How to Reheat Crab Legs

Suppose you are in a quest of knowing how to reheat crab legs so they taste identical at a seafood restaurant. In that case, you are at the right place, as we will be mentioning the top four methods to reheat crab legs properly.

Although nothing can beat a fresh/live crab’s taste, unfortunately, most people don’t have access to the fresh crab legs. Thus they have to cope with the grocery store’s frozen crab legs. So on most of the grocery store shelves, you will find half-cooked crab legs as this allows them to be stored for a longer time.

Before moving towards reheating crab legs, let’s first talk about the tips for buying them.

Tips To Buy The Frozen Crabs Leg:

It matters what and where you purchase the crab legs. Different areas sell them in different ways. Following are a few things to take care of once buying crab legs:

Step 1: Get Them Frozen

Get Them Frozen
Get Them Frozen

Whenever you purchase the crab legs, try to get a frozen one. They indeed taste well and 

They are much easier to store than the defrosted crab legs. Also, make sure that while buying the frosty crab legs, they don’t have ice crystals. This indicates them to be stored for an extended time.

Step 2: Check Its Smell

Healthy vs Unhealthy Crab Legs

Try to see if it smells bitter or not like what an actual crab leg may smell like, then probably it’s not to be bought, and it is not fresh. 

Step 3: See Its Color

The color, too, can tell a lot about the freshness of crab legs. If it seems discolored or contains freezer burns, then you should not buy one.

Step 4: Watch Out For The Meaty Ones

Select the crab legs that are thick and fresh—this way, they tend to be meatier than others. But don’t forget to get the optimum size that can fit into your utensils.

Reheat Frozen Crab Legs in Oven:

Although most people find this recipe a little more complicated recipe than boiling or steaming, also most people don’t have access to the baking oven. Yet, no one can deny the yummy flavor the stove produces. Follow these steps to reheat frozen crab legs in the baking oven:

Step 1: Preheat the Oven and Thaw the Crab Legs

Preheating the oven is very necessary, or else you won’t get your required results—preheat the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Meanwhile, as we have frozen crab legs, we need to thaw them overnight in the refrigerator. Don’t leave the crab legs for more than one day to thaw in the fridge. For best results, consume them fresh. 

After thawing, allow them to rinse properly under running tap water. This will not only help to defrost it but will also help to clean it properly.

Step 2: Prepare the Crab Legs

Preparation before reheating crab legs needs to be done carefully to yield the best restaurant alike flavor. Break the larger crab legs if they are causing difficulty in fitting correctly in the dish.

Place the rinsed, clean, and thawed crab legs in an oven-friendly dish. Glass dishes will also work fine. Now put some water or yummy stock (if you prefer) such that it nicely gets warm and reheated at the bottom without the fear of getting burnt. 

This time you may also add some garlic or herbs to enhance the flavor and reduce the smell. Now place a poked aluminum sheet above the glass dish.

Step 3: Bake and Serve

Carefully now place the glass dish inside the baking oven. You need to be extra conscious of the steam coming out of the preheated oven and the hot oven sides. Let the oven reheat crab legs for about 20 minutes.

Right after, your tender and cooked crab legs are ready to fulfill your hunger cravings.

Also, have a look at how to reheat brisket in the oven.

Reheating Crab Legs on Grill:

Reheating Crab Legs on Grill
Reheating Crab Legs on Grill

The grill is also another excellent method of reheating crab legs. The exciting part is that it doesn’t even require to thawing the crabs. This method is much easier and cheaper than the oven, but still, it needs to be performed carefully.

  1. Take two or three crab legs (whichever fits into a grill pan). Wrap them with a single or dual layer of aluminum foil.
  2. Place them nicely on the warm side but don’t place them in the direct heat. Continue this for 10 to 12 minutes. Give them a turn when half-time is over.
  3. Now unwrap the crab legs from foil. Do this much gently and carefully.
  4. Finally, reheat the cooked crab legs on the direct heat side and continue for another 5 minutes at the low-medium flame. Keep turning the sides and try to reheat evenly.

And at last, delicious grilled crab legs are reheated. 

Reheating Crab Legs with a Steamer:

Reheating Crab Legs with a Steamer
Reheating Crab Legs with a Steamer

Perhaps the most used reheating method for crab legs is by the use of a steamer. One of the most straightforward processes as it involves significantly less effort and also is stress-free to implement. This is how you would use a steamer to reheat crab legs:

Step 1: Find a Steamer Pot

Find a steamer big enough to carry all of the crab legs inside. 

Step 2: Fill the Steamer Pot

Take some water or any yummy stock (of your choice; for additional flavor). After that, let it boil on high flame. While the water is boiling, thoroughly rinse the crab legs in running water. Try to break the crab legs from joints as it makes reheating easier and yields better results.

Step 3: Steam

Now place a steam mesh and put the crab legs on it. Make sure they don’t touch or fall into the water. Cover the steamer and let it steam for 5-6 minutes. Turn the flame from high to medium.

Step 4: And Ready to Serve!

Finally, take one out and check the meat. If it’s nicely warm and tender, then you are good to go. Carefully remove the crab legs and serve them with garlic cloves or herbs of your choice. Lemons also work too well on reheated crab legs.

Tamales also have a similar reheating way in the instant pot.

Boiling to Reheat Crab Legs:

Boiling to Reheat Crab Legs
Boiling to Reheat Crab Legs

And with that, we arrive at our final method of reheating, and that is, boiling. Boiling is also an excellent way to reheat crab legs if you don’t have a steamer, grill, or baking oven. This is how to reheat crab legs with boiling:

Step 1: Find a Pot

Find a pot large enough to cater to all the crab legs

Step 2: Boil the Water

Add water in it such that all crab legs can be fully immersed in it. You can add a little spices/salt in the water so that crab legs get a nice flavor. Lemon juice and vinegar are good options to add at this time. 

Step 3: Add the Crab Legs in Boiling Water

Now add the crab legs to water. Reduce the flame to low-medium and let this continue for 5 minutes. Give a little stir after halftime, so the flavors are mixed evenly, and also, this avoids the crab legs from getting burnt. 

Step 4: Serve

Finally, after the time is over, the reheated crab legs are ready to be served. Use a draining utensil to separate the crab legs from the water carefully. Or you can also use a tong to remove them one by one, carefully from the hot boiling water.

Lastly, they are ready to be served, and they taste best when fresh. You can serve them as you wish, but they taste best with butter and lemon slices.


To conclude this article, we discussed some of the best methods to reheat crab legs? Also, we came across some points to take care of while buying frozen crab legs. These methods include the usage of a baking oven, grill pan, steamer, and boiling pot. Although all of these methods are very effective, it still depends on your choice.

In our opinion, the oven yields the best results. However, the oven requires much more time and is not the universal option. Nonetheless, no one can deny the yummy and delicious flavor it produces, which is indeed unique.

Another advantage of using an oven to reheat crab legs is that it makes the meat warm and makes it tender all the way through. Thus the best way to reheat crab legs is in the oven.

Other than that, the steam and boiling methods are the ones that are much widely used throughout. Their wide use is that they are much easier to implement than the oven as it requires a few extra steps. 

Finally, unlike most food, crab meat is not easy to handle, especially if you rarely eat one. So follow the steps properly to avoid getting it dried out and maintain warm and tender meat.

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