Shrimp Boil

Recipe from the Tasting Table Test Kitchen
43 Ratings
100% would make again

To learn more, read "One-Pot Party: Shrimp Boil" in our National edition.

Shrimp Boil

Recipe from the Tasting Table Test Kitchen

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour and 5 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour and 20 minutes


8 whole cloves

6 ribs celery, roughly chopped

5 bay leaves

3 sprigs thyme

2 yellow onions, quartered 

2 heads garlic, halved crosswise

2 lemons, halved

1 cup salt

3 tablespoons coriander seeds

2 tablespoons dill seeds

2 tablespoons mustard seeds

1½ tablespoons red pepper flakes

1½ tablespoons cayenne

1 tablespoon whole allspice

1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns

1 tablespoon sweet paprika

2 gallons water

4 pounds small red potatoes, washed

6 ears of corn, cut into 4-inch pieces

5 pounds unpeeled, head-on large shrimp

Melted butter, for serving

Cocktail sauce, for serving

Lemon wedges, for serving


1. Combine the cloves, celery, bay leaves, thyme, onions, garlic, lemons, salt, coriander, dill, mustard seeds, red pepper flakes, cayenne, allspice, peppercorns, paprika and water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the onions and celery are soft and the flavors have melded, about 40 minutes.

2. Add the potatoes to the broth and cook until almost tender, about 15 minutes. Add the corn and cook for another 6 minutes. Add the shrimp and cook, stirring occasionally, until the shrimp are just cooked through, about 4 minutes more.

3. Using a large slotted spoon, transfer the shrimp and vegetables to a large paper-lined surface. Serve with bowls of melted butter and cocktail sauce, lemon wedges and the reserved cooking liquid.

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