A crawfish boil is an exquisite dish. Rich, refined, and memorable, it is a good fish dining option loved by many. The crawfish boil is not a complex dish to make, but it requires certain knowledge and skill, so what do you need to know about crawfish boil?
Crawfish boil consists of two stages- boiling and seasoning. Both steps encompass a series of decisions you will need to make before and after the boiling and seasoning. The selection of sides and spices is the most important step.
It took me more than I’d like to say to master the technique of making a good crawfish boil. The seasoning alone is real science. Still, this tasty delight is worth every try, as the reward afterward is a symphony of perfectly synchronized flavors mashing into one great union. In the following paragraphs, I will give you the answers to the most frequent questions about crawfish boil.
What Are the Best Crawfish Boil Appetizers?
Because of the spicy, fishy, and mildly sour flavor of the crawfish, fresh vegetables are always a good idea. Crawfish goes amazingly well with crudites and hummus.
Another great idea would be to serve your crawfish boil with baked artichoke and crab dip. Baked zucchini and eggplant are excellent crawfish boil companions seasoned with a few lemon drops and salt.
Cajun potato salad also goes great with a crawfish boil. It is usually spicier than a crawfish boil which will fit perfectly with the fishy and zesty flavor of the crawfish.
How Long to Boil Crawfish on the Stove?
The recommended amount of boiling time for your crawfish is 15 minutes. Your crawfish should be in a metal cooking basket, not directly in the pot. Lower them inside the cooking pot and cook for 15 minutes.
However, they won’t start boiling right away. Say it will take about seven to ten minutes for the water to come to a full boil. That means that the crawfish will be boiling for five to seven minutes.
Don’t forget that this time also depends on the burner’s speed to increase the time of your cooker is more on the slow side.
After those five to seven minutes, don’t remove the crawfish from the water. Remove the pot from the hot plate, and leave the crawfish soak for 15 minutes.
If you use frozen crawfish, you should let them boil for two to three minutes, as they have already been processed.
Look out for the cues, too; your crawfish are ready when the shell turns dark red.
During the boiling process, stir the crawfish with a wooden spoon, and don’t stop while they are soaking.
How Long to Boil 1 Lb Crawfish?
The boiling and simmering time doesn’t depend on the amount of crawfish you are boiling. So whether you boil one, two, or three lbs. of crawfish, the amount of time needed won’t change. So, you should boil 1 Lb of crawfish for about 15 minutes.
However, the size of your pot will change according to the amount of fish. Since you need 2 quarts of water for each pound of crawfish, you will need a minimum of six quarts of water, as three pounds of crawfish is the standard amount per person. Therefore, it is best to choose a 30 quarts pot or higher.
How Long to Boil Turkey Necks in Crawfish Boil?
Turkey necks need a bit more time on the stove. When cooking turkey necks, the standard boiling period would be an hour. However, you can prolong this time for an additional 30 minutes, but no longer than that.
When boiled with vegetables, you should allow 40 minutes for your turkey necks as the vegetables speed up the boiling process.
How Do You Cut Onions for Crawfish Boil?
You should cut the onions in half, or a maximum of four pieces. A crawfish boil isn’t a soup, so avoid chopping, dicing, or mincing your vegetables.
The potatoes, carrots, or whatever else you might use should always be cut in large pieces – halved or cut in four chunks. Still, if you like your onions in smaller pieces, feel free to chop them and tailor your crawfish boil to your taste.
How Long to Boil Onions in Crawfish Boil?
You should boil the onions for anywhere from 40 to 45 minutes. If your cooker is slower, you can go up to 50 minutes.
If you decide to add the onions uncut, you should put them in the boil along with the potatoes, as they both need the same amount of time to cook.
On the other hand, if you decide to add the onions halved or chopped, you should add them later. When you cook smaller pieces, they will need less time to cook. So in case you’ve chopped or halved the onions, add them five-ten minutes before you add the crawfish.
A well-boiled onion should separate without any effort, so as long as your onions stick together, they aren’t ready.
How to Make Crawfish Boil Spicy?
If you are a fan of spicy food, add more paprika/ ginger, black pepper, garlic, and lemon juice. Seasoning is a crucial element of a crawfish boil, but it can be a tricky business too.
To make spicy crawfish boil, you need to season the crawfish water. When your crawfish boils in already seasoned water, it takes in all the spices you use. That’s why letting the crawfish soak after you boil it is very important.
What Are Some Weird Things to Put in a Crawfish Boil?
Mushrooms, cabbage, Brussel sprouts, and whole artichokes are unorthodox crawfish boil additions. The beauty of crawfish boil is that you can put whatever you like inside, and it will still be tasty.
Although smoked sausages are a standard part of a crawfish boil, a boiled sausage is weird to me. Another unusual crawfish addition is broccoli, but it seems to work for some people. However, the most bizarre crawfish boil side I have ever witnessed is pineapple, which oddly enough worked out great.
