Chili Lime Shrimp Bowls

$10.50 recipe / $1.75 serving
by Beth - Budget Bytes
4.85 from 13 votes
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Betcha didn’t think you could eat shrimp on a budget, did you? Well, if you use the basic Budget Byting principle of combining an expensive ingredient (like shrimp) with less expensive ingredients (like rice and beans), it suddenly becomes more affordable.

I do realize that I live in Louisiana and quality shrimp is relatively inexpensive here. If shrimp is not affordable in your area, try this marinade with chicken instead! In fact, after I had eaten all of the shrimp out of my bowl, the remaining rice, beans, and pineapple salsa was so good that this would probable also make a fantastic vegetarian meal!

I used 40/50 shrimp which means there are between 40 to 50 shrimp per pound (raw). So, I was able to put 7 or 8 shrimp in each bowl that I made. …Of course that means you can’t sneak and eat any while you’re cooking ;) I sauteed my shrimp in a skillet, but you could also skewer and then grill them for a more smokey flavor.

I’m beginning to really like these “meal in a bowl” recipes. (see taco chicken bowls, teriyaki meatball bowls)

Chili Lime Shrimp Bowls

Top view of a chili lime shrimp bowl with half of a lime and cilantro on the side of the bowl

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Chili Lime Shrimp Bowls

4.85 from 13 votes
Taste the tropics with these easy chili lime shrimp bowls. Rice, black beans, pineapple salsa, and spicy shrimp make a delicious and filling meal in a bowl.
Servings 6
Prep 15 minutes
Cook 45 minutes
Total 1 hour


  • 1 lb. peeled shrimp (40-50) ($5.43)
  • 1 tsp chili powder ($0.05)
  • 4 tsp cooking oil, divided ($0.04)
  • 1 tsp honey ($0.05)
  • 1 tsp soy sauce ($0.07)
  • 3 cloves garlic, divided ($0.24)
  • 2 limes ($0.68)
  • 2 15oz. cans black beans** ($1.12)
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin ($0.03)
  • 2 jalapeños ($0.22)
  • 1 20oz. can crushed pineapple ($1.23)
  • 1/2 red onion ($0.32)
  • 1 tsp salt ($0.05)
  • 1/4 bunch fresh cilantro ($0.21)
  • 2 cups long grain white rice ($0.71)


  • Begin by marinating the shrimp. Prepare the marinade by combining the chili powder, honey, and soy sauce with the juice of one lime, one clove of minced garlic, and one teaspoon of vegetable oil. Rinse the shrimp and shake off excess water. Add the marinade, stir to coat, and refrigerate until ready to cook.
  • Begin to cook the rice. Combine 2 cups of dry rice with four cups of water. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. As soon as it reaches a full boil, turn the heat down to the lowest setting and let simmer for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, turn the heat off and leave it covered until ready to serve. Fluff with a fork just prior to serving.
  • Prepare the seasoned black beans. Add 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil to a medium pot and add two cloves of minced garlic and one seeded and minced jalapeno. Saute for about one minute and then add the cumin. Saute for one minute more and then add the black beans. Stir and heat through.
  • Prepare the pineapple salsa. Drain the can of crushed pineapple well. Cut the red onion into a small dice. Remove the seeds from the jalapeno and cut it into a small dice. Roughly chop 1/4 bunch of cilantro. Combine the pineapple, jalapeno, red onion, cilantro, the juice of one lime, and 1 tsp of salt in a bowl. Stir until combined. Taste and adjust the salt and cilantro as desired.
  • To cook the shrimp heat a large skillet over a medium flame. Add the shrimp and all of the marinade. Cook just until the shrimp is opaque and has curled up. Remove the shrimp from the skillet and continue to let the marinade simmer until it has reduced and thickened (about five minutes more). Pour the thickened marinade back over the shrimp and stir to coat.
  • Build the shrimp bowls. Place one cup of rice in the bottom of a bowl. Top with about 3/4 cup seasoned black beans and about 1/2 cup of pineapple salsa. Place 7 or 8 shrimp on top. Garnish with extra cilantro if desired. Dig in!

See how we calculate recipe costs here.


**I used black beans that I had cooked from dry in my slow cooker and stored in my freezer. I used about 4 cups.


Serving: 1ServingCalories: 584.73kcalCarbohydrates: 104.48gProtein: 33.23gFat: 4.82gSodium: 1045mgFiber: 17.67g
Read our full nutrition disclaimer here.
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Close up of a Chili Lime Shrimp Bowl

Step By Step Photos

raw shrimp in packaging
This is the raw shrimp that I used. I’m quite lucky to have fresh shrimp at my fingertips, but if you don’t, you can use frozen shrimp or sub with chicken. Fresh shrimp should smell kind of sweet and not fishy.

marinade ingredients in mixing bowl
Begin to make the marinade by combining the chili powder, honey, and soy sauce with 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil.

