How Long You Should Boil Frozen Crab Legs For Tender, Juicy Meat

There's nothing better than cracking open a crab leg to reveal the tender, juicy flesh within. The sweet, savory meat is enjoyed at seafood boils and summer barbeques time and time again. And while crab season comes and goes, the frozen seafood aisle is here to ensure that we can enjoy crab legs all year round.

While it's common practice to dip live crabs straight into the pot, boiling frozen crab legs could look a little different. Since you'll be boiling the crab legs without thawing them first, it may seem like they need to stay in the pot for a long while. However, frozen crab legs only need to be boiled for about six to eight minutes per pound.

Frozen crab legs from the grocery store are typically pre-cooked, so you're essentially reheating the crab legs. Be careful not to overcook them — any longer than the allotted time and you risk rubbery, hard crab meat.

Follow these tips for juicy, tender crab legs every time

Ideally, the meat in crab legs should be soft and delicate. Crab meat that's on the tougher side is a surefire way of knowing that it's been simmering for too long. Keep watch of the color of the shell as it boils. One of the biggest mistakes you're making when cooking crab is allowing them to turn pink instead of taking them off the stove once they've reached a cross between orange and red.

When boiling them, ensure that you're using a large enough pot with the correct amount of water. If parts of the crab legs are sticking out, you won't get the same juicy, tender texture all throughout. Bend the legs of the crab if needed to make sure that everything is fully submerged. For crab legs that are too frozen to bend, place them in a bowl of cold water for up to 30 minutes or place them in the microwave and set them on defrost.