How to Shuck an Oyster

Steps to Shuck an Oyster

Shucking oysters is a difficult skill to master. The process of shucking can be tricky. It requires a lot of time and patience but it can be attained! Opening the though shell can be quite challenging without the proper tools. Set yourself up for success, and let us help you learn the appropriate shucking technique!

Choose the Right Oyster

Before you shuck an oyster, you want to make sure that your oyster is fresh and alive. If your oyster is alive, the shell should be tightly closed. If it’s open, your oyster is probably dead, and inedible. To be sure it’s not alive, you can smell the shell! A fresh oyster should smell semi-sweet and slightly salty. Whereas, an older oyster will have an unpleasant fishy smell.

Grab Your Supplies

After you collect some fresh oysters, there are a few supplies needed to shuck your oyster successfully. First, you’ll need a brush to clean the outside of the shell. Then, you’ll need your knife to assist you with shucking. Lastly, you’ll need ice to place your oysters once they’re shucked. Once you have these supplies, you’re ready to go!

It’s Time to Shuck!

Before you start to shuck, you might want to wear a pair of gloves or grab a towel so that you have a firmer grip on the oyster. Once you’re ready, the curved side of the oyster should face down in the palm of your hand with the hinge (the point of the shell) facing you. Then, take your knife and insert it into the hinge using a twisting motion. Once you feel a pop, you can continue these same motions along the side of the shell. The sides of the oyster will be more challenging to open, so wear protective gloves in case the knife slips!

Inspect the Oyster

When you open the shell, inspect the oyster for any pieces of broken shell or sand that was trapped inside. After inspecting, you can keep your oysters on ice, laying in their juices!

If you’d rather save yourself the hassle, and have someone else to perfectly shuck your oysters, let Dockside Seafood & Fishing Center do it for you! Come to our restaurant and enjoy our Lynnhaven or Local Eastern Shore Oysters! Check out our raw bar menu to see all our delicious seafood options!