Margaritas!

Don’t forget to save this recipe for when Cinco de Mayo comes around. It’s not Cinco de Mayo without them!

If you like seafood tacos, be sure to check out my recipe for Crispy Fish Tacos with Spicy Slaw too. You’ll love them!


Note: This recipe was originally published in 2009. It was updated with new photos, tips, nutrition facts and a video in 2020.

Shrimp Tacos with Cilantro-Lime Sour Cream Recipe

Serves 4 Prep Time: Cook Time:
5 based on 20 reviews


  • 20 medium prawns, peeled and deveined
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 corn tortillas
  • oil for frying
  • shredded lettuce
  • diced tomatoes
  • sliced avocado
  • cilantro lime sour cream (recipe follows)

For the Cilantro-Lime Sour Cream:

  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1- 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon lime zest
  • salt to taste



In a bowl whisk together olive oil, garlic, cumin, salt and cayenne pepper (if using). Add in shrimp and toss to coat completely. Cover and refrigerate for 20 minutes to give the flavors a chance to marry.


Cook shrimp in a skillet on medium heat until pink and cooked through, about 5 minutes. Turn off heat and cover to keep warm.


Use enough oil to lightly coat the bottom of a small pan, about 2 tablespoons. Heat over medium-high heat. Cook tortillas until soft, about 30 seconds on each side. Fold over to make a taco shell. As you cook each tortilla, place them on paper towels to absorb any of the oil left over.


Stir all ingredients for the Cilantro-Lime Sour Cream together in a bowl.


Spoon 5 shrimp into each taco shell. Top with lettuce, tomato, avocado and cilantro-lime sour cream. Serve.


Nutrition facts for estimation purposes only.

Nutrition information

Amount per serving: 4 servings
Calories: 468 , Total Fat: 32.2g , Saturated Fat: 6.7g , Cholesterol: 227mg , Sodium: 430mg , Carbohydrates: 20.3g , Fiber: 6.2g , Sugar: 2.2g , Protein: 27.2g

Leave a Comment

  • Reply
    January 22, 2020 at 8:39 am

    Simply Delish!

  • Reply
    September 3, 2019 at 7:05 am

    I LOVE how simple and delicious these recipes are! My mouth is watering just thinking of making them again 🙂

  • Reply
    krishna khunt
    December 4, 2018 at 1:43 am

    i just love this delicious food, Thanks you!!

  • Reply
    December 4, 2018 at 1:07 am

    Such a Delicious food! Perfect to eat with enjoy

  • Reply
    Sandra | A Dash of Sanity
    September 17, 2018 at 1:21 pm

    This looks perfect for our next taco night! Will definitely give this a try!

  • Reply
    September 14, 2018 at 8:37 am

    These tacos remind me of the ones I got in California earlier this year! I can’t wait to make them!

  • Reply
    September 14, 2018 at 7:51 am

    Delicious! Perfect for taco Tuesday!

  • Reply
    Katerina @ diethood .com
    September 14, 2018 at 7:29 am

    My family would love this!! It’s fantastic!!

  • Reply
    Dan Zehr
    September 14, 2018 at 1:51 am

    That looks so warm and comforting! Yummy! Cannot wait to try this. Thank you for a great recipe!

  • Reply
    September 13, 2018 at 2:01 pm

    This looks like the perfect combination, thank you so much for sharing!

  • Reply
    July 19, 2018 at 8:02 am

    This looks SO good! I have to make it asap!

  • Reply
    Jacque Hastert
    July 19, 2018 at 5:36 am

    Yes, I love a good spicy dinner. These shrimp tacos sound fantastic!

  • Reply
    July 19, 2018 at 4:37 am

    Yum, perfect for taco night!

  • Reply
    July 18, 2018 at 9:37 pm

    These look great! I love a dish that’s both yummy AND colorful!

  • Reply
    July 18, 2018 at 7:16 pm

    I love a good shrimp taco!

