Crab legs are one of the easiest things to cook in the instant pot. This Instant Pot Crab Legs recipe with a buttery dipping sauce, will make you second guess yourself when you want to order them from the restaurant.
Don’t even think about the restaurant this summer to enjoy your favorite snow crab legs. We’ll show you how to prepare them in the instant pot and give you some tips on how to eat them as well.
These crab legs taste so much better when they’re piping hot, with little to no handling. All you need is old bay seasoning and water to make this recipe in the instant pot.
Why The Instant Pot is The Best Way To Cook Crab Legs?
Cooking the crab legs in the instant pot offers a quick, high heat that supports the tender texture of the crab meat.
While cooking snow crab legs over the stove can produce the same result, cooking your crab legs in the instant pot help maintain the juices and seasoning from the old bay seasoning blend.
Should I Thaw Frozen Crab Legs Before Cooking?
No, there’s no need to thaw your snow crab legs before cooking them in the instant pot. When cooking the crab legs in the instant pot, thawing them out is not necessary.
However, they may not fit properly in the pot; therefore, rinsing them under hot water will help loosen them up a little.
If you thaw the legs out first, this will help reduce the cook time.
Be mindful snow crab legs that are thawed out are pliable, making them easier for you to arrange them in the pot no matter the size.
Various Cooking Methods
If you do not want to cook your snow crab legs in the instant pot, that’s perfectly fine. Here are a few other methods.
Boiling Snow Crab Legs Method
In a large stockpot, add the seasoning or old bay seasoning, lemon juice and crab and crab legs. Bring everything to a boil, cook for about 10 minutes.
Instant Pot Steaming Method
You can steam the crab legs in the instant pot or over the stove. To stem them in the instant, place all of the ingredients in the pot, then select “steam”. Steam for 8 minutes and steam for 10 minutes if frozen.
Stovetop Steaming Method
Over the stovetop, using a steamer basket, place the crabs in the basket. Fill the basket bottom of the pot with water; about 1-3 inches depending on the quantity of your snow crab legs.
Season the water and crab legs with old bay seasoning or desired seasoning. Note that you may need to season again when the crab legs are done steaming/cooking.
Cooking Top Tips & Frequently Asked Questions
You’ll know your snow crab legs are cooked when you see the shells start to look dry immediately when removed from the hot water.
Most supermarkets will carry the snow crab legs or the kings crab legs. Snow crab legs are available in clusters, whereas king crab legs are larger in size, and are sold individually.
The two kind of crab legs do vary in price. Snow crab legs are much cheaper. Depending on your budget, the option is available for you to choose from.
What To Serve With Crab Legs?
The best part about cooking instant pot crab legs at home is taking the time to enjoy them at your leisure.
When your instant pot snow crab legs are complete, it’s time to enjoy them with your favorite sides. Here are a few options:
Before eating your crab legs, it’s a good idea to set them aside as they are awfully hot.
Once your they are cooled enough to grab, it’s time to start enjoying them with this garlic butter dipping sauce.
Dipping Sauce: Garlic Butter Sauce
Similar to our Air Fryer Garlic Butter Shrimp Recipe, you can’t enjoy these snow crab legs without the garlic butter sauce.
Snow crab legs are usually on sale at the supermarket. The garlic butter sauce will definitely make the flavors from the old bay seasoning pop in these snow scrab legs.
To make this sauce all you’ll need are:
Unsalted butter, melted
Garlic powder or fresh garlic
And lemon juice
Simply place the ingredients in a small bowl and whisk to combine.
How To Eat Crab Legs?
Once the crab legs are cooked, set them aside so they are cool enough to touch.
Follow these steps and suggestions when eating your instant pot crab legs to make the best of your experience.
Eating Snow Crab Legs
Start removing them from the cluster.
Break the legs so that they are broken into two parts. Be careful to not hurt yourself with the shell as they can be very sharp.
Peel the shell apart until you see the meat inside. Do not press too hard as you do not want to the meat to be mushy.
Dip the meat in the dipping sauce. You may also use a fork to help you break the shell.
Eating King Crab Legs
You can definitely use some of your kitchen tools to break the shells off the king crab legs. Your kitchen scissors will suffice.
Using the scissors, cut the shell lengthwise. Open the shell to take so that the meat starts to show. Dip the meat in the sauce and enjoy.
How To Reheat Crab Legs?
Snow crab legs are completely easy to reheat. Simply place them back in the instant pot for another 3 minutes or heat them up over the stove.
More Favorite Instant Pot Recipes
If you love this instant pot crab leg recipe, try one of these other instant pot dishes next:
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The Best Instant Pot Snow Crab Legs
- Instant Pot
- 2 Lbs. Frozen Snow Crab Legs Clusters
- 1 Cup Water
- 1 Tbsp. Old Bay Seasoning
Garlic Butter Dipping Sauce
- 4 Tbsp. Unsalted Butter melted
- 2 Tsp. Garlic Powder
- ¼ Tsp. Salt we used kosher salt in this recipe
- ½ Tbsp. Lemon Juice from fresh lemon
- 1 Tbsp. Parsley Flakes
Cooking Snow Crab Legs In The Instant Pot
- In the instant pot, place the snow crab legs, add the water, then top with the old bay seasoning.
- Cover with the instant pot lid, turn the knob to sealing. Select the pressure cook button, adjust timer to 5 minuts to start cooking. Quick release and remove the crab legs from the instant pot and serve with dipping sauce. Enjoy!