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Sports Nutrition

Citrus Marinated Shrimp Salad With Cara Cara Oranges and Lime Vinaigrette

Not only are they zesty, juicy and delicious, but citrus fruits are also loaded with healthy goodness.

Temperatures may be brisk in some parts of the country now, but one thing’s for certain, citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, limes, grapefruits, tangerines and pomelos are in abundance during the winter season.

Though there are a variety of citrus fruits on the market, all contain some level of vitamin C, an important antioxidant that helps boost your immunity while also acting on free radicals within your body that can cause harm. The Recommended Dietary Allowance for vitamin C varies between 75 to 90 milligrams per day for adult men and women, with increased needs seen during pregnancy and lactation. Citrus fruits have been found to contain high levels of citrus flavanones, a class of antioxidants that helps lower oxidative stress in the body.

Research has found that citrus fruits can have multiple positive effects on the body, some of which include antioxidative, anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer, as well as cardioprotective and neuroprotective. Adding citrus into your daily diet can help combat the environmental exposures our body experiences just by participating in daily life activities.

While you were probably aware that citrus fruits are a powerhouse of vitamin C, did you know just how important this nutrient becomes when you exercise?

“Active individuals put extra stress on the heart and lungs as compared to the general population, increasing their needs for vitamin C,” says certified sports dietitian Kelly Jones, MS, RD, CSSD, LDN. “Vitamin C is not only involved in collagen production to support stressed out tissues but also to support lung cells.”

See Also Strawberry Banana Smoothie Recipe

While there’s certainly no black-and-white recommendation for the number of citrus fruits to eat per day, as with all our produce-loving friends, eating the rainbow is encouraged.

Increasing your consumption of citrus fruits also may help boost your body’s absorption of iron, too. Vitamin C binds iron in the digestive tract, creating a complex that increases absorption within the body. Given that spinach is a source of non-heme iron (iron found in plant foods), layering citrus on top of your salad bed is a great way to get the best of both worlds. Since different antioxidants are found in the different-colored pigments of citrus, spicing up your intakes is highly encouraged. (Hello, bright pink Cara Cara oranges and zesty limes!)

Take a look at this citrus marinated shrimp salad with Cara Cara oranges and lime vinaigrette that provides 100 percent of the RDA for vitamin C to get your creative citrus juices flowing!

Citrus Marinated Shrimp Salad With Cara Cara Oranges and Lime Vinaigrette

Tags: Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free
Option for: Paleo, Whole30
Serves: 1
Prep Time: 30 to 60 Minutes
Cook Time: 10 Minutes
Total Time: 40 Minutes


  • 6 oz wild-caught tail-off shrimp, thawed and deveined Marinade
  • ½ small lemon, thinly sliced 
  • ½ small jalapeño, thinly sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, mashed 
  • 3 tsp olive oil 
  • 2 tbsp water 
  • ⅛ tsp ground black pepper 
  • ⅛ tsp sea salt

Lime Vinaigrette

  • 1 tsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 tsp honey 
  • 2 tsp olive oil 
  • ⅛ tsp garlic powder
  • pinch of black pepper and sea salt


  • 3 cups baby spinach, washed and chopped
  • ½ medium Cara Cara orange, peeled and thinly sliced
  • ½ medium (2 oz) avocado, thinly sliced
  • ½ oz red onion, thinly sliced


1. To a zip-top bag, add shrimp, lemon, jalapeños, garlic clove,

2 teaspoons olive oil, water, black pepper and salt. Seal shut and vigorously shake one minute. Place in refrigerator to let marinate.

2. In small bowl, add lime juice and whisk in honey, olive oil, garlic powder and pinch of black pepper and sea salt. Set in refrigerator until ready to serve salad.

3. After 30 minutes but no longer than one hour, remove shrimp from refrigerator.

4. Heat medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat with remaining 1 teaspoon olive oil. Place shrimp into pan, cooking four to five minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 145 degrees. Discard remaining marinade.

5. Once shrimp is thoroughly cooked, remove from heat.

6. Assemble salad by placing spinach on bottom of bowl, topping with thinly sliced Cara Cara oranges, avocado, red onions and shrimp. Drizzle homemade vinaigrette over top.


• Shrimp can be substituted for boneless, skinless chicken breast.

• To comply with Whole30, feel free to swap out the dressing with a lemon and olive oil drizzle.

Nutrition Information
(per 1 salad): calories 450, total fat 25 g, saturated fat 2.5 g, cholesterol 215 mg, sodium 600 mg, carbs 29 g, fiber 10 g, total sugar 14 g, added sugar 6 g, protein 29 g, calcium 247 mg (20%), Iron 6 mg (35%), potassium 510 mg (19%), vitamin C 100 mg

*Analysis calculated using the

Food Processor SQL