Watermelon and Citrus Shrimp Ceviche
This Watermelon and Citrus Shrimp Ceviche is loaded with fresh shrimp and juicy watermelon, plus the bright flavors of orange and lime. It always puts me in a vacation kind of mood!
An Easy Shrimp Ceviche with Watermelon
When it comes to foods that scream “Summer!”, watermelon is definitely on my Top 5 list. Sweet and juicy and ultra refreshing, I’m positive this delicious fruit was created simply for the pleasure of celebrating summer!
In the heat of summer, I gravitate toward lighter fare that’s fresh and big on flavor. And one of my ultimate summer heat wave meals is ceviche.
Ceviche is most often found in the appetizer category, but I am not ashamed to call it a meal. Especially when it comes to this Watermelon and Citrus Shrimp Ceviche. Just give me a few chips and a big bowl of this fresh ceviche and I’m one happy girl!
If you like watermelon, be sure to also check out my Watermelon Salsa recipe!
* This is a sponsored post, created in partnership with the National Watermelon Promotion Board.
What is Ceviche? Is it Safe to Eat?
Inspired by travels to tropical locations (I ate ceviche every single day for a week while visiting Mexico!), ceviche always puts me in a vacation kind of mood.
Ceviche features raw fish (in this case shrimp) that is marinated or “cooked” in fresh citrus juice – and then mixed with any variety of other ingredients like fruits, peppers, onions, and seasonings.
This ceviche recipe is loaded with watermelon and shrimp bites, and marinates in both orange and lime juices. I love the bright and tart flavor that this citrus combo gives!
Ceviche is very safe to eat! The fresh citrus juice will essentially “cook” the shrimp. The acid makes the shrimp firm and opaque, just as if it is exposed to heat.
If you’re looking for a traditional recipe, try this classic shrimp ceviche!
Shrimp and watermelon are the stars in this recipe. Here’s a rundown of everything you’ll need to make this ceviche!
- Shrimp – Use raw medium-sized shrimp that has been peeled and deveined, and chop it into 1/2″ pieces.
- Watermelon – Cut it into 1/2″ pieces, similar in size to the shrimp pieces.
- Fresh orange juice & zest – Only freshly squeezed OJ will do in this ceviche!
- Fresh lime juice & zest – Again, only freshly squeezed.
- Red onion – Onion offers great contrasting flavor to the sweet watermelon. Mince it nice and small.
- Jalapeno – A little heat is always good in ceviche. Mince it the same size as the red onion.
- Cilantro – A common fresh herb that’s used in Mexican cuisine, we always have some on hand!
- Mint – Mint is known for being refreshing, and it plays so well with this watermelon recipe. My herb garden is crazy with mint all summer long, so I toss some in whenever I can!
- Kosher salt – A little salt really brings out all the flavors in this recipe, don’t skip it!
How to Make Shrimp Ceviche
You will love the simplicity of this recipe. And with all the fresh ingredients, it’s a JOY to make!
- Combine shrimp and some of the orange juice and lime juice in a medium bowl.
- Cover and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours, or until shrimp are pink and opaque (no longer translucent). The citric acids will “cook” the raw shrimp. Then drain and discard the juice.
- Fold together “cooked” shrimp and remaining ingredients.
- Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes to let flavors mingle.
Then just fold it a couple times to combine, and serve with your favorite chips!
Tips for Success
Pretty simple! But, even so, here are a few tips that will help you get the best results with your watermelon ceviche.
- Make the shrimp and watermelon pieces the same size: I like to keep the main ingredients, the shrimp and watermelon, in small pieces that are roughly the same size. I aim for pieces that are about 1/2″. This just makes it easier to scoop and easier to chew.
- Mince the secondary ingredients: Likewise, I like to keep the secondary ingredients, the red onion and jalapeno, roughly the same size. But I prefer to mince these, nice and small. This helps to ensure that these stronger flavors are more evenly distributed and that I don’t get a big bite of jalapeno!
- Add extra “cook” time: Do plan for the necessary time for the citrus juices to “cook” the shrimp, and then a 30-minute chill of the finished ceviche to let the flavors meld.
