How to Clean & Eat Crayfish


Crayfish--also known as crawfish or crawdads--are small, freshwater crustaceans related to lobsters. They are often boiled whole and served in their shells to enjoy as a social event. They have a mild, sweet taste that goes well with Cajun seasonings, brine, lemon, dill and melted butter. Crayfish boils often contain whole potatoes and corn on the cob.

Things You'll Need

  • Crayfish
  • Metal claw cracker or knife (optional)
  • Remove freshly-cooked crayfish from the boiling water or grill. Allow them to cool until they're safe to touch without getting burnt.

  • Grasp the body of the crayfish and twist off the head.

  • Peel off the top part of the tail's shell (that was closest to the head). Pinch the end of the tail and pull off the bottom part from the meat.

  • Remove the black vein on the back of the tail with a knife, or by hand.

  • Crack open the claws with metal claw crackers on the widest part of the claws. Or, cut the claws open with a knife to access the meat.

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  • Photo Credit crayfish image by imrek from
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