How to Prep Stone Crabs

Stone crabs are a modern delicacy that you can easily prepare at home. They are the perfect entree of choice if you are looking for a simple way to wow your guests with a mouth-watering meal. Stone crabs make a statement of status and elegance while tasting absolutely divine - and your guests will never know how quickly the entire meal came together in the kitchen. Read below to learn how to prepare stone crab claws for a lavish and flavorful meal at home.


Before preparing your stone crab claws, it is important to do some prep work. Since they are already flash-cooked before they are shipped, you just need to prepare them properly. If you cook them too long, you will end up with stone crab claws that are flavorless and tough.

Before you cook them, follow these steps:

  1. Take your stone crabs out of the packaging.
  2. Rinse them under cold running water.
  3. Let your stone crab claws air dry for several minutes
  4. Place them into a large bowl with cold water.
  5. Add ice cubes to the bowl or place the entire bowl into the refrigerator so they remain below 40°F.



Stone Crabs with a Glass of Wine

Stone crabs can be prepared in several ways. Let's look at how you can prepare stone crab claws to serve at home.


When considering how you should prepare stone crab claws to get the best results, the answer is to steam or boil them. This method produces the best flavor and tender texture, making stone crabs famous. All you need for this method is a pot, some water, and a colander if you will be steaming your seafood.

There is no need to season your stone crab claws beforehand. Simple is always best when prepping stone crabs and is best served with a savory dipping sauce. 

Here is how to steam or boil your stone crab claws:

  • Place a colander in the pot and add about two cups of water.
  • Once the water begins to boil, add the stone crabs and cover.
  • Cook for about 10 minutes or until the heavenly scent of stone crabs fills the room.
  • Remove from heat.

When boiling or steaming stone claws, it is important only to cook them for about 10 minutes. Any longer, and you will ruin the flavor and texture of this delicate crustacean.


To reheat stone crab claws that have been chilled, follow these steps:

  • Use a microwave-safe dish to reheat your stone crab claws.
  • Crack the claws (otherwise, they can explode in the microwave).
  • Spread them out, so they cook evenly.
  • Heat your stone crab claws for about two minutes.
  • Serve immediately.


This method provides tender, delicious meat that is less watery. Here is how to prepare stone crab claws by grilling or baking them:

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F or your grill to about 300°-325°F.
  • If you are grilling your stone crab claws, baste them with olive oil, and grill them for approximately five minutes on each side.
  • If you are baking, place your stone crab claws in a single layer onto a baking sheet.
  • Pour one cup of hot water over them, and then cover them with foil.
  • Bake for approximately ten minutes.

The same rule applies to grilling, baking, steaming, and boiling stone crab claws. Do not overcook them, or you will end up with flavorless meat with a tough texture.


Stone crab claws have a hard outer shell that protects the meat inside. There are a few ways to crack the shells while ensuring that the meat isn't damaged in the process. Here are some tips:

  • Don't use a hammer. It is too powerful. Instead, use a mallet or the back of a spoon.
  • Once cracked, remove the shells by hand.


Most often, stone crabs are served cold with a dipping sauce. You can't go wrong with this simple and delicious method, beautifully plated on a bed of ice. If you are wondering how to serve warm stone crab claws, simply use your favorite cooking method above and serve them with a savory dipping sauce.


At Billy's Stone Crab, we offer the highest quality seafood straight from the Florida Keys. Our fleet of over 40 boats catches crab, lobster, and fresh fish daily to supply each of our fish houses in Marathon and Summerland Key. Our business proudly handles everything from start to finish to ensure the highest quality and freshness. 

Billy's Stone Crab operates an online market that sells various seafood products, including stone crab, grouper filet, snapper, Mahi, oysters, clams, and steaks. Contact us to learn more about our business.

If you'd like to taste the best seafood in Florida, make a reservation at Billy's Stone Crab Restaurant, and if you'd like to prepare a delicious meal at home, check out our online shop.