A Simple Guide on the Common Types of Crab Meat

Whether you’re looking for a light soup or a rich crab cake, getting your pincers on some crab meat is a sure way to light up your taste buds.

Crab meat is a tasty and versatile ingredient that can be used in a variety of dishes. There are several different types of crab meat, each with its own unique flavor and texture. So which do you choose and what do you use each for?

Don’t panic. Here’s our simple guide on the common types of crab meat.

Colossal and Jumbo Lump

Colossal crab meat is the largest type of crab meat available. You’ll sometimes also see it labeled as “mega jumbo lump” or similar variations. It’s the unbroken meat of larger edible crab species.

Taken from the powerful swimming muscles, it has excellent structure and a delicate taste, which makes it ideal for eating with a dip or as the star of a sautee — anywhere it can attract the eye.

Jumbo lump is a similar but smaller grade of meat, though shares much of the same appeal in terms of appearance and texture, so keep that in mind when buying crab meat.


Lump crab meat is usually made of a mix of broken up jumbo meat plus meat from the body of the crab.

This makes a versatile style of crab meat that carries a lot of the same appeal as colossal meat without the high price tag. It’s one of the most popular grades of crab meat for crab cakes, and with some basic crab cooking tips, you can elevate it easily.


Special crab meat is the meat from a crab’s body. Consisting mostly of shreds and flakes, it’s often used in crab salads and other cold dishes where its delicate flavor can shine through. This is one of the most versatile grades of crab meat, though, so you’ll see it in a whole range of dishes, from crab cakes to soups.

Back fin

Back fin isn’t a specific portion of crab meat, but a name for the milieu of lump crab meat and the special meat taken from the body — like lump meat, it describes a blend of different grades. This gives it a loose structure that makes it the meat of choice for a range of dishes where it can blend with the main body of the dish.


Crab claw meat is a type of dark pink meat from (you guessed it) a crab’s claws. It has a strong flavor despite its low cost, which makes it ideal for use in soups and stews, where the flavor can come through and work together with seasonings, instead of being lost amongst them. Feeling peckish? Get crab delivery here and whip up your own soup with ease.

The Common Types of Crab Meat Explained

As you can see, the different types of crab meat can be as varied as those from a larger animal, suiting a wide range of dishes. By using this guide, you can be sure to match the grade of the meat to your dish for the perfect result.

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