Skip to Content

How Long to Cook Snow Crab Legs

With the numerous ways to enjoy snow crab legs, it’s normal for newbies to feel overwhelmed. And as one of the menus that reminds you of the beach, not knowing how long to cook it can be frustrating. But snow crab legs are easy to prepare, regardless of how you make them.

How Long to Cook Snow Crab Legs

What helps is knowing the procedure of the various cooking techniques for snow crab legs. But you’ll also need a few tips to ensure the perfect cooking time isn’t the only thing you’ll attain. When done right, snow crab legs can be pretty tasty, and this factor is attained by getting the correct duration and knowing how best to influence the flavor.

Crab Legs Nutrition Facts

How Long to Cook Snow Crab Legs...

Tips for Cooking Snow Crab Legs

Selecting the Crab Legs: Snow crab legs mostly come pre-cooked, so the cooking time won’t be as extensive as you fear. But for the best value, consider picking legs attached in a cluster. This type offers more meat with each batch.

Preparing the Crab Legs: If you buy fresh snow crab legs (which is highly unlikely), consider rinsing them under running water before cooking. You can also do the same with thawed pre-cooked snow crab legs to get the chill off.

Thaw Before Cooking: While it’s possible to cook frozen crab legs, it’s best to let it defrost before you proceed. This way, the seasoning and spices can seep into the meat, and the cooking time doesn’t need to be extended.

Always Serve with Dipping Sauce: As tasty as snow crab legs can be, the flavor can be even more exquisite with a rich side of dipping sauce. Melt some butter in a pan and stir in some minced garlic, pepper, and salt. Then, finish the recipe with some lemon juice, and you’ll have a delicious side dip in no more than 30 seconds.

Always Use a Crab Cracker: This tool is the recommended item for getting into the shell and picking the glorious meat. But you can also use a nutcracker or a pair of shears if that’s what you’ve got.

Snow Crab Legs Cooking Time

Knowing the proper time frame to cook snow crab legs depends on how you plan to cook it. So, we’ve broken down various snow crab cooking techniques with the allotted duration it should take.

On the Stove

Boil water in a pot and season if needed. Then, put the snow crab legs and simmer for five minutes. This method is the best way to boil the crab legs without losing much flavor to the water.

You can also consider steaming the snow crab legs on the stovetop. Seta pot to boil and drop the crab leg clusters in a steaming basket or colander. Then, set the basket over the boiling water to sit on the rim without touching the bottom. If you’re using a colander, ensure it can fit on the pot before you proceed. Cover the pot and let the steam cook the snow crab legs for five to seven minutes. Then serve as desired.

In an Oven

Put the snow crab legs on a baking sheet and brush with olive oil or butter. Then, position the sheet at about six to eight inches below the broiler. Permit it to cook for three to four minutes, then flip and cook for the same duration. Once done, serve as desired.

You can also bake the snow crab legs using a heavy-duty foil folder. Wrap four clusters in the foil, then fold and seal it. Next, place the envelopes in the oven and grill for 15 minutes at 450F. Once it’s done, serve with dipping sauce.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by All Things Lolli (@allthingslolli)

On the Grill

You can use the same folder technique from baking when grilling snow crab legs. Seal four clusters in the foil and place over indirect heat on a preheated grill at 450F. Then, cook for 10 minutes until you notice steam rising from the envelope.

In an Instant Pot

Put three to four clusters of snow crab legs in a pot of water. If the legs stick out, fold them in, so they fit under the lid. This amount is most suitable for a typical six-quart instant pot, and if you’re cooking more, do it in batches. Then, close the lid, set the pressure cooker to HIGH, and cook for four minutes with quick release.

In a Crockpot

Put the clusters of snow crab legs in the crockpot, folding in the legs so they fit snugly. Then add some water till it reaches halfway. Then pour in half a cup of melted butter with some spices and herbs (consider garlic and black pepper- they go well with seafood. Place the lid and cook for two hours on LOW. Once it’s ready, serve as desired.

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
How Long to Cook Snow Crab Legs

How Long to Cook Snow Crab Legs

  • Author: Bobby


Instant Pot Snow Crab Legs (2 Servings)


  • Four clusters snow crab legs, thawed and rinsed
  • Two garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ tablespoon lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper


  1. Put the water in the trivet inside the instant pot and fold in the crab legs.
  2. Cover the lid and seal the vent, then set the pressure cooker to manual HIGH. Leave it to cook for four minutes.
  3. Unseal the vent to release the pressure, and when the pin drops, open the lid and serve the snow crab legs.

Another way to check for snow crab legs cooking time is found here.