This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

A point of contention with healthy dinners if I may. They’re supposed to happen every night. Sometimes I step into my kitchen and think, didn’t we just do this? Was our pile of dishes not just washed (or, erm, moved to the sink for someone else to wash)? You are telling me I am supposed to cook a full meal again? For tonight at least, we have a solution: Healthy Mexican Shrimp!

A skillet of Mexican shrimp and rice

A one-pan dinner that combines juicy sautéed shrimp, hearty brown rice, fiber-rich beans, and fresh veggies, this is a healthy, filling, and colorful recipe that will alleviate your meal-planning stress.

To exterminate any final fragments of belief you may hold that I pull together a beautifully presented, well-rounded, and restaurant-worthy dinner every night (or even most every night), I do not.

Thank you leftovers, grilled cheese, and a personal favorite, going out to eat.

When I do cook, which is a few nights a week, I look for recipes that a) can be cooked in one pan (because dishes are the worst) and b) taste great reheated the next day (because cooking once and eating twice is the best).

These two requirements often lead me to recipes like this Mexican shrimp with rice.

It offers every food group, is easy to make, and since it is appropriate for topping with avocado, I know Ben is on board.

Shrimp and rice in a skillet with lime slices

About this Healthy Mexican Shrimp Recipe

  • The trick to making this an all-in-one is dinner is that the rice, veggies, and shrimp all cook in the same skillet.
  • To shorten the prep, I use a combination of fresh, frozen, pantry ingredients.

The Fresh Ingredient Line Up

  • Bell peppers. I prefer red for their sweeter flavor, though green will work too.
  • Jalapeno. For a lightly herbaceous, crisp kick. If you remove the seeds and membranes prior to chopping, they add flavor but not heat.
  • Green Onion. A bit o’ bite + color.
  • Cilantro + Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice. To lighten, brighten, and keep this Mexican shrimp recipe extra fresh. No bottled lime juice allowed. I know it’s easy, but it’s not the same.
  • All the Toppings. Avocado, cheese, nonfat Greek yogurt (my healthy swap for sour cream), salsa. Gussy up this Mexican shrimp to your heart’s content…or don’t. Toppings are delish of course but this recipe truly has enough flavor to stand on its own too.

The Frozen/Pantry Line Ingredient Up

  • Long Grain Brown Rice. Whole grains like brown rice are higher in fiber and protein than their white counterparts, making them more filling.
  • Shrimp. Yes, shrimp! Whether I’m making Shrimp Tacos, Garlic Shrimp Pasta, or even Grill Shrimp Seasoning, 99.9% of the time, I purchase frozen, deveined shrimp. It’s faster to prep, affordable, and since most grocery store shrimp is frozen before it arrives anyway, you often end up with a similar, less expensive version of the “fresh” shrimp sold in the seafood case. If you prefer a ground beef and rice recipe, check out my Healthy Beef Taco Skillet instead.
  • Canned Black Beans. Feel free to swap a different kind if that’s what you have on hand. To earn serious extra credit, use 1 ½ cups of beans that you’ve cooked from dry in advance. (If you want to go that route, these easy Instant Pot Black Beans are my favorite.)
  • Canned Tomatoes with Green Chilis. Instant fiesta + ultra convenient. Bonus: the rice cooks in the tomatoes’ liquid, absorbing even more flavor.
  • Spices. Cumin and chili powder give this recipe a good amount of heat. If you are sensitive to spice, scale them back a bit.
Seafood and rice in a skillet with lime

What to Serve with Mexican Shrimp

How to Store and Freeze

  • To Store. Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Rewarm gently in the microwave.
  • To Freeze. Re-frozen then reheated shrimp dishes are not my favorite, but you can certainly freeze this if you like. Place leftovers in an airtight freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
Mexican shrimp and rice in a large skillet

If this recipe looks vaguely familiar, it’s an adaptation of my Mexican Chicken and Rice with a few tweaks to give it extra pizzazz, tune the spices to pair more appropriately with shrimp, and sneak in a few extra veggies.

Try them both, and then try my Mexican Salad.

Then, tell me which is your favorite in the comments section below!

Mexican Shrimp

4.84 from 24 votes
Healthy Mexican Shrimp and Rice. Easy recipe that’s full of spicy Mexican flavor! Juicy shrimp, brown rice, veggies, and beans make it an all-in-one meal.