  • Reply
    Dorothy at Shockingly Delicious
    July 18, 2018 at 5:17 pm

    I love shrimp and fish tacos. I am so excited about the cilantro and lime sour cream!

  • Reply
    July 18, 2018 at 2:06 pm

    Shrimp tacos are my all time favorite, I cannot wait to try these!

  • Reply
    Samantha Dawn
    March 27, 2018 at 1:00 pm

    This crema is SO good!! Lime and sour cream make a delicious team.

  • Reply
    March 27, 2018 at 12:02 pm

    We adore fish tacos, this looks so easy and seriously tasty!! Can not wait to try it!

  • Reply
    Jennifer Blake
    March 23, 2018 at 8:28 am

    I love how light and fresh this is! I love these flavors together. Can’t wait to have this on taco night!

  • Reply
    Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts
    March 22, 2018 at 6:32 am

    Shrimp tacos are one of our favorite dinners!

  • Reply
    March 22, 2018 at 6:04 am

    Shrimp Tacos are always welcome!

  • Reply
    gerry speirs
    March 21, 2018 at 4:58 pm

    Yes for all the shrimp tacos, these are my fav!

  • Reply
    Lauren Taylor
    March 16, 2018 at 5:11 pm

    I love some shrimp tacos! Can’t wait to try!

  • Reply
    March 16, 2018 at 2:35 pm

    This look delicious!

  • Reply
    March 15, 2018 at 11:45 am

    Such fresh flavors, and I can’t wait to make this!

  • Reply
    March 14, 2018 at 6:29 pm

    I love all the flavors here. I am a huge cilantro fan! Looks delicious.

  • Reply
    March 13, 2018 at 7:32 am

    Love me some shrimp tacos!

  • Reply
    November 27, 2017 at 10:03 pm

    I made these for “Taco Tuesday” and they were a hit!

  • Reply
    Rachel Page
    December 12, 2014 at 4:42 am

    tacos look extra amazing

  • Reply
    Jerry Emery
    July 13, 2014 at 5:29 pm

    Good stuff, but I recommend 1/2 the lime juice as the sauce might be a little runny with more. Also try Crema Mexicana instead of regular sour cream for a more authentic flavor. Lastly, don’t pair it with Corona! Blech! Bohemia or one of the emerging Mexican craft beers, like Agua Mala Sirena.

  • Reply
    Dee Licious
    June 16, 2014 at 12:13 pm

    Love how fast, fresh & delicious these are!

  • Reply
    Nate Washington
    May 11, 2014 at 5:31 pm

    Made this for my family tonight. It was a big hit. My wife enjoyed it and it was my little gift for Mother’s Day. Even my 5 year old ate it. I grilled the shrimp and it turned out amazing. And I also used cabbage, carrots, and broccoli as a topping. Thank you for posting this.

    • Reply
      May 12, 2014 at 10:28 pm

      I am flattered that you chose one of my recipes for such a special day and even happier to hear your family enjoyed it! I love the idea of grilling the shrimp and using a cabbage/carrot/broccoli topping. Sounds delicious!

  • Reply
    April 14, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    SO yummy!!!! I made them for my Recipe Club gals and they were a hit! For 5 of us, I got 2lbs prawns, each person got 2 and there was some left over! I just served on warm white corn tortillas instead if frying-saved calories and really not necessary to fry because the seasoning on the prawns is delish!!!! Thank you for this recipe! Will be making it all summer…

    • Reply
      April 14, 2014 at 7:22 pm

      You’re welcome! So happy to hear that you enjoyed it. We’ll be making it all summer too! :)

  • Reply
    Leanna Kay Terry
    February 23, 2014 at 8:27 pm

    Family loved it.

    • Reply
      February 24, 2014 at 11:09 pm

      So nice to hear! Thank you!

  • Reply
    Dominique .M.
    February 10, 2014 at 8:46 pm

    Absolutely loved this recipe. i didnt have any olive oil so i used canola oil instead and it was still delicious. thanks for the recipe.

