Crawfish season is upon us, and families all over South Louisiana will spend time getting together for crawfish boils in their backyards, at their churches or at a neighbor’s home.
Crawfish boils are not just about eating deliciously spiced mudbugs during their peak season, but also about taking an afternoon to enjoy the beautiful spring weather and spend time with friends and family. A Southern tradition, you don’t have to live in the South to host a backyard boil this spring!
Crawfish season typically begins in January and lasts until June with the peak months (best size, price and availability) between March, April and May.
As one of the first restaurants and seafood markets to sell boiled crawfish to New Orleanians, Deanie’s Seafood is well qualified to share what it takes to throw the perfect boil with you! And when you’re ready to host your own crawfish boil, we hope you’ll order your live or boiled crawfish online from Deanie’s Seafood. We can deliver fresh, Louisiana seafood anywhere in the continental United States at shopdeanies.com.
Pick the Perfect Location for your Crawfish Boil
First you will need to pick a location for hosting your boil. A spacious backyard with trees that offer shade so your guests don’t get sunburned or overheated while hovering over spicy hot crawfish is a great option. Once you find the perfect location you will need to begin gathering your supplies!
What you will need to Prepare for your Boil
Seasoned crawfish eaters know that the best crawfish are from Louisiana. If you’re local, pick up the live crawfish from a favorite seafood market. See list for suggestions in New Orleans. Be sure to call several days ahead if you’re placing a big order. If you're out of town, luckily live Louisiana crawfish can now be shipped anywhere in the continental United States.
We recommend ordering somewhere between 2 to 5 pounds per person depending on the crawfish experience and appetites of your guests.
If you’ve ever been to a crawfish boil you know that some of most anticipated offerings are the extras that are thrown in with the crawfish soaking up all of the flavors and spices. What is added in is usually left to the preference of the boiler. A traditional crawfish boil--and the way Deanie’s prepares serves crawfish--is with small red potatoes, Andouille sausage and ears of corn chopped in half. Other favorite add-ins that are often seen at crawfish boils are:
Lemons and Oranges
Onions and Garlic
It never hurts to throw in some of your favorite veggies and see how they turn out. In addition you will need to add plenty of seasonings. There are hundreds of variations of crawfish seasoning. Deanie’s has been using our signature blend of Cajun seasonings for years that adds just the right amount of kick to a crawfish boil. It is available for purchase here.
Some choose to make their own combination of spices such as salt, bay leaves, hot sauce, cayenne pepper and black pepper or to purchase pre-made dry or liquid seasonings.
After you decide on your recipe, you will need to gather the following equipment to ensure cooking your crawfish and hosting your guests goes as smoothly as possible:
Large boiling pot (60 qts or more) with lid and a wire basket insert (pictured), available at Amazon.
A propane burner and full propane tank
A large paddle for stirring
Long tables and crawfish trays for serving (amount depends on number of guest)
Large metal tubs or ice chests
And lots of paper towels!
Tip: Cover all of your tables with recycled newspapers for an easy clean up!
Keep your crawfish in ice chests and rinse with cool water several times to purge pre-boiling
Fill your pot about ¾ full of water and bring to a boil using propane burner. This may take a while, so enjoy a cold beverage and the company while you wait!
Once your water is boiling, add in your extras and when the water returns to a boil it’s time to add the seasonings in.
After your veggies, meats and seasonings are in the pot, boil for an additional five to 10 minutes (don’t cook too much, they will still have time to cook more when the crawfish are added).
Add in the crawfish and return to a boil. At this point the water should be about an inch above all of your ingredients.
After all ingredients are boiling five minutes, turn off your heat, cover with your lid and let everything soak for 15 to 25 minutes depending on the level of spice desired, stirring occasionally with your paddle
When you are ready for another batch, simply return the water to a boil, add seasoning and repeat the process.
Strain crawfish with metal basket, distribute evenly across tables covered in newspaper in the backyard, gather round and enjoy!
For those who are of the legal drinking age, a cold beer such as Abita Amber, a local favorite, goes perfectly paired with hot boiled crawfish! If Abita is not available where you are, any light beer will do the trick. Sweet tea is also a great non-alcoholic option.
If you don’t get around to hosting your own crawfish boil this spring, join us in Bucktown April 19 at Deanie’s Seafood’s very own crawfish boil and festival, Pinch A Palooza.