July 24, 2022| By

Low Country Boil Recipe

Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 40 mins
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This Low Country Boil recipe is loaded with fresh shrimp, smoky sausage, sweet corn, and tender potatoes. It's topped with melted butter full of garlic and seasonings and is ideal for breaking bread with friends and family.

This classic Southern recipe is an easy one-pot meal that everyone will love! Grab the biggest pot you can find and let's get cooking!

Love a seafood boil? Try my Cajun Seafood Boil with Garlic Butter Sauce and my Old Bay Shrimp Boil!

low country boil in a oval platter on top of newspaper surrounded by shrimp and sliced bread.

Gather around the picnic table, it's time to eat! Welcome to my low country boil party, we're cooking up some tender shrimp, fresh corn, spicy sausage, and potatoes. If you have crab legs, feel free to throw those into the pot too!

My first low country boil was when my parents took me to Hilton Head, SC as a kid. We stopped in Charleston for dinner en route and I remember the waiter coming out with a big platter of seafood, a few bibs, and tons of napkins.

We sat there and ate for hours and ended up reheating some more the next day. When we got to Hilton Head, we took a day trip to St. Helena Island where I actually learned about the origins of Southern food, the strong African influence, and how low country boils were a celebratory food and a means of keeping Gullah tradition alive. It was beautiful.

up close photo of low country boil.

Fast forward to me starting a food blog (still so cool to say) and making my own low country boil recipe, I had to tell this story as I tried to recreate such an awesome memory from my childhood.

This low country boil comes together in under an hour and its the perfect recipe to feed a large crowd. The secret is the garlic butter sauce that's slathered on top that really carries the flavor and makes this low-country boil finger licking good! If you're ready for a perfect recipe to enjoy, you've come to the right place!

Jump to:

What is a low country boil?

A low country boil, also known as a tidewater boil, beaufort stew or beaufort boil, and most commonly, Frogmore Stew (even though it's not a stew at all), is a recipe that originates from the Gullah-Geechee people off the South Carolina Coast, also known as the low country. The Gullah kept their African traditions alive by making this one pot meal with low country catch from the bay. It was a celebratory food and a means of bringing people together, using the food available.

A low country boil is not to be confused with a Louisiana seafood boil down on the gulf coast as it uses shrimp instead of crawfish. You can also add blue crab, crab claws, and vegetables to make this lowcountry boil recipe your own.

ingredients to make low country boil - shrimp, water, chicken broth, onions, lemons, garlic, old bay seasoning, cajun seasoning, peppercorns, bay leaves, corn, smoked sausage, red potatoes, and bread.

What's in a low country boil?

Every frogmore stew recipe is a little different, however, here's what you'll need for this one!

  • Jumbo shrimp ( as big as you can find!): I used 2 lbs of shrimp which fed five people, however, you can adjust the amount of shrimp as needed.
  • Seasonings: cajun seasoning, whole peppercorns or black pepper, a cup of old bay seasoning, and bay leaves. These make for the perfect seasoned broth. You'll need large quantities to be sure to take inventory of your spices prior to getting started!
  • Onions, Lemon, and Garlic bulbs: aromatics to give this stew lots of delicious flavor. Save extra lemon wedges to squeeze on top of your seafood. I also recommend using vidalia onions / sweet onions.
  • Smoky Sausage: beef sausage, andouille sausage, or kielbasa sausage are all great for this shrimp boil recipe.
  • Red Potatoes: I like using small red potatoes but you can also use yukon gold potatoes as well.
  • Chicken Stock: you can also use seafood stock for added seafood flavor.
  • Hot sauce: for a nice kick!

What You'll Need

  • A large stockpot (at least a 20 quart pot)
  • Lots of paper towels
  • A large platter and/or newspapers to serve the seafood on

How to make a Low Country Boil

  • Start by making the broth. Add 6 quarts of water, chicken broth, onions, lemons, garlic, old bay, cajun seasoning, peppercorns, and bay leaves to a large stock pot. Bring this to a rolling boil.
  • Add red potatoes, ears of corn, and sausages to boiling water. Boil for 15 minutes, until potatoes become tender, but not mushy.
  • Then add shrimp and cook for 5-8 minutes, until shrimp are pink. (Reserve 1-2 cups of the stock!)
  • Make the garlic butter sauce by melting the butter in a skillet and adding diced garlic, seasonings, and adding in a little bit the stock from the boil. Pour on top of the boil and serve with more melted butter. Enjoy!
a hand grabbing shrimp and placing it onto a piece of sliced bread.

What to eat with a Low Country Boil

There are so many side dishes that go well with a seafood boil. One of my favorite things to enjoy are sourdough bread or a French roll sopped up with the garlic butter sauce. Garlic bread is also delicious with this meal too! You can also serve this with:

How to Store and Reheat a Low Country Boil

If you have leftovers, be sure to store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, simply microwave until warm (not hot, you don't want to overcook it, it'll become rubbery). You can also heat in the oven at 350 degrees F for about 10 minutes. I, however, recommend eating your leftovers cold!

Can I freeze my leftovers?

Yes! Freeze in an airtight container for up to three months. When you're ready to eat it again, allow the ingredients to thaw in the refrigerator.

a hand scooping out seafood out of a low country boil and placing it into a bowl.

Substitutions and Variations

  • Free free to add crab claws or whole crabs into the boil. Just be sure to cook them thoroughly. As a rule of thumb, crab is typically done when it's orange/red and begins to float.
  • For the broth, add in a few cans of beer for added flavor. Also, feel free to give Zatarain's shrimp and crab boil seasoning to the broth instead of cajun seasoning. You can also try using creole seasoning.