lime and garlic added to marinade ingredients in mixing bowl
Next add the juice of one lime and one clove of minced garlic.

rinsing shrimp in colander
Give the shrimp a quick rinse under cool water and then shake off as much water as possible.

shrimp added to marinade in bowl and mixed up
Add the shrimp to the marinade, stir to coat, and then refrigerate until it’s ready to cook.

rice cooking in pot on stovetop
Since the rice takes the longest to cook, begin it next. Combine 2 cups of long grain rice with 4 cups of water. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. As soon as it reaches a full boil, turn the heat down to the lowest setting and let simmer for 20 minutes. Turn the heat off after 20 minutes and let it sit, undisturbed, until ready to serve. Fluff with a fork just prior to serving.

seasoning for beans being cooked in pot
Begin to make the seasoned beans. Add 1 Tbsp of vegetable oil to a medium pot along with two cloves of minced garlic and one minced jalapeno (seeds removed). Saute for 2-3 minutes or just until softened. Add the cumin and saute for one minute more.

drained beans added to spice ingredients in pot
Add the drained beans, stir, and heat through. My beans had previously been frozen and they broke and mashed up a bit as they cooked. If you use canned beans they’ll probably stay intact and pretty. If you’re using home cooked beans, you may want to add some salt here.

pineapple salsa ingredients in mixing bowl
Next, make the pineapple salsa. Drain the can of crushed pineapple really well. Place it in a bowl. Cut the onion and jalapeno (seeds removed) into a small dice and add to the bowl with the pineapple.

finished pineapple salsa in bowl
Add one teaspoon of salt and the juice of one lime. Stir to combine and PRESTO! You’ve got a delicious and quick pineapple salsa.

cooking shrimp in skillet
Lastly, it’s time to cook the shrimp. Shrimp cooks quickly so you’ll want to do it last. Heat a large skillet over a medium flame. Add the shrimp along with all of the marinade.

cooked shrimp in skillet
Cook the shrimp just until it is opaque and they have curled up. Remove the shrimp and place them in a bowl.

simmering sauce
Continue to let the sauce simmer over medium heat (increase the heat if it’s not simmering) until it has reduced and thickened. This should only take about 5 minutes.

sauce poured back over shrimp in bowl
Pour the sauce back over the shrimp and stir to coat.

all four components in bowls (salsa, shrimp beans, rice)
Now you have all four components and you can build your bowls. You can either build one big bowl and serve individual portions out of it, or build each bowl individually with about 1 cup of rice, 3/4 cup of beans, 1/2 cup of salsa, and 7 or 8 shrimp.

Finished Chili Lime Shrimp Bowl
Beautiful, fresh, delicious, healthy, and inexpensive. Win, win, win, and win!

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  1. I used fresh pineapple but this came out very well. My husband and I really enjoyed it.

  2. This is such a great dish and is going in our regular rotation!  I made it exactly as written and all the flavors were perfect together.  Thanks for all of the work that you do to create these amazing recipes.  

  3. I am normally not a fan of raw red onion or jalapeño, but I made this recipe exactly as written and loved it! The flavors all balance so well. I am already ready to have it for lunch again tomorrow!

  4. Hi there
    Could this be easily made with pre-cooked shrimp as well? What changes would that make to the marinade or the assembly?

  5. Subbed in chicken over shrimp (because it is cheaper in my area) and made coconut rice to go with it. Very delish!!

  6. I made this last night and it was a success!This is one of those recipes where you really have to take your time and pay attention to everything you are doing. Can’t wait to make this again!!!!

  7. I think I’m going to try this with brown rice and quinoa, add some roasted corn, and add in some pickled red onion for a hearty lunch bowl!

  8. The instructions up top don’t say to add lime to the salsa, but the detailed instructions in the pictures section do include that ingredient. I almost missed it.

  9. Loved this recipe! The sauce is sweet and light.  We used pomegranate seeds instead of pineapple since we didn’t have pineapple on-hand. It tasted fantastic and gave it a crunch also! We used Trader Joe’s frozen jasmine rice  to make this a go-to quick weeknight dinner!  Will definitely make again!

    1. For this I’d think you’d want to use extra firm tofu and drain very thoroughly (I usually put mine between a couple of wooden cutting boards with some paper towels to soak the liquid up for a few hours) and then cut it into medium chunks and soak in the marinade overnight to absorb it and the flavors. You might need to double the marinade since the tofu will suck a lot of it up in my experience.

    2. I think Aysha said it best! :) Unfortunately I have yet to master the art of cooking tofu. :P

  10. This is one of my favorites from your blog. Delicious. My jalapenos went bad so I added red pepper flakes to give it a kick.

  11. SO GOOD. I got nothing but compliments on the aroma at work as I microwaved this.So delicious, and I love the contrast of the pineapple salsa

  12. Just made this with fresh pineapple (added a small amount of pineapple juice before throwing all the ingredients into a food processor) and subbed quinoa for the rice. Delicious!