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Seafood Boil with Garlic Butter Sauce

This flavorful Seafood Boil contains smoked sausage, shrimp, crab legs, juicy corn, tender potatoes, and more! There’s truly something for everyone in this filling seafood dinner recipe.

Easy Seafood Boil Recipe

Welcome to the delightful world of seafood boils! This culinary tradition, celebrated across coastal regions worldwide, promises an exciting blend of flavor, community, and the joy of a shared dining experience. Thus, if you can’t decide what to have for dinner tonight, this Seafood Boil is going to solve all of your problems. It’s got everything, and by everything, I mean shrimp, crab legs, sausage, corn, and potatoes.

The best part about this meal is that the whole thing can be made in just under an hour. With all that food, you would think it would take a lot longer, but the process is pretty quick! And once everything is cooked, you choose your favorite garnishes, pass around the lemon wedges, and enjoy.

If you need an even quicker boil, try my Shrimp Boil in Foil Packets. ?

Why You Should Make This Recipe

  • Customizable: You can tailor a seafood boil to your taste preferences by choosing different types of seafood, seasonings, and extras like corn or potatoes.
  • Social Meal: Great for gatherings, a seafood boil can bring people together and make mealtime more engaging and enjoyable. It’s perfect for backyard parties!
  • Nutritious: Seafood is known for being high in protein and rich in essential nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids, making seafood boil both tasty and nutritious.
  • Easy Preparation: Seafood boils can be relatively simple to prepare, and there’s often flexibility in the ingredients and quantities used, so it’s easy to scale up or down.
Corn on the cob halves, shrimp, crab legs, sausages, and potatoes arranged on newspapers.

How To Make A Seafood Boil

While seafood boils require a number of ingredients, the cooking process remains pretty simple.


  • Cooking Oil: Vegetable or any other, for sautéing the sausage.
  • Smoked Sausage: Sliced into ½-inch pieces.
  • Garlic: Enhances flavor.
  • Seasoning: Keep it simple with old bay seasoning and bay leaves.
  • Broth: Preferably low sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth.
  • Water & Beer: To blend with the broth. A light beer, like a pale lager, is recommended.
  • Corn: Sliced into 2-inch pieces for quicker cooking.
  • Potatoes: Opt for fingerling or yukon gold potatoes.
  • Seafood: Pre-cooked snow crab legs and raw shrimp.
  • Butter: Melted. You can use salted or unsalted.
  • Garnish: Fresh ground black pepper and chopped fresh parsley.
  • Serving: Optionally, serve on newspaper layers with lemon wedges and hot sauce.
Boiling corn on the cob in a stockpot.


  1. Cook the Sausage: In a big pot, brown the sausage in oil over medium-high heat. Toss in the garlic and cook for 20 seconds.
  2. Add Seasoning and Veggies: Mix in Old Bay, broth, water, beer, bay leaves, corn, and potatoes. Bring to a boil.
  3. Simmer: Turn down the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes until the potatoes are tender.
  4. Add Seafood: Add crab and shrimp, cooking until done. Drain but save 1 cup of liquid. Mix melted butter with the liquid and pour over the seafood.
  5. Ready to Serve: Lay newspapers on a table, spread out the seafood boil, and season. Add parsley and serve with lemon and hot sauce.
Boiling crab legs and shrimp in a stockpot.

How Long to Boil Seafood

I think it would be helpful to break down the specific cooking times for each piece of seafood. Since they’re all different, it can be hard to time everything so each ingredient is cooked perfectly. Here’s the breakdown:

  • Snow Crab Legs will need between 4 and 5 minutes to boil because they are pre-cooked. If you decide to use fresh crab, it can take up to 20 minutes to cook through.
  • Raw Shrimp usually takes between 2 to 3 minutes to cook.
  • Lobster Tails, if using, need to cook in the boil for 8 to 12 minutes or 1 minute per ounce of tail.
  • Clams, if using, will need about 5 to 7 minutes.
Crab legs, shrimp, and corn served on a baking sheet.