Tips

  • Make a homemade cocktail sauce to dip the shrimp into.
  • Fresh seafood is best! Try to use the freshest ingredients that you can find.
  • Remember, you need a large pot for this recipe!
  • Save a couple of lemons to squeeze on top of the boil while eating. It makes the boil so bright and fresh tasting!

FAQs

Can I use frozen shrimp?

es, you can absolutely use frozen shrimp. You simply may need to cook it for 1-2 minutes longer.

What is another name for low country boil?

There are many names for a low country boil. Frogmore stew, tidewater boil, Beaufort stew or Beaufort boil are common names for a low country boil.

Why is a low country boil served on newspaper?

Because it's easier to clean up that way! It's also easier to serve on newspaper because it's typically served in large quantities and you don't have to worry about finding a large dish to serve it on. So, newspaper does the trick!

More Seafood Recipes!

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Let's stay connected on social media and continue to cook together! Also, if you decide to make this recipe, please leave a star rating on the recipe card and leave a comment below! Tag @BritneyBreaksBread on Instagram and hashtag #britneybreaksbread so I can see your creations! I hope that you love this recipe as much as we do!

low country boil in a oval platter on top of newspaper surrounded by shrimp and sliced bread.

Low Country Boil Recipe

This Low Country Boil recipe is loaded with fresh shrimp, smoky sausage, sweet corn, and tender potatoes. Perfect meal for the family!
Serving: 6
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 40 mins
Total Time: 1 hr
Calories: 604kcal

Equipment

  • Large Stockpot (at least 20 quarts)

Ingredients

  • 6 qts Water
  • 64 oz Chicken Broth (2 32 oz boxes)
  • 2 Sweet Onions , sliced
  • 2 Lemons , sliced
  • 10 Garlic Cloves , smashed
  • 1 cup Old Bay Seasoning
  • 2 tbsps Whole Peppercorns
  • 5 Bay Leaves
  • 2 lbs Red Potatoes , cut in half
  • 8 Ears of Corn , cut in half
  • 1 lb Smoked Sausage , cut into chunks
  • 2 lbs Jumbo Shrimp (deveined)
  • 1 loaf Sourdough Bread , optional

Garlic Butter Sauce for Topping

  • 2 cups Butter , melted
  • 8 cloves Garlic , finely diced
  • cup Cajun Seasoning
  • 2 tbsps Old Bay Seasoning
  • 2 tbsps Onion Powder
  • 1-2 cups Reserved Seafood Broth from above
  • ¼ cup Fresh Parsley , diced
  • Salt , to taste
  • Hot Sauce , for serving

Directions

  • Start by making the broth. Add 6 quarts of water, chicken broth, onions, lemons, garlic, old bay seasoning, cajun seasoning, peppercorns, and bay leaves to a large stock pot. Bring this to a rolling boil.
  • Add red potatoes, ears of corn, and sausages to boiling water. Boil for 15 minutes, until potatoes become tender, but not mushy. Then add shrimp and cook for 5-8 minutes, until shrimp are pink. Reserve 1-2 cups of the stock.

Make the garlic butter sauce:

  • Melt butter over medium low heat in a large sauce pan, then add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 3 minutes.
  • Then add cajun seasoning, old bay seasoning, onion powder, and salt. Add 1 cup of the reserved broth and simmer on low for 3-5 minutes, until sauce thickens. (For a thinner sauce, add 2 cups) Add freshly diced parsley and remove from the heat.
  • Pour on top of the boil and serve with bread, more melted butter, and hot sauce.

Notes

Substitutions and Variations
  • Free free to add crab claws or whole crabs into the boil. Just be sure to cook them thoroughly. As a rule of thumb, crab is typically done when it's orange/red and begins to float.
  • For the broth, add in a few cans of beer for added flavor. Also, feel free to give Zatarain's shrimp and crab boil seasoning to the broth instead of cajun seasoning. You can also try using creole seasoning.
Tips
  • Make a homemade cocktail sauce to dip the shrimp into.
  • Fresh seafood is best! Try to use the freshest ingredients that you can find.
  • Remember, you need a large pot for this recipe!
  • Save a couple of lemons to squeeze on top of the boil while eating. It makes the boil so bright and fresh tasting!

Nutrition

Calories: 604kcal | Carbohydrates: 61g | Protein: 40g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 0.02g | Cholesterol: 250mg | Sodium: 2711mg | Potassium: 1341mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 848IU | Vitamin C: 42mg | Calcium: 309mg | Iron: 7mg
Course: Anytime, Main Course
Cuisine: African-American, American

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Recipe Rating




  1. 5 stars
    Made this with some friends last week and had to come back to say that I’m making it again today. It was so good! And easy too. Thank you for the recipe boss!

  2. 5 stars
    The garlic butter sauce was so good on the shrimp! I added a few crabs in mine and the boil came out really good. I’m going to make this again for Labor Day weekend.

  3. 5 stars
    This recipe was legit! Loved the garlic and herb butter sauce, it was kinda spicy and really flavorful. I added some beer to my broth that’s the only difference but everything was delicious!!

  4. 5 stars
    I so loved this recipe. I also learned from this about the origin. Thank you for this! I can’t wait to make this again with my family. ❤️

  5. 5 stars
    This was finger licking good! Literally! A little bit of spice with tons of good flavor, we had the best time with our friends peeling and eating shrimp over conversation. Definitely a memory-making recipe we’ll keep for every summer!