The Best Southern Crawfish Boil Recipe

This Creole Crawfish Boil recipe is sponsored by Idaho Potatoes. All opinions are my own.

Crawfish Boil! It’s how we’re cooking!

Basket filled from crawfish boil

In the south, we don’t play around with our seasoning, and this crawfish boil is no exception. A spicy, crazy mess of a feast that is made for sharing.

Crawfish boils are definitely a “come sit for a while, take a load off” kind of food that is meant to be savored and shared along with great conversation and cold brews.

Flavored with cajun goodness, crawfish are paired together with mini ears of corn, red Idaho Potatoes, and if you’re up for it, steamed artichokes to dip into a fiery dipping sauce.

Other dinner recipes to try:

Crawfish boil feast

What are Crawfish?

Crawfish are a freshwater shellfish that is considered a Louisiana delicacy. They live in the mud, are larger than shrimp, and definitely a good bit smaller than a lobster.

How to purge (clean) crawfish

It is essential to make sure that your crawfish (a.k.a. crayfish, crawdads … mudbugs) are purged before cooking them.

When buying crawfish, you have to ask for live crawfish, and being that those little fellas live in the mud, they will need to be purged (or cleaned) first. I found this article to be helpful for directions on purging crawdads. I only recommend using the freshwater method in this article. I do not recommend the salt method, so don’t waste your salt.

What do you put in a crawfish boil?


  • Seasoning for crab, shrimp and crayfish boil
  • 3 – 6 pounds crawfish per person
  • Corn on the cob
  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Artichokes, completely optional but a nice addition
  • Andouille sausage, again optional, but wow – so good!
  • RED, I repeat only red Idaho potatoes will do in this feast

For me, my go-to potatoes are Idaho Potatoes, and I’m never without a stash of them in my pantry. (To make sure you are enjoying the best quality potatoes for your recipes, look for the certified grown in Idaho label.) So when I decided it was time for a southern crawfish boil, out came my bag of red Idaho Potatoes!

For more great ideas and recipes, visit www.idahopotato.com.


Step One

Gather your ingredients, bring a large pot to a boil and start the broth. Clean or purge the live crawfish.

Step Two

Follow the order of adding the vegetables into the broth followed by adding in the crawfish.

Step Three

Set up the table, typically lined with newspaper, crack open the cold beers or drinks of choice.

Step Four

Once the crawfish are cooked, it’s time to drain and dump it on your newspaper lined table. To eat a crawfish, simply twist the tail off, suck the head to get the spicy flavored broth, and enjoy the succulent meat from the tail.

Basket of crawdads with artichokes corn and Idaho red potatoes

Satisfyingly delicious, boiled in a distinct spicy quick broth along with other vegetables, and a great way to stretch a meal to feed a crowd. Does this feast sound familiar? Other similar seafood cousins are referred to as seafood or shrimp boil, a one-pot meal, or even a clam bake depending on what part of the country you’re from. No, they’re not all the same, but yes, they are all equally and richly flavored making for a perfect way to enjoy warmer weather with your favorite people.

Crawfish boil feast

Crawfish Boil Recipe

Yield: 20 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Additional Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours

Enjoy this southern favorite that's perfect for summer, a spicy and rich flavored Crawfish Boil recipe.


  • 1 large package (73 ounces) seafood boil seasoning, I prefer Zatarain's Crawfish, Shrimp, and Crab Boil
  • 3 1/2 - 4 cups salt
  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup creole seasoning
  • 8 - 10 bay leaves
  • 6 - 8 lemons, halved
  • 4 - 6 garlic heads, halved
  • 3 pounds yellow or white onions, quartered
  • 4 - 6 pounds small red Idaho Potatoes, some left whole, others halved
  • 3 - 4 pounds Andouille sausage, optional
  • 10 - 12 mini frozen corn on the cob
  • 3 - 4 Artichokes
  • 35 - 40 pounds live fresh crawfish, purged


  1. In a very large (60 - 80 quart) pot, half-filled with water, place pot on a jet-style propane burner set on high heat. Add onions, garlic and lemon halves. Bring to a rolling boil over high heat (this can take a while to come to a boil, give yourself about an hour for this step).
  2. Add in the seafood boil seasoning, salt, creole seasoning, bay leaves, and potatoes, bring back to a boil, then reduce heat to medium heat, cooking for about 20 minutes or until potatoes are fork-tender.
  3. Add in the sausage, simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. Add in the mini corn and artichokes (optional) and simmer an additional 10 minutes. 
  5. Add crawfish, return to high heat and cook for 5-10 minutes. (When you start to see small gaps start to appear between the head and the tail on the largest crawfish, you'll know there ready). Turn the heat off and let the crawfish rest in the hot liquid for 20 - 30 minutes before serving.
  6. Line a large sheet pan with newspaper or parchment paper. Pour mixture through a large colander basket, or you can use a large spider strainer (slotted spoon) to remove crawfish and vegetables from water. Place crawfish and vegetables on a pan or newspaper lined table. Serve with extra creole seasoning, hot sauce, or remoulade if desired. 


If you don't have a large enough pot, you can half the recipe if needed and cook in a smaller pot in batches.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 20 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1137Total Fat: 36gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 19gCholesterol: 1101mgSodium: 81697mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 6gSugar: 8gProtein: 163g

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