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 50 minutes
Total: 1 hour

Servings: 4 people (about 9 cups)


  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil divided
  • 1 pound medium shrimp peeled and deveined (I use frozen shrimp, then thaw it)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground chili powder divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt divided
  • 1 small yellow onion chopped
  • 2 small jalapenos or 1 large jalapeno, core and seeds discarded, diced
  • 2 red bell peppers cored and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 can reduced sodium black beans — 15 ounces, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup long-grain brown rice do not use short grain or instant, as it will become mushy
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes in green chiles, such as Rotel 10-ounce cans, 20 ounces total
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 3 medium green onions chopped
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro plus additional for serving
  • 1 lime cut into wedges

Optional — for serving:

  • additional sliced jalapeno
  • sour cream or plain Greek yogurt
  • diced avocado


  • In a large skillet or Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot but not smoking, swirl to coat the pan, then add the shrimp. Sprinkle with ½ teaspoon chili powder, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ¼ teaspoon cumin, and ¼ teaspoon salt. Stir to coat the shrimp with the spices, then continue to saute just until the shrimp is pink and fully cooked through, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove to a plate and set aside.
  • Add the remaining ½ tablespoon oil, onion, jalapeno, and bell pepper. Cook until the vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the oregano, black pepper, the remaining 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, and ½ teaspoon cumin. Stir to coat the vegetables and cook 30 seconds. Add the rice and beans. Stir to coat once more.
  • Add the diced tomatoes in their juices and water. Stir to combine the ingredients. Bring to a gentle boil, cover, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Let simmer 30 minutes. Remove the lid and stir, scraping up any rice that has started to stick to the bottom of the pot. Re-cover and continue to let simmer with the lid on until the rice is tender, 10 to 15 additional minutes, stirring the pot every 10 minutes to prevent sticking. If the rice begins to dry out, add a bit more water as needed.
  • Stir in the green onions, cilantro, and reserved shrimp. Squeeze the lime over the top. Serve warm with desired toppings.


  • I have only tested this recipe with long grain brown rice. If white rice or another type of rice or grain is substituted, the cooking time and liquid ratios will vary. Consult the package for guidance.
  • Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Rewarm gently in the microwave.
  • Re-frozen then reheated shrimp dishes are not my favorite, but you can certainly freeze this if you like.


Serving: 2.25cups (without extra toppings)Calories: 492kcalCarbohydrates: 89gProtein: 42gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 173mgFiber: 21gSugar: 24g

Join today and start saving your favorite recipes

Create an account to easily save your favorite recipes and access FREE meal plans.

Sign Me Up

Did you try this recipe?

I want to see!

Follow @wellplated on Instagram, snap a photo, and tag it #wellplated. I love to know what you are making!

You May Also Like

Free Email Series
Sign Up for FREE Weekly Meal Plans
Each includes a grocery list, budget, and 5 healthy dinners, helping you save time, save money, and live better!
Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

Learn more about Erin

Leave a Comment

Did you make this recipe?

Don't forget to leave a review!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


Leave a comment

  1. I made the  Healthy Mexican Shrimp and Rice, my husband and I loved it. I will make this  for my family dinner.5 stars

  2. This is a family favorite! I sometimes add an extra can of black beans and a can of corn to stretch it a little further.5 stars

  3. This recipe was sooo soo good!!! i didn’t have black beans so I used chickpeas and it came out phenomenal! thank you! I wish I had made double the portion! haha5 stars

  4. This is my grown son’s absolute, most favorite dish! It’s one way I can get him to come over for dinner 😉5 stars

  5. It was a huge waste of time. And 10 minute prep! Ha ha… it takes at least 1/2 hour to de-shell the shrimp never mind cut up the veggies. Rice added nothing to the dish; was still undercooked at 50 minutes! Awful. And a waste of good shrimp!

    1. Hi Helen! I’m sorry to hear that this recipe fell short of your expectations. I (and other readers) truly enjoyed this dish, so I really wish you would’ve too!

  6. Oh no I am in the middle of this recipe and I don’t have black beans! Can I substitute kidney beans?5 stars

    1. Hi Beth! Just so you will know for next time, if a recipe of mine calls for cooked rice, it will specifically say that, otherwise it is uncooked. Hope this helps!

    1. Hi Jen! I’ve only tested the recipe as written. It would change your cooking time using quinoa. If you decide to experiment, let me know how it goes!

    1. Hi Jenni! I stopped including sodium info because it can vary so much depending upon what products you used, and I found a lot of conflicting info online, so ultimately I didn’t feel comfortable publishing it because sometimes it wasn’t even in the ballpark. If you’d like to calculate it yourself, there are lots of free tools online ( is popular). I hope that helps!

  7. OMG!!!!! This was sooooo good and soooo easy!! I didn’t use the jalapeño because I did not have any and would for sure add it next time….but still AH-Mazing!! We had no leftovers….do yourself a favor and make extra as this would be equally delicious the next day. The only thing I would change (only because we are Gus gus’s would be to add more shrimp). This has been added into rotation at our home!! A great Taco Tuesday addition!! Again soooo good!! Thanks for the recipe :)5 stars

  8. I cooked this a few days ago and been making it everyday thank you love this recipe its my new go to lunch and dinner.5 stars

  9. Worst recipe I’ve ever tried. After 1 hour 25 minutes the rice is still solid. Waste of expensive shrimp. Do yourself a favor and skip this recipe or use already cooked rice.1 star

    1. I’m sorry to hear that you had trouble with the recipe, Angelique. The amounts, flavorings and timing have worked well for myself (and others) so I wished it would have been a hit for you too! I know it can be so disappointing to try a new recipe and it does not turn out for you.

    1. Lyn, I think that would be really challenging because shrimp cook so fast. If you decide to experiment, you can check out my Instant Pot Brown Rice for the rice cooking time:

Load More Comments