Substitutions & Recipe Variations
Ceviche is a super flexible dish that begs to be played with. Here are some variation ideas. Have fun with it and make it your own!
- Seafood: Substitute all or part of the shrimp with scallops or firm white fish. I once enjoyed ceviche at a restaurant where they included calamari – and that was also very good!
- Fruit: Substitute some of the watermelon with mango or pineapple. Avocado is also good and lends bites of creaminess – fold some in right before serving.
- Vegetables: It’s easy to add other veggies, such as bell peppers (any color), cucumber, and green onion.
- Herbs: I often hear from people, saying they don’t like cilantro – and that’s not a problem. Simply leave it out. Consider adding some fresh chopped parsley in its place.
- Seasoning: I often like to add a few good grinds of course black pepper. I’m kind of a black pepper freak! And sometimes I sprinkle on a little cumin or Tajin.
- Heat: Some like a spicy ceviche. Others don’t. But it’s easy to make it however you like by simply increasing or decreasing the jalapeno, or omitting it entirely. And if you really like heat, you could even use hotter peppers such as a habanero.
Another fun variation is to grill the shrimp. While technically not a true ceviche, since the shrimp is first cooked on the grill, I love this Grilled Shrimp Ceviche for its grilled flavor!
How Long Does Ceviche Last?
Ceviche is best eaten on the same day it’s made. But I’ve very much enjoyed leftovers for another day or two. :) You can keep them in the fridge in an airtight container.
More Shrimp Recipes
Ready to make some more easy shrimp recipes? Let’s do it!
- 1 pound medium raw shrimp, peeled, deveined, and chopped into 1/2" pieces
- 1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice, divided
- 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lime juice, divided
- 4 cup diced (1/2" pieces) watermelon
- 3/4 cup minced red onion
- 2 tablespoon minced jalapeno pepper (add more if desired)
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- 1 teaspoon lime zest
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves, chopped
- 12 large mint leaves, chopped
- In a medium bowl, combine shrimp, 1/4 cup of the orange juice, and 1/4 cup of the lime juice. Cover and refrigerate 1 to 2 hours, or until shrimp are pink and opaque (no longer translucent). The citric acids will "cook" the raw shrimp. Drain. Discard juice.
- In a large bowl, fold together watermelon, red onion, jalapeño pepper, orange zest, lime zest, and remaining orange and lime juices. Sprinkle salt over the top, and then add the shrimp, cilantro, and mint. Fold gently to combine.
- Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes to let flavors mingle. Serve with your favorite chips.
- from a farmgirl's dabbles
- To store. Ceviche is best eaten on the same day it's made. But I've very much enjoyed leftovers for another day or two. :) You can keep them in the fridge in an airtight container.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 68Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 71mgSodium: 460mgCarbohydrates: 7gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 9g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by Nutritionix. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee accuracy. If your health depends on nutrition information, please calculate again with your own favorite calculator.
Use the Whole Watermelon
Did you know that the entire watermelon is usable and compostable?
RIND: Use the rind as creative serving vessels and centerpieces, and/or in composting. Take a look at this fun way to use the rind in these watermelon jello shots.
Also. Have you ever enjoyed watermelon pickles?! Find watermelon rind recipes here.
JUICE: Juicing watermelon is a great way to use overripe watermelon, retaining its budget-friendly value (one watermelon can feed up to three dozen people!) and nutrition (watermelon is an excellent source of vitamins A and C, and free from cholesterol, fat, and sodium). Consisting of 92% water, watermelon is a great way to stay hydrated in the summer. My family especially likes a cold watermelon lemonade spritzer on a hot summer day. Get watermelon juice recipes here.
FLESH: Whenever I bring home a watermelon, our youngest daughter requests that it be cut into wedges – her absolute favorite way to enjoy it. But there are so many fun ways to use watermelon flesh beyond the wedge. A couple suggestions for you: dice watermelon for this watermelon jicama salsa or cube it for this beautiful fruit salad with vanilla bean yogurt dressing. Discover even more recipes using watermelon flesh here.
Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by the National Watermelon Promotion Board. Thank you for supporting us and the brands we so carefully choose to work with. All opinions expressed are our own.