Crab Rillettes

  • Preparation 20 MIN
    Cooking 1 H
    Chilling 2 H
  • Servings 1
  • Makes 1 1/2 cups (375 ml)
Before every kitchen had a fridge, home cooks would often preserve fish and meat in pots under a seal of melted butter. Enter rillettes. You can cook whole fresh or frozen snow crabs and remove the flesh yourself for this recipe. For optimal consistency, wait 15 minutes after you pull your ramekin out of the fridge before spreading the potted crab on a slice of toasted bread... Your taste buds will thank you.



  1. In a microwave, melt 2 tbsp of the butter. Let cool to allow the butter to separate. Strain through a fine sieve, keeping only the top layer of fat. Discard any milk solids. Keep warm.
  2. In a bowl, combine the crab, remaining butter, garlic, Sriracha and lemon zest with an electric mixer. With the mixer running, gradually add the lemon juice until the mixture is creamy and emulsified. Season with pepper.
  3. Transfer the mixture to a jar, pressing down with a fork to remove any air. Cover the surface of the rillettes with the reserved butter. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours. Let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving. Sprinkle with chives, if desired. Serve with toasted bread or crackers. The rillettes will keep in the refrigerator for 3 weeks.


For this recipe you will need to use crabmeat extracted from fresh or frozen snow crab claws. Avoid using pre-packaged shredded crabmeat. To get 7 oz (200 g) of crabmeat, you need 1 lb (450 g) of snow crab claws. It takes about 15 minutes to shell crab claws.

Eco-friendly tip: If you use whole crabs for this recipe, be sure to make a nice broth with the shells before you toss them (in the compost!).

Healthy Pick

Recipes with the \"Healthy Pick\" stamp have been evaluated by a registered dietitian member of the Ordre professionnel des diététistes du Québec.