Get all the flavors of a full-fledged traditional cajun shrimp boil in a simple foil packet for easy cleanup! Packed with shrimp, sausage, potatoes, corn and a little Cajun seasoning, this New Orleans-inspired dish is sure to be a hit with the whole family.
No-Fuss Cajun Shrimp Boil Foil Packets
Shrimp boils are traditionally associated with coastal regions, but there is a distinct difference between Georgia or South Carolina boils and Louisiana boils; the heat. This recipe’s Cajun seasoning is what will give it that kick, and andouille is the preferred sausage because of its additional smoked Cajun flavors.
Once assembled, these packets can be cooked in the oven, on the grill or over a campfire. After they’re cooked and cooled, grab a fork and dig in!
Did we mention zero clean-up needed? That’s a win-win in my book!
Nutrition Tip: Shrimp is a low-fat, low-calorie source of protein that packs vitamin B12 and minerals like iodine. It’s also low in one of the lower-mercury fish and shellfish, according to the EPA.
One of my favorite things about this recipe is using fresh summer corn! When buying fresh corn on the cob, always look for green, tightly wrapped husks. The kernels should also feel plump through the husk. If you can feel holes, choose another one. For more tips on how to pick the perfect cob, visit our Produce Tips page.
Don’t forget to use heavy-duty foil or double up on layers to prevent tears or holes when assembling or cooking foil packets. You don’t want to lose an ounce of the delicious flavor!
What Is a Shrimp Boil?
If you’ve grown up on the coast or in the South — especially the Cajun South — you’ve probably attended your fair share of shrimp boils in your lifetime at church events, football tailgates, or wedding rehearsal dinners. But for those of you not familiar, allow me to enlighten you on the beauty of a traditional Southern shrimp boil.
Shrimp boils, crawfish boils, or even just general seafood boils are wonderful because they require very little prep work and are a fun, communal way to eat outside with the people you love.
It’s in their nature to be messy (you’re cracking shells and eating corn straight off the cob, after all), but I knew there had to be a way to turn this crustacean celebration into something that could be done indoors any night of the week with extremely little clean up.
Can a Shrimp Boil Really Be Mess-Free?
Food tends to bring people together, and one of my favorite culinary celebrations is a good, old fashioned shrimp boil. It’s a guaranteed good time spent with friends, family, and delicious grub.
However, if there’s a downside, it would have to be the mess. (If you’ve ever hosted a shrimp boil, then you know exactly what I’m talking about. The discarded shells, corn cobs, and used flatware is enough to make any host loose their head.)
Luckily for all of us, I’ve developed a solution — this recipe for Cajun Shrimp Boil Foil Packets.
They’re packed full of all the flavors found at a traditional cajun shrimp boil in a convenient and easy-to-clean foil package. Eat them straight from packet after it comes off the heat, bundle up all the discarded bits after your done, and toss in the trash. I told you it was easy! Plus, now you can spend less time cleaning up and more time with your guests.
Key Ingredients for These Cajun Shrimp Boil Foil Packets
- Shrimp: You’ll use one pound for this recipe, peeled and deveined.
- Baby Red Potatoes: One pound total, washed and diced.
- Andouille Sausage: This type of smoked sausage is commonly used in Cajun cooking. It’s spicy, super flavorful, and pairs perfectly with the shrimp and Cajun seasoning.
- Corn on the Cob: Three ears total, washed and cut in half.
- Olive Oil: To keep everything from sticking.
- Cajun seasoning: Three teaspoons total. Buy it in the grocery store/online, or make your own!
Homemade Cajun Seasoning Recipe
Making your own homemade Cajun seasoning is simple. Just combine:
- 3 tablespoons smoked paprika
- 2 tablespoons fine kosher salt (or omit it you want to better control the amount of sodium in what you cook with this seasoning)
- 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon ground white pepper
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon cayenne (or more if you like the heat)
- 1/2 tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
Set aside until ready to use, or store with your spices in an airtight container or plastic bag. It should stay good for at least a year.
How To Make a Traditional Cajun Shrimp in Foil
- Start by preheating your oven to 425 degrees or your grill to medium-high heat.
- Cut six large pieces of heavy-duty aluminum foil (about a foot long each), and lay out on a flat counter or surface.
