I love crab, especially King crab and snow crab. They are my favorite seafood!
Whenever I go to Las Vegas, they are the first thing I would grab from the buffet. They are so delicious with sweet and juicy crab meat.
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How to Cook Crab Legs?
In the United States, crab legs we get from the market are mostly pre-cooked, heavily salted and frozen.
Here are the three basic cooking methods for home cooks:
- Oven baked.
At restaurants, they are boiled in hot water and served with melted butter. However, I don’t recommend boiling because it depletes the natural sweetness of the crab. It also overcooks them.
If you choose boiling method, I recommend boiling for 5 minutes, in rolling boil water.
Steaming is a better method and I recommend steaming in a steamer for 5 – 10 minutes.
The best method is oven baking. Season the crab legs with melted butter, garlic, lemon juice, parsley and bake them in the oven for 5 minutes.
This is one of the best crab leg recipes ever!
Cook’s Tips on How to Make Crab Legs
For the best results at home, please follow my tips below:
- If you choose boiling as the cooking method, do not use salted water.
- Do not overcook. Over cooking will make the texture tougher and taste.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do You Have to Thaw Frozen Crab Legs Before Cooking?
The answer is yes. Thaw them before cooking for moist, tender and juicy crab meat.
King Crab Legs VS. Snow Crab Legs
The former has bigger legs. The meat is firm and sweet. They taste more like lobster.
Snow crab has skinny and long legs, making them less meatier. However, there are no thorns or spikes on the the legs so they are easier to crack open and eat. They are also cheaper.
To learn all the differences between the two species, please click here.
Where Is the Best Place to Buy?
Crab legs are not cheap but you can get discounted price from stores whenever they are on sale.
The best place to buy is Costco. Costco has good quality King crab legs that taste sweet, fresh and not too salty.
During sales and promotion, you can get them for less than $20 per pound.
How Many Calories per Serving?
This recipe is only 398 calories per serving.
What Dishes to Serve with This Recipe?
This recipe is best served with a side of crusty skillet garlic bread, cheesy garlic Texas Toast or cheddar bay biscuits, as an appetizer. For a wholesome meal and easy weeknight dinner, I recommend the following recipes.
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- 1 lb. king crab legs
- 1/2 stick salted butter (melted)
- 3 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 tablespoon parsley (chopped )
- 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
- lemon slices
- Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).
- Thaw the crab legs if they are frozen. Using a sharp knife or a pair of a scissors, slice or cut the crab legs into halves to expose the flesh. Arrange them evenly on a baking sheet or tray.
- Melt the butter in a microwave, for about 30 seconds. Add the garlic, parsley and lemon juice to the melted butter. Stir to mix well. Drizzle and spread the butter mixture on the crab. Save some for dipping.
- Bake the crab legs in the oven for about 5 minutes, or until the crab legs are heated. Serve immediately with the remaining garlic lemon butter and lemon slices. Squeeze some lemon juice on the crab before eating.
Notice: Nutrition is auto-calculated, using Spoonacular, for your convenience. Where relevant, we recommend using your own nutrition calculations.
You don’t clarify the butter ? Melt and pour the melted clarified butter off of the milk solids.
No need to clarify the butter.
when you thaw any frozen sea food, take it out of the package & put it in a dish & cover with cling wrap…when you take it out dry on paper towels & your ready to go..
I made these this evening for the first time as an appetizer. They were perfect! I highly recommend this recipe!
Made this for my sister’s birthday. I did add a dash each of garlic and onion powder. I didn’t have any parsley, but it was still delicious! I just saw your recipe for the sriracha and like the idea of roasting at 400 for 20 minutes. Will try that next time! Thanks for the amazing recipe!
Will be trying this for Xmas , how long do we thaw the king crab legs ? I will be buying them at Costco 2 days prior to Xmas , do I just leave in fridge and take them out the day before to thaw room temp?
Please read the instructions. It has all the information.
That answer is not clear, I read the instructions which say, thaw the crab legs. The question was: how long do you thaw them? Do you bring them to room temperature prior to baking, since you are only baking for 5 minutes? This recipe sounds great but because of the cost of King Crabs, I’d like to be sure beforehand.
Thank you for sharing some great recipes….
I think she meant read the thawing instructions on the crab leg package.