Crabs are hot commodities in the culinary world, not only for their highly prized lump meat, but also for their claws and legs – and, when caught while molting, their edible soft-shelled bodies. This 4th of July, check out these great crab recipes, and notice how not one of them is for crab cakes!

While there’s nothing like a good crab cake, there are ways to eat these cranky crustaceans other than forming their delicate meat into seasoned little patties. Whether you steam and pick your own crabs or buy a neatly packaged pound of jumbo lump, be adventurous! Sprinkle some crabmeat over a bowl of chilled summer soup. Roll it into balls and make bite-sized beignets. Or, just eat a soft shell crab – head, legs and all.

A crab contains only 10 to 30 percent meat, depending on the individual crab and the skill of the person picking it. High-cost, low-yield items such as crab can put a dent in your food costs, so make the most of it and expand your culinary repertoire.


Chef John Neal Harrison, Sr. of Stoney’s Seafood House
Steamed Crabs

Chef Tom Black of Barking Frog
Dungeness Crab Beignets

Chef Ann Cooper of The Ross School
Summer Gazpacho with Dungeness Crab

Chef Peter Vazquez of Marisol
Thai Crab and Coconut Soup

Chef Donald Link of Herbsaint
Chili Glazed Soft-Shelled Crab with Napa Cabbage Slaw

Chef Dan Thiessen of Salty’s
Black Bean Roasted Dungeness Crab