Double Stacked Shrimp and Cheese Tacos

Double Stacked Shrimp and Cheese Tacos

Tacos Bravos de Toño
6 to 8 double tacos
Pati Jinich
Course: Antojos, Main Dish
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Avocado, cheese, Chiles, corn tortillas, Mexico, Oaxaca cheese, pati’s mexican table, Shrimp, Sonora, Sonoran, tacos
Author:Pati Jinich
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Double Stacked Shrimp and Cheese Tacos recipe from Pati's Mexican Table Season 9, Episode 7 "Legends of the Sonoran Sea"


  • 2 pounds ripe tomatoes
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 to 3 chiles de árbol, stemmed, keep the seeds (more to taste)
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt, or to taste, plus more for seasoning the shrimp
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided, plus more to cook the tacos
  • 2 pounds medium shrimp, rinsed, shelled, and butterflied
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 12 to 16 corn tortillas
  • 3 cups melty shredded cheese, such as mozzarella, asadero, Oaxaca, quesadilla, or Monterey Jack
  • 1 large ripe avocado, halved, pitted, thinly sliced

To Prepare

  • Combine the tomatoes, garlic and chiles de árbol in a medium saucepan, cover with water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium and cook for about 10 minutes, until the tomatoes and garlic are completely soft and the chiles are plump and rehydrated. Transfer to a blender with 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Add the oregano, tomato paste and salt, and puree until completely smooth.
  • Heat the 1 tablespoon of the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Once hot, pour in the tomato puree, cover partially and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 6 minutes, until the mixture has thickened and darkened, and the flavors have intensified. Turn off the heat.
  • Season the butterflied shrimp with salt and pepper. Melt 1 tablespoon butter with 1 tablespoon oil in a large sauté pan over high heat. Once the butter begins to foam, add half the shrimp and quickly sear for a minute or so per side. They should be browned and just cooked through. Be careful not to overcook or the shrimp will be rubbery. Scrape into a bowl. Melt another tablespoon butter and oil together and repeat with the second batch.
  • Heat a comal, griddle or large skillet, preferably nonstick or cast iron, over medium heat. Add a tablespoon or two of oil to the surface.
  • One by one, lightly sauce the tortillas: briefly dip them into the tomato sauce, making sure the entire tortilla is coated (I like to use a pair of rubber tipped tongs but you could also just use you hands) and lay as many as will fit on the comal or griddle without overlapping. Top each tortilla with 2 to 3 tablespoons shredded cheese. Leave for a couple of minutes, until the cheese begins to melt and the bottoms of the sauced tortillas begin to dry and brown a little. Then, using a spatula, stack two sauced, browned and cheese-topped tortillas, one on top of another.
  • Don’t worry if the tortilla that you scrape up to stack on top of the other one sticks and tears a little bit or if it is not sitting evenly on top. Spoon some seared shrimp on top of each stack, gently fold with a spatula and continue cooking for a couple of minutes, until the cheese has completely melted and begun to ooze out and create a crust.
  • Remove from the heat and serve hot. Top with slices of ripe avocado.

28 comments on “Double Stacked Shrimp and Cheese Tacos

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  1. These were amazing. I used some left over chile from making tamales, so not quite the same sauce but still arbol based and garlicy. I used a vegan cheddar in mine (Miyokos brand) which was delicious; husband got the real queso and it was so melty! He gave it two enthusiastic thumbs up. We used corn tortillas, but this would be great with a fresh, thin flour tortilla. May try this with pork…and an egg…

    1. So glad you enjoyed these tacos Erin, and also amazed at how many great ideas you have to give this recipe your own twist, enjoy!

  2. Really great recipe, I watched the episode in tv couple of weeks ago and my husband was drooling and saying he wants those tacos:). They did not disappoint! So different from other taco recipes!
    Thank you Pati,

  3. My father in law and I made these tacos 🌮 tonight after watching ur show, they were everything you said they would be pati!!!!! Super delicious 😋 thank you for sharing these recipes with all of us….

  4. Hi Pati,

    I am such a big fan of your show! I learn so much from you. The recipe was fantastic! I followed your instructions exactly and the tacos didn’t disappoint. Mexican cuisine unfortunately gets misrepresented (tacos, burritos, rice, beans). Thank you for showing your fans that Mexican food has as much versatility as any cuisine in the world.

  5. Pati,

    Your the best!!! I always look forward to learning something different from your episodes. We really, really enjoyed the tacos!!! We followed the instructions exactly and they didn’t disappoint. I wish I could have posted of a photo!

  6. Hola Pati!! Hope you’re well. I enjoy watching your cooking show & all the places you take us to! How can I store cilantro so that it keeps fresh? I’m continually buying it & tossing the old one(s) out without the fragrance or blacken twigs. Cilantro is expensive & not always fresh!

    1. Hi Susanna, try to wrap the stems in a moist paper towel and then in a plastic bag, you will give you cilantro few more days of life 😉

      1. You know what works really well.
        After purchasing, cut stems, like you do fresh flowers. Then put in jar of water, cover with a dry plastic bag (I use a ziplock) put elastic around the bottom , refrigerate. Mine lasts for a few weeks this way.

  7. We have often visited Guymas, camping on the beach and diving and swimming. But the thing we looked forward to most was the shrimp! Non better in all of Baja or the Sea of Cortez.
    I can’t wait to make the shrimp tacos Brava.
    I think we can make these at the beach on New Years Day in San Diego.
    Thanks Patient.