The flavor, texture, and freshness of Dungeness crab cannot be surpassed. It’s so good, all it needs is a little drawn butter and lemon.

Serves 4


  • Dungeness crab
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Assorted regular lemons, Meyer lemons, and limes, plus flat-leaf parsley sprigs


  1. Bring a canning pot filled with water to a boil, about 30 minutes. Using tongs, lower crab into pot; cover. Repeat with 1 more crab; cover. Bring water back to boiling, then cook 8 minutes for 1 1/2- to 2-lb. crabs, 10 minutes if larger. Or, in a large stockpot, boil 1 crab at a time (5 minutes for the smaller size, 8 for the larger).
  2. In a small saucepan, melt butter with Old Bay over medium-high heat and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and skim foam until only clear liquid is left. Stir in lemon juice and salt.
  3. Using tongs, transfer crabs to a colander to drain and cool; meanwhile, cook remaining crabs. Set cooled crabs belly up on a rimmed baking sheet, then clean and crack.
  4. Serve on a platter with citrus, parsley, and the seasoned clarified butter.