Have you ever been intimidated shopping because that crab in ~ the grocery store, or cooking it at home? It happens to me all the time. I m sorry is why I decided enough is enough, and also gave myself a tutorial on the types of crab I’m likely to uncover (turns the end there’s a vast variety), and also how to cook them. Why? because crab is delicious.

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By and large, i’ve learned I’m no going to encounter fresh (read: live) crab in my grocery store. If girlfriend do, or have actually a “seafood guy,” much more power come you! What this means is that I’m looking at picked, pre-cooked, and preserved alternatives for all crab varieties. It is okay! ~ all, i don’t desire to mess about with bad, life seafood. As a issue of fact, if the crab you encounter at the grocery keep is not either lively (moves as soon as you touch it, alive), or picked, pre-cooked, and preserved, don’t mess through it. Raw and lethargic? leaving it alone. Raw and also dead? Don’t execute it! Also, if it looks or smells funky, happen on that piece and also go for an additional one. Now that we have that the end of the way, ~ above the crab!

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Scientific name: Callinectes sapidus

Also well-known as: Chesapeake blue crab

Harvest season: April come December

Blue crab is native to the mid-Atlantic, and also Gulf regions of the united States. It’s a significant source that food and/or commerce for the east shore the Maryland, and in Virginia, north Carolina, Louisiana, and brand-new Jersey. When you room eating out and you listen the ax “jumbo bump crab meat” you’re likely getting full pieces of blue crab. Girlfriend can cook these by themselves, or, they’re great in crab cakes, soups (a traditional use for the small female specimens), or also a crab Oscar preparation. Because that an old-style dish, try this Crab royal recipe.

Scientific name: Callinectes sapidus

Also known as: Softies

Harvest season: might to September

Notice anything strange here? check out the scientific name. The the very same as the blue crab, above. That’s because soft-shell crabs are just blue crabs in their molted state. That method their old shells have actually shed, and also their brand-new shells can not use formed and also hardened yet! What sets these babies personally in the kitchen is friend prepare the entirety thing because that consumption. They’re an excellent battered and also fried. Shot this Fried Soft covering Crab recipe.

Scientific name: Menippe mercenaria

Also well-known as: Florida rock crab

Harvest season: Mid-October to mid-May

The rock crab is aboriginal to a component of the Atlantic s spreading from the northeast an ar of the unified States, every the way down to main America. That can likewise be discovered in parts of the Gulf that Mexico, and salt water marsh locations of the southeastern United claims (most significantly South Carolina and also Georgia). Much of the rock crab that’s consumed in the united States originates from the Gulf. Interestingly, stone crabs space consumed for your claws due to the fact that there’s not much to the remainder of them. The claws, though, can be quite big and meaty. Moreover, because of this, fisheries look to declaw the crabs (either singular or dual removal) and also return them to the ocean. Some crabs also grow your claws back. The best method to gain some cook claws is with a mustard sauce made well known by Joe’s stone Crab.

Scientific name: Metacarcinus magister

Also known as: Cancer magister

Harvest season: December come July (predominantly late autumn through winter)

The Dungeness crab renders its house off the west coastline of north America, mainly from Alaska come California (and periodically Mexico). If you’re no on the eastern coast, and you’re looking for a tender, sweet option, steam Dungeness crabs space a great bet. It additionally works well for bisques. Shot this Dungeness Crab Bisque recipe.

Scientific name: Chionoecetes opilio

Harvest season: April to November

Snow crabs are harvested from (duh) cold waters in the north Pacific and also Atlantic. So, a most the eye crab we gain today originates from Canada. A the majority of folks favor to eat the legs steamed, boiled, or baked, through a tiny drawn butter. Other folks favor to fry snow crab legs. Yet if you up because that something a little bit much more adventurous, check out this Crab Fries v Garlic Aioli recipe.

Scientific name: Paralithodes camtschaticus

Also known as: Red king crab

Harvest season: October come January

The granddaddy of castle all! as soon as you desire decadent, rich, buttery, tender, sweet seafood because that a special occasion, girlfriend can’t go wrong with king crab. Castle come from Alaska and also Russia, and also fishing for them is known to be particularly dangerous work. They’re likewise one that the largest species of edible crab, with shells sometimes spanning 11 customs (and a leg expectancy of 6 feet)! for my money, pound for pound (and king crabs can weigh approximately 10 pounds each), I’d go v Alaskan red king crab legs over lobster tail any type of day. For just steamed legs, try this King Crab leg recipe.

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After this exploration, ns feel a lot an ext comfortable navigating the seafood respond to at my local grocery store, and also think I could actually give crab a shot. Hopefully, if you like crab, you feel the same.