This incredibly delicious recipe is the BEST garlic butter Cajun seafood boil you will ever try. It is made with rich, spicy, buttery seafood boil sauce using a basic Cajun seasoning mix. It also has the closest flavor to the famous whole shabang boiling crab style.
If you're a famous boiling crab restaurant fan, this recipe is definitely for you. Remember that addicted whole shabang garlic Cajun sauce? You will be able to resemble it with just a few simple ingredients.
Since you're here, I bet you have a thing with Cajun-style food (just like me). So be sure to check out these amazing recipes: Cajun honey butter salmon bites, Cajun Style Semi-dried Squid, Cajun chili garlic shrimps and Cajun grilled avocado chicken sandwich.
Though not a Cajun recipe, these garlic butter corn ribs use the same addicting combo flavors: garlic and butter. It's delicious and takes only 15 minutes. And it also makes a perfect side dish to this seafood boil if you want something different from regular Cajun corn.
To make the best garlic butter seafood boil, you'll need the best Cajun seafood boil sauce. Here are the key ingredients for the sauce:
- Old Bay seasoning. Your Cajun-style seafood boil won't be complete without this.
- Lemon Pepper seasoning. I use the one from McCormick.
- Paprika or smoked paprika helps to enhance the unique color that is always found in any Cajun recipe.
- Cajun seasoning. You'll save a lot of time if you buy this ready-to-use seasoning.
- Cayenne pepper. It brings the extra spicy to this garlic-boiling seafood. Omit this if you can't handle the spiciness.
- Brown sugar. It adds a hint of sweetness to the sauce, which helps to balance the buttery, garlicky and spicy flavor.
- Fresh garlic. Lots of garlic will be used to make this seasoning mix recipe so make sure you have extra in inventory.
- Unsalted butter. Just like garlic, you need lots of them. And make sure they are unsalted.
How to make the best garlic butter Cajun seafood boil
Make Cajun seafood boil sauce: Gather all ingredients for the sauce.
Melt unsalted butter: In a heavy bottom medium cooking pot or large cooking pan, melt butter over medium heat.
Add minced garlic: When butter has melted completely, add the minced garlic and cook for 5 minutes.
Cook garlic in butter: Remember to stir occasionally so the garlic won't stick to the bottom of the pan and burn.
Add seasoning: Add the rest of the ingredients to the butter garlic mixture, and constantly stir for another 6-8 minutes to prevent the mixture from scorching (still use medium heat setting).
Cook vegetables: In a separate pot, start cooking corns and potatoes.
Make finishing mixture: Gather ingredients for finishing mix, then set them aside for later use.
Add vegetables/sausages: Add corns, potatoes, and sausages to Cajun seafood boil sauce. Coat them evenly with the sauce and let them cook for 5-8 minutes. Make sure to stir the mixture occasionally to prevent the bottom from burning.
Add seafood of your choice: Add uncooked seafood of your choice (such as shrimps, crawfish, clams, or mussels).
Cook seafood: Coat the seafood completely with Cajun seasoning mix and let them cook on medium-high heat for 10-15 minutes or until they are fully cooked.
Cover the seafood: When seafood are cooked completely, quickly turn off the heat, cover the cooking pan and let them rest for 5-10 minutes.
Mix with finishing mixture: Move the seafood and vegetables with half or one third of the sauce to a large mixing bowl. Then when the seafood are still hot, immediately add finishing mixture into the bowl.
Mix well: Use a large spoon, mix and coat the cooked seafood and vegetables evenly with finishing mixture. Serve hot immediately
Essential cooking tools
This Cajun-style seafood boil calls for a lot of garlic. To make the job easier, some tools can help speed up the cooking process.
Remember, the more finely the cloves are crushed, the stronger the flavor will be. And make sure you include all of the garlic juice in the sauce. They're gold, don't throw them away.
- Granite mortal and pestle: If you making small batch of the recipe, this mortal comes in very handy. In fact this is what I often use whenever I make this butter garlic seafood boil recipe.
- Tuperware chop'n'prep: This small chopper is amazing and a very good tool to chop garlic as well as other herbs and vegetables. Don't underestimate its size, it can mince more garlic than it looks with just a few pull.
