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Aguachile: Zesty Mexican Flavor

Aguachile is a refreshing and zesty Mexican dish that originates from the coastal regions, particularly popular in states like Sinaloa and Nayarit.

Aguachile typically features fresh seafood, such as shrimp or fish, which is marinated in a mixture of lime juice, chili peppers, and seasonings.

The name “aguachile” translates to “chili water,” referencing the marinade’s liquid base of lime juice, which “cooks” the seafood, similar to ceviche.

This dish is prized for its bright and tangy taste, with the acidity of the lime juice enhancing the natural flavors of the seafood while the chili peppers add a kick of heat.
Aguachile is often served chilled, making it a perfect choice for hot summer days or as a refreshing appetizer.

Its popularity extends beyond coastal areas, as it has become a beloved dish enjoyed throughout Mexico and beyond, celebrated for its bold flavors and culinary innovation.

Estimated Duration

Embark on a culinary journey that takes approximately 30 minutes from start to finish. Aguachile, with its quick preparation, ensures you savor the freshness of seafood without a lengthy cooking process.

Nutrition Facts

Aguachile not only delights the taste buds but also provides a healthy dose of lean proteins, vitamins, and omega-3 fatty acids from the seafood. This dish is a nutritious choice for those looking for a light yet satisfying meal.

Equipment Required

Before creating this seafood masterpiece, ensure you have the following equipment:


Gather these fresh and flavorful ingredients for an authentic Aguachile experience:

For the Marinade:

  • 1 cup fresh lime juice
  • 2 to 3 green chilies, seeds removed
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and sliced
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • Salt to taste

Additional Ingredients:


  1. Prepare the Marinade: In a blender or food processor, combine fresh lime juice, green chilies, sliced cucumber, cilantro, garlic, and salt. Blend until you achieve a smooth, vibrant green marinade.
  2. Marinate the Shrimp: In a mixing bowl, place the fresh shrimp and pour the marinade over them. Ensure the shrimp are well-coated. Allow them to marinate for about 10-15 minutes.
  3. Assemble the Dish: Arrange the marinated shrimp on a serving plate. Top with thinly sliced red onion, julienned cucumber, and avocado slices.
  4. Garnish: Drizzle a bit of the marinade over the assembled ingredients. Garnish with fresh cilantro leaves for an added burst of flavor and freshness.
  5. Serve and Enjoy: Present your Aguachile masterpiece immediately. This dish is best enjoyed fresh and chilled.

Tips and Advice

  • Adjust the spiciness by modifying the number of green chilies in the marinade.
  • For an extra layer of flavor, consider adding a splash of clamato juice to the marinade.

Enjoy with these Side Dishes

Aguachile is often served with tostadas or salted crackers on the side. Pair it with a light Mexican beer or a refreshing cocktail for the perfect accompaniment.

Storage Options

Due to the nature of the dish, Aguachile is best enjoyed immediately. If you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for a short duration.

Ingredient Substitutes

Feel free to experiment with different seafood options such as scallops or fish fillets. You can also add diced mango or pineapple for a tropical twist.

Popular Alternatives to this Dish

Explore more Mexican seafood delights like Tostada de Ceviche, Coctel de Mariscos, or Camarones a la Diabla for a diverse and delightful seafood experience. Each dish showcases the coastal flavors of Mexico in a unique way.