Basic Seafood Stock

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

Notes(You can also substitute oyster liquor for all or part of seafood stock called for in a recipe.)



Total Timeunder 4 hours

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Five Ingredients or LessYes

Type of Dishstock


  • About 2 quarts cold water
  • Vegetable trimmings from the recipe(s) you are serving,
  • or
  • 1 medium onion, unpeeled and quartered
  • 1 large clove garlic, unpeeled and quartered
  • 1 rib celery
  • 1½ to 2 pounds rinsed shrimp heads and/or shells, or crawfish heads and/or shells, or crab shells (2½ to 3 quarts), or rinsed fish carcasses (heads and gills removed), or any combination of these.


  1. Always start with cold water—enough to cover the other stock ingredients. 1 Place all ingredients in a stock pot or a large saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, then gently simmer at least 4 hours, preferably 8 (unless directed otherwise in a recipe), replenishing the water as needed to keep about 1 quart of liquid in the pan. The pot may be uncovered or set a lid on it askew. Strain, cool and refrigerate until ready to use. (Note: Remember that if you are short on time, using a stock simmered 20 to 30 minutes is far better than using just water in any recipe.)


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I have not made this yet so I cannot rate it.

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Reduction concentrates flavor but the long amount of cooking time on this shellfish stock scares me a little.


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