What's The Diffrence Between King Crab VS Snow Crab?

Crab can be considered as one of the best seafood kinds, since it helps to keep you strong and healthy. Among different types of crab, King crab and Snow crab are the two most popular ones nowadays. Are they similar in appearance and size? Do they taste the same, or which one is better? Together with Fisherman's Net, let’s figure them out in today’s article - “King Crab vs Snow Crab: What are the differences?”.

King Crab vs Snow Crab

Snow Crab vs King Crab: Are They Different In Size?

When you look at these two crabs, size will be the core element that help you to distinguish between them. As stated in its name, King Crab is obviously a big creature, and it is clearly bigger than Snow Crab. So far, the largest King Crab that fishermen have ever found reaches 20 lbs (320 oz) and 5 ft long, representing to 1 lobster jumbo we sell.

A fisherman with a huge King Crab

In addition, when compared to King Crab, the legs of Snow Crab are normally longer and slimmer. Specifically, their legs can reach between 2 to 4 lbs (32 - 64 oz).

In general, King Crab is usually measured 6 lbs (96 oz), while Snow Crab is often weighed from 2 to 4 lbs (32 - 64 oz). Since King Crab is bigger in total size, their legs are bigger and thicker than those of Snow Crab. Also, King Crab has fatter legs than those of Snow Crab, and has many large spines on them.

The big and thick legs of King Crab

Here is another tip that helps you to distinguish between the two types of crab: king vs snow crab. The number of legs a crab has can tell you which kind of crab it is. Particularly, King Crab has 3 pairs of legs and 2 big claws, while Snow Crab has 4 pairs of legs and 2 claws.

Click here to read more about how to cook frozen crab legs.

King Crab vs Snow Crab: Where and When To Find Them?

Let’s get to know where each kind of crab comes from first! Snow Crab prefers the deep, cold water conditions; so they live in the North of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. In specific, they usually reside around Maine, Alaska, Canada, Norway, Russia and even Greenland. 

Snow Crab

Meanwhile, King Crab has less habitat compared to the Snow type. This kind of crab also loves frigid water, so they are typically found around Alaska and the Bering Sea. The red and blue King Crab live nearer to mainland Alaska, while the golden one often stays along the Aleutian Islands in the Bering Sea. 

For more information, you can check out types of Alaskan crab on our blog to see their diversity.

 

King Crab

Now you know where these two crab types live, the question is: When can we find them? Snow Crab’s harvesting season begins in April and lasts until late October or early November. In contrast, King Crab season is much shorter which normally kicks off in late October and ends in early January. At the same time it's the lobster season so you can enjoy both crab and fresh lobster from Maine.

King Crab vs Snow Crab Taste: Are They Unlike In Texture and Flavour?

Texture

Meat Consistency

The name “Snow” Crab is invented due to its meat texture. When being cooked, Snow Crab meat turns from red to snowy white. Furthermore, the texture of this crab type is firm and tends to be more fibrous, which makes it easier to shred into small pieces like corned beef. 

Snow Crab Meat

Different from that, King Crab meat tends to come off in big, firm hunks.

We have Canadian snow crabs legs in store and overnight delivery. Check out the prices here: snow crab legs for sale

Crackability

Most of the time, Snow Crab can be cracked easily by just using the hands due to its thin shell. 

Snow Crab shell can be cracked easily by hands

Meanwhile, King Crab are typically covered in spikes and are much more rigid, which is why eating this type of crab requires tools like crab crackers.

King Crab shell is typically covered in spikes, and is much harder than Snow Crab

Flavour

Then, when it comes to the flavour “battle” of King Crab vs Snow Crab, which is the better one? It is actually hard to find out the answer for this question, since each type has its own advantages. In other words, whether it is King Crab or Snow Crab depends primarily on your tasting preference. 

In general, they do have differences in flavour. Snow Crab has a sweet, slightly briny taste. 

Snow Crab is sweet and slightly briny

On the contrary, King Crab is truly a meal made for kings. It has a sweet, mild flavour, and is often compared to lobster. 

King Crab has a lobster-like flavour

King Crab vs Snow Crab: Are They Divergent In Price?

As we have stated in the second section, King Crab has a short harvesting season, which leads to limited availability. Additionally, it has lobster-like flavour. Thus, King Crab is the more expensive among the two types. Particularly, Snow Crab legs are typically more affordable than King Crab ones.

Conclusion

To sum up all the differences between King Crab and Snow Crab, please have a look at this table below. 

King Crab Snow Crab
Size
6 lbs (96 oz)
2 - 4 lbs (32 - 64 oz)
Legs
Bigger, thicker, shorter
Slimmer, longer
Location
Around Alaska and the Bering Sea
In the North of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans
Season
From late October to early January
From April to late October or early November
Meat consistency
Comes off in big, firm hunks

Color: From red to snowy white when cooked

Texture: Firm and more fibrous
Therefore, easily shred into small pieces

Crackability
Can be cracked easily by hands
Can only be cracked with specialized tools (Eg. Crab cracker)
Flavour
Sweet, mild (Similar somehow to lobster)
Sweet, slightly briny
Price
More expensive
More affordable

 

You can watch more informations in this video.

 

Which Crab To Buy? Snow Crab Or King Crab?

Choosing between snow crab and king crab largely depends on your wallet and personal preference. In terms of taste, you won't go wrong whichever one you choose.

At Fishermen's Net, we are selling fresh and live king crab. Check it out here:

 

Learn How To Cook Snow Crab And King Crab Legs?

Cooking Time

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 8 minutes
  • Total Time: 13 minutes
  • Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 3 - 4 pounds snow crab or king crab legs
  • 1/4 cup melted unsalted butter 
  • 1 lemon
  • 1/2 tablespoon freshly chopped parsley

Instructions

When you buy king crab or snow crab, they have been cooked and flash frozen, so you need to thaw and reheat to get them ready to serve.

You can reheat by boiling, steaming, baking or even grilling. But bake them in the oven is the best way to cook them. Here is a recipe that works well for both snow crab and king crab legs.

  1. Thaw the snow crab or king crab legs overnight in the fridge, or you can place them under cold running water for about 15 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 375°F (191°C).
  3. Mix melted butter and chopped parsley together in a small bowl
  4. Place crab legs on a baking sheet, brush the mixture.
  5. Bring to bake for 7 - 8 minutes or until cooked through.

When the crab legs are done, take them out, garnish with some chopped parsley, serve them with lemon wedges and dip into melted butter.

That is all for today’s topic: King Crab vs Snow Crab! Fishermen’s Net hopes that you are now able to distinguish between the two crab types with these four differences above.

People also look for: Canadian lobster vs Maine lobster

Visit our blog for more useful tips related to the crab and the other seafoods. Feel free to contact us via the below contact information if you have any further questions or requests. 

  • Website: www.mualobster.com
  • Address: 849 Forest Ave, Portland, ME 04103.
  • Tel: +1 (207) 772-3565.

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