Snow Crab Mac n’ Cheese

Recipe Info

Difficulty: Easy
Mess Level: Moderate
Yield: 2 Servings
Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 15 min


  • 2 Snow Crab Legs
  • ½ lb Cavatappi Pasta (Or any pasta you like)
  • ¼ Cup shredded White Cheddar
  • ¼ Cup shredded Havarti or Gouda (you may sub in any melty cheese that you like)
  • 2 Cups Heavy Cream
  • 2 Cloves Garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • Garlic or Kosher Salt to taste
  • Parsley to garnish (optional)
  • Toasted Sourdough slice (optional)


  1. Boil a large pot of water on the stove. When it has reached a boil, add the crab legs, tucking the legs at the joints so they fit into the pot. Most crab legs you buy are already cooked so we’re really just re-warming them and softening the shell.
  2. Simmer the legs for 5-8 minutes, then pull out and set aside. Strain the water into another pot if necessary to remove floating crab bits, then return the water to a boil and add the pasta. Take care not to over or under-cook the pasta.
  3. While the pasta cooks, remove the crab meat. Start by breaking the legs at the joints and pulling the leg segments apart. If the meat doesn’t slide right out, take a crab cracker or a pair of kitchen shears and cut or break the shell away exposing the meat. Cut the meat into bite-sized pieces and set aside.
  4. When the pasta is done, drain it and immediately run cold water over to stop the cooking process, tossing the pasta to make sure all of it is cooled. Set aside.
  5. Mince your garlic and shred your cheese pretty finely so it melts quickly. Then heat a large cast iron or non-stick skillet with fairly high sides over medium heat.
  6. Melt the butter and add the garlic, sauteing until the garlic is fragrant. Then Add in your heavy cream. Adjust your heat until the cream is simmering. You don’t want it to boil over but you do need to see bubbles. Continue cooking the cream until it is thick enough to hold a nappe.
  7. Turn the heat to low and add in your pasta, then immediately stir in the shredded cheese. Continue stirring until the cheese has melted into the cream and the pasta is coated. Add additional cream if the sauce becomes too thick.
  8. Stir in the crab meat and garnish with parsley. Enjoy!

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Savannah Says...

  1. Why does this recipe not have a roux?

    1. No roux you say?
      The heavy cream will thicken enough on it’s own to form a sauce. This is faster, easier and doesn’t have a dusty taste from the flour. Enjoy!
  2. What is Nappe?

    1. Nappe (pronounced nap-ay):
      When a sauce is thick enough that it will coat the back of a spoon and not run off. This is the ultimate trick to tell when your sauce has reached the perfect thickness.
  3. What is Sauteed?

    1. Saute:
      "To Jump" in French. A method of cooking food in a very hot pan. The process usually goes very quickly.
  4. What is a Simmer?

    1. Simmer:
      A very laid-back boil where small bubbles appear consistently as opposed to a full boil, which is much more excited.

Ramblings of a Line Cook

I woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning when I received a text that threatened to alter the plan I had made for my day. I had very carefully planned out exactly where I was going to be that day and when. There was a timeline, there was a plan and I blew the first part of it by not getting out of bed to go for a run in the 23 degree weather, which I felt lazy about, and then someone had a change of plans which changed my plans (heaven forbid) and it sent me right over the grumpy side of the bed. I spent the next hour stomping around with morning breath and a bad attitude.

What an attractive way to act on the day I had planned to make all the food for my Valentine’s Dinner post. I’m sure Tony was thinking what a lucky man he is. Whatever his thinking was he quietly brought me steak and eggs on toast and a bottle of sriracha sauce, he knows me well. So I ate my eggs, drank some coffee, put on warm socks and adjusted my attitude which I’m going to say was a sufficient workout for today.

I like Valentine’s Day and I think it should be simple, enjoyable and have a sexy flair to it. But stressed out is not sexy so from one over-ambitious human to the next I’m making a commitment to myself here, say it with me, won’t you? *raises right hand* “If I’m too stressed out to enjoy making this meal and the experience it will create, I will order a pizza.” There… Pressure’s off. Now let’s stop stressing out about trivial things and make the sexiest mac n cheese you’ve ever seen.

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