Fried Soft-Shell Crab – Southern-Style (#Fish Friday Foodies)

Fried Soft Shell Crab, Southern Style, buttermilk, seasoned flour

Fried Soft Shell Crab – Southern Style

This month’s #Fish Friday Foodies theme is for fried seafood; my recipe is a favorite in our house, Fried Soft-Shell Crab – Southern-Style. Of course. It is really so simple to have restaurant quality soft-shell crab at home, and they are prepared in minutes. 

Soft Shell Crab are crabs which have molted their eco-skelton and are at the stage where their shells are still soft (within two hours of molting). Because the shell is soft, the entire crab is edible. The most commonly available soft-shell crabs in this country are blue crabs and are typically available from April through September.

Mr. Saucy and I adore soft-shell crab. It was a hard thing to limit our consumption of these crispy, delicious crabs to just a few months a year. Fortunately, years ago now, I found a fabulous source for soft-shell crab. Year round!

I order our soft-shells from Linton’s Seafood located in Crisfield, Maryland. The crabs we get from Linton’s are from the Chesapeake Bay; with 45 years of experience with seafood from that area, they know their stuff. Every single time I have ordered from them, their customer service has been excellent. The frozen soft-shell crabs are meticulously packed in a box containing a styrofoam cooler liner and bags of dry ice to keep them frozen in transit. It’s always a treat in the Saucy household when a box arrives from Linton’s.

Soft-shell crab are very easy to prepare and are ready to eat in just minutes! For this recipe, I season flour and a bit of yellow corn meal (for added crunch factor) with some creole seasoning and black pepper. After a dredge in the flour mixture, some buttermilk and back into the flour mixture, the crabs are pan fried in about an inch of oil until golden brown on each side.

If you’ve never had soft-shell crab, I urge you to try them. Give Linton’s a call, or order online from them (not a paid endorsement, just one from good experience). I have ordered both the Jumbo and the Whale sizes…you won’t be disappointed! Also, check out the other recipes for fried fish from fellow Fish Friday Foodie posters!


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Fried Soft-Shell Crab - Southern-Style (#Fish Friday Foodies)
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Soft Shell Crab are crabs which have molted their eco-skelton and are at the stage where their shells are still soft (within two hours of molting). Because the shell is soft, the entire crab is edible; these are pan-fried with a seasoned flour/corn meal coating that is a crunchy, flavorful outer for these rich delicious crabs.
Serves: 2-4 depending on the size of the crabs
  • 4 soft shell crabs, prepared for cooking (gills, apron, mouth and eyes removed - Linton's crabs come ready to cook)
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup yellow corn meal
  • 2 tablespoons Creole seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • vegetable oil enough to have 1 inch in a deep skillet
  1. Combine the flour, corn meal, Creole seasoning and pepper in a shallow bowl and stir to combine.
  2. In a separate shallow bowl, add the buttermilk.
  3. Add the oil to the skillet and heat to about 350°F.
  4. Once the oil is hot, dredge each crab first in the seasoned flour mixture, then into the buttermilk, then back into the flour mixture, tossing the flour onto the crab to cover.
  5. Place the coated crabs into the heated oil and cook for about 3-4 minutes, or until golden brown, flip and continue to cook on the other side for an additional 3-4 minutes.
  6. Remove from the oil and allow to drain, either on a slotted rack, or on paper towel.
  7. Serve hot with lemon wedges.

About P ~ The Saucy Southerner

I started cooking when I was ten years old. For me, the process of cooking, from inception of a dish, to the execution, to the washing of the pots is sheer delight.

I am now retired from a business I still own, in partnership with my husband. I used to work six days a week and still cook every night. Now, I’m gardening, still cooking, always having fun and hoping to share my joy with you. Thank you for reading…and commenting! P~

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4 Responses to Fried Soft-Shell Crab – Southern-Style (#Fish Friday Foodies)

  1. sneha datar says:

    Love crabs and this is so inviting… yum.

  2. Colleen says:

    Oh what I wouldn’t give for a plate of these! Droolworthy!

  3. Sid says:

    Softshell crab sandwich’s are pretty common down here, but I’ve never tried one. I love crab however, and I guess it’s time for to try a sandwich. Yours looks so good.

  4. Oh my gosh, this looks AMAZING, P! 🙂 This is one of our favorite ways to have crab, too!

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