How to Cook a Lowcountry Boil

How to Cook a Lowcountry Boil

A Lowcountry Boil, also known as a "Frogmore Stew," is a traditional seafood dish that originated in the Lowcountry of South Carolina. The dish is famous for its combination of seafood, sausage, and vegetables cooked in a flavorful broth. The beauty of a Lowcountry Boil is the combination of textures and flavors from hearty potatoes to sweet and succulent shrimp.  Therein lies the most common blunder in preparing this recipe... overcooking the seafood.  The secret to preparing this dish is the order and timing of ingredients as the seafood and sausage are the stars of this dish and the vegetables play supporting roles.  

When invited to eat a Lowcountry Boil, arrive early and help with the preparation... even if just to chat with the chef with a cocktail in hand.  It's also bad form to arrive when the food has already been prepared only to leave as soon as you've had your fill.  A LCB is just as much an experience as it is a meal. 

Here's a recipe for making a delicious Lowcountry Boil at home:


  • 2 pounds small red potatoes
  • 2 pounds Andouille or other smoked sausage, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 pound large local shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 4 ears of corn, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 onions, cut into wedges
  • 2 lemons, cut into wedges
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 cups seafood or chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup Old Bay seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. In a large pot, bring the broth, water, Old Bay seasoning, butter, garlic, and lemons to a boil.
  2. Add the potatoes and onions to the pot and cook for 8-10 minutes.
  3. Add the smoked sausage and corn to the pot and cook for another 5-7 minutes.
  4. Lastly, add the shrimp to the pot and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until the shrimp are pink and cooked through. Shrimp will continue cooking after you've turned off the heat.  
  5. Drain the pot and discard the liquid.
  6. Season generously with Old Bay Seasoning.  
  7. Serve the Lowcountry Boil in bowls and enjoy with a cold beer and some bread.


  • You can also add other types of seafood such as crab legs, mussels, or clams to the boil. Be mindful not to overcook the shrimp or seafood.
  • Use fresh local Lowcountry shrimp... unless you want to make a Thailand Farmed Shrimp Boil.  
  • You can also add other vegetables such as okra, carrots, or bell peppers.  
  • You can also use other seasonings such as Cajun seasoning, or only use Salt and Pepper if you are not a fan of seafood seasonings
  • Add some locally brewed ale to the broth ... the citrusy flavor compliments the seafood. 

A Lowcountry Boil is a delicious and easy-to-make dish that is perfect for a gathering with friends and family. The combination of seafood, sausage, and vegetables cooked in a seasoned broth is sure to please any seafood lover. And you can always adjust the recipe to your taste and preferences. Serve it with some cold drinks and enjoy the company.

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