Boiling crawfish can be intimidating at first, especially if you’re cooking for a crowd. Luckily, the process is pretty simple, and it doesn’t take very long to do. Follow the advice below to end up with a delicious pot of crawfish (and potatoes, and corn, and maybe alligator sausage if you’re into that).

  1. Ensure that your pot and burner are large enough to cook the desired amount of crawfish. It sounds silly to mention, but trust us – you’ll want to double-check. Be sure to factor in any additions you want to include, like corn or potatoes.
  2. Clean and inspect your crawfish. Wash them with clean water to remove any existing dirt, and comb through the sack for dead or crushed crawfish that may be inside.
  3. Fill your pot with halfway with water. You’ll want just enough to cover the crawfish, but you don’t want to add any more. Too much water will make it difficult to bring the pot back to a boil.
  4. If you’re planning to use a seafood boil seasoning, add it to the water. If you want added flavor, add more while the crawfish are boiling. It can take more than a half hour for the seasoning to get inside the shell.
  5. Light your burner and wait for the water to boil. Crack a beer, relax, and chat with friends.
  6. When the water is at a rolling boil, add the potatoes and cook for 15 minutes, or until fork-tender. If you’re adding corn, wait until the last 5 minutes to add. Remove the vegetables and set aside.
  7. Add the crawfish, plus additional seasoning, if desired, to the hot water, then cover with a lid. Wait for the water to return to a rolling boil.
  8. Boiling time will vary by crawfish grade and shell thickness. A great rule of thumb is to not let the crawfish boil for more than 2 minutes once the water returns to a rolling boil. Overcooking crawfish means peeling the shell will become difficult.
  9. While the crawfish are finishing, sprinkle a light layer of seafood boil on the bottom of an ice chest. When the crawfish are done, add a layer to the bottom of the chest, then alternate between adding seasoning and layers of the fish. Once the last layer is finished, enlist a friend to help you shake the box, thus thoroughly coating the crawfish in seasoning.
  10. Allow the crawfish to steam for 15 minutes in the ice chest, keeping the lid on. The more time they spend in the box, the spicier they will be.
  11. Enjoy!