Food & Drink

Best Restaurants That Serve Crab In Tampa Bay

January 30, 2014 7:53 PM

(Photo Credit Barbara Ann)

(Photo Credit Barbara Ann)

If your looking for the best in crab dining that Tampa Bay has to offer, you have two types of establishments to consider. A seafood restaurant, or a Florida lifestyle crab shack.  Crab shacks are whole-in-the-wall throwbacks to the 1950’s seafood roadhouse diners that used to dot the Florida coast line. In addition to looking like a hole-in-the-wall, they have wooden picnic tables and serve all their drinks in plastic cups. Why plastic? Because glass isn’t allowed on the beach and in the 50’s it was all about the to-go-cup, which by the way are now illegal. These days the plastic cups and picnic tables are just a cherished part of the old Florida lifestyle.

Here’s our list of the best Tampa Bay restaurants and shacks that serve crab.

Crabby Bill’s

Crabby Bill’s is the perfect example of what the Florida lifestyle is all about with picnic tables and clear plastic cups for your beer. Despite the rustic setting they serve incredible tasting soft shell Blue Crab and Opilio Snow Crab steamed and served with fresh drawn butter. The St. Pete Beach location serves also serves Alaskan Jumbo King Crab and Snow Crab.  They have five Pinellas County locations to choose from including St. Pete Beach, Clearwater Beach and Indian Rocks Beach.


3401 Bayshore Blvd.
Tampa, Florida 33629
813-839-7558 |

This restaurant is a more upscale version of the Florida lifestyle because it’s indoors and has burnt wood tables instead of picnic tables. The Colonnade’s stunning water views of downtown Tampa skyline add a touch of class to dining at this earthy seafood joint. They serve hand breaded and lightly fried soft shelled crab, steamed snow crabs and some of Tampa Bay’s best crab cakes.

Related: Best Places in Tampa Bay for a Sunset Dinner

Crab Shack Restaurant

11400 Gandy Blvd
St. Petersburg, Florida 33702
727-576-7813 |

The Crab Shack is another fine example of the quaint 1950’s Florida lifestyle but without the open air dining. They specialize in blue crabs which you can order with a spicy seasoning or just with garlic butter. They also serve Snow and Dungeness Crab, Stone Crab Claws, Alaskan King and Snow Crabs. They have a “All You Can Eat Crab Legs Special” on Thursday nights during crab season (June-Jan). This whole in the wall shack is very popular and usually is packed with locals and tourists… so beware there may be a wait list.

Fresh Harvest

Seminole Hard Rock Casino
5223 North Orient Rd
Tampa, FL 33610
866-502-7529 |

The Hard Rock’s Fresh Harvest restaurant inside the Seminole Hard Rock Casino has a seafood buffet that includes steamed crab leg and it’s quite a spread! For you big eaters Fridays in February they have “All You Can Eat Crab Legs” that ranges in price from $30 – $40. Beware this is a very popular night and the buffet line can get long. The casino’s players club offers free meals at Fresh Harvest once you have enough points which makes the lines even longer. Six days a week Fresh Harvest offers crab legs as a add on item for $10 but it is NOT an “All You Can Eat”.

Joe’s Crab Shack

2730 Gulf to Bay Blvd.
Clearwater, FL 33755
727-799-8530 |

Joe’s doesn’t just have crabs…they have buckets full of crabs that they bring to your table. The have seven different types of crab buckets and 3 different sauces to choose from. Your crab bucket choices are: King, Queen, Snow, Pacific Dungeness, Arctic and everyone’s favorite crustacean lobster. All crab buckets are served with red potatoes, fresh ear of corn and a buttermilk biscuit.

City Fish Grill

4022 Tampa Road
Oldsmar, FL 34677
813-814-5800 |

City Fish Grill

4022 Tampa Road
Oldsmar, FL 34677
813-814-5800 – See more at:

City Fish Grill

4022 Tampa Road
Oldsmar, FL 34677
813-814-5800 – See more at:

This Oldsmar Grill’s decor has a trendy and tropical Tommy Bahama feel to it. If the old school Florida life style doesn’t appeal to you City Fish Grill is the perfect option. They serve steamed crab leg clusters by half or full pound. The food can be pricey but it’s worth it if you love crab legs.

Derby Lanes

10490 Gandy Blvd.
St. Petersburg, FL 33702
727-812-3339 |

You may think we’re crazy for adding a Grey Hound Racing Park to our list of best places to get crab but don’t laugh until you’ve experienced their buffet with all you can eat snow crab legs. There is only one word to describe this spread – UNBELIEVABLE!  The Friday and Saturday evening buffet not only includes crab legs but also prime rib, shrimp, oysters, pastas, soup, salad, and other delectable entrees. Best part…it’s all you can eat! It is pricey at $25.95 per-person but well worth the price just for the beautiful and large crab legs. The buffet runs from 6:30-9:30 p.m. and is very popular during tourist season so reservations are suggested. In slow summer months they offer two for one buffet dining, check with Derby Lanes for dates of this promotion.


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