Instant Pot Southern Soul Food Low Country Shrimp Boil

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Are you familiar with a low country boil? 

If not, no worries! You’re about to find out what it is and why people love Southern low country boils so much! 

Being a Black folks food enthusiast, I enjoy cooking and sharing easy soul food and Southern food at its finest – Black folks food! And a low country boils is a southern stockpot meal with lots of my coastal Virginia home state seafood faves like shrimp, crawfish, crabs, and shellfish. This dish is often served with corn on the cob for dipping. 

A low country boil is a classic Deep South hearty dish that looks as interesting on the table as it is appetizing!

 

 

Southern soul Food Shrimp Boil - Instant Pot Low Country Boil

 

Is there any part of the low country boil recipe that doesn’t sound good?

Everything sounds like something you’ll want to taste, from the shrimp to the corn on the cob to the sausage and potatoes! 

The secret soulful seasoning that adds the classic flavor to this dish is Old Bay Seasoning, which offers a beautiful savory enhancement to the shrimp, corn on the cob, potatoes, and sausage. 

A Louisiana Cajun soul food favorite!

 

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Soul Food Old Bay Shrimp Boil

 

What is a low country boil?

A low country boil is a Southern Louisiana tradition of boiling seafood (crabs, shrimp, clams) with vegetables (corn on the cob and potatoes). 

Traditionally it’s a stovetop slow cooker recipe. A combination of seafood and sausage, like andouille or kielbasa cooked in a spicy broth. The broth is seasoned heavily with Old Bay or Cajun seasoning and other spices. 

This meal is perfect for large gatherings, holidays & family reunions, tailgates, parties, and buffets! 

 

Black folks Southern shrimp boil Big Easy

African-Americans have been hosting gatherings with soul food low country boils for years. Often called a Southern shrimp boil Big Easy!

I love low country boils because they have all my favorite flavors – spicy sausage, tender shrimp, and sweet corn. 

 

You won’t even need hot sauce! 

No cocktail sauce is needed either! No dipping sauces are needed since the ingredients are so flavorful! And for this Instant Pot recipe, I’ve cut down the all-day or overnight simmering of a low country boil in a huge stockpot.

 

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How do you make low country boil?

With my Instant Pot shrimp boil recipe, you can make just enough of this dish for an average family of 3 or 4. 

There is no need for a large stockpot, extra refrigerator storage, or waste – and the cooking time is cut down from 8 hours to 8 minutes. Wowza!

 

How to cook Instant Pot shrimp boils

For this quick Instant Pot shrimp boil, you can use both the liquid shrimp and crab boil seasoning and Old Bay seasoning, and it won’t be too overpowering. Pressure cooking combines the flavors for a precise savor!

 

Southern Soul Food Instant Pot Shrimp Recipes

 

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Pioneer Woman Instant Pot Duo  |  Pioneer Woman measuring bowls  |  Pioneer Woman similar bowl  |  Anthropologie similar napkins  |

 

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Instant Pot Southern soul food shrimp boil 

Ingredients for a Southern soul food shrimp boil

  • 1 ½ pound of small-medium red or golden potatoes
  • 13-oz. package of smoked sausage, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 ears of corn, cut into thirds (fresh or frozen corn)
  • 1 tablespoon of liquid shrimp & crab boil seasoning
  • 4 teaspoons of Old Bay seasoning, divided – 3½ teaspoons and ½ teaspoon
  • ½ teaspoon of garlic powder
  • 6-8 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 pound of large or jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined (thawed or frozen shrimp)
  • ½ cup of butter, melted
  • 4 cups of water

 

Black Folks Low Country Boil Recipe

 

Instructions for an Instant Pot Southern soul food shrimp boil

  1. Place the potatoes, sausage, and corn in the Instant Pot stainless steel inner pot. 
  2. Add the 4 cups of water into the inner pot.
  3. Add the liquid shrimp & crab boil seasoning, thyme, bay leaf, and 3 ½ teaspoons of Old Bay seasoning.
  4. Make sure the potatoes are submerged in the water.
  5. Close the Instant Pot lid (make sure the vent is in the sealing position – up) and pressure cook on high for 8 minutes.
  6. When the 8 minutes is up, open the Instant Pot lid with a manual/quick release of the remaining pressure.
  7. Remove lid and add the shrimp. If needed, you can take the corn out to make room for the shrimp. 
  8. Sprinkle the remaining ½ teaspoon of Old Bay seasoning on the shrimp and stir in the shrimp. 
  9. Replace the Instant Pot lid and keep the Instant Pot on the ‘keep warm’ setting. 
  10. Let the residual heat inside the pot cook the shrimp for about 5 minutes.
  11. Open the Instant Pot lid, and sprinkle the remaining ½ a teaspoon of Old Bay seasoning onto the shrimp boil.
  12. Place the butter and garlic powder in a microwave-safe bowl.
  13. Microwave for about 45 seconds or until the butter melts. 
  14. Pour the melted garlic butter over the shrimp boil, or use it on the side for dipping!
  15. I like to serve low country boil directly from the Instant Pot inner pot, but you can also use a large spoon to transfer to a large serving bowl or dish to enjoy!

