Puerto Rican Shrimp and Tomato Stew

Several cooked shrimp, shells removed

Renee Comet Photography / StockFood Creative / Getty Images

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 25 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
299 Calories
14g Fat
10g Carbs
35g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 299
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 14g 17%
Saturated Fat 2g 10%
Cholesterol 245mg 82%
Sodium 1202mg 52%
Total Carbohydrate 10g 4%
Dietary Fiber 3g 10%
Protein 35g
Calcium 125mg 10%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

There are as many Puerto Rican shrimp recipes out there as there are cooks. What makes this one unique is the ease and speed that you can make it.

Ready in less than 30 minutes; it makes a quick mid-week meal or last-minute dinner addition when unexpected company arrives.

It tastes great over white rice with a slice of avocado or tostones.

Make It a Meal

We like to serve shrimp stew with white rice because it won't overshadow the flavors of the stew. However, you can serve this with any rice recipe you like.

Puerto Ricans serve twice-fried green plantain chips with just about everything. You can also serve maduros, which are sweet yellow plantains.


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons sofrito ( homemade sofrito is best)
  • 2 bay laurel leaves
  • 5 to 10 Spanish Manzanilla olives (pitted stuffed with pimentos)
  • 1/4 pound smoked cooked ham (diced fine)
  • 1 packet sazón (or a tablespoon of annatto/achiote oil)
  • 1 cup seasoned tomato sauce (canned or homemade)
  • 1 can (14 1/2 ounces) seasoned stewed tomatoes
  • 1 pound raw shrimp (medium size, peeled and clean)
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil. Add the sofrito, bay leaves, Spanish Manzanilla olives, and diced ham. Saute the mixture over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes, until fragrant.

  2. Then add in the sazón, tomato sauce, and stewed tomatoes. Bring the mixture to a boil and then immediately reduce heat and simmer for about 5 minutes.

  3. Next, toss in the shrimp and cook until the shrimp just turns pink - about 5 minutes. Do not overcook.

  4. Lastly, season with salt and pepper to taste and allow the mixture to simmer for 1 more minute.

  5. That's it; you are done. Remove the mixture from the heat and serve hot over white rice or yellow rice.


  • For the canned tomato sauce and stewed tomatoes below, use a pre-seasoned one such as that which is flavored with onions, celery, and green peppers or make your creole sauce.
  • You can also purchase plain tomato sauce and spruce it up with spices and seasonings you have in your kitchen cabinet (ex: oregano, parsley, dried onion, and garlic).
  • Save time by purchasing shrimp that has already been peeled and deveined. However, use raw shrimp, not pre-cooked. If the shrimp is pre-cooked, it will just get overcooked and rubbery in the recipe.