How Many Crabs are in a Bushel? Discover the Count

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If you’re a seafood lover, you’ll often find crabs sold by the bushel. The bushel, crab sizes, and variables that affect bushel crab counts will be explained in this article. Let’s explore how many crabs are in a bushel and know how to measure crabs before buying them for personal consumption or reselling.

how many crabs are in a bushel

What is a Bushel?

A bushel is a unit of measurement, roughly equal to 8 gallons or 35 litres, often used to indicate the quantity of crabs caught or allowed per person. Did you know that a bushel can house anywhere from 50 to 110 crabs, depending on their size? When it comes to recreational crabbing, the keep limit is commonly measured in bushels, typically allowing 1 to 2 bushels per person.

For hard-shell crabs measuring 5 to 6 ¼ inches, Maryland’s Department of Natural Resources estimates that a bushel typically contains about 84 crabs, while smaller crabs measuring 4 to 5 inches could fit 96 to 108 crabs in a bushel.

How many Crabs are in a Bushel?

The number of crabs you can keep during recreational crabbing is regulated by most U.S. fish and wildlife agencies. There are bushel capacity restrictions. The standard unit of sale for hard crabs is the dozen, or bushel. Here’s an approximate breakdown of how many crabs you may expect to find in a bushel based on the average size of those crabs.

Small4-5 inches (10-13 cm)8 – 9 dozen96 – 108 crabs
Medium5-5.5 inches (13-14 cm)7 – 8 dozen84 – 96 crabs
Large5.5-6 inches (14-15 cm)6 – 7 dozen72 – 84 crabs
Jumbo6-6.5 inches (15-16.5 cm)5 – 6 dozen60 – 72 crabs
Colossal6+ inches (16.5+ cm)<5 dozen48 – 60 crabs


It’s quite evident from the above table that the number of crabs that can fit inside a bushel varies with the size of the crabs. Crabs of increasing size may be stored in progressively fewer bushels, and vice versa. The lid of the bushel basket should be able to snap into place without altering the shape of the basket.

How many Crabs are in a half-bushel?

The number of crabs in half a bushel can vary depending on the size of the crabs and how tightly they are packed. On average, half a bushel can hold around two to four dozen blue crabs. However, this number can vary based on factors such as crab size and packing method. When purchasing crabs by the half bushel, it’s a good idea to ask the seller about the estimated number of crabs included to ensure you’re getting the quantity you need.

Crab size, bushel weight, and packing method determine how many crabs can fit in a particular volume or how many blue crabs are in a bushel. A bushel can hold four to eight dozen blue crabs, depending on the circumstances. Knowing these criteria may help when buying or selling crabs by the bushel.

  • The size of the crabs, the weight of the bushel, and the packing process all affect how many crabs can be crammed into a given volume. Let’s examine these aspects in further depth to determine how many crabs fit inside a bushel.
  • The quantity of crabs in a bushel might vary depending on the size of the crabs being harvested. For instance, blue crabs are among the most widely consumed crab species in the USA. Depending on the size of the crabs, a bushel can hold anywhere from four to eight dozens of them.
  • The weight of the bushel is another variable in determining the total number of crabs it can hold. Depending on the size of the container and the amount of ice used to compress the crabs, the weight of a bushel of crabs might range from about 60 to 80 pounds. A bushel’s weight is proportional to the number of crabs inside of it.

Finally, the quantity of crabs in a bushel might vary depending on the packaging technique utilized. Some crabbers stuff their bushels full of crabs, while others leave plenty of room for the crabs to move about. The quantity and quality of crabs in a bushel may be affected by this.

How many Maryland Crabs are in a Bushel?

Depending on their size, a bushel of Maryland crabs typically consists of between six and seven dozen crustaceans. Depending on how the crabs are packaged and their dimensions, the precise quantity may differ. Due to their sweet and savoury taste description, Maryland crabs are a preference among seafood fans. It is vital, when buying a bushel of Maryland crabs, take into account the crabs’ size and weight to make sure you get the amount you need.

A bushel of crabs can feed how many people?

How many bushels you can buy will depend on the size of your team. You’ll want to estimate how much crab flesh your guests will consume, as a blue crab will normally provide around 1 ounce of meat per crab.

Each individual may expect to receive around 250 grams, or about half a pound, of crab flesh. That works out to about 6-12 crabs per diner. A bushel of crabs typically contains 62–74 crabs, enough to serve 7–10 people.

How long do you recommend I leave a bushel of crabs in the oven?

So, you’ve got a whole bushel of crabs, and you want to know how long it will take to prepare them. You can steam or boil a bushel of crab in around 25 to 30 minutes if you use a big pot (60 quarts).The cooking time will increase if you use a smaller saucepan and cook only a portion of the bushel at a time. It’s Easier to Buy Crabs by the Bushel

Buying a bushel of crabs is more convenient than counting out 70 individual crabs. To get started, simply fill your basket to your desired level, whether that’s halfway or completely. The number of crabs needed to serve the desired number of persons may then be determined.

Cooking a Bushel of Crabs

You may be wondering what to do with your bushel of crabs once you get them home. Follow these tips to make the most of your crab bushel:

  • Crabs should be sorted by size before being cleaned or prepared for food. This will make it simpler to time their cooking and guarantee uniform cooking. In addition, you should empty the bushel of any crabs that are injured or dead.
  • To clean the crabs, just run them under cold water to wash away any mud or debris. Scrub the shells with a soft bristles brush to get rid of any barnacles or algae. The flavor of the crab flesh can be enhanced by removing the gills, which are the feathery structures on the sides of the crab.
  • If you’re not going to prepare the crabs straight away, put them in the fridge or another cool, dry area. You may store them in a refrigerator at a certain temperature or in a cooler with ice.


Knowing the size and weight of the crabs and the packing process can help you estimate the number of crabs in a bushel, which is still a bit of a mystery. Furthermore, getting the most out of a bushel of crabs requires proper preparation for either consumption or resale. Last but not least, if you’re in the market to purchase or sell a bushel of crabs, it’s best to check about the crabs thoroughly, haggle over prices, and network with others in the business.

Knowing how many crabs are in a bushel of crabs is useful information, whether you’re just interested in seafood or plan on getting into the business yourself. By using the tips given, you can buy or sell crabs by the bushel with confidence and get the most out of these tasty crustaceans.

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