Sweet and Spicy Beer Steamed Rock Crab

Live rock crab on a scale
Foodcollection / Getty Images
Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 20 mins
Servings: 3 to 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
396 Calories
6g Fat
10g Carbs
67g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 3 to 4
Amount per serving
Calories 396
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 6g 7%
Saturated Fat 0g 2%
Cholesterol 180mg 60%
Sodium 4573mg 199%
Total Carbohydrate 10g 4%
Dietary Fiber 0g 1%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 67g
Vitamin C 26mg 131%
Calcium 228mg 18%
Iron 3mg 17%
Potassium 955mg 20%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Here's a delicious way to add extra flavor to your crabs, crab legs, or crab claws whether they're already cooked or raw—steam them with spiced beer!

An amber or 'red' beer is best for this recipe; it gives a depth of flavor without being too assertive.

Rock crab claws are becoming more available in markets. Similar to blue crabs, US-produced rock crabs are sustainably harvested and have a nice sweet crab flavor. You can use this recipe for any type of crab, though.

If they aren't already, make sure to lightly crack each leg or claw before steaming so the flavor can get inside.


  • 1 (12-ounce) bottle amber beer, preferably flat

  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar

  • 2 tablespoons Old Bay, or other seafood seasoning

  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 2 to 3 pounds crab claws, legs, or whole crabs

Steps to Make It

  1. In a large covered stockpot, bring the beer, sugar, seafood seasoning, vinegar, and spices to a boil over medium-high heat.

  2. Add the crabs and stir well.

  3. Cover and steam 5-7 minutes (10-15 for raw crabs), stirring well a few times.

  4. Remove crabs and serve hot, sprinkled with a little extra seafood seasoning, if desired.