How to make blue crabs with savory sauce

Blue crabs is one of my favorite dishes!  I first ate this wonderful dish at my Aunt Ong's house ten years ago and instantly loved it at first taste!  The flavor is savory and succulant, omg is it finger licking good!  It is best served with sticky rice.  You dip the sticky rice into the sauce and eat. OMG YUM!


  • 2 or 3 pounds of blue crab (cleaned, gutted, and split in half)
  • 1 pound shrimp
  • 1 package of imitation crab meat
  • 1/2 cup chopped garlic
  • 1/2 cup chopped ginger
  • 1 cup fresh basil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 1/2 cup oyster sauce
  • 1 jar crab paste
  • 1 jar shrimp paste


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Let's just say we couldn't get enough of it. It's so easy yet sooooo good. Going it make it again. Thanks for sharing. Can't wait for more uploads from you.

Once again thanks Annie.

Hi PK, I'm glad the recipe turned out good for you! :-)  Yay!

Recipe looks good but can u use a wooden spoon so your video isn't so dang loud lol. I'll try out your recipe Ty

How but Annie talking while she cooks. Bet you she's got a great voice :)

How do you clean or prep the crab??? I want to try to make this recipe but I don't know how to work with live crabs!! Thanks. It looks yummy!

Hi Gaonou, first you wash the crabs in water.  Then you take the flap on their belly and open it up.  Use the long side of a spoon to pry the shell open.  Then you remove the dark sandy lungs.  You can clean out the guts (will be orange and have gooey stuff around it) OR you can leave it.  Some people like this taste so they leave it. I normally just take it out.  Then you break the crab in half (with a knife or just splitting it with your hands by bending the crab).  I think there may be some tutorials on youtube how to clean crabs but I didn't do it in this video.  Good luck!

Ok...I have to inquire further before attempting this. I've NEVER cleaned or gutted crabs before! My friends were saying you can boil the crabs while they're alive if you don't want to clean them before. After they cook, you can clean them out. A lot of videos say to chill the crabs in ice until they're numb and can't really move. Then you can gut them while they're still alive (seems so inhuman!!!). And then you cook them. So long as they're not dead before you cook them...What do you recommend? 

For this recipe, I usually get them live, then I put them under hot water to kill them.  Then I clean and gut them out.  I remove the outer shell and then open it with a spoon and wedge that inbetween the shell and the body. I take out the lung and clean out any dirt. 

So...just hot water and not boiling? So they don't cook, right?

Hi Annie, I know in the recipe you mention 1 jar of each crab and shrimp paste, but how many oz of crab paste / shrimp you used.

I believe it's 7 oz.  You can use more if you like. 

Hi Annie,Stumbled across your recipes on youtube! I'm going to give some of your recipes a try. I'm very interested in this recipe! But I'm scared to kill live crabs. LOL... I was watching how to kill them online... and that looks scary.I'll have to have my husband try to do it.

I hope you were able to try it!

How long should I cook the crab before adding the rest of the food .. What's the whole cook time approximate .. I really want to try this dish so I'm pretty excited .. Loving your videos and can't wait for more uploads [:` Nkauj Ci Thoj

If you cook it on high, it should only take about 10-15 minutes. You know it's ready when the outer shell turns red and it is really sizzling juices.

Hello Annie,I live in Fort Walton Beach, FL, and have been catching blue crab since this past summer on my own down at the beach, I can usually get about 20 or 30 in an hour, it is so fun.  I have my own recipe, which consists of oyster sauce, garlic, and sugar, it tastes good to me.  Your recipe looks so much better and can't wait to give it a try when I get back home from Germany.thank you,Foo

Thanks for your comment! Wow, Germany is far! Have a safe trip back home and happy eating blue crabs when you do get a chance to catch fresh ones!

I was so ready to make this today with your sweet pork too but went to 2 Asian stores and no blue crab available at either of them. Will have to search again tomorrow! The sweet pork turned out great though. Wish could have had it with the crab dish too. It would have been a two course dinner by Thanks so much for sharing and your videos are fabulous. Love them and keep them coming. There is definitely an audience for these dishes. Many of us eat them but don't know how to cook them well ourselves so great to see these play-by-plays from you. -ZouaM

Thanks for your feedback! I appreciate it very much.

Hi annie,I came across your website and saw this recipe.  I am in making this recipe but was wondering if you would recommend using other crabs rather then blue crabs? It's hard to find blue crabs and I am more expose to those red crabs.  Would you recommend using the red crabs?  Thanks again!

You can use other crabs. You might want to make the sauce separately and then pour it on top if the crabs are big.

Hello! This dish looks delicious, but what kind of crab paste and shrimp paste are you using? When I read the ingredients I was thinking shrimp past like for papaya... But then I watched the video and it looks different... Thanks!

No, not shrimp paste for papaya! This shrimp paste is not the same as that. It i sold in a jar and is usually filled with chili oil and shrimp pieces.

You can add anything you like.

thanks for sharing gunna make it for my in laws hope they like it!

Hope you enjoy it!

What is the name of the crab and shrimp paste that you use?

When I buy more, I'll take a picture.  I forgot the name of the brand.

Love the look of this dish! I love crabs. Since you added all those pastes and sauce in the dish, you don't need to put salt in there right? And when you cook it, do you sue high or low heat? I going to try this dish, thanks for sharing.

I don't add salt because the oyster sauce is salty and the shrimp paste and crab paste has salt too.

Hey Annie!! Thank you so much for the recipe. I live in a city with very few Asians. We have a small Korean and a small Vietnamese store here. I was curious, about your blue crabs recipe, where else can I get blue crabs? Thanks!

It might be in the frozen section of the korean store because koreans like seafood and sometimes it's sold near the frozen hotpot seafood stuff. Just ask the clerk.  Our korean store here has some too.  If you want fresh, you may need a large store.

Hi Annie-I just tried this recipe a few days ago and oh boy, my husband loved it! He's a seafood person and I'm very thankful for this recipe. So delicious and finger licking! Thank you so much!

I love this recipe too. Especially when I get blue crabs in my area. Sometimes I go for months craving this dish cos blue crabs is not available.

I cannot find the caravelle shrimp paste...would the dragonfly shrimp paste work?

I made this dish today because my husband wanted to try it out. It was super yummy. I loved it myself too. I made it with some bigger crabs though because they didn't have the small blue crabs anymore. The dish was still so good. Thanks for the recipe I would so cook it again. My mother in law and father in law loved it too. So nice seeing them enjoying this dish.

Hello Annie,I see the ingredients section but not the section to how you mix the ingredients/prep/cooking process. Am I just not seeing it? I can't wait to try this!:)mtx

Wow this recipe is totally delicious!!! And I mean it! I've watch this video in the pass before but never got a chance to make it until Tonight. My whole family loved it. Thanks for sharing Annie!

Annie, I've tried almost of all your recipes and they all turned out really good.  I just wanted to thank you for sharing your recipes.  It's made my family and friends very happy.  Again thanks.  You're amazing, inspiring and much appreciate by alot of your Hmong sisters.   

oww I have a great affinity for crab made dishes and is a huge fan of it too. Mostly sweet corn and minced chicken in crab soup. It is just the perfect combination. For those of who love mushroom can add them as well. This is a wonderful dish. 

I want to make this recipe but will it taste ok without the shrimp paste? My husband loves crabs but he's allergic to shrimp.

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