Classic Ceviche


Though Peruvians claim ceviche as their national dish, chilled, citrus-dressed seafood is a mainstay in homes and restaurants in Central and South America almost anywhere ocean meets coastline. A knockout ceviche is the result of a delicate balance of heat, salt, acidity, freshness, and crunch. Although it's widely believed that soaking raw fish in an acidic liquid "cooks" the seafood, it actually just denatures the protein. As with any seafood recipe, it's essential to use the freshest, most sustainably sourced fish and shellfish you can get your hands on, both for flavor and for the sake of food safety. After you've nailed the classic ceviche style in the steps below, have fun playing with different add-ins, toppings, and chips for dipping to create your own signature style. See a full step-by-step guide to making the perfect ceviche.

Classic ceviche with red snapper, fresh vegetables, and crunchy pepitas
Photo: Greg DuPree
Active Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
45 mins


  • 1 pound 1/2-inch-cubed skinless red snapper fillet (from 1 [2-pound] skin-on red snapper fillet)

  • 1 cup lime juice (from 8 large limes)

  • 3/4 cup 3/4-inch-diced plum tomato

  • 4 medium radishes, cut into 1/4-inch-thick half-moons (about 1/2 cup)

  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice

  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped serrano chile or 2 teaspoons finely chopped jalapeño

  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste

  • 1/3 cup loosely packed fresh cilantro leaves

  • 2 tablespoons salted roasted pepitas

  • Plantain chips, for serving


  1. Place fish in a medium-size nonreactive bowl. Add lime juice; gently fold to combine, making sure fish is covered with juice. Cover and chill until fish is opaque and firm, about 30 minutes.

  2. Drain and discard liquid. Gently fold in tomato, radishes, orange juice, chile, and salt. Top with cilantro and pepitas, and, if desired, sprinkle with salt to taste. Serve immediately with plantain chips.

Suggested Pairing

Tart Chilean Sauvignon Blanc.

Related Articles