Margarita Shrimp Salad

Spring 2003, The Essential EatingWell Cookbook (2004)

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The flavors of a margarita—tequila, orange and lime—are blended in this healthy salad recipe of fresh shrimp, diced avocado and sliced red onion, spiked with a creamy, spicy sour cream dressing. Don’t shy away from avocados because they’re high in calories—avocados are rich in good, heart-healthy fat, as well as vitamin E, folate, potassium and other important nutrients.

"This is a terrific salad. In summer I like to add frest, grilled corn. It's one of those super refreshing meals for a hot day plus it's sophisticated enough for those special, small luncheon parties. "
Margarita Shrimp Salad

Makes: 4 servings

Serving Size: about 2 cups

Active Time:

Total Time:


Creamy Lime-Chile Dressing

  • 6 tablespoons reduced-fat sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice (see Tip)
  • 2 teaspoons minced seeded jalapeno, or serrano pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Margarita Shrimp Salad

  • 1 pound medium shrimp (30-40 per pound), peeled and deveined
  • 1/4 cup tequila
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated orange zest
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated lime zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup thinly slivered red onion
  • 4 cups torn romaine lettuce
  • 2 medium endives, cored and torn into pieces (2 cups)
  • 1 orange, peeled and cut into segments
  • 2 ripe Hass avocados, peeled, pitted and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice (see Tip)
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • Lime wedges


  1. To prepare the dressing: Whisk sour cream, lime juice, jalapeño, chili powder, sugar and salt.
  2. To prepare the salad: Toss shrimp, tequila, orange zest, lime zest and salt in a medium bowl. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Place onion in a small bowl, cover with cold water and some ice; let stand for 10 minutes, or until ready to use.
  3. Toss romaine, endive, orange segments and the drained onion in a large bowl. Add the dressing and toss to coat. Divide among 4 plates. Toss avocados with lime juice and divide among the salads.
  4. Drain the shrimp, reserving the marinade. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp and sauté until pink and firm, 2 to 3 minutes. Divide among the salads. Add the reserved marinade to the pan and bring to a boil, stirring; spoon over shrimp. Serve with lime wedges for squeezing.

Tips & Notes

  • Tip: A lime at room temperature gives the most juice (1 1/2-2 tablespoons). Before juicing, roll the lime on the counter, pressing down with your hand. If the recipe calls for both zest and juice, grate the zest before squeezing the juice.


Per serving: 398 calories; 22 g fat (4 g sat, 12 g mono); 191 mg cholesterol; 21 g carbohydrates; 1 g added sugars; 6 g total sugars; 27 g protein; 10 g fiber; 615 mg sodium; 1132 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (97% daily value), Vitamin C (70% dv), Folate (51% dv), Potassium (27% dv), Magnesium (19% dv)

Carbohydrate Servings: 1 1/2

Exchanges: 1/2 fruit, 1 1/2 vegetable, 3 1/2 lean protein, 4 1/2 fat

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