Dungeness crab is a species of crab that can be found on the west coast of North America, from Alaska to the coast of California. This crab lives on eelgrass beds and at the bottom of the water and is named after the town of Dungeness, Washington, where it was first harvested for commercial purposes.
The Dungeness crab is a commercial seafood product, that can be cooked in multiple forms, such as crab bisque, crab cake, and others.
How much does Dungeness crab cost?
The average cost of Dungeness crab is anywhere between $10 and $24 per pound. The price will depend on several factors such as your geographical location, season, size, and from where you purchase it from.
However, if you prefer to purchase an already cleaned and cooked Dungeness crab, you should expect to pay between $26 and as much as $60 per pound, or even more. So expect to pay more for comfort.
The table below has the costs provided by some dedicated companies that commercialize Dungeness crabs:
|Source||Average Costs per LBs|
|Lummi Island Wild||$28.38|
|Tanner’s Alaskan Seafoods||$44.95|
The costs are subject to change so we strongly recommend researching before rushing to purchase.
The specialized company Lobsterman has listed on its website frozen Dungeness crab meat at a cost of $37 per half pound. For a cooked or live Dungeness crab of 1.8 pounds with the top shell included, the cost is $35.99.
The well-known company Lummi Island Wild sells Dungeness crabs at costs from $40 to $70 per pound. They also sell different dishes of Dungeness crab meat, such as legs for the cost of $64 per 32 ounces.
Fresh Sea Food, for example, sells fresh Dungeness crab meat for $56.50 per pound. Also, you can purchase a whole crab of 2 pounds from them for $38.50.
The cost range for Dungeness crab meat is also influenced by whether the crab is cleaned and cooked or it is a whole-shell crab.
The Pike Place Fish Market has listed on its website fresh cleaned Dungeness crab meat for the cost of $59.99 per pound. Also, they sell a Dungeness crab feast that contains pre-cooked, cleaned legs and claws ready-to-eat for the cost of $244.99 per 6 pounds.
At the retail store Walmart, Premium Dungeness crab legs are sold for $16.98 per 16 oz.
As stated above, the cost range for Dungeness crab meat will greatly vary depending on your location, season, size, whether it is cooked or cleaned, and where you purchase it from.
Dungeness crab overview
The Dungeness crab is commonly found on the Pacific Ocean bottom along the West Coast of California. Their season is from late November until late June and even July, which is a quite long period.
Dungeness crab has a hard shell that is usually 6 to 7 inches long and can reach up to 10 inches on maturity. It periodically molds to grow.
This species of crab has a tender and sweet meat that is very popular among seafood lovers. The Dungeness crab can be cooked in various menu options. The most popular way to cook it is by boiling or steaming it, which gives it a buttery and flavored taste.
Also, it can be fried, grilled, or even baked to create delicious dishes such as cake crabs, crab legs crab, bisque, and crab salad.
What are the extra costs?
Purchasing Dungeness crab from an online seafood store may come with an extra cost for the shipping and handling fee.
If you are considering purchasing a whole Dungeness crab to cook, it is recommended to acquire a crab cracker set that can cost around $20 for a mid-quality one.
Important things to consider
The Dungeness crabs are not harvested during the fall season due to the fact that their shells are thinner and they are poor in meat.
The mating period is between May and August when the adult females have recently molted and the new exoskeleton starts hardening.
A young Dungeness crab reaches its maturity after five larval stages, usually lasting two years. Through this period, small crabs molt for about 10 times.
In order to sustain the harvesting each year, professional fishermen will only commercialize the larger males.
In case the crabs are to be shipped alive, a reputable supplier will always pack them in a styrofoam box with frozen gel packs to ensure their survival upon arrival.
A single serving of crab weighs around two pounds on average.
An important note to consider is that the Dungeness crabs are high in sodium, especially if it is prepared with salt.
Take into consideration that these crabs may contain domoic acid, a natural toxin that can induce nausea, vomiting, and neurological affections. Ensure that the Dungeness crab you’re considering purchasing is tested.
Once caught, a crab can typically survive for up to six days.
On average, the meat of a Dungeness crab makes up about 30% of its total weight.
According to the Food Network, if the crab weighs one to two pounds, it should be cooked for about 15 minutes. If it weighs three pounds, it should be cooked closer to 20 minutes.
Save money on the price of this crustacean
Seafood sellers usually waive the shipping and handling fee for orders that meet a minimum spend requirement.
Buying in bulk can often result in a significant reduction of about 20 to 30 percent of the “per pound” price.
Buying directly from the West Coast fishing docks will definitely be cheaper and you can also benefit from the freshest crab meat.