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Cuban Ceviche Recipe

Cuban Style Ceviche

This Cuban Style Ceviche Recipe is going to become your new summer staple. It’s is simple and very fresh and what else could you want out of a summer appetizer. 

Traditionally Cuban ceviche is served as an appetizer with saltine crackers. Mostly it’s eaten with hot sauce on the side. We like to put a dash in the mixture for flavor, but it’s not spicy. It just wakes up all the flavors like nothing else can. 

Unlike other ceviches, such as Peruvian Ceviche, the fish in the Cuban style ceviche sits longer in the lime juice. This lets the juice be completely absorbed by the fish, which helps transform the texture and flavor. You don’t want the fish to sit in citrus for too long. So while 2 hours is the sweet spot, anything more than 4 hours would breakdown the fish too much. This is not a n overnight recipe.

Our Tips for Making the Best Cuban Style Ceviche

Don’t get us wrong, we love Peruvian Ceviche. In fact, it was a Peruvian friend who gave me a few tips to make this Cuab Style Ceviche Recipe.

  • Washing the fish with salted water and letting the onions sit in salted water make for such clean and pure flavors. It’s an extra step worth taking. 
  • Always use the freshest fish you can find. It should smell salty like the ocean.
  • Use a firm white fish that you can cut in cubes.
  • Plan ahead. You want the lime juice to be completely soaked up.
  • Use a glass bowl or non reactive bowl. You don’t want the lime juice to be affected and change flavor by using an aluminum bowl. 
  • Keep everything small and bitesized. 

Perfect for your next BBQ or Pool Party this summer! Other great ideas: Our Guacamole or

Cuban Style Ceviche

Recipe by Abuelas Cuban CounterCourse: AppetizersCuisine: CubanDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time




  • 1 ½ pounds of white fish (use a firm white fish such as mahi mahi, halibut or corvina)

  • ¾ cup lime juice (about 6 juicy limes)

  • ½ cup fresh plum tomato, chopped

  • ½ cup white onion, chopped 

  • ½ serrano pepper, very finely chopped (if you don’t like it too spicy remove all the seeds)

  • 1 tablespoon of parsley, very finely chopped

  • 1 tablespoon of hot sauce

  • Course Kosher or Sea Salt

  • Garnish and serve with: limes, saltines and more hot sa


  • In a small bowl, add the chopped onions. Cover them with cold water and add ½ tablespoon of salt. This will ease the bitterness of the onion. Mix it around and let it sit for 20-30 minutes. Set aside.
  • Place the fish in a shallow platter or bowl. Rub with 2 tablespoons of salt. I know it seems like a lot but just go with me on this one. Let the salt sit on the fish for 5 minutes in the fridge. 
  • Once the time has passed, rub the salt off with cold running water. Pat the fish dry and place on a cutting board. Then cut the fish into ceviche style chunks. (This isn’t tartare so it doesn’t have to be that small)
  • Place the cut fish into a bowl. Add the tomato, serrano, parsley, lime juice, 1 teaspoon of salt and freshly cracked pepper and the hot sauce. (We promise this small amount of hot sauce will not make it spicy!) 
  • Drain the onions in the salted water with a colander and pat dry. Add the onions to the fish. 
  • Mix everything together. Taste it and adjust the seasoning, but keep in mind as it sits the flavors will continue to intensify. 
  • Let it side in the fridge at least 30 minutes. It’s best to let it sit for 1 to 2 hours. You want to see the fish absorb the lime juice and become partially white opaque. This will be an indicator that the lime juice has “cooked” the fish. 
  • Taste it one last time. You may need more spice or more lime juice.