What Are The Best Crabs to Buy? Top 7 Crabs Ranked

Crab is a delicious delicacy consumed on special occasions around the world. But when you’re shopping for crab, it can be overwhelming to see so many different options—how do you know which crab is truly the best?

Here at the Stone Crab Club, we know everything there is to know about crab, and we’ve drafted this list to help you find the best type of crab for your next event. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the best types of crabs! 

1. Stone Crab

Stone crab is the most tender and flavorful crab meat which is available on the market. Not only is it wildly delicious, but it is also 100% sustainable, as you don’t have to kill the crab in order to enjoy its meat.

Stone crabs are unique because they can regrow their claws every year or so—so when they are fished, just one claw is taken (the other is left so the crab can hunt), and the crab is released back into the sea. This means that only stone crab claws are available for sale—but that’s the best part about eating crab anyway! 

Whether or not you have tried stone crab before, it is truly the best type of crab and a must-buy for those who want to enjoy the best type of crab. Just be sure to also grab some of the amazing Joe’s Mustard sauce to make your stone crab experience complete!

2. Alaskan King Crab

Alaskan King Crab is known far and wide for its amazing flavor and, of course, its large size! Alaskan King crab is one of the largest varieties of crab in the world, and the meat has a deliciously sweet and buttery flavor, which makes this crab meat delicious when dipped in butter. 

Alaska King Crab is tasty when steamed and eaten alone but also delicious when made into soups or crab cakes. Because one Alaskan King Crab can weigh up to 24 lbs., you’ll likely be buying a portion of one crab for your next seafood feast! 

3. North Sea Giant Crab

The North Sea Giant Crab is a similar breed to the Alaskan King Crab, but rather than being fished out of the seas around Alaska, these large crustaceans are found in the North Sea near England and Scotland. 

This breed of crab, however, doesn’t grow quite as large as the Alaskan variety and instead tops out at about 9 pounds. Regardless, the meat is tender and delicious and an excellent addition to any seafood dish or delicious when simply cracked and eaten with clarified butter! 

4. Snow Crab

If you’ve enjoyed crab before, there’s a huge chance it was snow crab. While snow crab is on the cheaper end, it is also known for not being as tender or flavorful as the other varieties of crabs on this list.

Just because it isn’t as nice doesn’t mean it isn’t tasty. Because it tends to be on the briny side, snow crab is an excellent choice for soups, as you won’t have to add a ton of salt to make it flavorful.  Just be sure if you buy snow crab to eat on its own that, you have something ready to dip it in to help counteract the slightly salty taste! 

5. Dungeness Crab

Dungeness crab is another popular choice for crab meat and can be commonly found in Asian dishes. While Dungeness crab is tender and sweet, it doesn’t have large legs—meaning it isn’t an easy crab to eat on its own. If you are having this crab for a meal, you’ll need to dig into the body as well to ensure you truly get your money’s worth! 

Dungeness crab is best prepared by boiling, though they can also be steamed. Keep in mind, though, that the Dungeness crab shells are very thick and difficult to manage, so you’ll probably want to pre-crack them when serving guests. 

6. Blue Crab

Blue crab is known far and wide for its deliciously sweet and tender meat, which also has a unique nutty flavor. Blue crab is a bit hard to find whole, however, as most fisheries that catch them send them to be made into jumbo lump crab meat, but they are typically available along the Atlantic coast of the United States

If you are lucky enough to buy a whole blue crab, then the world is your oyster. You can steam or boil the crab to eat plain or extract the meat for use in another dish. You will never run out of options when it comes to cooking and serving blue crab! 

**Blue crab is often harvested as the crab molts its shell. These crabs, with the partially formed shells, are usually fried and served as softshell crabs as they can’t be cooked using any other method (the partially formed shell will disintegrate when cooking).

7. Japanese Spider Crab

Japanese Spider Crab is another of the largest crab varieties, falling in the same category as Alaskan King Crabs. These large animals can be scary to encounter in the wild, as their massive legs move quickly, making them look like a spider and thus giving them their name. 

Japanese Spider Crabs have very sweet and delicate meat, which makes them excellent for serving on their own or in recipes. They are only found off the coast of Japan, however, so if you don’t live in Asia, you’ll probably have a hard time finding this particular breed of crab! 

If you do get your hands on one, it's best to serve it on its own with a mild dipping sauce, which will enhance the crab’s natural flavor. Stay away from chowders and crab cakes, as this type of crab has a flavor that is easily overpowered. 

Overall, there are so many delicious types of crab out there to try! We recommend starting with either Stone Crab or Alaskan King Crab, as these types of crab are easy to find and prepare. No matter what type of crab you decide on, check out the Stone Crab Club to see all of the amazing offers and to enroll in our subscription program which will have fresh seafood shipped to your door automatically on a monthly basis! 

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