Maryland Cream of Crab Soup

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Maryland Cream of Crab Soup —sweet blue crab meat fresh from the Chesapeake made into a creamy classic Maryland soup.

bread bowls filled with cream of crab soup

Cream of Crab Soup is more like chowder than a soup. It’s thick and creamy with lumps of sweet Maryland crab meat throughout. Name aside, this dish will have you swooning over every bite. This is one of those classic Maryland dishes that you find on almost every restaurant menu. It’s an impressive recipe that is easy to make and impossible to mess up.

Where to buy Maryland crab meat

I am aware that not all of my readers have access to Maryland crab meat or crab of any kind. Well, there are several local seafood markets that will ship crab meat across the country! My absolute favorite place to buy crab is Conrad’s Crabs seafood market and restaurant. Not only are they the best in town for fresh seafood, but they also ship to all 50 states. Check out their website HERE. Another popular vendor is The Crab Place. They ship to all the states as well. Check out their site HERE.

Cream of crab soup ingredients

Lump crab meat– Maryland blue crab can be substituted with blue crab from any region. I have never tried it this recipe with any other crab meat but another suitable substitution could be Dungeness crab meat.
Half & half– Half and half can be substituted by blending equal parts whole milk with heavy cream.
Crab stock– I’m using my Homemade Crab Stock for this soup but any seafood stock will do.
Cooking sherry– A shot of sherry right before serving the soup is customary. I’m blending it in at the start of the soup to burn off some of the alcohol. It can be omitted entirely.
Salted butter
All-purpose flour
Diced pimentos
Flat-leaf parsley
Old Bay
Mustard powder
Kosher salt
Black pepper
Cayenne pepper
Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot


This soup base begins with a roux. Heat a pot overnight medium flame. Add the butter and let it melt before whisking in the flour.

Next, stir in the crab stock and sherry to make a sauce. 

Season the spice with salt, pepper, and all of the dried spices then whisk in the half and half.

Add the pimentos, parsley, and crab meat. Reduce the heat to low and add the remaining butter. Simmer for 10-15 minutes before turning off the heat.

spoonful of crab soup

Serve the soup in a Easy Bread Bowl with a scoop of Old Bay Oyster Crackers.


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*Updated 10/11/2020. It was originally posted on 2/21/2019.*

cream of crab soup in a bread bowl
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Maryland Cream of Crab Soup

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Maryland Cream of Crab Soup—sweet blue crab meat fresh from the Chesapeake made into a creamy classic Maryland soup.
Prep Time:15 mins
Cook Time:20 mins
Oyster Crackers:20 mins
Total Time:35 mins


  • 1 lb crab meat shells removed
  • 1 qt half & half
  • 1 c Homemade Crab Stock or seafood stock
  • 1/3 c cooking sherry
  • 8 tbsp salted butter cut into equal pieces
  • 4 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 4 tbsp diced pimentos
  • 4 tbsp fresh flat leaf parsley plus more to garnish
  • 4 tsp Old Bay seasoning
  • 1-2 tsp mustard powder
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne optional
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper


  • In a 3-5 quart dutch oven over medium-low heat, melt 4 tablespoons of butter.  Don’t allow it to brown. Should take 2-3 minutes. 
  • Then add the flour and stir to form a roux. Allow it to cook for 1 1/2 minutes before it browns. Pour in the seafood stock and sherry, whisk to make a sauce. 
  • Stir in all of the dried spices including the salt then the half and half. Continue stirring until it blends completely. Next, add the pimentos, parsley, and crab meat. 
  • Reduce the heat to low and add the remaining butter, allow it to simmer. Stir frequently being sure to scrape the bottom to loosen any sticking. Cook another 10-15 minutes on very low heat. Turn off the heat and cool for 5-10 minutes. Serve while hot. 


Serving: 0g | Calories: 458kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 35g | Saturated Fat: 21g | Cholesterol: 131mg | Sodium: 1198mg | Potassium: 427mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Iron: 2mg
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: American, Maryland
Keyword: crab, crab soup, maryland, old bay, saltine crackers
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 458kcal

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