This Louisiana Crawfish Boil contains crawfish, corn, potatoes, and smoked sausage, all boiled in Old Bay seasoning flavored Cajun-style broth. Serve it with the classic seafood garlic butter sauce for the ultimate crawfish boil recipe.
During the crawfish season, especially near New Orleans, it is a must to cook some delicious recipes with crawfish. Our favorites are Crawfish Tails, Seafood Boil Sauce, and this authentic Louisiana-style recipe.
You won’t believe how easy it is to make your very own crawfish boil. For the best results, you’ll need fresh crawfish, but it’s ok to use frozen ones. If you like, go ahead and add other seafood such as crab legs or shrimp. For authentic Cajun flavor, be sure to pick up some Old Bay seasoning.
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Crawfish: Fresh crawfish is the best option for your seafood boil, but go ahead and use frozen crawfish if that’s easier for you to source.
- Fresh Corn on the Cob: For best result, use fresh corn on the cob instead of frozen. Cut your corn into manageable pieces about 3 inches thick.
- Potatoes: Potatoes help to bulk up your crawfish boil. We like using small Yukon Gold or Russet potatoes for this recipe.
- Onion: Yellow or white onions are good for this recipe. Cut the onion into wedges.
- Sausages: Smoked sausages add the best flavor to this recipe. For authentic Cajun taste, try using Andouille sausages.
- Garlic: Use fresh cloves of garlic.
- Old Bay Seasoning: This classic seasoning mix has been used for decades to add flavor to seafood and meats. Alternatively, you can use a Cajun seasoning mix.
- Lemons: Add slices or wedges of lemons for a tart citrus flavor.
- Salt and Pepper: For seasoning.
- Melted Butter: For serving.
How to Cook Crawfish Boil
Time needed: 25 minutes.
This recipe is so easy to make in just one pot:
- Add seasonings to the pot
Fill a large pot with water over medium-high heat. Add old bay seasoning, garlic, and lemon. Bring it to a boil.
- Add corn and potatoes
Add corn and baby potatoes into the water. Boil for about 10 minutes.
- Add sausage and onions
Add sausage and onions, cover with a lid, and boil for an additional 5 minutes.
- Add the crawfish
Gently stir in crawfish. Boil for 5-6 minutes or until the crawfish turns into bright red color. (Boil for 2-3 more minutes if you use frozen crawfish). Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Drain the mixture
Drain the mixture (you can reserve about 1/2 cup of the broth for serving). Transfer the crawfish boil to a serving plate or on the newspaper.
- Serve with the sauce
Serve with melted butter or homemade seafood boil sauce. Sprinkle with parsley. Enjoy!
Crawfish Boil Seasoning
Seasoning is a key part of ensuring this dish to have the desired taste. For convenience, you can simply use Old Bay or a Cajun seasoning blend from your grocery store. If you want to make your seasoning blend from scratch, combine equal parts celery salt, paprika, black pepper, and cayenne pepper with pinches of dry mustard, ground cloves, cardamom, and ground nutmeg.
Tips for Crawfish Boil Recipe
- Avoid overcooking your crawfish: You can use either fresh or frozen whole crawfish for this recipe. Note that the frozen crawfish cooks slightly longer. Don’t use crawfish tail meat for this recipe.
- Fresh corn on the cob tastes best in this recipe: Though you may be tempted to use frozen corn on the cob, make the effort and get fresh corn. They’ll really make a difference in the overall taste of your crawfish boil.
- You can add other seafood such as crab, lobster, and shrimp: If you want, you can substitute crawfish for other shellfish. Alternatively, you can mix crawfish with crab, shrimp or lobster for a mixed seafood boil.
- Serving your crawfish boil immediately: Crawfish boil is at its best when it’s served immediately. This way, you’ll get to enjoy the freshest, tastiest flavors.
Homemade Garlic Butter Seafood Boil Sauce for Crawfish Boil
Homemade garlic butter sauce is packed with all the flavors your seafood boil needs. Dipping succulent crawfish meat into this sauce is heaven! To make it, sauté minced garlic and onion in melted butter mixed with olive oil, then stir in Old Bay seasoning, lemon pepper, paprika, cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, lemon juice, and brown sugar.
