All crab lovers are certainly aware of the age-old debate of which is better, Dungeness crab or King crab; well, Bell Buoy of Seaside decided it was time to put an end to the debate and declare Dungeness crab the winner! While both are delicious, we believe Dungeness crab deserves the esteemed distinction of "best" crab. Let us tell you why.
1. Dungeness Crab Tastes Better Than King Crab
Dungeness crab has a sweet, succulent taste, and melt-in-your mouth texture. Dungeness crab legs are a true delicacy with a firmer texture than the body meat. In comparison, King crab has a more mild flavor, almost to the point of generic. In other words, you don't get the "OMG" factor when tasting King crab, whereas with Dungeness crab, sighs of delight can be heard from anyone lucky enough to eat it fresh 'outta the shell!
2. Dungeness Crab is More Versatile Than King Crab
You can buy a whole Dungeness crab, take it home, and crack it yourself. You can't purchase whole king crab, only king crab legs are sold in stores. Dungeness crab is also a chef's dream as it elevates any salad, dip, or sandwich.
At Bell Buoy, canned Dungeness Crab is one of our specialities, which highlights the versatility of Dungeness crab (we've never seen canned king crab!) Canned crab can be used the same as fresh crab; for salads, casseroles, dips, or eaten straight from the can!
3. Buying Dungeness Crab Supports Local Communities
Dungeness crab is mainly harvested in the Pacific Northwest by locally based boats from California to Washington. Local fishermen and women work hard to deliver the freshest crab to their communities.
When you buy fresh Dungeness crab your are not only getting a superior tasting product, you are also supporting your community's local food movement. (Check out the North Coast Food Trail for foodie finds, markets, and all things yummy in the local category!)
King crab is mainly an industrial operation, caught by large vessels in Alaska and in foreign waters. In the past, a large portion of King crab sold in the U.S. was actually caught in foreign waters. In most cases, King crab doesn't support local economies.
4. Year Round Availability
Dungeness crab season usually runs from December to August, making fresh crab available almost year round. King crab only has a ten day season, meaning outside of those ten days, king crab sold in stores has most likely been frozen. The 2021 Alaska Red King crab season was closed due to low abundance, meaning any Red King crab sold in the U.S. was caught in foreign waters and has likely been frozen for a very long time.
5. Environmentally Sustainable Option
In Oregon, Dungeness crab harvest methods are strictly regulated and managed with sustainability of the species in mind. According to the Oregon Dungeness Crab Commission, "...gear regulations are designed with conservation in mind." Crab pots have female escape rings so that females and undersized males can exit. Overfishing is virtually impossible with the regulations in place, ensuring future generations can enjoy the "best" crab for many years to come.
Locally sourced Dungeness crab also has a much lower carbon footprint compared to King crab. The Dungeness crab at Bell Buoy is caught less than 50 miles away in the Pacific Ocean. Any King crab in your grocery store has likely traveled thousands of miles.
The best way to convince you that Dungeness crab is the "best" crab is to have you try some! So come on down to Bell Buoy and choose from crab meat, crab legs, whole crab, or canned crab. We are pretty sure you will be sighing with delight after your first bite.