Southern King Crab vs Alaskan King Crab: What’s The Difference?

Southern King Crab vs Alaskan King Crab
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Southern King Crab vs Alaskan King Crab

Seafood enthusiasts love eating crab because they know it has the same nutrients as most other seafood. Not all crabs are edible though, but many of the king crabs are.

There are more than 100 different species of King crabs, of which the large Southern King Crab and the even larger Alaskan King Crab are two.

The meat of both these crabs is considered a delicacy. The truth about them, however, is that they aren’t cheap to buy, and they are no longer plentiful, even though their populations are closely monitored to avoid overfishing.

When it comes to the price of the Southern King Crab vs. Alaskan King Crab, it is determined by supply and demand, and only a certain amount of crab can be harvested each year.

Let’s take a look at how these crabs differ and what you can expect from each one.

Southern King Crab vs. Alaskan King Crab

Southern King Crab Alaskan King Crab
  • The Southern king crab has a bright red shell with spikes.
  • These crabs are found in the southernmost parts of South America close to Chile and Argentina.
  • Adults can reach up to 7.5 inches in body width and a 5-foot leg span.
  • The Chilean King Crab’s tender, juicy meat is white with a lovely sweet flavor.
  • The Red king crab or Alaskan King Crab is rather a burgundy colored crab and not exactly red, and the shell also has spikes
  • The large Alaskan King crab hails from the Gulf of Alaska and the Bering Sea.
  • The shell or carapace can reach 11 inches, and the leg span can reach up to 5.9 ft.
  • The Alaskan king crab’s flavor is also white, rich, and sweet, with a tender texture. It is likened to lobster meat.
  • Both crabs live to be between 20 and 30 years of age.
  • The parts of both these crabs that are eaten are essentially the legs but also the claws. Both have 5 pairs of legs, and there is plenty of meat in them.
  • The crab meat of both these crabs is marketed as pre-cooked and frozen.
  • In some restaurants, the entire king crab is served – the legs, claws, body parts, and even the shell. They’re served with the likes of garlic, seafood rice, and sauces

If you can get hold of these crabs, they can be a very tasty treat now and again. Probably the most popular way to eat these king crabs is to boil or steam them, but of course, there are plenty of other ways to enjoy this delicious seafood.

A common and delicious way to cook the crabs is to put them on a hot iron griddle with lemon juice and white wine. You can also bake the crabs or cook them in a sauce.

The Southern King Crab

Fresh spider crab (centolla)
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Which of the two king crabs is the most delicious? The Southern king crab is often referred to as Chilean king crab and also Centolla.

Sweet-flavored meat that is highly prized.

The large crabs are caught in pots between July and November and then processed to be enjoyed. It has a unique look, being a red color with spikes. The flesh is white. It’s a sweet-flavored meat that is highly prized and gastronomically sought after.

The fishing process for the Southern king crab involves pre-cooking the meat and then flash-freezing it.  Consumers then just have to simply reheat the meat as they prefer.

The Alaskan King Crab

There are many kinds of crabs caught in Alaskan waters, some of which are particularly popular. One of these is the Alaskan king crab. It is also commonly referred to as the Red king crab and is another sought-after crab for its tasty flesh.

Sought after sweet, tender crab meat.

For lovers of crab meat, the Alaskan king crab is known for its sweet taste, making it a top choice for its delectable leg and claw meat. In fact, the claws are highly sought after simply because of their size and, more specifically, the meat that is found with them.

The legs, too, are in demand and will come to you precooked and frozen. These Alaskan king crab legs are available for order online.

A favorite way to cook the legs is to deep fry them. You can keep the legs refrigerated for up to two days and for up to 4 months in your freezer.

Flavors and textures differ somewhat.

The Southern king crab is often compared to the Alaskan king crab, but anyone who has sampled both will tell you that the Southern king crustacean has a different texture and flavor. Like the

Alaskan king crab, the Southern king crab offers sweet, flavorsome, tender meat to ensure a memorable tasting experience, whatever the dish.

You can say that it is because of the geographic locations of the two crabs that they have developed somewhat different flavors, even though they are still fairly similar in taste.

Some people who have tried both crabs say that the Chilean King Crab has a better flavor that is more sweet and tender than the Alaskan King Crab, but it’s essentially a matter of opinion as both are deliciously tasty.

Two similar King crabs

southern king crab vs alaskan king crab
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Southern King Crab vs. Alaskan King Crab? As you can see, the two crabs are very similar really, and both are popular seafood.

The crabs have always been available most of the year to countries around the world. Both crabs are best eaten fresh or frozen, though canned versions are also available.

If you are a lover of crabs, try to get hold of either one of these crabs, as they are a famous delicacy. Sadly though, because of overfishing and climate change, there is now a decline in harvesting the crabs, and they are often in short supply.

Both crabs offer mouth-watering tastes.

Alaskan King Crab
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The enjoyment of fine food is a delight for anyone who appreciates mouth-watering, exotic tastes. Both these crabs are not only delicious but they both provide dietary benefits that include being a good source of protein.

Both the Southern and Alaskan King Crabs also offer excellent opportunities for exercising your skill in the art of garnishing.

These succulent crabs look all the more appetizing if surrounded by creamy potatoes, lemon and garlic sauce, or roasted vegetables. What a mouth-watering treat they are, and by being offered such a rare treat, the hostess is showing how special you are.

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