Different Types of Crabs

Crabs are delicious to eat, if you’re a seafood lover and foodie! However, when you encounter an abundance of crabs on the menu at restaurants, it may be difficult to choose which one to eat.

Crab varieties and types may be found all around the globe, and today we’re going to learn everything about them together with you.

Understanding your taste buds and what you want will be helpful to figure out which species of crabs are edible and which ones you should eat.

Let’s go ahead and learn about the many crab types and species available for consumption, as well as which ones are popular in different parts of the globe. Take a look and choose which is your favorite!

Blue Crab

Large-sized crabs with blue shells and legs (Callinectes sapidus) are known as blue crabs. The waters off the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, Europe, Japan, and the United States’ East Coast are home to these creatures.

The double paddle-like feet of blue crabs aid them in swimming. These attractive swimming crabs can reach 3.5 to 5.5 inches in length and may be larger at times. Their Latin name translates to ‘lovely swimmer.’

The shell of the Blue crab changes color to a deep red hue when it is cooked, which is typical of most cooked crustaceans and their flesh has a salty-sweet flavor. The body, legs, and claws of the majority of this species are used to store its meat.

Apart from the blue color of its shell, the Blue crab has a unique body shape that distinguishes it. The sides of the carapace protrude to a degree, rather than being round.

Soft-shelled crabs, often sautéed or deep-fried, are served as a main dish.

The King Crab

Because of their big size and delectable flavor, king crabs (Paralithodes camtschaticus) are regarded as one of the finest and most frequent kinds of edible crabs. Among the world’s biggest crab species, these crabs have been documented.

The cold North Pacific waters off the coast of Alaska, such as the Norton Sound and Bering Sea, are where red king crabs may be found and captured.

The Red King crab grows to 11 inches (28 cm) wide and weighs roughly 13 kg. It is so big that it takes up most of a pot. The delicious white flesh of the Red King crab is housed in its long legs, which reach up to 5 feet (1.8 meters).

Another kind of enormous Alaskan king crab is the Blue King Crab (Paralithodes platypus). Although weighing over 8.2 kg (18 pounds), it is not as impressive in size as the Red King crab.

Florida Stone Crab

Another favorite kind of marine crab is the Florida Stone crab (Menippe mercenaria), which is noted for its rich delicately-flavored flesh. Warm seas in Central America and the East Coast of the United States are home to these crabs.

The Florida Stone crab’s huge pincers on the front of its body are one of the species’ distinguishing features. The hard outer shell is the same color as these brownish-red colored claws (chelae) with black tips.

This is a medium to large-sized crab, with the carapace measuring up to 6.5″ (17 cm) wide.

When these crabs are captured, one claw is removed rather than being captured and cooked whole. After 18 months, the crabs are released back into the water, where they will replace their claws.

The flesh from the huge claws is only eaten by Florida Stone crabs. Its claws are a pinkish to crimson color with black tips when cooked.

Claw meat is extremely sweet and mouthwatering, with a firm texture. It is one of the greatest types of meat to consume. You’ll need a mallet or crab crackers to get to the meat because of the claws’ hardness.

Bairdi Crabs

The tails of Bairdi crabs are short and specialized. Their body is mostly made of a shell or a carapace with a small abdominal flap, and they have five pairs of legs, the first one containing pincers.

Tanner crabs are a Snow crab variety that is also known as Tanner crabs. Their diet consists largely of clams, worms, and other crustaceans found on the ocean bottom, and they can grow up to four pounds in weight.

The pincer claws of Bairdi crabs are located in the front of their legs, and they are also known as “real” crabs. Overfishing of Bairdi crabs has led to stringent regulations on fisheries that specialize in this species in recent years, and the crabs have suffered as a result.

This type of crab is by far the largest, and it may be cooked, boiled, grilled, sautéed, or even roasted. Of all of the Snow crab varieties available, this is by far the most common.

Spider Crab

The Japanese Spider crab (Macrocheira kaempferi) is the biggest of the crabs with long legs, and it’s a frightening-looking crab. Among the various types of edible crabs, this is without a doubt the biggest.

Thus, how big is the Japanese spider crab? It has a huge body that may be up to 16 inches (40 cm) broad. The leg span can be up to 18 feet (5.5 meters) long. The gigantic cold-water crab may weigh up to 42 pounds (19 kilograms).

Despite the large crab’s ferocious appearance, it is not an aggressive species.

The flesh of a Japanese spider crab is a coveted delicacy rather than something to be feared. The spider crab has a sweeter flavor than brown crab varieties when it comes to flavor.

Of course, getting all of the delicious flaky white meat out will require some effort due to the length of the long spindly legs.

Coconut Crabs

The coconut crab is the world’s biggest land-living arthropod, reaching up to nine pounds in weight and spanning up to sixteen inches in length. It is also known as a robber crab or palm thief.

Moreover, although their maximum size isn’t reached until they are roughly forty to sixty years old, each long leg of the Coconut crab can be as wide as three feet in span. The reason they are called is because they’ve been burned.

Coconut crabs are known for their fondness of coconuts, which they will climb trees to get at. Although it doesn’t have a shell when it is fully grown, it is also a kind of Hermit crab.

Coconut crabs are unique in that they are unable to survive for long periods of time under water, even if they are underwater for too long. They eat meats, nuts, fruits, and seeds.

Coconut crabs are only found in two places on Earth: other Coconut crabs and humans, and they live in areas around the Pacific and Indian oceans.

Dungeness Crab

Dungeness crabs may be found in coastal waters from Alaska to Baja, Mexico, and are known by their Latin name Cancer magister. This huge crab, which is brown to purple in color, typically weighs between 1 3/4 and 4 pounds.

Dungeness, a tiny hamlet on Washington State’s Olympic Peninsula that first started commercially harvesting the delicacy, is the inspiration for its name.

Only males can be taken because the crab must be at least 6 1/4 inches long to be harvested. The winter months are when the best fishing is. Succulent and sweet pink flesh is available.

Peekytoes Crabs

Cancer irroratus, the peekytoe crab, is a brown rock crab species. The Atlantic Ocean’s chilly seas are home to them. The brown color of its hard shell and the purple spots on it distinguish this crab from others.

When compared to other crabs, the Peekytoe crab is medium-sized. It has a carapace that may grow to be 5.25 inches (13 cm) in diameter. The Florida Stone crab’s tiny chelae are also processed here.

The Atlantic rock crab is another popular name for this seafood delicacy.

Japanese Spider Crab

The Japanese Spider Crab (Macrocheira kaempferi) is the biggest of crabs with long legs, and it’s a scary-looking crab. Among all the different types of edible crabs, this is without a doubt the largest.

So, how big is the Japanese spider crab? Its body is up to 16 inches (40 cm) broad, making it one of the biggest. The leg span may be up to 18 feet (5.5 meters) long. The large cold-water crab can weigh up to 42 pounds (19 kilograms).