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Perfectly Boil Shrimp

How To: Perfectly Boil Shrimp

  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 8 Servings 1x


  • 4 quarts cold water
  • 2 lemons, halved
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 1 large thyme sprig
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and bruised
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon Old Bay seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 2 pounds fresh shrimp (16/20 size)


  1. Fill a large pot with 4 quarts of water. Squeeze the juice from the lemons then toss in the lemon halves, onion, thyme, garlic, bay leaves, Old Bay, and peppercorn to the water.
  2. Bring to a boil for 5 minutes.
  3. Add shrimp and return to a boil.
  4. Once it reaches a boil, cover and remove from heat. Let sit for 5 mins.
  5. Drain shrimp in a colander and dip the colander in an ice bath to prevent overcooking.
  6. Enjoy with cocktail sauce or use in a recipe that requires cooked shrimp.


The size of shrimp will affect how long you boil them. The key is to look for a separation of the shell from the shrimp. As soon as you see this drain the shrimp because they are perfectly cooked.

  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Cook Time: 25 mins