If you love crab and spring vegetables, you will definitely love this Crab Linguine recipe. It’s fast, easy and so delicious, making it perfect for any dinner for two. It’s also easily doubled or scaled up even further to make a main dish that’s perfect for family dinners or entertaining.
This Crab Linguine recipe is incredibly easy and is literally the work of moments to put together. It is a great one to make with your kids as well! Children are much keener to try new things if they have helped to make them – and I can honestly say that every child I have served this recipe to has really enjoyed it.
(Of course you need to be sure to take precautions to keep kids safe in the kitchen, particularly where boiling water is involved or knives are used, as they are in this recipe.)
Quick, Easy and Versatile Crab Linguine
I love to make crab linguine with asparagus, but when it’s out of season or too expensive, I simply add some frozen peas to the pasta a few minutes before the end of the cooking time instead. In recent years, I have also started to use both asparagus and peas when I can to up the veggie content of this recipe.
Red pepper adds colour and crunch, but if you don’t have any to hand, it really will not matter.
Any kind of pasta can be used to make this recipe, although strictly speaking, if you want it to be Crab Linguine, you have to use linguine! I also like to make the recipe with spaghetti and in recent years I’ve started to use whole wheat spaghetti to bump up the fibre and nutrition, as you can see in these updated photographs. Use gluten free pasta to make the recipe gluten free.
Use White or Brown Crab Meat – Or Both!
I use crab meat that has already been cooked and separated. Preparing crab can be quite a long, drawn out process, and frankly I can’t face the idea of cooking a live crab. I can buy fresh crab meat quite easily in my local grocery store, but you can also use canned or frozen pre-cooked crab for this recipe if fresh is not available locally. If you use frozen crab be sure to defrost it first by thawing it overnight in the refrigerator.
Many people use both white and brown crab meat for Crab Linguine. I am not a fan of brown crab meat so I use only the white. As I can buy it separately so there is absolutely no waste. You can of course use both brown and white crab meat if you prefer.
Adjust the Seasoning to Suit Your Family
Chopped red chilis give this recipe a wonderful kick, but if you don’t like things spicy, please feel free to leave them out. I love the pop of colour the chopped chili gives the dish, but if you add finely chopped red pepper you can get the colour without the spice.
A Great Date Night Recipe
Crab Linguine is a perfect date night recipe as it makes enough to serve two generously. In addition, its quick preparation and easy clean up make it perfect for dinner à deux. While one person is preparing, the other can set the table, light some candles and pour two glasses of chilled white wine. Then all you have to do is sit down together, relax and enjoy the meal. I suggest some fresh strawberries and cream for dessert. I will leave the rest of the evening up to you!
Crab Linguine is Perfect for Family Dinners
If you double the recipe, or scale it up to suit the size of your family, Crab Linguine is a wonderful ‘entry level’ seafood dish for kids. I have a friend whose daughter loves to help her make this, not least of all because it is one of her favourite pasta recipes. If you get kids involved in the kitchen (taking the necessary safety precautions of course), they are more likely to enjoy trying new things.
Is This Recipe Gluten Free?
If you use gluten free linguine, the recipe is naturally gluten free.
Crab Linguine – Printable Recipe
- 1 large bunch of asparagus or about ⅓ cup of frozen peas Half a cup is a good handful. You can also use both asparagus and peas if you like.
- a generous handful of linguine or spaghetti Use gluten free pasta to make the recipe gluten free
- 3 tablespoons good mild olive oil, divided
- 1 red pepper, washed, cored and finely diced, optional If you don't have red pepper you can leave it out.
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed You can also use 1 teaspoon Very Lazy Garlic (pre-prepared garlic in a jar or tube).
- 1 lemon, zest and juice
- 1 teaspoon red chilis, finely chopped (optional) Adjust the chili to taste or leave it out if you prefer.
- 4 ounces cooked white crab meat, flaked
- 4 scallions, finely sliced Scallions are also known as spring onions
- freshly ground pepper
- Wash and drain the asparagus, snapping off the woody ends, if using.
- Cut each spear of asparagus in two or three pieces, depending on how long they are.
- Cook the linguine in boiling salted water according to package directions.
- Add the asparagus or frozen peas 3 minutes before the end of the cooking time.
- Meanwhile heat the olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat.
- Sauté the diced red pepper for two or three minutes until it begins to soften.
- Add the garlic and continue to sauté for a minute, stirring almost constantly.
- Pour the lemon juice over and toss in the lemon rind.
- Stir and cook for a moment or two.
- Add the crab meat, scallions and remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil, along with a twist or two of freshly ground pepper.
- Remove a couple of ladles of pasta water from the pasta pan and set aside.
- Drain the pasta and asparagus and return it to the saucepan.
- Stir in half of the crab 'sauce' (it's easiest to use two forks and kind of 'toss' it in), adding a bit of the pasta water to help make the 'sauce' mix in more easily.
- Divide the mixture between two or three warmed bowls or plates, topping each serving with a portion of the remaining crab sauce.