- Food processor: If you have extra budget, you can go all out for a food processor. Regardless of how big a batch you're gonna make, it can handle all of your minced garlic needs.
Cajun seafood boil sauce is the main sauce for this recipe. At the same time, a finishing mix is a touch-up added after everything is cooked and right before serving time.
The finishing mix help to enhance the flavors and bring out the best of this garlic butter Cajun seafood boil.
Yes, definitely. You'll need to pre-cook big sizes of seafood before adding them to the Cajun sauce.
Yes, you can. Please make sure to completely thaw them at room temperature before adding them to the cooking pot. If not, their coldness will significantly reduce the cooking temperature and the extra water will do more damage to the sauce than good.
The sauce (made from seasoning mix) can be separated and kept in an airtight container for up to 2 months due to its richness.
Absolutely. All you need to do is omit the cayenne peppers and reduce the amount of Old Bay and Cajun seasoning by half.
Just to let you know, the new non-spicy flavor is not what the recipe initially aims for; so it'll taste less impressive like it's supposed to be.
Best Butter Garlic Cajun Seafood Boil
- 1-2 lb shrimps/clams/crawfish/mussels uncooked
- 2 ea corn on the corb cut into equal pieces, cooked
- 1 link sausages cut into equal pieces, cooked
- 4 ea new potatoes cooked
Cajun seafood boil sauce
- In a large pot, start cooking corn and potatoes.2 ea corn on the corb, 4 ea new potatoes
Make finishing mixture
- Gather ingredients for finishing mixture and put in a mixing bowl. Then set them aside for later use.
Make Cajun seafood boil sauce
- In a heavy bottom medium cooking pot or large cooking pan, melt unsalted butter over medium heat.1 lb unsalted butter
- When butter has melted completely, add the minced garlic and cook for 5 minutes.7 oz garlic
- Remember to stir occasionally so the garlic won't stick to the bottom of the pan and burn.
- Add the rest of the Cajun seafood boil's ingredients to the mixture, and constantly stir for another 6-8 minutes to prevent the mixture from scorching (still use medium heat setting).0.5 oz cajun seasoning, 0.5 oz Old Bay seasoning, 0.5 oz lemon pepper seasoning, 0.5 oz paprika, 0.4 oz brown sugar, 0.2 oz cayenne pepper
Make garlic Cajun boiling seafood
- Start adding corn, potatoes, and sausages to Cajun seafood boil sauce. Coat them evenly with the sauce and let them cook for 5-8 minutes. Make sure to stir the mixture occasionally to prevent the bottom from burning.1 link sausages
- Add uncooked seafood (shrimp, crawfish, clams, or mussels).1-2 lb shrimps/clams/crawfish/mussels
- Coat the seafood with the sauce and let them cook on medium heat for 10-15 minutes or until they are fully cooked.
- When seafood are cooked completely, quickly turn off the heat, cover the cooking pan and let them rest for 5-10 minutes.
- Move the seafood and vegetables with half or one third of Cajun seasoning mix to a large mixing bowl. Then when the seafood are still hot, immediately add finishing mixture into the bowl.8 oz unsalted butter, 3 oz garlic, 0.5 oz Cajun seasoning, 0.5 oz Old Bay seasoning, 0.5 oz paprika
- Use a large spoon to mix and coat the cooked seafood and vegetables evenly with the finishing mixture.
- Serve hot immediately.
- You can swap shrimp for any seafood you like, and remember to cook this over medium heat ONLY. Also, DON’T forget the finishing mixture. It is the secret to making any Cajun boiling more delicious.
- If you don't have lemon pepper seasoning, you can substitute 2 tbsp (1oz) of lemon juice & 2 tsp of ground black pepper.
- If you don't have brown sugar, you can substitute it for 1.5tsp (0.2oz) of granulated white sugar.
- You can use the leftover Cajun seafood boil sauce in the pan to make a different batch of boiling seafood or serve it as a sauce on the side.
- If you decide to use more extensive seafood such as lobster, you should cook them first.
- Cajun seafood boil sauce can be separated for other recipes and kept in an airtight container, in the refrigerator, for up to 2 months.
- Per popular demand, I also added each ingredient's volume measurement (tbsp and tsp). However, I recommend using the weight measurement for a more consistent flavor.
Disclaimer: this post was originally published on April 3, 2019