Can You Freeze Live Crawfish

Can You Freeze Live Crawfish – Preserving the Freshness

Crawfish is not a fish. It’s a shellfish. The shellfish is used as a food that is mostly found in fresh and salty water.

The crawfish is mostly related to lobster, but the lobster has three layers of colors, such as yellow, blue, and red from the top and downside. The crawfish have a blue-brown and light green color in early spring.

It’s essential to know about can you freeze live crawfish, Because maybe you want to save cooked, live, fresh crawfish for later. If you want to preserve the crawfish’s taste and texture, it is essential to store them in the right place to keep them fresh for a long time.

Crawfish are crustaceans, which include crabs, lobsters, and other animals. The crustaceans are edible and considered seafood.


The crawfish is native to North America.

Scientific Name:

The scientific name of crawfish is Cambarus sp, and the common name is Crayfish, crawdads, yabbies, mountain lobsters, and mudbugs.

Can You Freeze Crawfish

Frozen Crawfish

When it comes to crawfish, so many people are confused: Can we freeze cooked, live, fresh crawfish? So, in short, it’s clear either you have cooked live, fresh crawfish, you can freeze them. Let’s discuss the proper way of freezing for the whole, live, and tail meat crawfish.

Can You Freeze Live Crawfish

When it comes to the live crawfish, it’s difficult for people to freeze them, and they don’t know the proper method of freezing live crawfish.

It’s essential to freeze the live crawfish before die. So make sure you know how long a crawfish can live without water? The crawfish have a special type of breathing organ that is called gills. Due to gills, crawfish enable them to breathe just like in as they take a breath in the water.

But crawfish can survive for several days without water once their gills become dry so that the fish will die immediately. Before dying, it’s recommended to freeze them.

Once crawfish die so, bacteria will start growing on it that may spoil the meat. That’s why freeze them before bacteria grow on it. Here is how you can freeze live crawfish.


Make sure to freeze live crawfish before dying. They can survive for a few days without water.

How To Freeze Live Crawfish

frozen live crawfish

  • First of all, place the live crawfish in the large container and add clean water to it, Now leave the container for one hour to let them sit.
  • Make sure to check out the crawfish properly; don’t place the dead crawfish in the container. If you have any dead fish, throw them away from the container.
  • Separate the body from the tail and rinse the tail under running water. It could be tap water, pipes, or cabin.
  • Before cleaning, add the tail to the colander, which is used for rinse vegetables. Rinse the tail properly for one minute. 
  • Dip the crawfish tail into the juicy lemon water.
  • If you have many freezer-safe bags, then it would be better to place a tail there. While placing crawfish in the safe freeze bag, make sure to leave one-inch space at the top so you can quickly zip the bag without any difficulty.
  • I will recommend sealing the bag tightly. If you don’t have a sealed bag, sealed it yourself.
  • Squeeze out the air and label the bag, The labeling will avoid confusion, and you will easily remember how this crawfish is old.
  • Place the bag into the freezer.


You can freeze the live crawfish. If you don’t want to freeze live crawfish, kill them before freezing but make sure that doesn’t leave dead crawfish at room temperature.

How To Freeze Cooked Crawfish

Freezing cooked crawfish is easy, but make sure that doesn’t leave cooked crawfish at room temperature for long because bacteria may grow on it, which may become spoiled within an hour. To freeze cooked crawfish, follow these instructions.

  • If you want to freeze cooked crawfish without being eating by someone to freeze them directly, don’t freeze the leftover directly. Once you know that all your family has eaten the meal but some crawfish leftover, put the leftover crawfish on a separate plate, remove the crawfish with a long straight tail and throw them away.
  • Don’t leave the leftover crawfish at room temperature for long.
  • Place all the crawfish in the colander and let it set down for 15-20 minutes. It would be better if you keep crawfish dry.
  • If you want to freeze the whole crawfish, then put them in the freezer-safe bag. You can also place the tail meat in a separate bag.
  • Squeeze out the air so that crawfish will be fresh longer, Label the bag and place it in the freezer.


Don’t freeze the whole crawfish at once. Separate the tail meat and place them in the separate freezer-safe bag.

How to Freeze Crawfish Tails


Most people love to eat the tail of the crawfish instead of other meat, But sometimes it’s important to freeze the crawfish tail meat for later. 

Once you cooked the crawfish, so the tail meat becomes and easy to freeze. 

Before freezing the tail meat, make sure to remove the skin and remove the yellow fats because they become rancid rapidly, which may spoil the whole meat.

  • Put the crawfish tail meat in the airtight freezer bag and place them in the freezer.


You can freeze crawfish but ensure to remove the skin before freezing.

How To Freeze Whole Crawfish

Do you know whole and cooked crawfish spoiled quickly? If you want to preserve the whole crawfish, ensure that you don’t leave them at room temperature.

The best way to keep your whole crawfish fresh for longer is to store them in the fridge.

