Bahia-Style Shrimp in Coconut Sauce


The rich coconut sauce in this rustic seafood dish is typical of recipes from Brazil's tropical seaside state of Bahia. More Amazing Shrimp Recipes

Bahia-Style Shrimp in Coconut Sauce
Photo: © Maura McEvoy
Active Time:
45 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 10 mins


  • 2 pounds large shrimp, shelled and deveined, tails left on

  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

  • Juice of 1 lime

  • Kosher salt

  • 2 tablespoons Annatto Oil or corn oil

  • 1 small onion, minced

  • 6 scallions, white and light green parts, minced

  • 1/2 medium red bell pepper, minced

  • 1/2 medium green bell pepper, minced

  • 6 plum tomatoes, minced

  • 1/4 cup tomato sauce

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk

  • 1 Scotch bonnet or habanero chile, halved and seeded

  • 1 tablespoon minced cilantro leaves and stems

  • Lime wedges, for serving


  1. In a large bowl, toss the shrimp with the garlic, lime juice and 1 teaspoon of salt. Let marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes.

  2. In a large skillet, heat the Annatto Oil until shimmering. Add the onion, scallions and red and green bell peppers and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until softened, about 4 minutes. Add the minced tomatoes and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to moderately low and add the tomato sauce, coconut milk, chile and 1 teaspoon of salt. Simmer until the sauce is reduced by one-fourth, about 10 minutes. Increase the heat to moderately high. Add the shrimp and cook, stirring, until they're pink and opaque, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a serving dish and discard the chile. Sprinkle with the cilantro and serve with lime wedges.

Serve With

White rice.

Suggested Pairing

To complement the sauce here, look for a fruity, lightly spicy and aromatic white, such as an Argentinean Torrontés.

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