Actual Maryland Crab Dip (The Greatest!)

Stroll into just about any Maryland restaurant and also you’re sure to search out scorching crab dip on the menu. It’s our staple. Generally served on mushy pretzels and generally baked in a skillet, however at all times vital order. We eat it on hen (normally referred to as “Hen Chesapeake”) or in quesadillas, however one of the best ways to serve scorching tacky crab dip is with contemporary bread, pita wedges, celery, and/or sturdy crackers.

Right here in Maryland, WE LOVE OUR CRAB DIP.

This Scorching Crab Dip Is:

  • Made with jumbo lump crab, similar to crab pretzels
  • Tacky dip meets crab truffles
  • Irresistibly creamy
  • Outdated Bay-seasoned
  • Baked or gradual cooked, your alternative
  • Further fast, no pre-cooking
  • Nothing lower than an enormous hit, assured!

This does Maryland justice!

hand holding baguette slice dipped in Maryland crab dip.

Search the web and also you’ll discover thousands and thousands of crab dip recipes. They’re all centered round—you guessed it—crab, however the different components can range. I’ve tasted dozens of crab dips (I’m surrounded by it!) and I do know what works, and what doesn’t.

The Greatest Crab Dip Components

These are the 9 components it’s worthwhile to make the very best Maryland crab dip on the planet. And that’s not an exaggeration. I do know lifelong Maryland locals who swear by this one!!!!

  1. Cream Cheese: Cream cheese is the bottom of this dip. No substitutions right here.
  2. Mayonnaise: I don’t like mayonnaise and I nonetheless love this crab dip. You don’t want a lot—simply sufficient to skinny out the cream cheese and add that vital creamy dip texture.
  3. Bitter Cream: Some crab dip recipes name for simply mayo and cream cheese, however I like to interrupt down these heavier components with tangy bitter cream.
  4. Cheddar Cheese: You should utilize sharp cheddar or white cheddar if desired, however don’t use one other cheese that has a stronger taste since you don’t need to overpower the crab.
  5. Floor Mustard: A touch of mustard is a key ingredient in any Maryland crab cake recipe and we’re utilizing one thing related right here, too. Floor mustard is critical—and don’t fear, you don’t style mustard.
  6. Lemon Juice: Recent, balancing taste!
  7. Outdated Bay Seasoning: This salty spice is a staple in Maryland, the place it’s made, particularly with crab.
  8. Worcestershire Sauce: A lot taste. You don’t want rather a lot—simply 2 teaspoons.
  9. Lump Crab Meat: For the best possible crab dip, I like to recommend utilizing lump crab meat or a mixture of lump crab meat and backfin meat. Lump crab meat ensures these massive, mouthwatering bites of crab.

A touch of scorching sauce is scrumptious, too!

jumbo lump crab meat in glass bowl on gray backdrop with green linen in top left corner.

Easy methods to Make Scorching Crab Dip

You’re solely about 30–35 minutes away from this bliss.

  1. Beat the cream cheese first. You need it tremendous creamy and clean.
  2. Beat in the remainder of the components, besides the crab.
  3. Gently fold within the crab meat. Keep away from utilizing a mixer for this step since you don’t need to fully break down the lump crab.
  4. Sluggish prepare dinner or bake. Sluggish prepare dinner on low for 3–4 hours till scorching and creamy; or bake in a casserole dish, pie dish, or oven-safe skillet for 25 minutes, or till browned and bubbly across the edges.

The method is fast, easy, and foolproof so long as you’re utilizing the best components. A handheld or stand mixer is unquestionably useful and makes mixing simpler, however I’ve blended it collectively by hand earlier than too.

overhead photo of crab dip in cast iron skillet shown without cheese and with cheese sprinkled on top.
crab dip in cast iron skillet with toasted baguette slices around the edges.

Serving Crab Dip

For serving, preserve issues easy. You need the flavors from the dip to shine, so don’t serve with crackers or breads with overpowering flavors. Baguette slices, toasted artisan bread (pictured!), or sturdy crackers/pita chips are key so you may scoop up all that lump crab.

