Actual Maryland Crab Dip (The Greatest!)

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

Right here in Maryland, WE LOVE OUR CRAB DIP.

This Sizzling Crab Dip Is:

  • Made with jumbo lump crab, identical to crab pretzels
  • Tacky dip meets crab desserts
  • Irresistibly creamy
  • Outdated Bay-seasoned
  • Baked or gradual cooked, your selection
  • 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 hundreds of thousands of crab dip recipes. They’re all centered round—you guessed it—crab, however the different components can differ. 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 Substances

These are the 9 components you might want to make the perfect 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 needed 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 wish 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 comparable right here, too. Floor mustard is critical—and don’t fear, you don’t style mustard.
  6. Lemon Juice: Contemporary, 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 Outdated Bay Seasoning: This salty spice is a staple in Maryland, the place it’s made, particularly with crab.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 quite a bit—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 huge, 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.

How one can Make Sizzling 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 easy.
  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 wish to utterly break down the lump crab.
  4. Sluggish cook dinner or bake. Sluggish cook 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 combined 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, hold 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 could find canned, frozen, or recent (refrigerated) crab meat. Unrefrigerated canned crab meat doesn’t have the freshest taste (clearly). If you might want 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 totally cooked and offered in plastic tubs by the butcher or seafood counter. That is what I all the time use for crab desserts and crab dip, and extremely encourage you to make use of the identical right here. It’s pricier than canned, however you might have a very totally different (and recent) product. Don’t fear, all the opposite components are fairly cheap, particularly if you buy store-brand or discover them on sale.

Ask your grocer the place to seek out the freshest crab meat within the retailer. I buy recent crab meat offered 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)

  • Writer:

  • Prep Time:
    10 minutes

  • Prepare dinner Time:
    25 minutes

  • Complete Time:
    35 minutes

  • Yield:
    serves 8

  • Class:

  • Technique:

  • Delicacies:


For the perfect 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 publish 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 pace till easy 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 pace till mixed. Utilizing a spoon or rubber spatula, gently fold within the lump crab meat. If you happen to 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 totally 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. Be sure you’re utilizing a block of cream cheese, not cream cheese unfold. I’ve used lower-fat components with no drawback 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 often 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 publish above. I extremely suggest recent (refrigerated) lump crab meat.
  6. Sluggish Cooker: Observe steps 2 and three. As a substitute of transferring to a baking dish, spoon into your gradual cooker (don’t add the 1/4 cup of cheese on prime) and cook dinner on low for 3–4 hours till scorching and creamy. Stir often because it cooks. Over the last half-hour, sprinkle 1/4 cup reserved cheddar cheese on prime.