Get Crackin' on These 14 Crab Recipes

February 13, 2017

Last week, McDonald’s announced that it’d be debuting a snow crab sandwich in four of its San Jose, California locations. The product is the first of its kind for McDonald's, created with the help of Top Chef alum Ryan Scott. The chain's snow crab sandwich is a mix of celery, clarified butter, mayo, tomato, and the meat of a snow crab, all stuffed between two slices of sourdough. If the sandwich is successful in these South Bay locations, it's primed for a greater rollout in 250 stores later this year.

Depending on where you live, there’s a chance that crabs are in season. The snow crab is a milder, less expensive cousin to the Dungeness crab, which is San Francisco's most widely-consumed crab of choice. Seasonality notwithstanding, hearing about this new sandwich made me very hungry. I'm fascinated by these crustaceans and how they cook, so much that this news got me scouring for the crabs we've got in our library of recipes.

My recommendation? Stick your Sebastians into a cake or beignets. A chowder. A plate of macaroni. Even if crabs—and the tomatoes and corn they're frequently served with—are not in season wherever you are in the world, don’t worry: They will be soon enough. (Though, for what it's worth, frozen crabs are just fine.)

What are your favorite crab recipes? Let us know in the comments.

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Mayukh Sen is a James Beard Award-winning food and culture writer in New York. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, the New Yorker, Bon Appetit, and elsewhere. He won a 2018 James Beard Award in Journalism for his profile of Princess Pamela published on Food52.


Smaug February 14, 2017
I am fortunate enough to live in Dungeness country- like most of us here, my favorite crab recipe is Don't Mess With It- serve cracked with dipping sauce. And frozen is most certainly not fine.
Mary C. February 13, 2017
Soft shell crabs, deep fried with a pinch of sea salt. Hell, throw a soft shell in a sushi roll--I'm totally down with that, too. I'm also a sucker for Crab Imperial, a dish that frequented my family's dinner table growing up. Crab Imperial stuffed mushrooms are delightful, too!
HalfPint February 13, 2017
Not really a recipe: top hot cooked rice with fresh picked crabmeat, julienned cucumbers, ~1 tsp julienned mint, and dress with some nuoc cham or a mixture of fish sauce, lime/lemon juice, sugar, and fresh minced chile (sorry I don't have exact measurements, adjust to get a balanced sweet/salty/sour dressing then add the chile).