Can You Freeze Imitation Crab?

Updated on March 6, 2023

If you are too a massive fan of Asian cured seafood, then you might have heard about imitation crabs. When you hear the name imitation crab as a cured seafood, you might think of it as a crab that is salted and preserved. But in reality imitation crabs are nowhere near to this. Whether you like canned crabs or not you will surely love imitation crabs as they will provide you a perfect solution for your sudden late-night seafood cravings. You just have to open the can and infuse it with any form of food you like.

From making pasta, sandwiches, and salads, to soups you can use imitation crabs to make all of these right away. If you have just got to know about this innovative form of seafood and are curious to know more, then you should keep going as here I have gathered all that you need to know before buying them. As many seafood items are not ideal to be placed inside the freezers, you might be questioning whether you can freeze imitation crabs or not. So, without further ado, let’s sink into the details.

Imitation Crab

It is a form of seafood that is not made up of real crabs. Many people who have learned about the imitation crab for the first time stand in disbelief when they are told that the soft, red, and gooey sticks that are an exact depiction of crab legs are not crabs in reality. This is because the imitation crab not only looks like crab legs but also tastes like them too. These fake crab sticks are made up of different types of marine meat. The fish meat is minced in such a way that when it is added with other seasonings and ingredients it gets a jelly-like appearance.

This jelly-like minced fish meat mixture is called surimi. The meat is given a color and structure that makes it identical to that of crab legs. This fake and crab resembling food is perverse and salted, so the users can simply take them out of the can and enjoy it right away. Even though there is no part of crab meat added to these sticks, they still have the distinctive taste of the crabs. This is because of the artificial flavor that is added to it before molding them into the final shape.

Can You Freeze Imitation Crab?

Yes, you can freeze imitation crabs in freezers really easily. People can’t just toss their imitation crabs into the freezer as you need to know the technicalities before storing or using the imitation crabs. Like any other seafood item, these sticks are also very delicate and require much effort in terms of maintenance. If you don’t know the proper method to freeze them, then you might end up eating a foul-tasting and low-quality crab stick. Keep on reading to find out the right method, so you can always have the best-tasting and best-looking imitation crab every time.

What’s The Right Method?

Freezing your imitation crab using the incorrect measures will completely alter your love for these delicate sticks. Seafood is already very sensitive to heat and contamination. But as the fish meat present in the imitation crab is minced and has many other additional chemicals added to it. Hence, the level of sensitivity and the possibility of turning bad is comparatively high. You should neither place the imitation crab outside nor in the fridge. As in both situations, the exposure to heat and germs is more. Here are some points to keep in mind while storing imitation crab.

  1. The setting of the freezer must be at the lowest temperature so the probability of the crab having bacterial growth is less.
  2. You should place the tin inside the freezer without opening its seal.
  3. If you have opened the tin, then transfer the imitation crab to an airtight and freezable container.
  4. Try to eliminate any chance of contact with the meat with air to help you with increasing the life of the imitation crab.
  5. To avoid decolorization put the cans in the freezer right away after you have bought them.
  6. Don’t eat if the texture is not smooth and stiff.
  7. If the imitation crab is defrosted, don’t freeze it again.
  8. Don’t put the can in the freezer for more than 7 months.


I hope that now you know the answer to the most debatable question among seafood lovers: can you freeze imitation crab or not? The most important thing is that you can only freeze the crab conveniently in the freezer when the seal is not broken and the temperature is set at the lowest option in the freezer. If you have taken the imitation crab out of the packaging then put the meat in an airtight bag or container before freezing as the quality and taste can degrade. Now you can enjoy your crab sticks without any worry.

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