Baja California Shrimp Tacos With Pineapple Salsa

Baja California Shrimp Tacos With Pineapple Salsa

Growing up in Southern California I probably had tacos at least twice a week, and Baja California shrimp tacos and fish tacos were my favorite. In fact, now that I live in Europe where corn tortillas are hard to find, I make seafood tacos quite often since they pair nicely with flour tortillas. If you want to put a bit of a tropical spin on this dish, make some Baja California shrimp tacos with pineapple salsa!

To be honest, I don’t really know what makes these tacos Baja California style, other than they are how I remember getting tacos in Rosarito on college road trips. I guess it’s just quality fresh seafood, fresh vegetables and herbs, and flour tortillas. By the way, it’s entirely possible I’m mistaken and corn tortillas are normal for seafood tacos, so if you prefer corn you should go for it!

Step 1: The Shrimp

For this recipe I’m using Argentinean Red Shrimp. I actually use these for most of my shrimp/prawn recipes like my Cantonese Style Black Bean Shrimp and my weirdly popular Grandma’s Salty Shrimp. These crustaceans are some of the sweetest you’ll find, which makes them perfect for fresh, summery dishes. You can also use a basic whiteleg shrimp like I use for my tex-mex shrimp fajitas.

This recipe calls for a pound of shrimp, or around 450 grams. Peel and devein them and place them in a bowl. Add two tablespoons of olive oil, a teaspoon each of of ground cumin and garlic powder, half a teaspoon each of curcuma, paprika and red chili flakes, and a pinch of salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Curcuma isn’t a common ingredient in Mexican food, but I do love the flavor and color it brings.

shrimp in the baja california marinade

Give the bowl a good mix, cover with plastic, and let marinate for at least 20 minutes. While it is marinating you can begin work on the awesome toppings like the fresh pineapple salsa and the cilantro-lime crema.

Step 2: The Fixins (Fresh Pineapple Salsa & Cilantro-Lime Crema)

fresh Mexican salsa

The pineapple salsa is super easy. It’s basically a pico de gallo with pineapple, and one of my favorite things to make for seafood. In a bowl add two chopped tomatoes, 1/2 a chopped white onion, a handful of chopped cilantro (adjust to your preferences), a good glug of olive oil, salt and pepper to taste, and as much chopped pineapple as you wish. Give everything a mix and set aside.

shrimp next to cilantro lime crema

The cilantro lime crema is also super easy. In a bowl add a cup of sour cream, a bunch of chopped cilantro, the zest and juice of one lime, salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste, and some garlic powder if you like. Get creative and feel free to adjust with your favorite seasonings.

Step 3: Don’t Forget The Slaw!

Baja style shrimp tacos are almost always served with a crisp refreshing slaw. My super simple slaw can be put together in just a few minutes but you can totally make it ahead. In a large bowl add half a cabbage thinly sliced, two grated carrots, a half cup of mayonnaise, two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, salt and pepper to taste. I also like to add a thinly sliced red bell pepper, but that’s entirely optional. Give everything a good mix, and you’re ready to start on the cooking part! If you don’t want slaw you can use pickled cabbage instead, which offers a nice tanginess to seafood tacos.

Step 4: Making The Baja California Shrimp Tacos

In a pan on medium heat add a little olive oil and toss in the shrimp. Cook them just about 30 seconds a side, or until they begin to curl. Remove the shrimp and set aside. Take your flour tortillas (or corn if that’s what you are using) and place directly on the open flame for a few seconds a side to get them nice and pliable and hot.

Lay down your tortillas, add the shrimp and salsa, and drizzle over with the cilantro-lime crema. If you like spice you can drip over some store-bought or homemade hot sauce. I think my morita grapefruit hot sauce works wonderfully on these shrimp tacos. You can top with the slaw, or serve it on the side and let your guests decide how much they want. Enjoy!

Baja California Shrimp Tacos With Pineapple Salsa

Baja California Shrimp Tacos

These Baja California style shrimp tacos remind me of my times taking roadtrips with friends to Rosarito beach. Fresh ingredients really make these tacos pop.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 2 minutes
Total Time 22 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course, Main Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 8 tacos
Calories 346 kcal


  • Bowls
  • Pan
  • Knife


  • 8 Street Taco Style Tortillas I used flour, you can use corn if you like

Baja California Shrimp

  • 400 grams Shrimp about 1 pound. I used Argentinean Red Shrimp, but you can use whatever you prefer.
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp Cumin ground
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Curcuma
  • 1/2 tsp Paprika
  • 1/2 tsp Red Chili Flakes more or less to taste
  • 1 pinch Salt
  • 1 pinch Black Pepper freshly cracked

Cilantro Lime Crema

  • 1 cup Sour Cream
  • 1 Lime zest and juice
  • 1 bunch Cilantro chopped
  • 1 pinch Salt
  • 1 pinch Black Pepper freshly cracked
  • Garlic Powder optional, to taste

Pineapple Salsa

  • 2 large Tomatoes chopped
  • 1.5 cups Pineapple chopped (use fresh, not canned)
  • 1/2 White Onion chopped
  • 1 bunch Cilantro chopped
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 pinch Salt
  • 1 pinch Black Pepper freshly cracked


  • 1/2 Cabbage thinly sliced
  • 2 Carrots grated
  • 1/2 cup Mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1 Bell Pepper optional, thinly sliced


  • In a bowl mix together the shrimp with its marinade. Cover with plastic and let sit for 20 minutes. During this time you can prepare the slaw, salsa, and crema.
  • Prepare the slaw, salsa, and crema by mixing each of their respective ingredients in separate bowls. Set aside.
  • Put a large pan on medium heat add a glug of olive oil and when hot pour in the shrimp with all the marinade. Cook for 30 seconds a side, or just until the shrimp begin to curl. Remove the shrimp from the heat.
  • On an open flame toss the tortillas for a few seconds a side, just until they are soft and hot. Lay them down and dress the tacos with the shrimp and toppings to your pleasure. Enjoy!


You can slightly ignore the calorie count as this program is assuming you are using all of the crema divided equally among the tacos. In reality you’ll be left over with about half of it which you can save in the fridge for later. 
Keyword Pineapple Salsa, Shrimp Tacos, Tacos
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