Crab: Jonah

Other Common Names:

Cancer Borealis


year round

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The Jonah crab inhabits the deep water and rocky bottoms in the north Atlantic, from New England to Canada. It is closely related to the Dungeness crab of the Pacific coast, and is known for its strong claws, although it is not a very aggressive species. The claws are so well muscled that they are generally prized as food vs. the legs, which are more typically prized in other crab species.

Main Commercial Sources: Jonah crabs are found in the western North Atlantic, from Nova Scotia in Canada to North Carolina, including the Bermudas. The main source of Jonah crabs is the United States.

Capture Methods: Jonah crabs come from marine fisheries, not fish farms. They are primarily caught with pots and traps. Additional types of fishing gear include bottom trawls, hooks-and-lines and nets.

Flavor & Texture: Jonah crab has flaky, white meat, with a sweet taste.

Buying Tips: Jonah crab is commonly sold in leg portions, either single or in clusters with some body meat. Jonah crab is commonly sold live, but Jonah “snap-‘n-eats” (pre-cooked, pre-cracked crab claws) have been recently promoted by seafood companies.