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Chili Lime Shrimp is a quick and easy recipe that packs a serious punch of flavor. But you only need a few ingredients, one skillet, and less than ten minutes. And you can make a healthy and gluten free seafood dinner by serving kicked up saucy honey lime shrimp over rice or cauliflower rice, in tacos or lettuce wraps, or on top of a salad.
Love this? Try Chili Lime Cube Steaks or Sriracha Lime Slow Cooker Turkey Breast Tenderloin.
My son recently asked me to start making more seafood for dinner. He could have easily requested a steady stream of pizza and lasagna and mac and cheese. But since he went with something fairly healthy, I figured I should try to comply with this suggestion.
Here’s the thing. I’m not the world’s biggest seafood fan, so I just have never gotten comfortable cooking a wide variety of it. Yes, shrimp is fairly simple. I make a mean Maple Sesame Salmon that I even enjoy eating.
Honestly, I’d rather stick to, you know, chicken.
But since I won’t cave to crazy pickiness and preferences that change daily from my kids, I figured it’s kind of hypocritical for me to continue to avoid making seafood just because it’s not my favorite.
That’s why I’ve been keeping a bag of shrimp in my freezer all the time. So even if I am not feeling quite adventurous enough to try a new seafood recipe, at least I can fall back on one of my simple but tasty shrimp recipes that even I will eat.
It’s based on this super popular recipe for Chili Lime Steak Bites. I knew that since the sauce turns the beef cubes into a fiesta in your mouth, it would certainly do the same for simply sauteed shrimp since they are a blank slate just waiting for their invite to the flavor party.
Why do you need THIS Chili Lime Shrimp Recipe?
Picky-eater approved – And when I talk about picky eaters, in this case, I’m actually talking about myself and not my kids. I love the slight kick and zippy flavor in the simple sauce.
No marinating time – Other recipes for chili lime shrimp require you to marinate the shrimp for at least a half hour. This dish requires no advance planning, other than thawing your shrimp. And even if you forget to do that, you can run them under cold water and they thaw in no time.
Quick prep – Sprinkle salt, pepper, and garlic powder on the shrimp and give them a quick saute. Stir a few ingredients together for the sauce and pour it over the shrimp. Done and done.
Just one skillet – No turning on the oven and greasing a sheet pan. No lighting the grill or threading shrimp onto skewers. That means you can keep the kitchen cool on hot days and stay inside on cold days, making this a go-to recipe any time of the year.
Chili Honey Lime Shrimp Recipe
All it takes is six ingredients, plus salt and pepper. You’ll need a bowl or two and one skillet. And in less than ten minutes you have slightly sweet, slightly spicy, slightly tangy, and seriously succulent shrimp to use a million different ways.
What do you need to make this saucy shrimp recipe?
- Shrimp – raw, peeled, deveined, and tails removed. I used medium shrimp. Larger shrimp may need another couple minutes of cooking time.
- Garlic Powder
- Chili Paste – I use the tube from Gourmet Garden that you can find in the produce section, usually near the herbs. I have not tried Sambal Oelek or Thai Chili Paste, but I imagine it would have a similar flavor.
- Limes – zested and juiced
- Olive Oil
- Cilantro or Scallions – optional for garnish
- Skillet – you can use any 9- or 10-inch skillet, but I prefer to use my cast iron skillet.
- Bowls – you’ll need a couple of small bowls, one for seasoning the shrimp and one for sturring together the sauce ingredients.
- Microplane grater – a microplane zester or grater is the best tool for zesting limes to ensure you don’t get any of the bitter white pith
- Citrus juicer – yes, you can just cut the limes in half and squeeze them, but I am a big fan of this citrus juicer. It really gets a lot of juice out of your fruit without a lot of effort.
How do you make Chili Lime Shrimp?
Here is a brief overview so you can see just how easy it is to make. Scroll down to the printable recipe card for the full quantities and details.
But don’t skip my PRO TIPS below!
- Season the shrimp with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
- In a small bowl, stir together the chili paste, honey, lime juice, and lime zest.
- Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add the shrimp and cook for 1-2 minutes per side.
- Pour the sauce over the shrimp and cook for another minute or two until heated through and the shrimp are fully cooked.
What kind of shrimp to use?
I used raw frozen medium shrimp. To cut down on prep time, I got the shrimp that already had the shells and tails removed.
But you can use and fresh or frozen raw shrimp. I do not recommend pre-cooked shrimp, as shrimp do cook quickly. Precooked shrimp will get tough as you heat it and you won’t be able to cook it long enough to absorb the flavors of the sauce.
If you are using frozen shrimp, be sure it is thawed completely. You can do this by leaving it in the refrigerator overnight. Or to thaw it more quickly, place the shrimp in a bowl of cold water for a couple of hours. Or thaw it in a colander with cold water running over it. This will thaw the shrimp in a matter of minutes.
Whether you use fresh or thawed shrimp, just be sure to pat it dry before seasoning it so you don’t have excess moisture.
And if you use large or jumbo shrimp, you may need to add another minute or two to the cooking time to ensure they are cooked through.
What to serve with Chili Lime Shrimp?
- Spoon the sauteed shrimp and sauce over rice or cauliflower rice.
- Turn them into tacos or lettuce wraps with Avocado Mango Salsa or Tropical Pineapple Coleslaw.
- Use them to top a salad and drizzle with Buttermilk Avocado Ranch Dressing or Honey Lime Dressing.
- Serve with baked sweet potatoes and Pineapple Black Beans or Pineapple Broccoli Salad on the side.
More recipes ready in under 15 minutes…
- Worcestershire Sauce Cube Steak Skillet Recipe
- Barbecue Chicken Tostadas
- Honey Balsamic Glazed Steak Bites
- Beef Stir Fry
- Quick Tortilla Soup
More shrimp recipes…
- Homestyle Mashed Potatoes and Shrimp Bowls
- Chicken and Shrimp Jambalaya Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Shrimp Rice Paper Rolls
- BBQ Shrimp Quinoa Bowls
- Garlic Butter Shrimp
Easy Chili Lime Shrimp Recipe
This skillet shrimp dinner recipe will be your go-to for busy nights. You only have to gather a few ingredients and saute everything in one pan. Cooking and cleanup will be done fast, and the family will devour it even faster. It’s so versatile, you can use this slightly spicy honey lime shrimp and its flavor-packed sauce to make many different healthy and gluten free meals.
Chili Lime Shrimp
- 1 pound raw shrimp , peeled, deveined, and tails removed (thawed if frozen)
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 Tablespoons chili paste
- 1 Tablespoon honey
- 2 limes , zested and juiced
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- Cilantro or scallions for garnish , if desired
- Pat shrimp dry, then place in a bowl. Season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder, and toss to coat evenly.
- In a small bowl, stir together chili paste, honey, and the juice and zest of the limes.
- Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and add the olive oil.
- Add the shrimp to the pan and cook for 1-2 minutes, then flip and cook another 1-2 minutes on the second side.
- Pour the sauce over the shrimp and cook for another 1-2 mintes, or until heated through and the shrimp are opaque and cooked through.
- Serve as desired over rice or cauliflower rice, in tacos or lettuce wraps, on a salad, or however you like. Garnish with cilantro or scallions, if desired.