Why Do You Put Oranges in Crawfish Boil?
As a type of seafood, crawfish boil goes excellent with citrus fruits. Milder than lemons, oranges are the perfect combination of sweet and sour, fitting right into place with a crawfish boil. Oranges also have a practical use in crawfish boil too.
You can place the oranges on the bottom of the metal cooking basket to form a thicker barrier between the pot bottom and the crawfish. The oranges will release sweet and sour flavors during the boiling process, which the crawfish will absorb. This technique makes it easier for the seasoning to penetrate the crawfish.
It is vital that you cut the orange into thick pieces to release as much taste as possible.
What Can You Do with Leftover Crawfish Juice?
You can use the juice as an ingredient for risotto. Add some sausage, or seafood, or whatever you want your risotto with, season, and enjoy. Whatever you do, don’t throw the leftover crawfish juice away.
You can also use the leftover juice to make bisque. For this, you will need to thicken the juice with a cold roux.
Rice/pilaf is another excellent use of leftover crawfish juice. Boiling the rice in that crawfish juice will give it a distinct aroma, flavor, and texture.
Pan sauce is also an excellent idea. You will have to halve the crawfish juice amount, though.
How Many Calories Are in Crawfish Boil?
Crawfish is low in fat and calorie – only 70 calories per serving and rich in lean protein. It is generally considered healthy and beneficial.
Considering that crawfish boil consists of several food groups, you should be okay if you don’t overdo it. Since crawfish boil is a type of seafood, it can lead to bloating and nausea if eaten more frequently.
The recommended amount per person is ½ lb. of tail meat, along with one medium boiled potato. Measure the amount of the other veggies in tablespoons, and three tablespoons per person are the recommended dosage. 
What Desserts Go with Crawfish Boil?
Crawfish and seafood generally go well with lighter desserts, such as mousses and fruity pies.
Blueberry pie goes great after crawfish boil. Light, sour, and at the same time sweet, it would be the perfect way to round up your meal.
Key lime pie will also do a great job. Since the crawfish boil already has the lemon zest and sourness, this dessert just continues that theme.
Fruit tarts can be an excellent way to polish off your crawfish experience. They could be the perfect ending to a perfect meal, rich and nearly decadent.
And last but not least, chocolate mousse. Chocolate will go great, especially after a spicier crawfish boil.
How to Store Crawfish Boil Leftovers?
If you refrigerate it, keep it in an airtight container. If you keep it on a plate, make sure you wrap it tightly with plastic foil. This way, your crawfish will be good for the next two to three days maximum.
If you freeze your crawfish boil, it will be safe from two weeks to a month.
A crawfish boil is highly perishable, so you must store it if you don’t clear your plate three hours after making them. Leaving your crawfish boil outside the fridge isn’t an option.
How Much Does Crawfish Boil Cost?
Crawfish boil can be costly, and the price of the crawfish depends on the season you buy it in. Usually, crawfish is most available from the end of February until the end of May, and you can find it for $2.99 to $3.50 per pound. Outside this period, it usually costs more.
Frozen crawfish costs about $5 to $6 per pound, and pre-cooked crawfish costs, even more, depending on the brand.
The cost of the entire meal depends on what else you decide to put into the crawfish boil and what kind of seasoning you use. In any case, it will be pricey.
What Equipment Do You Need for a Crawfish Boil?
A burner is the main element you need for a crawfish boil, but you probably have that already. Another essential is a crawfish pot. There’s no need to look for an expensive pot if you are a beginner, as a simple 60-quart pot will do just fine.
The smallest size pot is the 30-quart pot, where you can fit 15 pounds of crawfish, or enough to feed five people.
Whichever pot size you use, just make sure it has a matching basket because that’s where your crawfish boils.
Another helpful piece of equipment is gloves. You will be working with boiling water and hot pots, so gloves are an essential safety precaution.
A wooden spoon is a must. Since you will have to stir your crawfish while boiling and simmering, choose a wooden spoon with a long handle.
Trays are another necessity for a crawfish boil. After your crawfish boil is done, you will have to use trays to serve it, as it won’t fit on serving plates.
A skimmer isn’t an essential piece of equipment for a crawfish boil, but it is pretty practical. You can use it to remove anything that falls inside the pot. You can also use it to scoop the vegetables to check if they’re done.
Where to Buy Crawfish Boil Pot?
There should be a crawfish boil pot in any bigger hardware store. Also, crawfish boil pots are part of any store handling restaurant equipment selection.
The easiest way to buy a crawfish boil pot would, of course, be to order it online. However, crawfish boil pots aren’t cheap, so you have to do thorough research on the brand you are interested in.
Good crawfish boil pots can vary from $70 to $300 and above, depending on their size and material. For home use, I’d recommend a 30 or 60-quart aluminum pot, the price of which ranges from $60 to $100.
Stainless steel pots are more durable but more expensive as well. Aluminum pots will tarnish over time, depending on how often you use them.