Snow Crab Legs in Garlic Butter Beer Sauce are So good you may never want crabs any other way!
If you can believe it, I never had a crab until I was 29 years old.
I live in Pennsylvania, so not having them easily available doesn’t explain it (I can get to the Jersey Shore in just over an hour) Plus, we spent a lot of time down the Jersey Shore, hmmmm.
Crabs are just something we didn’t eat growing up.
My Dad is a meat and potatoes kind of guy, other than lots of seafood during Lent, meat, and potatoes is what we typically had for dinner. Pasta showed up once a week or so.
Once I was on my own, I remember coming across crabs every once in a while at various get-togethers. However, whenever offered a crab, I was like…”ummm, no…you need to do all that work and get all messy just to get that little bit of food…ummmm, no thanks!” I couldn’t quite wrap my head around the attraction.
Enter my husband. The Summer after we started dating, a bunch of us went to Ocean City Maryland for a week. Half of the excitement of the group was to hit a restaurant called Waterman’s, where they served all-you-can-eat crabs.
We get there…they seated us in this rough wooden booth, pulled a huge, thick piece of brown craft paper off of a roll and covered the table with it. Not a utensil to be seen.
I looked around…there were so many people with huge coolers of beer, napkins tucked all under their chins into their shirts each totally engrossed in what they were doing (eating crabs) and they looked happy.
All of a sudden the waitress is there and she literally dumps a HUGE amount of steaming crabs onto the brown paper covered table (right on to the table…I was shocked, I literally jumped back as far as I could in my seat), then she dumps shrimp, followed by fried chicken, and finally corn on the cob. On either side of me and across the table, hands immediately start flying, folks are grabbing, cracking, pulling, making small sounds of contentment and pretty much doing the happy food dance in their seats! (You know the one when you are so loving what you are eating you do a little wiggle in your seat)..
My then-boyfriend starts to show me what to do.
Suddenly one of the guys gets an injury…There’s blood…he’s cut from a jagged piece of crab shell, but he just kept going.
I timidly reach for a crab having nooooo idea what to do.
My guys walks me through it (can you believe a whole crab has a pull tab to get going…a pull tab!)
Well, let me tell you I think I heard the angels sing that day.
I never touched another item of food besides those crabs and if someone hadn’t pulled me away I would still be there.
That my friends, was my first and last experience with whole crabs because THEN…then, I tasted snow crab legs.
Needless to say, these days, we are known in our circle of life for our crab nights. Snow Crab Legs in Garlic Butter Beer Sauce is our go-to preparation. Which is just like a now-famous Philly restaurant makes them. Chickie and Pete’s.
After enjoying crabs at their restaurant, I replicated them. I remember when Chickies had just opened their 2nd location…Now they are all over. People are bonkers for their Crab Fries (they even trademarked that name), however for me it’s all about their crabs!
We have Snow Crab Legs in Garlic Butter Beer Sauce at home either one or two couples at a time or on a larger scale at our annual crab fest. We always have a crab night when we are away with friends and family on weekend getaway’s or on a full vacation. We have a well-traveled crab pot!
Double, triple, quadruple or beyond the sauce for your needs. My rule of thumb for a crab night is 2 ½ pound of crab legs a person. Go for it!
Snow Crab Legs in Garlic Butter Beer Sauce
- 5 pounds of snow crab legs
- 2 sticks ½ pound butter
- 4 good sized cloves of garlic minced
- ½ cup chicken broth
- ½ cup beer
- 3 Tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning
- Additional Old Bay for seasoning
- French bread for dipping
- Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat.
- Add in the garlic and saute for 2 minutes, stirring often. Add in the chicken broth, beer and Old Bay. Stir well.
- Bring to a rapid boil for 2 minutes, stirring often. Set aside. Reheat sauce just to a boil when crabs are just about ready.
- Cook your crabs (we have a very large turkey cooker that hooks up to a propane tank, that we only use for crabs, so easy and it’s all done outside an extra perk)
- Frozen crab legs are already cooked, all you are really doing is heating them up.
- We steam them frozen in batches for approximately 8 minutes a batch.
- The bigger that batch, the longer it takes. Again all you are doing is heating them up.
- If you do not have a turkey fryer, in a vegetable steamer or colander over heavy
- and rapid boiling water (fill the pot about ⅓ of the way with water.)
- Cover tightly and steam them 10-12 minutes until heated through.
- As soon as they are ready, begin dunking and basting them one cluster at a time in the sauce.
- As you place each one onto the serving dish, shake a good amount of Old Bay Seasoning onto one side of each crab cluster.
- Once your dish is full spoon some of the additional sauce over the crabs if necessary give a couple of additional shakes of old bay and you are good to go.
- And don’t forget some good French bread for sopping up the sauce in the bottom of the bowl, dip your crab into it as well if you like and please lick your fingers every once and a while, all rules are out the window when eating crabs!!