Louisiana Shrimp Etouffee

Louisiana Shrimp Etouffee is a delicious Southern medley of tender Gulf shrimp nestled in a blonde Creole roux, and accented with The Holy Trinity – onion, celery and green bell peppers–all served over a bed of white rice!

If you can’t get to Louisiana, this shrimp etouffee recipe is the next best thing! It’s quick, easy and ready in minutes!

Shrimp Etoufee with rice in a blue bowl.

This is one of my favorite “go-to” recipes for shrimp because it’s ready in minutes and it’s a delicious Creole shrimp recipe!

The Creole sauce is based on tomatoes nestled in a blonde roux, which doesn’t take long to make and the shrimp cooks in 5-minutes! It’s a perfect weeknight dinner in your own kitchen-no need to go to Pappadeaux’s™ for a really good etouffee!

You’ll love this recipe!

You’ll find various versions of Louisiana shrimp etouffee – some are Cajun recipes (that typically do not include tomatoes) and some are Creole recipes, which usually include tomatoes. This easy shrimp recipe is Creole and you can use fresh tomatoes or canned tomatoes.

  • This easy Creole shrimp etouffee recipe is based on a blonde roux,” The Holy Trinity,” stewed tomatoes and Creole seasonings. 
  • Quick and easy – use premade seafood stock and this French classic is ready in 40-minutes!
  • Healthy – all-natural ingredients, no preservatives, fillers or additives
  • Easy Clean-up! One big skillet and a pan for rice…that’s it!
  • Great flavor – make it as mild or spicy as you like!
  • Perfect Mardi Gras recipe! 

What is Shrimp Etouffee?

Etouffee, pronounced “Ay-too-FAY”, is a French word that means “smothered” , and is a popular cooking method where shellfish or chicken is cooked, or “smothered” in a blonde roux and served with white rice. 

It is a popular French dish in and around all of Louisiana, including New Orleans, and is second to the famous Louisiana Seafood Gumbo.

A popular version of this recipe in New Orleans is Crawfish (or crayfish) Etouffee or etouffee recipes that include andouille sausage. This recipe mirrors the classic etouffee sauce recipe except with shrimp.

Generally speaking, traditional etouffee does not include tomatoes, but I added a few to give a Creole vs Cajun flair to this popular Louisiana dish.

Here’s what you’ll need

Fresh shrimp, flour, butter, yellow onion, celery, green bell peppers, stewed/canned tomatoes, a spice blend – Creole seasoning (or Cajun seasoning), high-quality prepared seafood stock, Worcestershire sauce, Louisiana pepper sauce (optional) and white rice.

If you want it really spicy, add cayenne pepper and Louisiana hot sauce – both of these are optional.

This classic dish calls for a high quality seafood stock; however if you can’t find one, substitute with chicken broth, chicken stock, or shrimp stock or shrimp broth.

Shrimp etouffee and rice in white bowl.

These simple ingredients are much better than etouffee mixes like Zatarain’s™ Etouffee Mix, because they’re all-natural. No additives, colorants or preservatives. 

If you can’t find Cajun or Creole seasoning, you can season the fresh shrimp with Old Bay seasoning.

How to make Shrimp Etouffee

If you’re using fresh Gulf shrimp (which I recommend), you’ll need to peel and devein the shrimp first; lightly season with Creole seasonings and set aside. Chop the onion, green bell pepper and celery into small pieces and set aside.

Next, make the roux. The main thing to focus on when making a proper etouffee is to get the roux to the right consistency.

In a large saucepan on medium heat, melt butter and sprinkle in equal parts flour; whisk and cook on low to medium-low heat for 2-3 minutes until the roux turns to a light golden brown

While continually whisking, add in the seafood stock, tomatoes, chopped vegetables and Creole seasonings. Allow this to simmer a while so the Creole flavors will develop.

Once these have simmered a bit, add the seasoned shrimp. It doesn’t take much time for shrimp to cook – about 5 – 8 minutes! Serve over prepared white rice and you’re done! Garnish with chopped green onion tops, fresh parsley or a little Gumbo filé powder.

The end result is a delicious, restaurant-quality Louisiana Shrimp Etouffee!

Saucepan with blonde roux in it.
Combine and cook for 5 minutes

Recipe FAQ’s

What’s the Holy Trinity?

In Louisiana cooking,“The Holy Trinity” refers to the sauteeing of three vegetables: white or yellow onions, green bell peppers and celery. These vegetables form a “mirepoix” which is basically an aromatic base for soups, stews, Gumbos and other dishes. 

The French version is chopped carrots, onions and green bell peppers, but Louisiana folks substitute celery for the carrots.

Can I use frozen shrimp?

Yes! Rinse, peel and devein frozen shrimp then, lightly season with Creole seasoning and set aside. If you want to go easy on the Creole seasoning, just light salt and pepper the shrimp.

What is a roux?

A roux is a combination of equal parts of fat and flour, heated to form a base for sauces. There are different types of roux, depending upon what you’re making. For instance, Gumbos are based on dark roux.

A basic white cream sauce starts with a light, or white roux. The color and thickness of a roux depend upon how long they’re cooked. A light roux is thicker than a dark roux.

Is Creole cuisine spicy?

Generally speaking, a classic Creole dish usually has more spice than it’s cousin- Cajun. The Creole people were city dwellers and had easy access to bold flavors and spices like cayenne pepper , bay leaf and chili powder…so a lot of these warmer spices are found in Creole food. Cajun cooking generally consists of simple ingredients and less spices.