Pro tips: 

  • If adding crawfish, crab, crab claws, lobster, or other shellfish like mussels or clams, you can take the corn out to make room and pressure cook on high for an additional 2 minutes.  
  • You may also add coarsely chopped onion to this recipe.
  • You may include lemon wedges on the side, as they’re always good pallet cleansers and fingertip cleaners when enjoying seafood and a seafood boil!

 

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Instant Pot Southern Soul Food Low Country Shrimp Boil

 

What dessert goes with a Southern soul food low country boil?

The combination of fried shrimp, sausage, corn on the cob, and red potatoes in a spicy boil is one of my favorite meals. This dish pairs well with seasoned or spicy oyster crackers or a crusty focaccia bread.

In case you struggle with what dessert to serve with your shrimp boil, I’ve listed a few Black folks’ favorites you can select from.

 

  1. Soul food apple pie 
  2. Southern bread pudding
  3. Black folks Southern peach cobbler
  4. Soul food sweet cornbread
  5. Southern banana pudding the Black way
  6. Southern strawberry pretzel salad
  7. Southern desserts strawberry rhubarb pie

 

Instant Pot Southern soul food low country shrimp boil FAQs

Is a simmer a low boil?

A “low boil” is when the liquid in a pot or pan boils at an even rate to create bubbles that break the surface of the liquid. 

This can be used to cook rice, pasta, vegetables, and other types of food. 

A “simmer,” on the other hand, is when you want to heat liquids without boiling them over – like for making soup stock or sauces (or your favorite chili). The bubbles don’t break all the way through, so they’re more gentle than with a full-on, rolling boil.

So, there you have it! Now you know what both terms mean and how they differ from one another.

 

Southern Shrimp Boil Big Easy

 

What’s another name for low country boil?

Since the low country boil is a Southern dish, you may not know that another name also knows it. 

There are, of course, the name variations like soul food boil, low country shrimp boil, low country crab boil, or Old Bay shrimp boil. 

Other classic names for this dish are Beaufort stew and Frogmore stew.

 

Low country boil vs. Frogmore stew?

There are two popular dishes in the south that people often confuse with one another because they both have the same DNA. 

A low country boil is a seafood dish consisting of crab, shrimp, and other shellfish in a spicy broth. Frogmore stew (or Beautford stew) is a Southern dish made with alligator meat simmered in tomato gravy.

Frogmore stew is a traditional Southern dish from South Carolina. At the same time, a low country boil is a regional preparation of seafood. Low country boils usually include shellfish like crab claws, whereas Frogmore stew does not.

 

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Why is it called a low country boil?

In the United States, “low country” refers to coastal areas in the southeastern region. The word “boil” comes from boiling or cooking food in water – so it’s no surprise that both dishes are cooked with boiled shrimp, crawfish, corn on the cob, potatoes, onions, and red pepper flakes. 

Similar to Louisiana Creole gumbo, low country boils have a clear broth instead of a creamy base.

 

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What does a low boil look like?

A low boil is an exciting thing! It looks like a simmer, but it’s not quite that either. 

So what does a low boil look like? 

A lot of people would say, “a tiny little bubble.” But what does that mean? Is there any difference between the bubbles in simmering water and the bubbles in boiling water? You’re about to find out!

A low boil is typically a simmering pot of liquid with bubbles that rise to the surface and break. It doesn’t matter whether the bubbles are large or small; they always remain on top of the water. Low boils are also known as “shallow boiling.”

 

What do you call a seafood boil?

You may have heard it called many names, but few embody the Southern culinary experience like Frogmore Stew. It’s a mixture of seafood and vegetables that is boiled in spices for hours until tender.

With shrimp exclusively, this recipe is a low country shrimp boil.

 

Black Folks Cajun Southern Shrimp Boil Big Easy

 

Can low country boil be stored in the fridge for a long time?

Low country boils are typically leftovers from fried seafood or boiled shellfish like crabs or crawfish simmered with vegetables in a seasoned broth. 

Low country boils can be prepared ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator, so they’re ready to eat whenever hunger strikes! 

 

How long do leftovers last?

Contrary to popular belief, there’s no need to freeze lowland boils before storing them- they’ll keep fresh for up to 3 days.

 

Where did seafood boils originate?

The origins of seafood boils are not definite, but there is evidence that they originated in the southeastern United States. Seafood boils can be traced back to Native Americans who boiled crabs, clams, and crawfish with cornmeal dumplings called “lumps” or “hush puppies.” 

This dish became more widespread when settlers began boiling lobsters, shrimp, oysters, and other shellfish with potatoes and onion.

 

Do you need to stir while simmering?

The answer is yes! It is important to stir this dish constantly when it’s being prepared in a traditional large stockpot because it contains many ingredients. Stir so that they all cook evenly and do not stick to the bottom.

