Shrimp Boil with Spicy Butter Sauce


In this especially delicious version of a classic shrimp boil, the seafood is simmered with lemon, garlic, and a touch of Old Bay Seasoning. Shell the shrimp right at the table and then dunk each one into our positively irresistible cayenne-spiced sauce. For tamer tastes, serve the shrimp with lemon wedges instead. 

Active Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
20 mins
4 servings


  • 1 ½ quarts water

  • ¼ cup vinegar

  • ½ lemon, cut into thin slices

  • 2 garlic cloves, smashed

  • 5 tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning

  • ½ teaspoon peppercorns

  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt, divided

  • 1 ¼ teaspoons cayenne, divided

  • 4 bay leaves, crumbled

  • 2 pounds large shrimp (in their shells)

  • ½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter

  • 4 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice


  1. In a large pot, combine the water, vinegar, lemon slices, garlic, Old Bay Seasoning, peppercorns, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt, 1/4 teaspoon of the cayenne, and the bay leaves. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

  2. Add the shrimp to the pot. Cover and bring back to a boil; continue boiling, partially covered, until the shrimp are just done, 1 to 2 minutes.

  3. In a small stainless-steel saucepan, melt the butter. Remove the pan from the heat and add the Worcestershire sauce, the lemon juice, and the remaining 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon cayenne.

  4. Divide the shrimp along with some broth among four bowls. Serve with the butter dipping sauce on the side.

    Shrimp Boil with Spicy Butter Sauce
    Jerrelle Guy

Suggested Pairing

Pop open a cold beer for this one, or be adventurous and try pairing the spiciness of the shrimp boil with a palate-cleansing, refreshing sparkling wine from California or Australia.

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