How to Cook Frozen Crab Legs on the Stove Without Thawing

You can cook frozen crab legs on the stove without thawing.
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You can cook frozen crab legs on the stove without thawing. Try a boiled snow crab legs recipe or an Old Bay king crab legs recipe.


Boiled King Crab Legs

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Try this boiled recipe for king crab legs. It uses frozen crab legs.

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Things You'll Need

  • 3 pounds king crab legs, precooked and frozen

  • 2 Lemons

  • 1 stick of unsalted butter

  • Old Bay seasoning (6 ounces or more)

  • Water

  • Large pot

  • Small saucepan

  • Tongs

  • Small bowl

Step 1: Get Ready

Put crab legs in a large pot with 4 quarts of water to cover. Add salt and Old Bay seasoning and bring to a boil. Cut the lemons in half and squeeze as much lemon juice as possible into the pan, and then throw in the lemon rinds.

Step 2: Cook the Crab Legs

Add a lid to the pot and bring to a boil. Adjust heat to medium-high and continue cooking for about 5 minutes. Use tongs to remove the crab legs.

Step 3: Melt the Butter

Use a small saucepan over medium heat to melt the butter until it begins to simmer. You'll see a little bit of a foam form on top. This will take about 1 minute. Remove the pan from the hot burner, and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Use a spoon to scoop out any solids. Carefully pour the melted butter into a small bowl, and serve with the crab legs.



If you need more water to cover the crab legs, you'll also need more seasoning and lemons. For every 2 quarts of water that needs to be added, add another ¼ cup of Old Bay seasoning and another lemon.

According to, crab is done when the flesh is opaque and white. If you're cooking with precooked frozen crab legs all you need to do is warm them up.


You can also try this recipe with an herb butter instead of old Bay seasoning, according to the Alaska Fisheries Development Foundation. Melt two cups of butter with the following herbs:

  • One tablespoon chopped parsley
  • Quarter teaspoon of oregano leaves
  • Quarter teaspoon of pepper
  • Quarter teaspoon of thyme leaves
  • Three tablespoons of chopped shallots
  • Quarter tablespoon of chopped garlic

Brush onto crab legs and enjoy!

Read More: Are Crab Legs a Healthy Food?

King Crab Legs Nutrition

According to the USDA, 1 leg or 134 grams of Alaska king crab leg cooked in a moist heat contains 130 calories, 25.9 grams of protein, 2.06 grams of fat, 79.1 milligrams of calcium, 84.4 milligrams of magnesium, 375 milligrams of phosphorus, 351 milligrams of potassium, 1440 milligrams of sodium, 71 milligrams of cholesterol and 10.2 milligrams of zinc. One king crab leg also contains vitamins, including 10.2 milligrams of vitamin C, 1.8 milligrams of niacin, 68.3 micrograms of folate, 15.4 micrograms of vitamin B-12 and 12.1 micrograms of vitamin A.


You can steam frozen, precooked crab legs in a steamer, over rapidly boiling water, for about 10 minutes. The pot should be filled one-third of the way with water. Make sure you cover the pot.

You can also boil frozen crab legs. Fill a saucepan halfway with water and bring to a boil. Add a tablespoon of salt and any other seasoning, such as Old Bay seasoning, which is used in the recipe above. Add the crab legs when the water is boiling, and adjust the heat to medium. Simmer for 6 minutes.

Read More: 2 Factors That Make Crab Meat One of the Healthiest Seafoods