Make-Ahead Low-Country Shrimp Boil


Follow our make-ahead instructions to prepare this low-country boil recipe in minutes come party time. Make sure you have plenty of napkins handy when you serve this buttery Low-Country Shrimp Boil--you'll want to skip the utensils and enjoy it with your hands!

Low-Country Shrimp Boil
Photo: Karla Conrad
Prep Time:
30 mins
Cook Time:
12 mins
Total Time:
42 mins


  • 2 pound fresh or frozen large shrimp in shells

  • ¼ cup butter, melted

  • ¼ cup snipped fresh herbs (such as thyme, oregano, and/or basil) (optional)

  • 1 16 ounce package frozen small whole onions

  • 2 pound cooked smoked sausage links, cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks

  • 5 ears of corn, husks and silks removed and cut into chunks

  • 2 gallon water

  • ¼ cup Old Bay seasoning or crab and shrimp boil seasoning

  • 2 - 3 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 2 pound tiny new potatoes

  • Cocktail sauce (optional)

  • Bottled hot pepper sauce (optional)


The day before:

  1. Thaw shrimp, if frozen. Peel and devein shrimp, leaving tails intact (if desired). Rinse shrimp; pat dry with paper towels. Place in a resealable plastic bag; seal bag and chill overnight. In a storage container combine melted butter and, if desired, herbs; cover and chill overnight. Allow frozen onions to thaw in the refrigerator overnight.

Tailgate day:

  1. Tote shrimp, butter mixture, onions, sausage, and corn in an insulated cooler with ice packs.

  2. At the tailgating site, in a turkey fryer with a removable basket combine the water, Old Bay seasoning, and cayenne pepper. Cover and bring to boiling. Meanwhile, cut potatoes in half. Once water is boiling, add potatoes, onions, sausage, and corn to basket and lower into boiling water. Return to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 10 to 15 minutes or until potatoes and corn are tender. Add shrimp. Cook, covered, for 2 to 3 minutes more or until shrimp are opaque.

  3. Lift basket from fryer and allow mixture to drain. Transfer shrimp mixture to an extra-large bowl or a disposable foil roasting pan. Pour butter mixture over shrimp mixture; toss gently to coat. If desired, serve with cocktail sauce and hot pepper sauce. Provide moist towelettes when serving.

Must-have equipment:

Insulated cooler with ice packsTurkey fryer with a removable basketCutting board and sharp knifeExtra-large bowl or disposable foil roasting panMoist towelettes

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

534 Calories
32g Fat
27g Carbs
33g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 10
Calories 534
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 32g 41%
Saturated Fat 12g 60%
Cholesterol 205mg 68%
Sodium 1133mg 49%
Total Carbohydrate 27g 10%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 33g
Vitamin C 12.4mg 62%
Calcium 70.7mg 5%
Iron 3.6mg 20%
Potassium 1143mg 24%
Folate, total 40.3mcg
Vitamin B-12 1.7mcg
Vitamin B-6 0.5mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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