November 28, 2022

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Easy Hot Crab Dip (Very Best)


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My creamy, cheesy, hot crab dip is the perfect starter for your next get-together or game-day celebration. You’ll love the sweet lump crabmeat blended with cream cheese, sour cream, cheddar cheese, and the perfect combination of seasonings.

It’s almost too good for words!

hot crab dip in casserole dish with pita chips on a white plate

Perfectly seasoned (not spicy) and indulgent, one bite of my hot crab dip and you’ll agree this is The Very Best Crab Dip you’ve ever had.

And besides being ah-mazingly delicious, it’s also an Easy Crab Dip Recipe!

Hand holding cracker with dip being held above casserole of crab dip.

The secret is using full-fat cream cheese and extra sharp cheddar cheese. I prefer using fresh jumbo lump crab meat or lump crab meat, but backfin crab meat is a good alternative. You can also use (gasp) imitation crab meat.

Blended together with the perfect combination of seasonings for the best flavor possible. Worchestershire sauce, old bay seasoning, dry mustard, and lemon juice makes this cheesy dip the perfect appetizer for any occasion.

If you love decadent dips, my Cheddar Lobster Dip is another great dip.

Ingredients

Ingredients to make hot crab dip.

Let’s start by gathering the ingredients we need to make Hot Crab Dip. In Chef Speak this is called the “Mise en Place” which translates to “Everything in its Place”.

Not only does setting your ingredients up ahead of time speed up the cooking process, it also helps ensure you have everything you need to make the dish.

Can I add other seasonings to this dip?

You sure can. A little parmesan cheese will increase the cheese flavor and if you like heat add a little of your favorite hot sauce to the mixture. You do want the flavor of the crab and old bay to be the prominent flavors, but it’s easy to adjust this recipe to your flavor preference.

How to make Hot Crab Dip

Preheat the oven to 375°F

collage of 6 steps showing hot to make recipe.
  • In a large mixing bowl using a handheld mixer (or stand mixer) beat the cream cheese on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy (1-2 minutes).
  • Add the mayonnaise and sour cream to the whipped cream cheese.
  • Beat on medium-high speed until combined.
  • Add the cheddar cheese, Old Bay seasoning, mustard powder, lemon juice, and Worcestershire sauce to the cream cheese mixture.
  • Beat on medium-high speed until combined.
  • Add the crab meat to the cream cheese mixture and using a rubber spatula gently fold in the crab meat until combined.
two images showing how to set up dip in casserole dishes
  • Add the crab mixture to one larger or two small casserole dishes.
  • Top with shredded cheddar cheese and chopped Italian parsley (optional) or sprinkle Old Bay Seasoning on top of the cheese.

These casserole dishes work great with this recipe. My recipe makes two dishes of crab dip. The recipe can easily be cut in half if you only need one dish of this delicious dip.

Hot crab dip in white oval casserole dish with pita chips on a white plate

Bake the crab dip for 30-35 minutes until the dip is hot and bubbly around the edges or until the internal temperature of the crab dip reaches a minimum of 165 degrees F.

Crab dip in a white casserole dish with chip in the dip.

Serve my delicious creamy dip warm from the oven with your favorite chips, crackers, celery, or carrot sticks.

Recipe FAQ’s

What is Crab Dip made of?

Hot Crab Dip is made by blending cream cheese, sour cream, mayonnaise, and shredded sharp cheddar cheese (or your favorite cheese) with crab meat and seasonings. It’s a very simple process and is the perfect appetizer for any occasion.

What kind of crab meat should I use to make Crab Dip?

The best crabmeat to use is jumbo lump, but it’s also the most expensive. Lump crabmeat as well as backfin are also good choices and are less expensive alternatives. I like using fresh crabmeat whenever possible, but canned pasteurized crabmeat also works well. If you’re a fan of west coast crab, Dungeness or king crab can also be used.

Why is my crab dip watery?

The first reason could be that you could experience a loose watery dip is that you didn’t drain the crabmeat well. Some crab meat is dry and needs no draining while others (as they get older) will give off a lot of liquid. I have found that some brands of sour cream are also too loose (which also happens as they get older). Make sure to use the freshest possible ingredients.

More Recipes You’ll Love!

hot crab dip in casserole dish with pita chips on a white plate

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Maryland Hot Crab Dip

My creamy, cheesy, hot crab dip is the perfect starter for your next get-together or game-day celebration. You’ll love the sweet lump crabmeat blended with cream cheese, sour cream, cheddar cheese, and the perfect combination of seasonings

Prep Time10 mins

Cook Time35 mins

Total Time45 mins

Course: Appetiser, Appetizer

Cuisine: American

Servings: 8

Calories: 230kcal

Author: Chef Dennis Littley

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces block cream cheese room temperature*
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons worcestershire sauce
  • 1 pound fresh lump crab meat
  • ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese for topping
  • 1 tsp Italian parsley finely chopped for garnish

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Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 375°F

  • In a large mixing bowl using a handheld mixer (or stand mixer), beat the cream cheese on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy (1-2 minutes).

  • Add the mayonnaise and sour cream to the whipped cream cheese.

  • Beat on medium-high speed until combined.

  • Add the cheddar cheese, Old Bay seasoning, mustard powder, lemon juice, and Worcestershire sauce to the cream cheese mixture.

  • Beat on medium-high speed until combined.

  • Add the crab meat to the cream cheese mixture and using a rubber spatula gently fold in the crab meat until combined.

  • Add the crab dip mixture to one larger or two small casserole dishes.

  • Top the crab dip with shredded cheddar cheese and chopped Italian parsley (optional) or sprinkle Old Bay Seasoning on top of the cheese.

  • Bake the crab dip for 30-35 minutes until the dip is hot and bubbly around the edges or until the internal temperature of the crab dip reaches a minimum of 165 degrees F.

  • Serve the crab dip warm with your favorite chips, celery and carrot sticks.

Nutrition

Calories: 230kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 56mg | Sodium: 857mg | Potassium: 245mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 315IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 273mg | Iron: 1mg