Recipes and Cooking Tips
Understanding Crab Meat

Phillips Crab Meat comes in six grades:
Colossal, Jumbo, Super Lump, Backfin, Special and Claw.

These are defined by the various sections of a crab from which they are picked and the size of the lumps. All of the grades are white meat (except for claw) and have the same taste profile. Claw meat (which is a brown meat) has a slightly stronger flavor profile.

Do you know what to look for in good quality crab meat?Learn what good quality tastes like, feels like and smells like.

Our resident crabologist will explain the different grades of crab meat and help guide you to the best choice for your recipe.

Colossal and Jumbo Lump

Colossal and Jumbo Lump are prized for their impressive size, bright white color and exquisite taste. Colossal and jumbo lump consist of the two large muscles connected to the swimming fins of the crab; colossal simply comes from larger crabs than jumbo lump. Colossal and jumbo lump should never be broken up for a recipe; they are best used in upscale cocktail presentations or in sautés, where the size of the lumps can really shine.

Super Lump

Perfect for making dishes where crab is the star. Super lump crab meat’s sweet flavor and large pieces give any crab dish a dash of panache. Super lump is a combination of broken jumbo lumps and whole body meat extracted from the shell. The grade allows for even distribution of crab meat throughout the recipe, with large enough pieces of meat to shine through the rest of the ingredients. Try super lump crab meat in crab cakes, as a pasta topping, scampi or a ceviche.


Backfin is a blend of broken pieces of jumbo lump and special grade crab meat. It is perfect for use in crab cakes, dips, salads, and casseroles. Backfin makes a beautiful presentation when stuffing fish, chicken, vegetables, or seafood.


Often considered the most versatile grade for the widest range of recipes, special crab meat consists of the smaller pieces of white meat from the body of the crab. Perfect for crab cakes, salads, quesadillas, wraps, soups, and crab balls.

Claw Meat

Picked from the swimming fins of the crab, claw meat is a brown meat with a stronger flavor profile. Its stronger flavor profile makes claw meat ideal for dishes with heavy sauces or in dips and soups, as the flavor of the crab still comes through.