You control the heat of this shrimp creole by the amount of seasoning you add.

If you don’t like spice, only salt and pepper the shrimp and start with 1/2 tablespoon of the seasoning blend in the tomato sauce. You can always add more.

Serving suggestions

Although Louisiana Shrimp Etouffee is a complete dish on its own, you will often see it served with warm French bread and/or a cup of soup…like French Onion or a cup of Gumbo.

You might want to serve a side of Louisiana Crab Puffs with the etouffee, as well!

Storage and reheating

You can make this Louisiana shrimp étouffée recipe up to three days in advance and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. I recommend storing the etouffee sauce separately from the rice.

For best results, reheat the shrimp etouffee on the stovetop and reheat the rice in the microwave. (You might have to add a little water to the creole sauce as it may thicken upon storage.)

You can freeze this dish up to 6 months. 

Louisiana shrimp etoufee and white rice in blue bowl.

Make this quick and easy Louisiana Shrimp Etouffee for Mardi Gras or any day of the week!

More Louisiana and New Orleans recipes

If you make this recipe, please scroll down and leave a comment and rating! I love to hear from you! Thank you!

Shrimp etouffee in a blue bowl over white rice.

Louisiana Shrimp Etouffee

A delicious Southern medley of tender Gulf shrimp nestled in a blonde Creole roux, and accented with onion, celery and bell peppers–all served over a bed of white rice!
5 from 10 votes
Print Rate
Course: Entree
Cuisine: Cajun, Creole, French, French-American, Louisiana
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
Author: Anecia Hero


  • 1 lb Gulf shrimp shelled and deveined
  • 4 tablespoons butter , salted or unsalted
  • ½ cup flour , all-purpose
  • ½ cup chopped celery
  • ½ cup chopped yellow onion choped
  • ½ cup chopped green bell pepper
  • cups seafood stock See Recipe Notes
  • 2 tablespoons Creole seasoning Creole Seasoning (divided); 1 tablespoon to season shrimp and 1 tablespoon for the sauce; See Recipe Notes
  • 15 ounces stewed tomatoes , chopped; See Recipe Notes
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Louisiana Hot Sauce (optional)
  • 4 cups prepared white rice
  • 1 bunch green onions , for garnish


  • Remove shells and tails of shrimp. If you're making your own shrimp stock, place the shells and tails in a saucepan and cover with 1 ¾ cups of water and ½ teaspoon of salt; bring to boil; drain and reserve liquid for later in the recipe.
  • Season shelled, raw shrimp with 1 tablespoon of Tony Chachere's Creole Seasoning; set aside
    1 lb Gulf shrimp, 2 tablespoons Creole seasoning
  • In a heavy bottom skillet on medium-low heat, melt butter; sprinkle in flour; combine and let cook for 2-3 minutes (it will be lumpy)
    4 tablespoons butter, ½ cup flour
  • Add The Holy Trinity : chopped onion, celery and green bell peppers to butter/flour mixture; cook 5 minutes
    ½ cup chopped celery, ½ cup chopped yellow onion, ½ cup chopped green bell pepper
  • Gradually add in shrimp stock, stirring with whisk to remove any lumps
    1½ cups seafood stock
  • Add Worcestershire sauce, remaining 1 tablespoon of Tony Chachere's Creole Seasoning, stewed tomatoes with their juice, and Louisiana hot sauce (optional); combine well (use wooden spoon to break apart tomatoes)
    2 tablespoons Creole seasoning, 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce, 15 ounces stewed tomatoes
  • Allow mixture to cook on low for 10 minutes, or until the tomatoes are tender; taste for salt
  • Meanwhile, prepare rice
    4 cups prepared white rice
  • Add seasoned shrimp to mixture; allow to cook for 6-10 minutes or until shrimp are light pink
    1 lb Gulf shrimp
  • Plate rice onto plates or bowls and ladle shrimp and roux over rice; garnish with chopped green onions
    1 bunch green onions, 1 teaspoon Louisiana Hot Sauce


This dish is not super spicy, but if you don’t like even a little heat, season the shrimp with a little salt and pepper and start with 1/2 tablespoon of Creole seasoning in the sauce.
I use Tony Chachere’s™ Creole Seasoning.
Don’t over cook the shrimp!
  • Nestle them in the hot tomato mixture and let them cook for about 5-8 minutes
Seafood Stock:
If you don’t have seafood stock, you can use chicken or vegetable stock. 
How to make shrimp stock
Peel shrimp and remove tails. Place in medium saucepan; add 1 3/4 cups of water and 1/2 teaspoon salt; bring to boil for 5-8 minutes; drain shells and tails, reserving the liquid. 
Stewed tomatoes:
This recipe calls for stewed tomatoes but if you only have diced, that will work as well. Just cook them a little bit longer in the sauce so they thicken.
If you have stewed tomatoes with basil and/or garlic, that will work just as well. 

Nutrition Estimate

Serving: 1cupCalories: 660kcalCarbohydrates: 69gProtein: 56gFat: 17gSaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 602mgSodium: 2536mgPotassium: 789mgFiber: 5gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 1852IUVitamin C: 48mgCalcium: 454mgIron: 11mg
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5 from 10 votes (8 ratings without comment)

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  1. 5 stars
    I forgot to take a picture but this recipe is so easy and absolutely delicious. I expect to make this on a regular basis