If you want to consume the whole crawfish within 1-2 days, then it’s recommended to store them in the fridge.

Otherwise, If you don’t have any plane to use the crawfish within the next few days, freeze them.

If I compared the whole and tail meat crawfish, then which one spoiled quickly? The answer will be the whole crawfish.


To enjoy the delicious taste of the whole crawfish, consume them as soon as possible.

How Long Does Crawfish Last

Live Crawfish Last At Room Temperature

The crawfish will last at room temperature for 1-2 hours. You can extend the shelf life of crawfish at room temperature. Just follow these steps.

  1. Store the crawfish in the cool container, which will keep the crawfish cold inside the container at room temperature.
  2. Provide food to live crawfish every day.
  3. The crawfish eat vegetables, shrimp pellets, and regular fresh food.

If you have followed the above steps, live crawfish will last 1-2 weeks at room temperature.

Once you know that the live crawfish is dead, So it’s not recommended to freeze them. It would be better if you cooked and eat them as soon as possible.

Cooked Crawfish Last At Room Temperature

The cooked crawfish will last 6-7 hours at room temperature. It would be better if you consume them before going bad.

The bacteria start overgrow it room temperature that spoiled your food quickly.

Cooked Crawfish Last In The Fridge

The cooked crawfish will last 5-7 days in the fridge. After that, it may lose their taste and texture.

Before freezing the cooked crawfish, place them in the airtight container and label them so you may know the freezing date.

How Long Does Crawfish Tail Meat Last After Freezing

Before freezing the crawfish meat, follow the above freezing crawfish tail meat method. The crawfish tail meat will last three months if you have stored them correctly according to the above techniques.

How Long Does Live Crawfish Last After Freezing

If you have frozen live crawfish properly according to the above techniques, live crawfish will last two weeks.

How Long Does Cooked Crawfish Last After Freezing

The cooked crawfish last for three months once you freeze it properly.


If you have crawfish in any condition, consume them before going bad according to the above shelf life.

How Can You Tell If Crawfish Is Bad

bad Crawfish

There are a few signs that you can recognize the bad crawfish.


If you have cooked leftover crawfish, smell them before eating. If you feel any bad smell, it means it’s not suitable for eating throw them away.

Look At The Tail:

Once you put the crawfish into the boiling water, look at the tail of the crawfish. If you saw that it’s straight, then it means it was dead. 

Taste The Crawfish:

Many people don’t try this step because they hesitate if the crawfish is spoiled so that I may get sick. Confidently taste the crawfish. If it tastes bad, it means it’s spoiled. You should stop eating more, but if you are confused about what will happen if I eat bad crawfish, continue reading.


Check for above symptoms to recognize the bad crawfish.

What Happens If You Eat Bad Crawfish

If you have eaten bad crawfish mistakenly so you won’t be worried too much, Maybe you get sick after eating the bad crawfish, but it’s not going to react on your whole. You will be healthy within a few days without going to the doctor.


Don’t eat spoiled crawfish. It may get you sick.

How To Cook Crawfish

Easy guides to cooked crawfish.

Related Questions

How do you store crawfish after you catch them?

Once you catch the crawfish, store them in an ice chest that holds ice and keep foods fresh. It’s not recommended to use dry ice because dry ice may kill them. Many people store the catch crawfish in the refrigerator, but I will prefer to store the crawfish in the ice chest.

How much crawfish do you need for one person?

There is no exit answer to this query because many people love to eat too much crawfish, but the average crawfish for one person is 3- 5 pounds. If you think you or your guest can eat more, then 5-7 pounds is enough for one person.

What’s the difference between crawdads and crawfish?

Crawfish and crawdads are the same animals, but there are different names for these shellfish in different regions. In the northern areas, people called it crayfish. The Arkansas, Kansas, and different other region area peoples called it a crawdad. So don’t be confused; it’s the same animal but has different common names.

Can you eat cooked crawfish cold?

Yes, you can eat cooked crawfish cold. It may taste better. You can reheat them, but make sure to reheat them properly, which will preserve texture and taste.

Can you microwave crawfish?

Yes, you can microwave crawfish, and it’s a good technique rather than stove because, in the microwave, you need to cover the crawfish adequately for 4-5 minutes.

If you go for a stove, you will need a large container and add water to the pot. You will wait for the boil, which may take more time.

Final Thoughts

That was all about can you freeze live, cooked, the whole crawfish. You can freeze crawfish. To freeze crawfish properly, read the above freezing methods. Before freezing crawfish, make sure they are not spoiled. I have mentioned how you can easily recognize the spoiled crawfish.

The crawfish don’t last long at room temperature. To increase its shelf life, freeze them.

Don’t ever eat bad crawfish. It may have a harmful effect on your health.

How do you catch crawfish? Let us know in the comments section below. It will help those readers who want to catch crawfish but don’t know the proper techniques.

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