Frequently Asked Questions
Also known as crayfish, these freshwater crustaceans look like miniature lobsters and have a similar taste and texture. Most of the crawfish consumed in the United States are harvested in Louisiana.
This is the time of year when crawfish are abundant and ready to be caught. This time period usually lasts from springtime to early summer – from late February to May each year. During this time, you can enjoy the freshest and best quality crawfish.
Like other shellfish, crawfish tend to cook very quickly and can be ready in just a few minutes. You’ll know they’re ready when they turn a bright red color. Usually, it takes about 4-6 minutes to cook the fresh, shell-on crawfish. Because they cook so quickly, it’s best to add them to the boil towards the end to avoid overcooking.
Crawfish are most popularly served with the shell on and are usually eaten with your hands. Most of the meat is in the tail, so simply crack the tail open and pull out the succulent meat inside. Many people also enjoy sucking on the head of the crawfish and consider this the best part of the experience.
This recipe is a complete meal by itself. However, you can serve it with a variety of side dishes to make it a complete Southern meal. Popular options include a green salad, classic cheddar biscuits, potato salad, or rice.
Tasty options include fruity Southern favorites like peach cobbler, lemon squares, or strawberry shortcake. You can even serve up a few scoops of strawberry ice cream for the whole family to enjoy.
- Make crawfish shrimp & crab boil by adding shrimp and crab legs to the recipe.
- Use shrimp instead of crawfish for a delicious Shrimp Boil.
- Add a can of beer along with the water for a more flavorful broth.
- Feel free to add other vegetables like green beans and asparagus.
I hope you like this recipe. If you try it, please comment below and let me know how your Crawfish Boil turns out!
Best Crawfish Boil Recipe
- 2 ½ lbs crawfish shell-on, fresh or frozen
- 4 ears corn cut into 3-4 inch pieces
- 1 pound small yellow potatoes halved, you can also use red baby potatoes
- 1 onion peeled and sliced into 6 wedges
- 1 pound smoked sausage andouille or kielbasa, sliced into 1-inch thick pieces
- 8 cloves garlic smashed
- 1/2 cup Old Bay seasoning
- 1 lemon quartered
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter for serving melted, or garlic butter seafood sauce, see recipe notes
- 2 tablespoons optional chopped parsley
- Fill up a large pot with water over medium-high heat. Add old bay seasoning, garlic, and lemon. Bring it to a boil.
- Add corn and baby potatoes into the water. Boil for about 10 minutes.
- Add sausage and onions. Cover with a lid and boil for an additional 5 minutes.
- Gently stir in crawfish. Boil for 5-6 minutes or until the crawfish turns into bright red color. Season with salt and pepper to taste. (If you crawfish is pre-cooked, you'll only need 3-4 minutes; if yours is frozen, add 2-3 more minutes.)
- Drain the mixture (you can reserve about 1/2 cup of the broth for serving).
- Transfer the crawfish boil to a serving plate or on the newspaper.
- Sprinkle with parsley. Serve with melted butter or homemade seafood boil sauce. Enjoy!
- For Homemade Crawfish Boil Sauce:
- 3 tablespoons minced garlic
- 2 cups unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 3 tablespoons Old Bay seasoning
- 1 ½ cups chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon lemon pepper
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
- 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/2 tablespoon brown sugar
- How to Make Homemade Crawfish Boil Sauce
- In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, add 1/2 cup of butter and oil.
- Once the butter is melted, add onions and stir fry until they’re soft.
- Add garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Add Old Bay seasoning, lemon pepper, paprika, cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, lemon juice, and brown sugar. Mix together.
- Turn the heat to low and add the remaining butter.
- Simmer until the butter is melted, stirring constantly.
- Add chicken broth and cook for a few minutes until the sauce is slightly thickened.
- Remove from heat. Pour the sauce over your favorite seafood boil or serve it as a dipping sauce.