This easy shrimp stew begins with a homemade roux. It's packed with shrimp, trinity, and flavor! Serve over cooked rice, or add some hard-boiled eggs after the stew has cooked. You'll love this old-fashioned, cajun comfort food!
Why You'll Love This
This recipe is very similar to shrimp etouffee. However, this shrimp stew is much thicker than an etouffee. It also has a medium-dark roux which takes about 30 minutes to make (a dark, rich roux takes time!). While etouffee also has a roux, it's "generally" a lighter roux.
This basic shrimp stew recipe contains no vegetables other than onion, bell pepper, and celery. But don't fret - you can always add some peas and carrots at the very end.
Some people add peeled, whole hard-boiled eggs after the stew has cooked, and some even add a scoop of potato salad in the same serving bowl right on top of the stew!
Shrimp stew ingredients should be fairly easy to find at any grocery store.
Shrimp - use raw, large shrimp. The shrimp should be peeled, deveined, and tails removed. (Some people leave the tails on for added flavor - but this is purely your choice. It makes for some messy fingers if you have to pull the tails off of shrimp that are covered in stew -- but again, totally your choice!)
Trinity - chopped onion, bell pepper, and celery. This is commonly referred to as the trinity because it's always these same 3 ingredients.
Flour and Oil - use all-purpose flour and canola oil to make the roux.
Minced Garlic - use fresh or use the minced garlic that comes in a jar - so handy!
Green Onions - the green onions had additional flavor and always seem to make their way into our Cajun recipes.
Worcestershire Sauce - for a little added flavor, add a little "wooster" sauce.
Seasonings - salt, cajun or creole seasoning mix, and black pepper.
How to Make It
For the absolute best results, please follow the instructions in the recipe card!
(1) Make the roux by adding the oil and flour to your pot. Slow simmer, constantly stirring, until the roux is medium to dark brown. This will take about 30 minutes.
(2) Add the onion, bell pepper, and celery. Simmer 10 minutes.
(3) Add the garlic and shrimp. Simmer 5 minutes. Add the water (or use broth instead) and all the seasonings. Simmer 5 minutes. Test for flavor and add additional seasonings, if desired. Add green onions, and simmer for another 5 minutes.
(4) Serve over hot, cooked rice. Yummy!
Frequently Asked Questions
The stew is pretty filling as-is, but nobody would pass up some buttery French bread! You can also serve it with potato salad or a green salad.
As long as it's stored in an airtight container, it will stay fresh for up to 2 days. When ready to eat, just warm it in the microwave. Be careful not to overheat it (don't boil the stew in the microwave lol) or the shrimp may become rubbery.
Substitutes and Additions
Can substitute cayenne pepper for the cajun-creole seasoning. You can also use red pepper flakes (add them when you're sauteing the onion, bell pepper, and celery.
If you have any fresh parsley, you can add it to the cooked stew.
Add a can of diced or stewed tomatoes -- add to the pot when you add the shrimp.
Add a can of drained peas and carrots for a more traditional stew.
Add a potato -- make sure it's diced small -- add to the pot when you add the onion, bell pepper, and celery. Potatoes are thickeners, and this stew is plenty thick, so don't add any more than 1 large potato.
Add some peeled, whole hard-boiled eggs at the end of the recipe, right before serving time. This is a traditional Louisiana add-in. Adding hard-boiled eggs to a recipe was likely a means to stretch the recipe and or add more protein (especially during Lent).
For an extra flavor kick, add ½ pound of sliced sausage (Andouille or your favorite) -- add while you're sauteeing the trinity.
More Cajun recipes
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- 5-quart heavy pan
- measuring cup(s)
- measuring spoons
- ½ cup all-purpose (plain) flour
- ½ cup oil (I use canola oil)
- 1 cup diced onion (lima-bean-size pieces)
- ½ cup diced bell pepper (green-pea-size pieces)
- ½ cup diced celery (green-pea-size pieces)
- 2 pounds raw, large shrimp, peeled, deveined, tails removed if using frozen shrimp, let them thaw first then drain them in a colander to remove excess liquid
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic (jarred)
- 1-½ cups water or use broth for added flavor! Be mindful of additional salt in the broth before adding more salt.
- ½ tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon creole seasoning (Tony Chachere's) add more or less to suit your taste - it's up to you!
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 3 green onions, sliced
- Make the roux. In a heavy, 5-quart pan (or Dutch oven), add the flour and oil. Blend with a whisk. Cook on medium-low heat, stirring every minute with a whisk until the color is medium brown. This will take about 30 minutes. You'll want the roux to slightly (barely) simmer - do not boil! Be careful not to burn the roux or you'll have to start over. Making a roux is easy -- but it takes time and is well worth every minute.
- Add onion, bell pepper, and celery. Stir to combine. Simmer uncovered until the celery is tender; about 10 minutes. (Simmer = light, delicate bubbling action; not boiling).
- Add the garlic and shrimp. Stir to combine. Simmer covered for 5 minutes.
- Add water, Worcestershire sauce, creole seasoning, salt, and black pepper. Stir to combine. Simmer uncovered for 5 minutes. Taste test for flavor and add more salt or creole seasoning, if desired. If mixture seems too thick, add a little more water (or broth).
- Add green onions, stir, and simmer uncovered for another 5 minutes.
- Serve over cooked rice. Serve with buttered and toasted French bread.
Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy to my readers. I'm not a nutritionist and I don't guarantee the accuracy of this data. The data may differ according to the brands I used versus the brands you use. To calculate the data yourself using your brands, try using an online nutrition calculator or app.