Shrimp Stock, Thai Shrimp Soup


If you are a fan of wild Gulf Coast shrimp, this stock is a must-have in your freezer. It’s so incredibly delectable and can be used for everything from étouffée to soups and even bloody marys (trust me on this!). Because you never want to boil crustaceans for long, it is a relatively quick stock to make, which is a good thing because you’ll be eager to put it to use for this Thai-inspired soup. With the bright flavors of curry, lemongrass, lime and cilantro, this shrimp soup is perfect for any night of the week, any time of the year.


Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes

Makes 2 quarts

1 ½ pounds large Gulf Coast shrimp (20-25 count)
1 large yellow onion, quartered
2 carrots, halved
2 celery stalks, halved
1 head of garlic, sliced in half exposing the cloves
6 sprigs parsley
3 sprigs thyme
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon black peppercorns

Remove the shrimp from their shells. Set aside the shrimp for later use. Gently rinse the shells.

In a large pot, combine the shells with the remaining ingredients. Add 2 ½ quarts (10 cups) of water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes. Strain the liquid stock from the solids and cool. Refrigerate stock in an airtight container for up to 4 days or 3 months in the freezer.


Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes

Serves 4

2 tablespoons canola oil
2 segments (4-inch each) of lemongrass
3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 shallot, peeled and minced
2 tablespoons grated ginger
2 tablespoons red curry paste
1 15-ounce can coconut milk
1 teaspoon fish sauce
5 cups shrimp stock
4 cups chopped bok choy
1½ pounds large shrimp, shelled and cleaned (20-25 count)
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

In a large pot, heat canola oil over medium-low heat. Add lemongrass, garlic and shallots and cook until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add ginger, curry paste, coconut milk and fish sauce. Stir until combined. Next, add stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add bok choy and shrimp, and return heat to a rapid simmer for 3 to 5 minutes, until shrimp are thoroughly cooked and the bok choy is tender. Remove from heat and add cilantro and lime juice. Garnish with serrano peppers, extra cilantro and lime wedges, if desired.

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MEREDITH STEELE is a recipe developer, food writer, food photographer and author of, an award winning family food blog celebrating creative and fresh foods. Her recipe development and photography company, MBS Recipe Development specializes in multimedia recipe development for commercial and small business who’s clients include everyone from Ziploc® to small wineries. Meredith’s work has been published online, in various print media, and has been nominated for the SAVEUR awards. She can also be found across the pond writing a monthly column for When Meredith is not in the kitchen, she’s roaming Dallas, Texas with her husband, curly-headed pixie of a daughter, and big floppy-eared dog.