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Difference between Zatarain's liquid crab boil and bagged version?

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In a recipe, how is Zatarain's concentrate liquid crab boil, and the bagged version interchangeable? Does anyone prefer one over the other?

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  1. I think this gets back to preferences.
    They are two different tastes. I use the bags for boils but have occasionally added some liquid. Mostly I use liquid as a seasoning, not necessarily in a boil. The other use for liquid is that you can use a small amount if you are just doing maybe a pound of shrimp for a salad or other side dish.

    1. "Interchangeable" is the dangerous word here. One bag does not equal one bottle. The bottled stuff is very powerful stuff..You could use it for crowd control in a riot. More than a capful in a pot on the stove and you'll get people's eyes watering. For outdoor boil we usually use a full bottle and a couple of the bags for the first sack of crawfish. I agree with collardman. You just have to play a bit to get your preference...those last batches are going to get ramped up, too. I eyeball it but there are certainly a whole boatload of recipes Out There.

      1. Alrightie, thanks a lot for the info!

        5 Replies
        1. re: vusi22

          I only buy the liquid version now because I add a splash of it to my red beans, to egg wash before frying shrimp, to seafood gumbo, etouffee, to butter for tossing potatoes in and roasting them and other dishes. A little goes a long way.

          1. re: texasredtop

            egg wash--what an excellent idea! I'll try that next time. I switched to liquid just because it's easier to keep (prefer bottles to powders) and add in like you say. It's good to add to your rice cooking water, too. I do a scant teaspoon per cup of uncooked rice if I'm serving with etouffee, gumbo, etc.

            1. re: sailornagy

              I made some crawfish cornbread a couple of months ago and put a little in the batter. It's a nice kick to anything seafood and some things not seafood. I think the best dish I like it in is the red beans.

              1. re: sailornagy

                Zatarains did a crawfish boil demo at JF. They used pro boil(powder), liquid, bags in addition to the usual fresh garlic, lemons onions etc. The crawfish were excellent.

                I use the liquid to boil potatoes for potato salad. I became addicted to spicy potato salad years ago when I used leftover pototes from a crawfish boil.

                1. re: JazzyB

                  Take some raw potato chunks and toss them in a mixture of butter and liquid crab boil and roast them. Oh lordie, they're so good. Sometimes I use those and make a potato salad if there are any left.

          2. I am a confirmed bag man (in the nice kind of way, I mean). All I had to do was look at the ingedients in each. I admit that there are times that the bottle would come in handy, many of them the suggestions made by other responders. I guess it depends on what you need it for. I use the bag for boiling everything from seafood to beef tongue, and I have no occasions that demand the bottle.

            1. I think its a matter of preference really. Personally, I prefer the liquid boil. Like others said, a little goes a long way. I find the liquid to be more spicy and have more of a kick which is what I like. Also, keep in mind that one bag doesn't equal one bottle. The liquid is VERY potent. I can boil 1lb. shrimp of with a little over a cap full and its seasoned to perfection. Its really a trial and error type thing to figure out which you prefer.