These stone crab claws are cooked with garlic and lemon and served with a delicious stone crab sauce. The tender meat has a hint of sweetness but is savory to taste making it an amazing seafood recipe!

Overhead shot o bowl overflowing with crab claws, lemon wedges, and toasted bread.

Just like Dungeness crab legs are to the West Coast, these little babies are an East Coast delicacy. Stone crabs are a signature dish on Florida menus for half of the year. They are large claws filled with sweet meat. The first time we experienced them was on a Cabbage Key off the gulf coast, and ever since, we’ve been on the hunt for a taste of stone crab heaven.

If you love crabs, you will be in for a great seafood dinner with this flavorful stone crab claws recipe! They aren’t as meaty (or big) as King crab legs but are just as briny and sweet. They are steamed with garlic and lemon and then slathered in a tangy mustard sauce made from Dijon mustard, horseradish, mayonnaise, lemon juice, and chives.

The best way to serve this dish is with vegetables, french fries, or a simple side salad. See our additional side dish ideas toward the bottom of this post for more ideas.

Close up of steamed claws garnished with minced chives.

What Are Stone Crabs?

Stone crabs are most known for their hard shells and sweeter taste. Unlike blue crabs, only the claws can be eaten, and they are extremely meaty. They can prominently be found on the east coast of the United States, through the Florida Keys, and down through the Bahamas, in the warmer waters of the Atlantic Ocean. So, if you’re looking for the best crab claws and you’re in that area, you are in luck! After all, the best seafood is fresh seafood.

Ingredients for this recipe.

Stone Crab Claws Ingredients

For the Steamed crab claws

  • Stone Crab Claws – we used medium Florida fresh crab claws. In this case, medium denotes the size and how many claws you will get per pound. For medium, expect 5 to 7 per pound to help you estimate how many you will need. Larger stone crab claws will give you fewer individual claws per pound and smaller more. If you can’t get stone crabs locally, see our online meat buying guide for trusted sources for delivery right to your front door.
  •  Fresh lemon
  • head of garlic

Mustard Sauce

  • Mayo – we use this avocado mayo to keep things keto.
  • Dijon – we opt for a smooth mustard here to avoid anyone worrying they have accidentally chewed on a piece of shell.
  • Horseradish
  • Salt – we always use kosher salt.
  • Lemon Juice – use fresh lemon for the best flavor.
  • Chives – fresh, not dried.

To Serve

  • Lemon Wedges 
  • Melted butter 
Hand drizzling clarified butter over bowl of crab claws.

How to cook Stone Crab Claws

Steam the stone crab claws

Rinse crab claws in cold water and allow them to dry. Meanwhile, add water, lemon, and garlic to a pot with a steam basket on top. 

Add stone crab claws and cover. Vent so steam can escape. Do this for five to eight minutes.

Carefully remove the claws from the steamer basket. 

Make the sauce

Whisk sauce ingredients together to make the zesty dip. 

How to eat stone crab claws

To serve, crack each of the claws with crab/lobster crackers and place them in a bowl, careful not to get any shell fragments in the dish. Toss with melted butter and chives. 

Serve hot with the mustard sauce and additional melted butter and chives if desired. 

Hand dipping crab meat into mustard sauce.


  • Looking for quality products but not in South Florida? Purchase your stone crab claws online at Wild Fork Foods. Check out our ‘Where To Buy Meat Online’ guide!
  • Make sure claws are completely thawed before cooking. 
  • Unless they are fresh off the boat, Stone crab claws will arrive fully cooked, so you are just reheating them to enjoy. In this case, we are steaming the claws with additional aromatics, much like the old bay in my traditional steamed blue crabs, and serving it with a mustard sauce found on most menus in Florida during crab season.

Reheating Leftovers

Refrigerator: Double-wrap in plastic wrap tightly so it remains fresh and stored in the refrigerator. If you really want to keep it extra fresh, place ice in a Ziploc bag and place it on top of the dish covered in plastic wrap. If stored properly, leftovers will last up to four days.

Reheat: Bring water to a light boil in a pot on the stove. Then take it off the burner and place uncracked claws inside for at least two minutes.

What to Serve With 

Not sure what to pair with this stone crab claw recipe? Your favorite vegetables and mashed potatoes are always a great idea!

If you’re feeling cheeky, key lime pie is the perfect dessert to serve with this to tie it all back to the region.

Pile of stone crab claws new dipping sauce.



Stone crab is best known for having a unique flavor and texture. It tastes sweeter than other crab and is firmer as well. It’s typically served cold, but this recipe is cooked.


If you’re eager to get your hands on fresh claws, stone crab season is from October 15th through May 15th. Fresh stone crabs are primarily found on the east coast of the United States and down through Cuba and the Bahamas. This is why you may have heard of Florida stone crab claws, as they heavily breed in that area. And the freshest and best stone crabs come from these areas.

More Delicious seafood recipes

Love lobster and crab? Check out the following recipes. Also, if you can’t get enough seafood, there are some of the best seafood recipes on the site!

Is this your first time cooking stone crab claws? Did you find it difficult or easy? Whether you’ve made them before or not, let me know in the comments below how your dish turned out and what you paired them with!

Stone Crab Claws in Garlic Butter with Mustard Sauce

5 from 14 votes
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 8 minutes
Resting Time: 2 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings: 4
Bring home the taste of the Floida coast with this delicious steamed stone crab claws recipe paired with the quintessential mustard dipping sauce.


  • 4 lbs Stone Crab Claws medium 5 to 7 claws per pound
  • lemon
  • head of garlic

Mustard Sauce

  • ¼ cup Mayo
  • 2 tbsp Dijon
  • 1 tbsp Horseradish
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 tbsp Chives freshly minced

To Serve

  • Lemon Wedges
  • Melted butter


Steam the crab

  • Rinse your crab claws in cold water and allow to dry on a wire rack or in a colander for 20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, add water, lemon, and garlic in a pot and place a steam basket over top.
  • Add the stone crab claws and cover, making sure to vent the lid to allow steam to escape.
  • Steam claws 5 to 8 minutes until heated through
  • Carefully remove the claws from the steamer basket.

Make the sauce:

  • Meanwhile, whisk the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl to make the zesty mustard dip.


  • To serve, crack each of the claws with crab/lobster crackers and place the crab claws in a bowl and toss with melted butter and chives.
  • Serve hot with the mustard sauce, additional melted butter and chives.


When ordering stone crab claw, they will most likely already be cooked, so the key here is to reheat them with extra flavor for serving. 
If you want options, cocktail sauce, tarter sauce, or even chimichurri are also great dipping sauces for crab. 
We kept this as close to the recipes we’ve tasted at restaurants in Florida, but if you want, sprinkle on a little Old Bay while the claws steam for added flavor. 


Serving: 1g | Calories: 208kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.03g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 1672mg | Potassium: 247mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 69IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 57mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Author: Kita Roberts

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Well, Hey, Y’all.

Kita is a multi-talented individual, boasting numerous accomplishments such as being an award-winning recipe developer, world-traveled professional photographer, and journalist. As the lead creative force behind Girl Carnivore®, she is widely recognized as an authority on all things meat.


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