Greatest Crab Meat for Crab Dip

On the market, you’ll find canned, frozen, or contemporary (refrigerated) crab meat. Unrefrigerated canned crab meat doesn’t have the freshest taste (clearly). If it’s worthwhile to use canned, search for canned crab meat within the refrigerated part of your market. The more energizing the crab meat, the higher the crab dip will style.

Crab meat labeled “hand-picked” or “fresh-picked” is absolutely cooked and bought in plastic tubs by the butcher or seafood counter. That is what I at all times use for crab truffles and crab dip, and extremely encourage you to make use of the identical right here. It’s pricier than canned, however you’ve gotten a totally completely different (and contemporary) product. Don’t fear, all the opposite components are fairly cheap, particularly if you are going to buy store-brand or discover them on sale.

Ask your grocer the place to search out the freshest crab meat within the retailer. I buy contemporary crab meat bought in a 1-pound tub from the seafood counter.

hot crab dip

This DOES NOT disappoint!

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hand holding baguette slice dipped in Maryland crab dip.

Crab Dip (Greatest Maryland Fashion)

  • Creator:

  • Prep Time:
    10 minutes

  • Prepare dinner Time:
    25 minutes

  • Complete Time:
    35 minutes

  • Yield:
    serves 8

  • Class:

  • Methodology:

  • Delicacies:


For the very best texture, use lump crab meat and every ingredient listed. No substitutions! Serve with crusty baguette, sturdy crackers, celery sticks, or pita wedges. For extra success suggestions and to be taught which crab meat to make use of, see weblog put up above.


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F (191°C).
  2. In a big mixing bowl utilizing a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on medium-high velocity till clean and creamy, about 1 minute.
  3. Add the mayonnaise, bitter cream, 1 cup cheddar cheese, floor mustard, lemon juice, Outdated Bay seasoning, Worcestershire sauce, and scorching sauce (if utilizing). Beat on medium-high velocity till mixed. Utilizing a spoon or rubber spatula, gently fold within the lump crab meat. When you used scorching sauce, style, then add extra scorching sauce if desired.
  4. Switch to a 9-inch (or barely bigger) baking pan, pie dish, or oven-safe skillet. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup of cheddar cheese.
  5. Bake for 25 minutes or till scorching and bubbly across the edges.
  6. Serve heat.
  7. Cowl and retailer leftovers within the fridge for as much as 5 days. Reheat within the microwave or in a 350°F (177°C) oven till warmed all through.


  1. Make Forward & Freezing Directions: You may absolutely assemble this crab dip, cowl tightly, and refrigerate for as much as 2 days earlier than baking/gradual cooking and serving. You can even freeze the unbaked or baked (and cooled) crab dip for as much as 3 months. Thaw in a single day within the fridge, then bake as directed; or, if already baked, thaw and warmth in a 350°F (177°C) oven for 25 minutes or till warmed all through.
  2. Particular Instruments (affiliate hyperlinks): Glass Mixing Bowl | Electrical Mixer (Handheld or Stand) | Wooden Spoon or Rubber Spatula | Oven-Safe Skillet
  3. Ensure you’re utilizing a block of cream cheese, not cream cheese unfold. I’ve used lower-fat components with no downside like reduced-fat (not fat-free) cream cheese, bitter cream, and mayo, however the dip clearly tastes richer with the full-fat variations.
  4. Outdated Bay: Use 2 teaspoons for a spicier kick. (I normally do!)
  5. Which Crab Meat to Use: For any questions concerning which crab meat to make use of, see Greatest Crab Meat for Crab Dip within the weblog put up above. I extremely suggest contemporary (refrigerated) lump crab meat.
  6. Sluggish Cooker: Comply with steps 2 and three. As an alternative of transferring to a baking dish, spoon into your gradual cooker (don’t add the 1/4 cup of cheese on high) and prepare dinner on low for 3–4 hours till scorching and creamy. Stir sometimes because it cooks. Over the last half-hour, sprinkle 1/4 cup reserved cheddar cheese on high.