This Shrimp Creole recipe starts with a roux and ends with a skillet full of shrimp, vegetables, and a savory tomato broth.

Shrimp creole in a black bowl.
Table of Contents
  1. Recipe ingredients
  2. Ingredient notes
  3. Step-by-step instructions
  4. Recipe tips and variations
  5. Shrimp Creole Recipe

Recipe ingredients

Labeled shrimp creole ingredients in various bowls.

Ingredient notes

  • Shrimp stock: The shrimp shells from the 2 pounds of raw shrimp needed for this recipe are enough to make 4 cups homemade shrimp stock. Or substitute store-bought seafood stock or chicken broth.
  • Cayenne pepper: Omit if you don’t like spicy food. Add more if you do!
  • Shrimp: Buy raw shrimp in the shell if possible. Before you cook, clean the shrimp and make stock with the shells. Raw shrimp are the best in this recipe (pre-cooked shrimp will turn rubbery). Thaw frozen shrimp overnight in the refrigerator or in a bowl in the sink with a trickle of cold water running over them.

Step-by-step instructions

  1. Make a roux using flour and butter. Melt the butter over medium heat until it foams, then whisk in the flour.
Melted butter in a black skillet.
  1. Cook, still whisking, until it turns golden, about 5 to 6 minutes.
Roux for shrimp creole in a black skillet.
  1. Add the onions, peppers, celery, and garlic and cook until everything is lightly browned and softened, about 5 to 6 minutes.
Cooked vegetables in a black skillet.
  1. Pour in the diced tomatoes along with their juice, the chicken or shrimp stock, bay leaves, salt, and cayenne pepper. Bring everything to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until the sauce thickens, about 30 minutes.
Vegetables and broth in a black skillet.
  1. After the sauce is ready, add the raw shrimp and cook for another 3 to 4 minutes, just until they turn pink and opaque.
Shrimp creole in a black skillet.
  1. Take out the bay leaves and garnish with parsley, then serve in bowls over fluffy rice or with a loaf of crusty bread.
Shrimp creole in a black bowl.

Recipe tips and variations

  • Yield: This recipe makes 8 (1-cup) servings of Shrimp Creole. Serve with hot cooked rice or crusty bread.
  • Storage: Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  • Make ahead: You can prepare the sauce (everything through Step 3) up to 3 days in advance. For best results, reheat the sauce and add the shrimp when you are ready to eat.
  • Chicken: Substitute 4 cups cooked chicken for the shrimp, or do a mix (2 cups chicken and 1 pound of shrimp, for example).
  • Okra: Some cooks add a few handfuls of frozen chopped okra to the sauce to simmer into the tomatoes. Okra also acts as a natural thickener.
  • Spicy: Serve with your favorite hot sauce or crushed red chili flakes for extra heat.
Shrimp creole in a white bowl served over rice.

More festive recipes

Shrimp creole in a black bowl.

Shrimp Creole

When you can't get to New Orleans, cook New Orleans. This fun and effortless recipe for Shrimp Creole is loaded with tender shrimp and tomatoes all simmered in the holy trinity of ingredients, true Louisiana style.
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Servings 8 servings (1 cup each)
Course Main Course
Cuisine Creole
Calories 200

Ingredients 

  • 1/4 cup butter (½ stick)
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 large onion chopped (1 ½ cups)
  • 1 large green bell pepper chopped (¾ cup)
  • 2 celery ribs chopped (¾ cup)
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 15 ounces diced tomatoes undrained
  • 1 cup shrimp stock or chicken broth (see note 1)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper or to taste (see note 2)
  • 2 pounds large raw shrimp peeled and deveined (see note 3)
  • 2 teaspoons fresh parsley minced
  • cooked rice hot, for serving

Instructions 

  • In a large heavy pot over medium heat, melt butter until foaming. Whisk in flour and cook until blonde in color, about 5 to 6 minutes.
  • Add onions, bell peppers, celery, and garlic and cook until lightly browned, about 5 to 6 minutes.
  • Stir in tomatoes with their juice, shrimp stock, bay leaves, salt, and cayenne pepper. Bring to boil, reduce heat, and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes.
  • Add shrimp and cook until they turn pink, about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove bay leaves, garnish with parsley, and serve over rice.

Notes

  1. Shrimp stock: The shrimp shells from the 2 pounds of raw shrimp needed for this recipe are enough to make 4 cups homemade shrimp stock. Or substitute store-bought seafood stock or chicken broth.
  2. Cayenne pepper: Omit if you don’t like spicy food. Add more if you do!
  3. Shrimp: Buy raw shrimp in the shell if possible. Before you cook, clean the shrimp and make stock with the shells. Raw shrimp are the best in this recipe (pre-cooked shrimp will turn rubbery). Thaw frozen shrimp overnight in the refrigerator or in a bowl in the sink with a trickle of cold water running over them.
  4. Yield: This recipe makes 8 (1-cup) servings of Shrimp Creole. Serve with hot cooked rice or crusty bread.
  5. Storage: Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  6. Make ahead: You can prepare the sauce (everything through Step 3) up to 3 days in advance. For best results, reheat the sauce and add the shrimp when you are ready to eat.
  7. Chicken: Substitute 4 cups cooked chicken for the shrimp, or do a mix (2 cups chicken and 1 pound of shrimp, for example).
  8. Okra: Some cooks add a few handfuls of frozen chopped okra to the sauce to simmer into the tomatoes. Okra also acts as a natural thickener.
  9. Spicy: Serve with your favorite hot sauce or crushed red chili flakes for extra heat.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cupCalories: 200kcalCarbohydrates: 7gProtein: 25gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 286mgSodium: 1351mgPotassium: 311mgFiber: 1gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 463IUVitamin C: 28mgCalcium: 205mgIron: 3mg
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