Tips For Seafood Boil

This vibrant meal is a feast for the eyes, especially when served on newspapers with garnishes. Here are a few pointers for a successful seafood boil:

  • Versatility of Ingredients: No need to stick to the recipe strictly. Add other proteins like lobster, clams, or different sausages to your liking.
  • Fresh Vegetables: While frozen seafood is acceptable, use fresh corn for the best flavor. Don’t hesitate to include other vegetables, like green beans or peas.
  • Avoid Overcooking Shrimp: Overcooked shrimp turns rubbery. If the crab needs more time, remove the cooked shrimp from the pot.
  • Cook Potatoes Separately: If concerned about the potatoes cooking thoroughly, boil them separately and add them with the crab legs.
  • Adding Heat: Include some red pepper flakes for a spicier seafood boil.
  • Serve Immediately: I suggest eating that seafood boil right away – it tastes the best when it’s fresh.
Close-up image of seafood boil with crab legs, shrimp, corn, potatoes, and sausages.

What To Serve with Seafood Boil

I know it’s already a lot of food, but you can serve this seafood boil with extra sides if you want to! Here are a few ideas:


shot of seafood boil with crab legs, shrimp, corn, potatoes, and sausages

Seafood Boil Recipe

Katerina | Diethood
This flavorful Seafood Boil contains smoked sausage, shrimp, crab legs, juicy corn, tender potatoes, and more! There's truly something for everyone in this filling seafood dinner recipe.
5 from 13 votes
Servings : 8
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 14 ounces smoked sausage, like andouille, cut into ½-inch slices
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup old bay seasoning
  • 10 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 12 ounces light beer
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 4 ears of corn, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 pound fingerling potatoes, halved (or you can use yukon gold potatoes)
  • 1 pound precooked snow crab legs
  • 1 pound fresh shrimp
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • salt, to taste
  • fresh ground black pepper, for garnish
  • chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
  • lemon wedges, for serving
  • hot sauce, for serving, optional
  • newspapers, for serving the meal on, optional


  • Heat oil in a large stockpot set over medium-high heat.
  • Add the sausage pieces to the hot oil and cook until browned on all sides. Add garlic and cook for 20 seconds.
  • Stir in the old bay seasoning; then stir in the chicken broth, water, beer, and bay leaves. Add corn and potatoes and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat to a steady simmer and cook, uncovered, for 18 to 20 minutes, or until the potatoes and corn are tender.
  • Add the crab legs and shrimp; continue to cook for 3 minutes, or until shrimp are cooked through.
  • Remove from heat and drain, reserving 1 cup of the liquid. Discard bay leaves.
  • Whisk the melted butter into the 1 cup reserved liquid.
  • Pour the garlic butter mixture over the seafood.
  • Spread a couple of newspapers over a table and arrange the seafood boil right on top of the newspapers.
  • Season with salt and fresh cracked pepper.
  • Garnish with parsley and serve with lemon wedges and hot sauce.


  • Ingredient Subs: The recipe is versatile – you can substitute or add lobster, clams, or different sausages.
  • Fresh Veggies: Frozen seafood is acceptable, but fresh corn is recommended for superior flavor. Add other vegetables as desired.
  • Shrimp: Avoid rubbery shrimp by removing them from the pot if the crab needs more time to cook.
  • Potatoes: If you’re concerned about potatoes cooking through, boil them separately and add them with the crab legs and shrimp.
  • Heat Adjustment: Add pepper flakes if you like spicier seafood.
  • Storing: Refrigerate this meal in an airtight container for 3 days. It makes for great leftover lunches!
  • To reheat: Add a little extra chicken broth to a stockpot with your leftovers, and cook over low heat until everything is warmed through. I don’t recommend microwaving your leftovers.


Calories: 478 kcal | Carbohydrates: 25 g | Protein: 40 g | Fat: 24 g | Saturated Fat: 10 g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3 g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9 g | Trans Fat: 1 g | Cholesterol: 229 mg | Sodium: 1194 mg | Potassium: 1040 mg | Fiber: 2 g | Sugar: 4 g | Vitamin A: 349 IU | Vitamin C: 20 mg | Calcium: 165 mg | Iron: 4 mg | Net Carbs: 23 g

Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.

Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Keyword: seafood boil, shrimp boil
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16 comments on “Seafood Boil with Garlic Butter Sauce”

  1. This Seafood Boil has become a yearly birthday dinner for my husband. Everyone just loves it. It’s so easy very good. . I do go overboard on the amount of seafood per person so it can get pricey. It’s so worth it. Thank you for sharing.

  2. What a great and very flavorful recipe! This was so easy to throw together and my family loved this! Spot on with the flavors and such a hit here!

  3. Really great flavor! Super easy to throw together but super impressive! Do you know if I could use a dry cider instead of beer next time? We very rarely have beer in the house since we don’t drink it, but we usually have ciders.

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