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Get Crackin' - How to Throw the Ultimate Crab Feed at Home

Updated: Dec 27, 2023

Crab feeds are a beloved tradition in many coastal communities, and for good reason. There's something special about gathering with friends and family to crack open fresh, delicious crab and enjoy a casual, festive atmosphere. But what if you don't live near a crabbing hub or want to avoid the crowds at a restaurant? With a little bit of preparation, you can easily

Cooked Crab
Cooked Dungeness Crab

throw a crab feed at home that's sure to impress your guests. Here's how to get started.

1. Choose your crab supplier.

The key to a successful crab feed is, of course, the quality of the crab. If you live near a coastal area, you may be able to purchase fresh crab from a local fisherman or seafood market like Giovanni's Fish Market. Crab can be ordered online and delivered your door overnight either live or cooked here is a Link: BUY CRAB ONLINE Make sure you research your options and read reviews before making a purchase to ensure you're getting high-quality sustainable seafood.

2. Gather your supplies.

In addition to the crab, you'll need a few key supplies to make your crab feed a success. Here's a basic list:

  • Large pots or steamers to cook or reheat the crab (An oven works too!)

  • Crab crackers and picks to break open the shells. (or order pre-cracked)

  • Bibs or aprons to protect clothing (easily found on Amazon)

  • Lemon wedges, melted butter, and dipping sauces for the crab

  • Side dishes like bread, salad, and potatoes

3. Plan your cooking process.

Cooking crab at home can be intimidating, but it's actually fairly simple. If you're using live crab, you'll need to quickly boil or steam them until they turn bright red and the meat is cooked through - about 20 minutes. If you're using pre-cooked crab, you'll just need to reheat it - about 5-6 mins. Make sure you have enough pots or steamers to cook all the crab at once, and plan to serve it as soon as it's ready to ensure it stays hot and flavorful.

3. Set the scene.

Invite the whole family, or just the neighbors, maybe some friends, but always the more the merrier! Part of the fun of a crab feed is the casual, relaxed atmosphere. Set up a large table or several smaller ones to accommodate your guests, and cover them with newspaper or butcher paper to make cleanup a breeze. Provide plenty of napkins and hand wipes, and decorate the table with nautical-themed decor like shells, netting, or boat-themed centerpieces.

4. Enjoy the feast!

Once everything is prepared, it's time to dig in! Encourage your guests to crack open their crab and get messy, and don't be afraid to try different dipping sauces and flavor combinations. Offer plenty of side dishes and drinks to complement the crab, and don't forget to take plenty of photos to remember the occasion.

Hosting a crab feed at home can be a fun and memorable experience for your friends and family. With a little bit of planning and preparation, you can enjoy delicious, fresh crab without the hassle of a restaurant or the expense of a catered event. So fire up those steamers, crack open some shells, and enjoy the company of your loved ones over a delicious seafood feast!

5. HOW TO: Crack and Clean Your Crab CLICK HERE FOR VIDEO

This blog was inspired by a real Testimonial from one of our favorite customers..


By: Charlie West

Have an event coming up and want to do something different, or just gather with some friends? A crab feed can be a fun change of pace.

Relocating to the middle part of the country after living on the central coast left us with a craving for Dungeness crab. We called Gio and determined how many crabs to order to get the free shipping and then reached out to folks in our neighborhood about a "Crab Feed". They all wanted to join in as Dungeness crab was not something they’d had the opportunity to try. Here is how we plan a crab feed:

About a month in advance, set a date and get folks committed. Everyone buys their own crab, then each couple brings what they want to drink and an appetizer, side or dessert to share. We also ask they bring a large bowl for their crab which can be used to take home the rare uneaten parts for a salad the next day. As hosts, we provide glassware, utensils, paper goods and bread for all plus a salad and Dave’s secret sauce (recipe to follow). Having done this 6 times, with as many as 26 at a time, we’ve determined the optimum size is 16 or less so that everyone has time to visit.

Crab is ordered at least a week ahead with arrival set for the day before the crab feed, just in case there are issues with shipping. If you are close enough to pick up your crab there are no worries about shipping but give Gio a head’s up a week ahead so he knows how many crabs to have on hand. We order them cooked, cracked and cleaned and bagged 2 per bag as most couples order 2 crabs.

A day or two before we set up our tables, 2 tables of 8 and we cover them with old newspaper. We have a separate table for drinks and glasses and a large island for paper plates, utensils and a jar for folks to deposit their crab feed money. When the crab arrives it immediately goes under refrigeration; it has always arrived very cold and covered with ice packs.

As folks arrive for the crab feed their pot luck items go on the large island, then they help themselves to drinks and appetizers while they mingle. When we are ready for dinner, my helper and I retrieve the crabs, dump them in a colander, rinse with cold water and put in each couple’s crab bowl. Everyone serves themselves and takes their place at the table. For each couple we have a small bowl with a wet washrag size cloth inside for wiping hands and the crab feed is a hands-on experience. We also have tiny forks and crab crackers on each table, along with salt and pepper, butter and a roll of paper towels.

Now the fun begins. Everyone begins digging out their crab meat using the handy “pick” at the end of each leg, or tiny forks. Crab shells are just tossed on the newspaper for eazy clean up later. Be sure and separate the two sides of the bodies and clean out lots of delicious sweet crab meat. Some folks get a pile going before they add the sauce and eat, others eat as they go. You hear lots of comments like “so yummy, delicious, great fun!”

Once everyone has had their fill the few crab pieces left in the bowl are covered with plastic wrap to take home. Folks help themselves to dessert and any additional drinks. Clean up is a matter of folding up the newspaper containing the crab shells and putting all paper goods in the trash. All glassware goes in the dishwasher and we are done.

Most people where we now live had never had Dungeness crab so it is a treat they look forward to each year and everyone has a grand time. We hope you enjoy the event as much as we do, it is a great way to gather with family and friends.

Dave’s secret sauce recipe: (enough for 16 people). This is always a big hit and a nice change from Thousand Island or red sauce.

1 quart real mayonaise

3 to 4 tablespoons grainy mustard

3 to 4 tablespoons yellow mustard

1 tablespoon or amount to taste of sriracha

Juice of lemon or lime, enough that the sauce is not thick but not too thin. These are approximate sizes, adjust to your taste.

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