Seafood Stock

Adapted from Sara’s recipe

Makes 8 cups of stock

While I pioneered this recipe specifically for gumbo, this stock is perfect for almost any Western-style dish that calls for seafood stock. This recipe aims to inject as much flavor into your stock as possible, with the added bonus of using ingredients that normally would be considered trash, wasting nothing.

Favorite Recipes Using this Stock:

Goan-Style Shrimp Curry

Smoky Seafood Chowder

Seafood Gumbo


1 gallon-bag full of shrimp shells, fish carcasses, squid or octopus parts, etc (for more on saving scraps for stock, see my post on bone broth)

4 onions, quartered

4 celery stalks, roughly chopped

2 carrots, roughly chopped

2 bay leaves

1 head of garlic, sliced in half horizontally

1 TBSP dried parsley

5 whole cloves

1 TBSP ground black pepper

1 TBSP dried basil

1 TBSP dried thyme

Enough water to cover the solids in the pot


Preheat oven to 375F. Dump the bag of seafood leftovers onto a baking sheet. Add the vegetables, and place in the oven on the middle rack. Roast until the shells are dried and the ingredients are taking on some brown color.

Put the roasted ingredients and the rest of the solid ingredients into a large stockpot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, lower to a simmer, and cook for several hours—at least one, but up to three or more, adding water if necessary.

Let the stock cool a bit until it’s safe to handle, then pour through a strainer into a large bowl. Discard the solids and return the stock to the stockpot; cook down until there are about 8 cups of liquid left and the taste is rich.

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