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Steamed crab legs on a speckled plate with a glass dish of melted butter and two corn on the cob halves

Steamed Crab Legs

Everyone at the table will love these steamed crab legs! It's a rich and decadent recipe, yet simple to make at home. Sweet and tender crab meat dipped in a butter garlic sauce makes for an irresistible and easy crab legs recipe that's perfect for entertaining.
Course Appetizer, Appetizer or main, Main, Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword boiled crab legs recipe, Crab legs, King crab legs, snow crab legs, steamed crab legs
Prep Time 0 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 315kcal
Author Kristen King


  • 3 tbsp Old Bay seasoning
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 12 oz can light beer
  • 2 lbs frozen crab legs (thawed or partially thawed)
  • 6-8 corn cob halves (optional)

For Flavored Butter

  • 1 stick butter, melted
  • ½ tsp garlic salt
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 pinch salt


  • Fill a large stock pot about a quarter full with water (leaving plenty of room for the crab legs) and bring to a boil.
  • Add Old Bay seasoning, salt, vegetable oil, and beer.
  • Add crab legs and return to a boil. Steam crab legs for 5 minutes.
  • Carefully remove crab legs and set aside. Cover to keep warm.
  • Optional: Add frozen corn cobs in same pot and bring to a boil. Remove. Serve everything warm with lemon butter sauce.

For Lemon Butter Sauce

  • Melt butter and add garlic salt, lemon juice, and salt.



TIP—Crab leg cracker: If you bought your crab legs pre-scored, you can easily remove the meat from them by prying them open with your hands. Otherwise, you can crack them carefully by hand or use a crab leg cracker such as a lobster cracker, nutcracker, or even a meat tenderizer.
Carefully crack the crab legs with your tool of choice to avoid breaking too much of the shell and getting shell pieces in your crab meat. Once you have the crab legs open, you can easily remove the meat with a fork.


Calories: 315kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 85mg | Sodium: 2725mg | Potassium: 157mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 805IU | Vitamin C: 4.9mg | Calcium: 69mg | Iron: 1.5mg