  • Reply
    December 23, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    This was so delicious! Family loved it..the sauce is divine. Thank you..will definitely be a family favorite.

  • Reply
    August 24, 2013 at 1:27 pm

    This is a good recipe. I’d specify no more than 1 tbsp lime juice in the sauce, though. I followed your recipe and used all the juice from a lime and – even though I ended up doubling the sour cream – it made the sauce too runny and the flavor was overpowering.

  • Reply
    August 11, 2013 at 8:06 pm

    We doubled the spice amounts and added 1/2 tsp of chipotle powder. Spicy but not too hot. Good recipe, will make again!

  • Reply
    Monte Crysto
    July 24, 2013 at 7:08 pm

    I made these with fresh Asian Tiger prawns. Quality ingredients equal a quality shrimp taco.

  • Reply
    July 16, 2013 at 6:39 pm

    I made these tonight and they were deliscious. I added fresh pico to them. Amazing!!!!

  • Reply
    June 20, 2013 at 8:50 am

    What would the amounts be if I’m cooking for 15 ppl?

    • Reply
      June 20, 2013 at 10:40 am

      Michie- Testing my math skills! Since this recipe serves 2 and you want to serve 15, you’ll need to multiply everything by 7.5. So for the tacos 150 prawns, 7 1/2 cloves garlic, 1 1/4 tbl chili powder and cumin, about 2 teaspoons kosher salt and cayenne pepper, 7.5 tablespoons olive oil, 30 corn tortillas. For the sour cream, about 2 cups of sour cream, 15 tbl chopped cliantro, about 2 teaspoons cumin, juice from about 7 limes. Again my math may be a bit rusty but this should get you very close, just be sure to taste before serving. I’d even cook up a few shrimp before and taste them to make sure everything tastes right to you. Hope this helps!

  • Reply
    John Stanfield
    May 24, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    I love this recipe. I made it for dinner tonight and have shared your URL with others. Going to try some of your other recipes.

    • Reply
      May 25, 2013 at 6:27 pm

      Thank you John! And thank you for sharing my blog with others :)

  • Reply
    Dani Marie
    April 5, 2013 at 8:38 pm

    Just made for dinner tonight, came out perfect!!!!

  • Reply
    March 26, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    Delicious- a keeper recipe. My husband loves it

  • Reply
    February 11, 2013 at 8:29 am

    These are the best tacos!! Thanks so much for sharing it.

  • Reply
    Heide M.
    January 24, 2013 at 7:19 am

    Thanks for posting this recipe.

  • Reply
    January 3, 2013 at 5:20 pm

    i just mad it , it is very good ..thank you.

  • Reply
    December 13, 2012 at 5:57 pm

    Love shrimp and fish tacos, but being Cajun I prefer to blacken the shrimp.

  • Reply
    September 14, 2012 at 6:15 pm

    I’m fairly new to cooking, and I was leery about trying this, even though it’s not really complicated. These are delicious. One thing that I messed up was I forgot to add the chili powder. Following the directions, I didn’t see where it said to add it, I’m assuming in the mixture that you put the shrimp in. Thank you for this recipe. They are awesome.

  • Reply
    September 11, 2012 at 12:31 am

    And also….. cabbage. Is hot option instead. Of lettuc

  • Reply
    September 11, 2012 at 12:29 am

    Fish tacos r always a fav in my house so I know they will love this…. I think I will use Greek yogurt instead of sour cream! I am so excited for dinner tomorrow night!

  • Reply
    June 18, 2012 at 6:19 am


  • Reply
    Karen M.
    June 7, 2012 at 10:24 am

    Just wanted to say that my husband and I tried these in January (yes, we grilled out in Missouri January weather) and they were so good – I mean REALLY good – that I almost started crying….no kidding – I hadn’t eaten solid food in three days due to a medical procedure and THIS recipe was what I wanted! :) We make these for company every chance we get and we still have them once a week for our regular menu item on Taco Tuesday…don’t skimp on the cilantro lime sauce, people, it adds just the right compliment to the spicyness of the shrimp – SO GOOD!

