A crab leg cracker is an indispensable tool at a crab feast. If you’ve eaten crab legs in the past, you know just how messy the experience can get. Whether you’re thinking about putting in a big order or want to prepare for a spur-of-the-moment purchase, there are a few utensils you should buy to make the process easier. Namely: A leg cracker, a bib, and a crab leg pot.

What is a Crab Leg Cracker?

Crab crackers help diners get to the tender meat inside the crab shell. Squeezing the handles closes the grip around the shell. With enough force, diners can crack through the hard exterior and pull out the edible part of the crab.

We recommend getting a crab leg cracker – even if eating crab legs is rare in your house. They are easy to find and relatively inexpensive. Without a cracker, a crab leg meal may be too frustrating to enjoy. In this case, spending $5 on a utensil you’ll use a few times a year is absolutely worth the cost.

Crab Bibs are Silly but Useful

Crab legs can be a messy eating experience. We’re all familiar with the stereotypical crab bib restaurants hand out, but is it worth it for a meal at home? In our opinion: Absolutely. These bibs are low-cost, and they’ll protect your clothes from juice and crab shell shrapnel.

How to Buy a Crab Leg Pot

A crab pot is used to cook crab legs. These pots are large enough for home chefs to cook all legs in a cluster at once. Before setting out to buy your pot, however, think about how many legs you’ll cook for an average meal. These pots come in a wide range of sizes, from 16 quarts to 162 quarts. You’ll want to buy the volume that best suits your needs. If you think crab legs are a date night entrée, a smaller pot will suffice. But if you plan to cook crab legs at the annual family reunion, you’ll probably need a larger pot.

You’ll also want to pay attention to the type of metal used in construction. These pots can get heavy, so most home chefs prefer a lighter material. Prioritize stainless steel and enameled steel vessels when shopping around.

A Note on Crab Legs Serving Size

If you’re buying a crab leg cracker and a pot, you should figure out how much crab you plan to serve. This will help you understand how many crackers and how large of a pot to purchase. Between 1.5 and 2 pounds of crab legs is a good amount of big eaters. But, if you have some side dishes, 1 or 2 clusters per person should be a good crab legs service size.

You should also think about whether you want diners to share crackers. We generally recommend getting one cracker for each diner. But, if you don’t eat crab legs very much, one cracker for every two diners should be enough.