To my Cookies that aren’t familiar with Cajun cuisine, allow me to introduce you to a delicacy here in Louisiana. The Crawfish. Nothing gathers people together more than a good ole Crawfish Boil down here! Listen, this little red suckers bring a different kind of joy to our hearts! I can’t even explain the taste. But, let me try…It’s kind of like a mini lobster with 100x more flavor! Of course, everyone here has their own way of boiling. You already know I had to come up with the easiest method that also has the most flavor! Here’s how I prepare my Crawfish Boil and bless my folks!
Clean ‘Em Up!
Your sack of crawfish are going to be dirty! Don’t be alarmed. They come from the swamp. So, a little dirt is expected. We pour them into large cooler and place the water hose inside it. Then, open the drainage hole. Allow the water to run for about 20 minutes or until the water in the cooler is clean.
You should be able to see the crawfish clearly. You also want to remove any dead crawfish you see floating around. If their tails are straight, they’ve gone to glory. Toss ‘em! You definitely do not want to eat a crawfish that gave up the ghost before hitting that hot water. Gross!
You guys know I’m a flavor girl. I worked extra hard making sure these crawdaddies were seasoned to perfection. You want them to have the right amount of kick. If they’re too spicy, it’s hard to enjoy them. You want them jusssssst right! You know, like Goldilocks ole breaking and entering behind. Anyway, I like to season well! I use a mix of both Zatarain’s and Louisiana Fish Fry Products boil seasonings. Both are brands will incredible flavor! I also add one, 8 ounce bottle of liquid boil. The Garlic & Onion flavor is a tad bit less spicy than the original concentrate. It adds just the right amount of kick. If you like extra, EXTRA spicy crawfish, add another bottle.
I know what you’re thinking. “Coop, what the hell?” But, listen, you know if I don’t know anything else, I know how to add flavor to some food, okay? So, trust me on this. Do NOT skip this chicken bouillon!! Also, don’t skip the butter. Because, well, butter makes every damn thing good!
And don’t be shy with the veggies and citrus. They bring so much more out of the boil! And a secret, must have ingredient: vinegar. Plain, white, distilled vinegar. A cup will do. This makes the crawfish shells easier to peel. It also calms the smell. The scent of crawfish can linger on your fingers long after washing your hands. This little splash of vinegar takes care of that! You can even eat them inside of your house without worrying about stinking up your walls and furniture. Thank God for vinegar!
Cool Off, Cool Off
The most important part of the boil, other than choosing the right amount of seasoning, is the cooling/soaking process. Crawfish boils super fast! Within 5 minutes, they will be beautifully red and floating at the top of the pot. This is when you need to drop that temperature. 150°F is ideal for soaking. Adding in frozen corn and sausages helps. But, you need to do more to drop the temperature fast enough. If not, the crawfish will overcook and become a mush. Some like to add ice. I don’t recommend that because ice can dilute the boil and take away some of the flavor we worked so hard to build. I use the Boil Boss! It’s an innovative and easy to use ring that attaches to your water hose. It works amazingly! It dropped my Boil from 220°F to 150°F in a little over 3 minutes! It also locks in the juice. I had the juiciest crawfish of my life using this thing! Get yours here (NOT SPONSORED): https://theboilboss.com
It is said that when the crawfish sinks to the bottom of the pot, it has sucked in as much flavor as possible. But, I find that the longer you soak, the spicier they become. So, taste as you soak. I soaked for about 40 minutes. Since the Boil Boss drooped the temp, I didn’t have to worry about my crawfish overcooking. It allotted them plenty of extra soaking time.
I was intimidated about boiling crawfish. But, there’s nothing to it! Just follow my instructions and watch the video until you’re ready to confidently tackle your first boil. You can do it! And just look at the reward!!
The Best Crawfish Boil Recipe
- 30-40 lbs live crawfish
- 2.5 lbs Zatarain’s Crawfish Shrimp, and Crab Boil Complete
- 2 lbs Louisiana Crawfish Shrimp, and Crab Boil
- 8 oz Zatarain’s liquid Shrimp & Crab Boil Garlic & Onion flavor
- 1 cup distilled vinegar
- 7-8 oz powdered chicken bouillon
- 1 cup kosher salt
- 3 onions
- 3 bell peppers
- 4 celery stalks
- 3 garlic pods
- 3 oranges
- 3-4 lemons
- 1 stick salted butter
- Boiling potatoes
- Frozen corn
- Sausage frozen or thawed
Pour crawfish into a large cooler with a drainage hole
Place water hose into cooler and run water into the cooler with the drainage hole opened.
Remove any dead crawfish (if the tails are straight, they’re gone!)
Continue until the water in the cooler is clear
Turn on the fire and place the boiling pot on top
Fill the pot with water until it is 2-3 inches over halfway full.
And in the Zatarain’s seasoning (both powder and liquid), the Louisiana seasoning, chicken bouillon, salt, and vinegar.
Place the holed, steamer insert into the pot
Add in the veggies
Squeeze the juice from the oranges and lemons before toss them into the pot.
Add the butter and stir well.
Cover the pot with the lid to encourage the boil
Once boiling, add on the potatoes
Stir, cover with the lid, and allow to boil for 10 minutes.
Carefully remove the steamer insert
Pour crawfish into the insert on top of the potatoes.
Carefully place insert back into the pot.
Cover with a lid and boil the crawfish for 5-7 minutes
Turn the fire off.
Add in frozen corn and/or sausage to help cool the boil.
Stir until the temp inside the pot has lowered to 150°F *see video and info above for instructions*
Cover and allow the crawfish to soak for at least 30 minutes; or until the corn and sausage is done, and the majority of the crawfish has sunk to the bottom of the pot**
Remove the steamer insert and allow it to drain.