  • Reply
    May 24, 2012 at 7:11 am

    Delicious! My whole family absolutely loved this recipe, and the best part was it took less than 30 minutes to make! Thanks for this wonderful recipe :)

    • Reply
      May 24, 2012 at 9:08 am

      Thanks Inspired Dish! That is awesome! :) Sierra- I’m glad you and your family enjoyed it!

  • Reply
    The Inspired Dish
    May 23, 2012 at 6:50 pm

    Hiya! I have returned to announce that your shrimp tacos received the most likes on The Inspired Dish’s Facebook Page this week and I would like to give you our Tasty Blog Award! I have posted the award to your facebook page. Please feel free to use it on you website if you like! Loved the lime, cilantro sour cream!

  • Reply
    The Inspired Dish
    May 17, 2012 at 5:14 pm

    Hi Des,
    Theses look super yummy! I am so hungry for shrimp tacos and these are making my mouth water! I have featured them on my FB page so my readers can have a drool! Stop by and see me! -Cathy

  • Reply
    Amanda Escajeda
    April 18, 2012 at 5:48 pm

    So good!! Husband said it was like eating at a restaurant & I outdid myself! :) Couldn’t stop eating the leftover cilantro-lime sourcream with chips! Thanks so much for recipe.

  • Reply
    March 20, 2012 at 7:54 pm

    This was so good. The lime was a little strong and I only used half of the juice. Definitely making this again!

  • Reply
    March 4, 2012 at 1:47 pm

    Des, this shrimp taco recipe was outstanding!! Yum! I look forward to trying your other recipes. Do you have a cookbook?

  • Reply
    January 28, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    Had these for dinner last night! I used fresh Maine shrimp and I used the white tortillas instead of corn…very yummy!!! I will be making these again and again!!

  • Reply
    December 11, 2011 at 10:31 pm

    so yummy. but my husband and I made a biggggg mistake- we added a freshly chopped, whole jalapeno to the recipe…. we love spicy things, but this was burn-your-face-off spicy. we couldnt stop eating them because they were sooo good, but we downed a gallon of milk afterwards =p

  • Reply
    shrink on the couch
    November 16, 2011 at 6:37 am

    This shrimp taco recipe was out of this world! Loved the lime cilantro sauce so much, enough to blog about it, actually! Stop by and see my shout out.

  • Reply
    October 30, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    I made them for my husband and two teenaged boys tonight. I used a whole package of frozen salad shrimp, which came out to two small tacos apiece. Next time I’ll be doubling the recipe to make the tacos a bit fatter. The boys (including Dad) loved them. I didn’t have any cilantro, so left it out of the sour cream, but added some southwestern seasoning, and it was still delicious. Thanks for sharing this delightful recipe!

  • Reply
    October 23, 2011 at 7:49 pm

    These turned out great! My 84 year old grandma, 6 year old nephew, and 30 year old fiance’ all want these again, soon! I used fat free sour cream, and no one had a clue.

  • Reply
    ruby goodwin
    September 21, 2011 at 10:04 am

    here is the shrimp taco recipe I told you about real good

  • Reply
    September 1, 2011 at 3:19 pm

    My husband hates shrimp tacos… but he LOVED these! My 7 year old even ate seconds. Good work!

  • Reply
    August 3, 2011 at 4:43 pm

    Big hit at dinner tonight! I scraped the cooked kernels from a corn on the cob and added it to the sauce. Also substituted finely shredded red cabbage for the lettuce. That extra crunch was so good!! Will make these again and again for sure!

  • Reply
    May 6, 2011 at 12:15 pm

    I made this dish, and it was easy and DELICIOUS!!!

  • Reply
    March 22, 2011 at 1:05 pm

    I made these last night…OMG! YUM!! Soooo good! Even the hubby loved them!