- Divide shrimp, diced potatoes, sliced sausage, and halved corn into 6 even-ish portions, and place in center of foil. Drizzle each with 1 tsp. olive oil, and season with 1/2 teaspoon Cajun seasoning (add more or less to taste).
- Seal the foil packets by rolling the long side of foil together on top and folding sides in tightly, ensuring nothing will drip out during the cooking process.
- Bake for 20-30 minutes, or until potatoes are tender and shrimp is cooked through and pink.
- Serve with a side salad, some coleslaw, or as is. Enjoy!
Variations on this Cajun Shrimp Boil Foil Packets Recipe
- Leave the shells on like I did when I made it for more flavor.
- Not a fan of shrimp? You can substitute fish, crawfish, or shelled mussels. Even chicken would work well, but you’ll need to brown it before adding to the foil packet to ensure it’s cooked through.
- If you don’t like andouille sausage, then swap it with your favorite sausage, like turkey, veggie, or Connecuh.
- Make it vegan and vegetarian by omitting meat entirely!
- Add more veggies like onions, bell peppers, hot peppers, cherry tomatoes, sliced cabbage, or minced garlic.
- If you want to make this without the foil packets, try turning this into a sheet pan recipe and following the instructions for my sheet pan shrimp fajitas recipe.
- Make it in the slow cooker by adding the potatoes, sausage, corn, 5 cups of water, and 1/4 cup of Cajun seasoning to your Crock Pot. Cook on high heat for three hours, or until the potatoes are fork tender. Then, add the pound of shrimp and cook until just opaque, approx. 10-15 minutes. (Remove the corn before adding the shrimp to make room, if possible. Place on a plate and cover with foil until ready to serve.) Drain, serve, and enjoy!
Storage, Freezing, and Reheating Instructions
- Store leftovers from your Cajun Shrimp Boil Foil Packets in an airtight container (without the foil) in the refrigerator for up to two days.
- Reheat leftovers in foil packets in the oven at 350 degrees or on the grill at medium, or simply on a lined sheet pan, until warmed through. You can microwave these leftovers, but it may alter the texture and make your house smell like shrimp.
- We did not test freezing this recipe — leftovers or ahead of time — and honestly we don’t recommend it. You can, however, use frozen ingredients like shrimp, sausage, or potatoes. Just let them thaw completely and drain before baking so there’s no excess water in the foil packets.
Be Weary of Shrimp Food Allergies
When serving this or any meal with shellfish to little ones, be prepared for them to have an unplanned allergic reaction. This is especially true with toddlers or kids who are having any new food for the first time.
It’s best to let them test out a common allergen like shrimp by having a small taste or amount first, then waiting an hour or so to see if their bodies react. Have Benadryl handy, and never hesitate to take them to the doctor or hospital if you’re concerned over their allergic reaction.
If your child is prone to food allergies, then it’s best to avoid foods like shellfish all together, or meals where other foods are in contact with the allergen.
Check out this episode of the Healthy Family Project Podcast on Living with a Food Allergy to learn more.
More Recipes To Try
If you enjoyed these Cajun Shrimp Boil Foil Packets, then you’ll love these no-fuss family-friendly recipes:
- Sheet Pan Shrimp Fajitas
- Easy Shakin’ Breaded Drumsticks and Cheesy Broccoli Rice Bake
- Slow Cooker Shredded Pork Tacos
- Easy Vegetarian Naan Pizzas
- Baked Pork Chops and Purple Mashed Potatoes
Cajun Shrimp Boil Foil Packets
- 1 pound peeled de-veined shrimp
- 1 pound baby red potatoes diced
- 1/2 pound andouille sausage sliced
- 3 ears corn on the cob cut in half
- 6 teaspoons olive oil
- 3 teaspoons cajun seasoning
- Preheat oven to 425F or preheat grill to medium-high heat.
- Precut 6 large pieces of heavy-duty aluminum foil (about 12 inches each). Divide shrimp, potatoes, sausage and corn into 6 portions and place in center of foil. Drizzle each with 1 tsp. olive oil and season with 1/2 tsp. Cajun seasoning (add more or less depending on level of heat desired).
- Roll long side of foil together on top and fold sides in, sealing the foil packet tightly.
- Bake in preheated oven or grill 20-30 minutes or until potatoes are tender and shrimp is cooked through.