If you’re using an Instant Pot, the magic is that there’s no need for constant stirring!

 

How long to boil shrimp?

After adding shrimp, you should boil it until the shrimp’s color turns pink. Usually, it’ll take only 3 to 4 minutes.

In the Instant Pot, the shrimp are added last because the pot’s steam will cook them. The potatoes are the main reason for the 8 minutes total pressure cooking time.

 

How much do you love this recipe?!

8 minutes vs. 8 hours? I’m in!

What do you think of this Southern soul food low country boil recipe?

Have you ever made a low country boil?

Leave a 5-star rating along with a comment below if you love this Instant Pot shrimp boil recipe’s time savings!

 

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Black folks Southern shrimp boil Big Easy Recipe In The Instant Pot

 

Instant Pot Shrimp Boil

Instant Pot Southern Soul Food Low Country Shrimp Boil

African-Americans have been hosting gatherings with soul food low country shrimp boils for years. Often called a Southern shrimp boil Big Easy!
I love low country boils because they have all my favorite flavors – spicy sausage, tender shrimp, and sweet corn. 
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Shrimp Steam Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 18 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Boil, Stew
Keyword: Black folks low country boil, Instant Pot low country boil, Instant Pot recipe, Instant Pot shrimp boil, Instant Pot shrimp recipes, low country boil, low country boil recipe, Old Bay shrimp boil, soul food, soul food low country boil, southern food, Southern low country boil
Servings: 4
Calories: 576kcal

Equipment

  • Instant Pot electric pressure cooker

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ pound potatoes small-medium red or golden potatoes
  • 13 oz smoked sausage cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 corn on the cob cut into thirds (fresh or frozen corn)
  • 1 tablespoon seafood seasoning Liquid Shrimp and Crab Boil Seasoning
  • 4 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning divided – 3½ teaspoons and ½ teaspoon
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon fresh thyme 6-8 sprigs
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 pound shrimp large or jumbo - peeled and deveined (thawed or frozen shrimp)
  • ½ cup butter melted
  • 4 cups water

Instructions

  • Place the potatoes, sausage, and corn in the Instant Pot stainless steel inner pot.
  • Add the 4 cups of water into the inner pot.
  • Add the liquid shrimp & crab boil seasoning, thyme, bay leaf, and 3 ½ teaspoons of Old Bay seasoning.
  • Make sure the potatoes are submerged in the water.
  • Close the Instant Pot lid (make sure the vent is in the sealing position – up) and pressure cook on high for 8 minutes.
  • When the 8 minutes is up, open the Instant Pot lid with a manual/quick release of the remaining pressure.
  • Remove lid and add the shrimp. If needed, you can take the corn out to make room for the shrimp.
  • Sprinkle the remaining ½ teaspoon of Old Bay seasoning on the shrimp and stir in the shrimp.
  • Replace the Instant Pot lid and keep the Instant Pot on the ‘keep warm’ setting.
  • Let the residual heat inside the book cook the shrimp for about 5 minutes.
  • Open the Instant Pot lid, and if desired, sprinkle more Old Bay onto the shrimp boil.
  • Place the butter and garlic powder in a microwave-safe bowl.
  • Microwave for about 45 seconds or until the butter melts.
  • Serve the melted garlic butter on the side for dipping!
  • I like to serve low country boil directly from the Instant Pot inner pot, but you can also use a large spoon to transfer to a large serving bowl or dish to enjoy!

Video

Notes

  • If adding crawfish, crab, crab claws, lobster, or other shellfish like mussels or clams, you can take the corn out to make room and pressure cook on high for an additional 2 minutes.  
  • You may also add coarsely chopped onion to this recipe.
  • You may include lemon wedges on the side, as they’re always good pallet cleansers and fingertip cleaners when enjoying seafood and a seafood boil!
Instant Pot Low Country Boil - Shrimp Boil Printable Recipe

Nutrition

Calories: 576kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 212mg | Sodium: 1488mg | Potassium: 1267mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 470IU | Vitamin C: 39mg | Calcium: 162mg | Iron: 4mg
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Nutrition Facts
Instant Pot Southern Soul Food Low Country Shrimp Boil
Amount per Serving
Calories
576
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
28
g
43
%
Saturated Fat
 
10
g
63
%
Trans Fat
 
1
g
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
3
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
12
g
Cholesterol
 
212
mg
71
%
Sodium
 
1488
mg
65
%
Potassium
 
1267
mg
36
%
Carbohydrates
 
49
g
16
%
Fiber
 
5
g
21
%
Sugar
 
7
g
8
%
Protein
 
34
g
68
%
Vitamin A
 
470
IU
9
%
Vitamin C
 
39
mg
47
%
Calcium
 
162
mg
16
%
Iron
 
4
mg
22
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

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2 Comments

  1. Cyrene
    August 9, 2021 / 3:17 pm

    5 stars
    Oh my! This recipe is mouthwatering!

    • August 11, 2021 / 11:49 am

      So happy you agree! It’s one of my seafood favorites!

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