Soft Shell Crab Season and Your Restaurant Menu

Soft Shell Crab Season and Your Restaurant Menu

Most people get their first crunch of soft-shell crab in sushi or sandwiches, but how about actually cooking with these incredible delicacies? Wholesale food distributors, like us, are in high gear this time of year. We’re always excited for the booming and plentiful soft shell crab season! These popular morsels are widely adored and prized for easy preparation.

They’re a perfect addition to a Spring menu or feature. Their season generally starts in Spring and runs to the beginning of Fall, so time is of the essence. These late-spring, early-summer delicacies are freshly molted now. It’s almost as if they are built-in prep cooks!

What is a soft-shell crab?

Shell Shocker: They’re regular crabs.

Many people think they are a separate species, but they’re most frequently consuming blue crabs in their spider rolls.Image of fish supplier holding soft shelled crab.

Crabs, like all crustaceans, need to molt their outer shells (exoskeletons) in order to continue growing. Once they shed their shell, they begin the process of making new, bigger exoskeletons immediately.

In order to molt, the crab starts building a softer, inner shell underneath the hard exterior. They will then swell themselves up with water to break their hard shell off, then crawl out of it. After this, they must begin the process of hardening the new shell. Fishermen must catch these guys before the hardening happens, so they must act quickly and grab them while they’re vulnerable! Then, chefs cook them alive.

We’re all savages, aren’t we?

Serving soft-shell crab

Soft-shell crabs are most frequently eaten golden and crispy, inside sushi rolls, sandwiches, tacos, and beyond. Cook them delicately and never boil! If boiled, soft shell crabs will fall apart, unlike a regular crab with the exoskeleton intact.

If you want to do something unique and special with this humble creature, they can also be grilled, broiled, or sautéed. Grilling them takes just a few minutes, so they’re great for line cooks, and look beautiful on a plate.

The oceans are beginning to fill up to the brim with these luxurious treats. Make sure you subscribe to our price list to keep up with pricing or contact us today at if you’re ready to get started serving these bad boys in your restaurant!

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