Home Recipe Roundup 10 Different Dipping Sauces for Crab Legs

10 Different Dipping Sauces for Crab Legs

You’re here looking for dipping sauces for crab legs, right? Ten years ago, my first question to you would have been, “WHY?!” 

I always thought crab legs were pretty perfect by themselves. Dipping them in a sauce seemed insulting, like putting ketchup on steak.

Crab Legs with Hots Sauce, Lemons and Parsley
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Then I discovered garlic butter sauce, and my resolve broke.

Yes, crab legs are incredibly delicious. Still, they’re even better slathered in garlic butter.

After that, I started experimenting with more dipping sauces for crab legs.

And over the years, I’ve found that these ten are some of the best. I hope you’ll enjoy them, too.

1. Garlic Butter Sauce

As I mentioned, I’ve found a handful of great crab leg dipping sauces over the years.

They enhance the natural flavor of the crab meat instead of overpowering it.

Still, I’ve never found one I liked more than garlic butter.

It makes the crab meat buttery and juicier, and the garlic is the perfect umami complement. 

Put simply, the sauce gives the crab legs a more complex taste. Plus, it adds just a dash of salt, which is ideal for crab meat.

If you only try one sauce from this list, be sure it’s this one.

2. Tartar Sauce

I never enjoyed dipping my crab legs in tartar sauce. I’ve always appreciated the bright, tangy flavor of the condiment.

I just didn’t think it paired well with crab meat.

Then I tried making my own, and that made all the difference. This mayo-based, dill-heavy recipe for tartar sauce tastes fantastic on crab legs.

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It’s cool, zingy, and has a perfect consistency, too. Give it a try the next time you have a crab boil. It also works well on fried fish or shrimp. 

3. Homemade Cocktail Sauce

I’m a serious cocktail sauce fan. It sounds crazy, but I could put this stuff on practically anything.

(I’m not joking, either. I add it to baked potatoes, asparagus, and other strange things.)

Fortunately, this recipe for homemade cocktail sauce is one of the best I’ve tried.

The recipe is quick and easy to follow. It also tastes 10 times better than anything you can buy in the condiment aisle.

4. Green Cocktail Sauce

Are you looking for something a bit spicier? Try this recipe for green cocktail sauce instead.

The cilantro and tomatillos give it a brilliant green color and fresh taste.

Adding horseradish and green hot sauce brings the heat. This cocktail sauce is spicy, refreshing, and very good.

Try it on crab legs or any other favorite seafood dishes.

5. Wasabi Cocktail Sauce

I like this wasabi cocktail sauce best on shrimp. However, my friends swear it’s a must-have sauce for crab legs. 

It’s quick and easy to make. You need only five ingredients. Mix horseradish, ketchup, wasabi, soy sauce, and rice wine vinegar in a bowl. 

Once it’s smooth, it’s ready to go. It’s been described as ‘salsa with a kick.’ It definitely adds another depth of flavor to your crab meat. 

6. Cajun Butter Sauce

Cajun butter sauce may not be as pretty as other sauces on this list. However, it has an exceptional taste.

It’s deliciously buttery. And somehow, it’s sweet, tangy, and spicy all at once.

It features the robust, earthy flavors of onions and garlic. Additionally, there’s plenty of heat and bold Cajun flavors. 

You’ll need seven ingredients and less than 15 minutes to make it. It also has an incredible shelf life.

You can pop it in the freezer and keep it for half a year! 

I love it on crab legs and shrimp. It’s also an excellent option for jazzing up plain white rice or mashed potatoes.  

7. Lemon Aioli

You’ll need four simple ingredients to make this homemade lemon aioli sauce.

Lemons (juice and zest) and mayo are the main components. You also add garlic and a dash of salt.

Whisk everything together until it forms a smooth, creamy sauce. Then, play with the lemon juice and zest until it suits your tastes perfectly. 

It’s bright, tart, and tangy. A lot of people don’t appreciate those flavors on their crab legs. However, I think it livens and lightens them up! 

If you feel the same way, this recipe is a must-have.

8. Ginger Sauce

If you’ve visited a Japanese steakhouse, you’ve tried ginger sauce.

It’s the rich, spicy sauce that gives Japanese steak (and chicken) such a terrific flavor.

It tastes just as incredible on crab legs. It’s a bold, umami-packed sauce with plenty of heat.

It’ll give your crab legs a lovely bit of zing that’ll make them irresistible. 

9. Creamy Mustard Sauce

I’ll admit. It took me a few tries to warm up to mustard sauce on crab legs.

The thick, luscious sauce is full of zesty flavor and tastes spectacular on some things.

(I love it on fries and chicken fingers, for example.) 

However, I wasn’t feeling it on my crab legs. And to be honest, it’s still not one of my favorite go-to crab leg sauces.

Even so, it grew on me. I can easily understand why some people love it so much. It has a unique, sweet-n-tangy flavor full of spice and heat.

Try it for yourself. Even if you don’t like it on crab meat, you may appreciate it with other meals.

10. Diablo Sauce

This tomato-based sauce may look mild and unassuming. However, it’s anything but!

Diablo sauce is just the thing if you want to bring heat to your crab meat.

There are quite a few ingredients in this spicy sauce. The serrano chile, chile powder, and paprika steal the show, though.

The tomatoes and lemon juice provide a bright, fresh base for the sauce.

You add onions and garlic for an understated, earthy complement. Brown sugar lends a bit of sweetness to the mix.

Then, you’ll add the spices and peppers. And whoa, mister, are they spicy! This sauce won’t cause fire to shoot from your ears cartoon-style. 

Still, it’s not a gentle heat, either. If you’re sensitive to spicy foods, you might want to pass on this one.

If “the hotter, the better” is your motto, you’ll adore it.

10 Different Dipping Sauces for Crab Legs

Try these dipping sauces for crab legs to make your seafood meal even better. From garlic butter to cocktail to mustard, these sauces all work well with crab.


  • Garlic Butter Sauce

  • Tartar Sauce

  • Homemade Cocktail Sauce

  • Green Cocktail Sauce

  • Wasabi Cocktail Sauce

  • Cajun Butter Sauce

  • Lemon Aioli

  • Ginger Sauce

  • Creamy Mustard Sauce

  • Diablo Sauce


  • Select your favorite recipe.
  • Organize all the required ingredients.
  • Prep a dipping sauce in 30 minutes or less!
Dipping Sauces for Crab Legs

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author avatar
NaTaya Hastings
NaTaya Hastings is a food and recipe writer for Insanely Good Recipes. She’s an educator, boy mom, dog mom, and whatever-stray-enters-the-yard mom. As a result, she's constantly cooking for both humans and animals.

Luckily, she enjoys it!

Though born, raised, and still living in Alabama, her specialty is NOT down-home Southern cooking. Instead, she loves to experiment with Asian, Mexican, Italian, and other ethnic cuisines. She has two mottos when it comes to cooking. “The more spice, the better!” and “There’s no such thing as too much garlic!”

She’s also pretty good with desserts. Especially the easy, no-bake ones.

Her favorite things are cuddling with her four giant dogs, traveling, reading, writing, and hanging out in nature. She’s also pretty excellent at Dominoes.

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