Louisiana Seafood Boil Recipe

It's always a party in Louisiana — host your own seafood boil to bring a taste of Louisiana to you!

seafood boil

This spicy seafood boil is perfect for a backyard party.

Seafood is a staple in Louisiana, a state abundant in lakes, bayous and coastal waters. Here, seafood boils are a communal meal to share with family and friends. If you’re ever invited to one, make sure you show up hungry!

The ingredients of a seafood boil can differ depending upon the number of people, the time of year and personal preferences. Most Louisiana seafood boils include seasoned andouille sausage, sweet corn, tender potatoes, tart lemons, yellow onions and fresh crawfish, shrimp or crab.

In Louisiana, you’ll have your pick of restaurants serving up seasoned pots of this southern coastal classic. At Boil Seafood House in New Orleans, you can choose from eight ‘seafood bucket’ options including the spicy Cajun classic. If you’re passing through Rayne, stop by Cajun Claws Seafood Boilers for a boil featuring fresh Louisiana crawfish and shrimp.

Whether you are throwing a backyard party or tailgating at your favorite sporting event, this spicy Louisiana seafood boil recipe will bring everyone to the table. Don’t forget the ice-cold beers!

Check out the 60-sec instructional video for additional tips and how to make this easy seafood boil recipe.

Ingredients for a Seafood Boil:

  • 12 quarts water
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 4 yellow onions, unpeeled
  • 6 celery stalks, halved crosswise
  • 4 lemons, unpeeled and quartered
  • 4 artichokes (optional)
  • 8 whole garlic cloves
  • 5 bay leaves
  • Zatarain’s Seafood Boil Seasoning
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup sea salt, or to taste
  • 2 to 3 pounds small red-skinned potatoes, unpeeled
  • 24 live Louisiana blue crabs
  • 6 ears of corn, husked and halved crosswise
  • 6 pounds large shrimp, with heads attached

Method of Preparation:

  1. Pour the water into a large stockpot. Add the oil, onions, celery, lemons, garlic, bay leaves, Zatarain’s crab boil spice mix and salt and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil for 10 minutes.
  2. Add the potatoes and artichokes and boil for 5 minutes. Add the crabs and boil for 15 minutes.
  3. Add the corn and boil for 5 minutes.
  4. Add the shrimp and boil for 1 minute. Turn off the heat and let the mixture stand for 5 minutes.
  5. Using tongs or a skimmer, retrieve the seafood and vegetables from the pot and serve them warm atop several thicknesses of newspaper or large sheets of parchment paper, or transfer to a large serving platter. The seafood can also be served at room temperature or chilled. Use a cracker or a table knife to crack the shells.

Serves 8 to 12.

Explore more recipes like this with Louisiana’s Culinary Trails. For more information, recipes and tips for your next trip to Louisiana, sign up to receive our eNewsletter