Saturday, September 11, 2010

How to Make Homemade Shrimp Stock

A rich seafood stock is made easy with shrimp shells and a few aromatics.

How to Make Homemade Shrimp Stock

Homemade shrimp stock adds amazing flavor to so many seafood dishes and it is super easy to make. I've included instructions on how to make a homemade stock from shrimp shells in many of my recipes here, but I figured it was time to give it a spot of its own for the how to tip section of my site.

Now, I do realize that not everybody has access to fresh shrimp, although in some grocery stores you can buy frozen shrimp in the shell. One thing is for certain y'all - {pulling out soapbox} Stop buying the foreign imported stuff!  If that's the only shrimp you've ever eaten, well... you've never eaten shrimp. Turn over the package, look at the very bottom and you'll find the country of origin. Look for packages marked Wild American Shrimp. Yes, it costs a little more thanks to the influx of foreign imports that everybody has been buying - and truth is, most folks don't even realize that is what they are buying - but Wild American is worth every extra penny. Try it once, you will never go back. {tucking soapbox back away}

For those of us fortunate enough to live along a coastline and have direct access to shrimp fresh out of the water, homemade stock from the shells - and always the heads when you have them - makes all the difference when preparing seafood dishes - like Shrimp Sauce Piquant, Seafood Gumbo, and Courtbouillon, to name a few.  Here's the way that I do mine.

Recipe: Homemade Shrimp Stock

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Cook time: 1 hour 30 min | Total time: 1 hour 40 min | Yield: About 4 to 6 cups

  • Shells and heads from 2 pounds of shrimp
  • 1/2 gallon of water
  • 1 onion, unpeeled, quartered
  • 2 ribs of celery, leafy tops included, chopped rough
  • 4 cloves of garlic, smashed and unpeeled

Add ingredients to stockpot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1-1/2 hours. Strain and let cool. Use immediately, refrigerate or freeze.


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Posted by on September 11, 2010
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  1. I feel better not that I see yours is the same color as mine - have a good weekend.

  2. I'm so glad you posted this. So many folks spend a fortune on fish stock when they can use shrimp shells to create their own. This is a nice recipe. I hope you are having a great day. Blessings...Mary

  3. I used a large quantity of shrimp heads because we went to the Gulf and purchased 20 lbs. I made stock - and it looks like your photo - but wonder if i should dilute it? I used 3 gallons of water when cooking the heads. Thoughts anyone?

    1. Hi Diane! I wouldn't dilute it, but consider that when you are using it. In other words, at the time that you are using the stock in a recipe, factor that in and using additional water if you feel it is too concentrated.

  4. Can I use a flounder head instead of the shrimp?


    1. You can - well, it'll be a fish stock of course and you'll want about 3 pounds of fish carcasses/bones to go along with any heads you have. Make sure to remove gills on any heads you use though and strain well to remove any small bones when it's done.

  5. Thanks for recipe on shrimp stock. Trying for first time.


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