Soupy Rice with Shrimp (Asopao de Camarones) is a soup that is thickened with rice and has a very creamy texture. Sautéing the herbs and vegetables before cooking the rice is what brings out all the flavors and aroma to this dish. The Spanish term for this dish is Asopao. Furthermore, Asopao is Puerto Rico’s national soup.
I remember spending weekends on the beach (Luquillo) with my friends soaking up all the sun rays in Puerto Rico. Afterwards, we would cook a large pot of Soupy Rice with Shrimp (Asopao de Camarones) late at night with double fried plantains (Tostones). Those were the carefree days during my summer breaks from school. In addition, we have three (3) popular versions of Asopao: Asopao with chicken, Asopao with seafood and Asopao with green pigeons peas.
I love to travel. One day I decided to travel to New Orleans and visit as many restaurants as possible. When I ordered and tasted Gumbo for the first time, I was surprised that the flavors, ingredients and consistency were so similar to our Soupy Rice with Shrimp. In fact, many of their dishes are almost identical to the Puerto Rican cookery.
If you are looking for a comfort soup during the winter months, this recipe is yours truly!
Harvesting Some Fresh Produce for the Soupy Rice with Shrimp!
Harvesting sweet peppers (ajies dulces).
Picking several green bell peppers!
With a kitchen scissor, cutting a bunch of cilantro!
Selecting culantro leaves that are approximately 4 to 6 inches long before snipping them off with a kitchen scissor!
Sautéing the Vegetables, Herbs and Condiments!
Let’s start with adding 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil; 1 teaspoon Lite salt; 10 pimiento-stuffed green olives, cut in halves; 2 tablespoons capers and 2 minced garlic cloves.
Continue with 1 green pepper, cut into strips; 1 medium onion, chopped; 2 tablespoons tomato sauce; 3 sprigs cilantro, chopped; and 2 bay leaves.
Add 3 culantro leaves, chopped. if you don’t have culantro, then add 3 more sprigs of chopped cilantro.
Click on this link to learn about our aromatic herb that is an essential ingredient to our cookery – Culantro.
Now we are ready to add 4 sweet peppers (ajies dulces), cut in halves and seeded. They definitely bring out the flavors of this dish. You can also substitute with cubanelle peppers.
Click on this link to learn about our sweet peppers another essential ingredient to our cookery – Sweet Peppers.
We normally add ½ cup of lean ham (optional) and 2 seasoning envelopes with coriander and annatto. The seasoning envelopes are now sold at most regular supermarkets.
However, click on the link to learn how to create your own Special Blend of Seasonings.
Mix all the ingredients until well blended and sauté for 10 minutes over low heat, stirring occasionally.
Sautéing the Shrimp and Green Peas!
After 10 minutes of sautéing, add 1 pound of large raw shrimp (peeled, deveined and with tail on) and 1 cup of green peas.
Stir to coat the shrimp with the tomato-oil based sauce and sauté the shrimp for two minutes.
Simmering Our Soupy Rice with Shrimp!
After sautéing the shrimp for 2 minutes, add the 6 cups of water and bring to a boil.
When the liquid is boiling, add ¾ cup of rice. However, if you want a thicker soup consistency, then add 1 cup of rice. Stir rice well into liquid. Cover saucepan with lid and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes.
After 5 minutes of cooking, reduce heat to low. Give it a quick stir. Cover saucepan with lid and cook for 30 minutes or until the rice is tender and soup thickens to your liking. Stirring occasionally.
Let’s check if the soup is ready after 30 minutes of cooking. Yes, it is. Look how beautiful. Remove the bay leaves before serving the asopao de camarones.
Serving a Bowl of this Delicious Soupy Rice with Shrimp (Asopao de Camarones)!
Serve the Soupy rice with Shrimp (Asopao de Camarones) into a bowl. This soupy dish is not complete unless it is served with Double Fried Green Plantains (Tostones).
If you have any leftovers, this soup will have a thicker consistency the next day. I would recommend to add a small amount of water while reheating this soup if you feel it is too thick.
Click on the button below to watch my YouTube video on How to Prepare Soupy Rice with Shrimp (Asopao de Camarones!
Recipe and Nutritional Facts
Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is approximate only. Please refer to our Nutritional Facts Disclaimer for more information.Print
Asopao is a soup that is thickened with rice and has a creamy texture. It is very similar to the Gumbo in New Orleans.
- ½ cup lean ham, diced
- 1 teaspoon salt, low sodium
- 10 pimento-stuffed green olives, halved
- 2 tablespoons caper, drained
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 seasoning envelopes with coriander and annatto
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 sweet peppers (ajies dulces) halved and seeded
- 1 green bell pepper, cut into strips
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 tablespoons tomato sauce
- 3 culantro leaves, chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 cup green peas
- 1 pound large shrimp, peeled, deveined, tails on
- 6 cups water
- ¾ cup long-grain white rice
- In a saucepan, add all the ingredients except for shrimp, green peas, water and rice.
- Sauté the herbs, condiments and vegetables for 10 minutes.
- Add the shrimp and green peas. Stir to coat the shrimp with the tomato-oil based sauce. Sauté shrimp for 2 minutes.
- Now add the water and bring to a boil.
- The rice is then added to the boiling water. Stir rice well into liquid.
- Cover saucepan with lid and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes.
- Reduce heat to low. Give it a quick stir. Cover saucepan with lid and cook for 30 minutes or until the rice is tender and soup thickens to your liking. Stirring occasionally.
This soup is served with double fried plantains (tostones).
- Category: Soups and Stews
- Cuisine: Puerto Rican
Keywords: Soupy Rice with Shrimp