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Perfectly Reheated Crab Legs

Crab legs are a delicious seafood treat. However, they can be tricky to reheat properly to avoid ruining their texture and flavor. This article will provide tips on the best methods for reheating crab legs using an oven, microwave, steamer or stovetop.

Oven Method

The oven allows you to reheat crab legs gradually without overcooking. Here’s how to do it:

  • Preheat oven to 375°F.
  • Place crab legs on a baking sheet and drizzle with lemon juice or butter to prevent them from drying out.
  • Bake for 10-15 minutes until heated through. The time will vary based on how thick the crab legs are.
  • Check for doneness after 10 minutes. The shell should be hot to the touch when they are ready.
  • Do not overbake crab or the meat can become rubbery and dry.

Microwave Method

The microwave provides a quick method for reheating crab legs. Follow these instructions:

  • Place crab legs on a microwave-safe plate in a single layer.
  • Cover with a damp paper towel to prevent drying out.
  • Microwave on high for 1-2 minutes per leg. Time will vary based on thickness.
  • Check for doneness and continue microwaving in 30 second intervals until heated through.
  • Beware of overcooking and making the meat tough.

Steamer Method

Using a steamer is an ideal way to reheat crab legs so they stay moist and tender. Here’s how:

  • Place crab legs in a single layer in a steamer basket.
  • Fill steamer pot with about an inch of water and bring to a boil.
  • Place steamer basket in pot, cover and steam crab legs for 4-5 minutes until hot.
  • Check frequently to avoid overcooking.
  • The shell should be hot to the touch when done.

Stovetop Method

It’s easy to reheat crab legs on the stovetop with this simple technique:

  • Place crab legs in a skillet with 1⁄4 inch of water.
  • Cover pan and heat over medium heat for 5-6 minutes, turning legs halfway through.
  • Once hot, remove from pan and drain any excess water.
  • Add butter to coat legs and serve warm.
  • Monitor closely to prevent overcooking.

The stovetop method uses steam from the simmering water to gently reheat the crab. Just be careful not to boil the water or the crab meat can become tough.

Tips for Reheating Crab Legs

  • Always reheat pre-cooked crab legs. Do not reheat raw crab.
  • Check for doneness by touching the shell. It should be hot to the touch.
  • Reheat crab legs within 3-4 days for optimal flavor and texture.
  • Add lemon, butter or spices after reheating to prevent drying out.
  • Use a cooking thermometer to check internal temperature reaches 165°F when reheated.
  • Do not boil crab legs when reheating as this can make the meat tough.
  • Add spices or seasoning after reheating to maximize flavor.
  • Do not reheat crab legs more than once.


Q: How can you tell when crab legs are done reheating?
A: Check that the shell is hot to the touch and the meat inside is opaque and heated through. The flesh should look moist and flaky, not dry or rubbery.

Q: Is it safe to reheat crab legs more than once?
A: No, only reheat leftover crab legs one time. Reheating crab legs multiple times can increase the risk of bacteria growth.

Q: Can you reheat frozen crab legs while they are still frozen?
A: It’s best to thaw frozen crab legs overnight in the refrigerator before reheating. Attempting to reheat crab legs while frozen runs the risk of overcooking the exterior before the inside thaws.

Q: What is the best way to reheat king crab legs?
A: Due to their larger size, king crab legs do well reheated in a 350°F oven for 15-20 minutes until heated through.


Baked Crab Legs

  • Preheat oven to 375°F. Place crab legs on a baking sheet and brush with melted butter. Bake 15 minutes until hot. Squeeze fresh lemon over the top.

Crab Leg Frittata

  • Reheat crab legs by sautéing in olive oil. Add beaten eggs, spinach and cheese. Cook until eggs are set. Finish under broiler.

Creamy Crab Dip

  • Mix lump crab meat with cream cheese, sour cream, lemon juice and spices. Bake dip until bubbly, then serve with crab legs for dipping.

Buttery Garlic Crab Legs

  • Melt one stick of butter with minced garlic. Brush mixture on crab legs before and after reheating for added flavor.

Here are some recommended appliances for reheating crab legs in the microwave, oven, on the stovetop or with a steamer:


  • Toshiba EM131A5C-BS Microwave Oven – 1100W with smart sensor cooking for perfectly reheated food.
  • Panasonic Microwave Oven NN-SN936B – Inverter technology delivers even heating for reheating crab legs.
  • Breville Quick Touch BMO734XL – Pre-programmed shortcuts make reheating crab legs easy.


  • Wolf 30″ Electric Double Oven – Provides consistent low-heat for gentle reheating in both ovens.
  • GE Profile 30″ Smart Double Oven – WiFi connectivity allows remote monitoring and control.
  • Bosch 800 Series Double Oven – Dampened hinges and QuietClose door ensure even reheating.


  • All-Clad Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Skillet – Heats evenly and holds heat well when reheating on the stovetop.
  • Calphalon Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Skillet – Aluminum core conducts heat quickly and evenly.
  • Cuisinart Chef’s Classic Stainless Skillet – Tempered glass cover traps steam for moisture when reheating.


  • Cuisinart Stainless Steel Steamer – 3-quart capacity big enough for multiple servings.
  • Oster Double Tiered Food Steamer – Stackable baskets allow reheating crab legs separately.
  • Aicook 3-Tier Bamboo Steamer – Natural bamboo construction and large capacity.

Following these simple methods will give you tender, juicy crab legs every time. Enjoy this tasty seafood dish reheated to perfection.

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