  • Reply
    March 12, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    Outstanding! I substituted tartar for sour cream, and I mixed in a little chipotle paste instead of cayenne, and used LOTS of Garlic. OMG…I’m now back in my wife’s good graces. Thanks!

  • Reply
    February 18, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    the whole family love, love, loved them. Thanks so much.

  • Reply
    February 3, 2011 at 10:53 pm

    we made this 2 nights ago and it was a big hit. i used greek yogurt instead of sour cream. great stuff Des

  • Reply
    December 19, 2010 at 7:59 am

    Made it last night, absolutely delicious ,even my too young kids loved it! Served it with spanish rice and beans.Thank you so much for sharing your recipes.

  • Reply
    November 17, 2010 at 7:21 pm

    You won’t be disappointed! These were AMAZING! We ate them in mid-November, served with homemade spanish rice!

    • Reply
      November 19, 2010 at 8:58 am

      Shannon- Thank you! I like the sound of homemade spanish rice. How did you make it?

  • Reply
    September 5, 2010 at 7:51 pm

    WOW. We made this recipe for dinner last week and it was absolutely delicious. I rank it up there with some of the best mexican restaurant shrimp tacos around. We will probably cut back on the lime juice and zest next time – but this is truly an A+ recipe!

  • Reply
    tony marini
    August 3, 2010 at 10:49 am

    You can make this a little healthier if you want to use yogurt instead of sour cream…Just sayin

  • Reply
    April 29, 2010 at 4:12 pm

    O.k.- My mouth is watering! I don’t believe I can rest until I’ve made and enjoyed this delish dish!


  • Reply
    April 4, 2010 at 8:48 pm

    i’ve made shrimp tacos 3 times in 2 weeks, and your recipe is the best one….so delicious!!! thank you for sharing your awesome recipe and beautiful photos, cant wait to see what else you have on your blog

  • Reply
    October 16, 2009 at 12:17 pm

    REALLY excited to try this one tonight!

    • Reply
      October 16, 2009 at 7:07 pm

      I hope you enjoy them Melissa!

  • Reply
    July 29, 2009 at 2:27 pm

    I just made this for dinner – loved the tasty shrimp, and the sauce was a nice touch! thanks!

    • Reply
      July 29, 2009 at 5:21 pm

      You’re welcome Sadia! I am glad that you liked them :)

  • Reply
    July 22, 2009 at 4:48 am

    Looks so tasty – of all the things I never had in a taco … now I have to try it.

  • Reply
    Cathy - wheresmydamnanswer
    July 20, 2009 at 1:19 pm

    This is a perfect meal in my book!! Cannot get enough of these flavors!!

  • Reply
    July 20, 2009 at 10:23 am

    Wow look at that photo! That is one gorgeous dish!

  • Reply
    July 20, 2009 at 1:38 am

    Ohmygosh, could this look more attractive? I’ve never eaten anything like this (British girl, here!) but wow, do I want to. I adore seafood in any format!

  • Reply
    BAKING is my ZeN
    July 19, 2009 at 8:30 am

    looks delish!

  • Reply
    The Leftoverist
    July 18, 2009 at 7:42 pm

    Darn! We might have run into one another at Pike Place and talked blogging!

    This is a really mouthwatering photo. I was thinking about tacos today myself. And I bought shrimp at the market!

  • Reply
    July 18, 2009 at 2:06 pm

    Ohhh grilled seafood in a tortilla, it’s like all my cravings wrapped into a cute parcel!
    I LOVE what you’ve done to the site. It looks so fresh and dynamic! Good job!

  • Des

    Hey! I'm Des!

    Welcome to Life’s Ambrosia where Dinner is served and memories are made. Here you will find over 1000 tried and true recipes for every possible occasion. In the last 10 years, this blog has helped millions of families put dinner on the table and create food memories. Let me help you too.

    Read more »

    Have new recipes emailed to you.