Maryland is known for their crab dip, a hot cheesy dip full of crab meat, cheese and Old Bay seasoning. Everyone who has tried my recipe says it rivals that of local restaurants, so you're sure to love this dip, known as Nichole's Famous Maryland Crab Dip.
Update: This recipe was originally posted in October 2012. The recipe and photos have been updated and republished in December 2021.
I'll be completely honest with you - this is a recipe that I debated on sharing with the world for many, many years. It was the first recipe I ever created and I feared that people would claim it as their own.
Even though my own mother did that, I realized it was silly. I've made this crab dip probably over 100 times in my life and everyone loves it. This crab dip recipe needs to exist in the world for anyone to make.
What is Nichole's Famous Maryland Crab Dip?
Maryland Crab Dip is a crab meat filled, Old Bay seasoned creamy, cheesy dip. I am Nichole and I have been told by multiple people that this recipe rivals those served by local restaurants and that they want me to bring it to their parties or make it for them. So, put all of that together and you get Nichole's Famous Maryland Crab Dip.
Ingredients for this recipe
- Crab meat
- cream cheese
- sour cream
- shredded cheddar cheese
- Worcestershire sauce
- hot sauce
- diced onion
- Old Bay seasoning
- crackers, baguette rounds, pita wedges, carrots and/or celery, for dipping
Instructions for this recipe
- Start off by preheating your oven to 350. Spray a 8x8 baking dish with non-stick spray and place on a foil-lined baking sheet. (If the crab dip bubbles over, this makes for easy clean up)
- Then pick through the crab meat. Carefully go through the crab meat to make sure there are not any shells in it. Stir in half of the Old Bay seasoning to coat.
- Next, mix up the ingredients. In a large bowl, combine the cream cheese, sour cream, onion, mayo, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, mustard, garlic, parsley and remaining Old Bay. Mix until combined. Carefully fold in ¾ of the cheese and the crab meat until fully combined.
- Then spread into the baking dish. Spread half of the crab mixture into the baking dish, top with half of the shredded cheese and then the remaining crab dip. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top.
- After that, bake up the crab dip. Bake for 25 minutes until the cheese on top has melted. Then switch the oven to broil and broil for 3-4 minutes, until the top is browned and bubbly.
- Finally, serve the crab dip. Serve crab dip with baguettes, crackers (Club are my favorite), pita rounds or veggies like carrots and celery for dipping. Garnished with chopped fresh parsley, if desired
FAQ's for Hot Crab Dip
I prefer to use the less expensive crab meat when making a dip. Claw is a great choice because the pieces of meat are large, but come without the extra expense. Backfin, or a blend of crab meats is also a great option for dip.
That's up to you! I like hot crab dip and that's what you'll find in Maryland restaurants, but feel free to serve it cold or at room temperature.
- Cheesy dips are not the healthiest, so if you're looking to cut calories on this recipe, I suggest using reduced-fat sour cream and a lighter mayo option. The cream cheese and shredded cheese need to be full fat for the recipe to work well.
- Chives can replace the parsley. The hot sauce and mustard are optional, but I like them in my version.
There's no wrong time of the year to serve crab dip in Maryland, whether it be for a holiday, a summer cookout or for game day. Everyone appreciates the cheesy, crabby dip so double the batch if you're having company and keep an eye on the dish - it's gonna disappear quickly.
If you're looking for other delicious Maryland recipes, check out my Maryland Crab Soup or Maryland Crab Cakes. For sweet Maryland dishes, try my Baltimore Bomb Pie or Baltimore Peach Cake.
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Nichole's Famous Maryland Crab Dip
- 8x8 baking dish
- ½ lb crab meat see recipe notes
- ½ cup onion minced
- 8 oz cream cheese softened
- 6 oz sour cream
- 2 tablespoon mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley chopped and divided
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce
- 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
- ½ teaspoon mustard
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 2 teaspoon Old Bay divided
- baguettes, crackers, bread, carrots or celery for dipping
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8x8 baking dish with non-stick spray. (Place the dish on a foil lined baking sheet for easier clean up, in case the crab dip bubbles over)
- Gently pick through the crab meat and remove any shells. Add 1 teaspoon of Old Bay and gently stir in to combine.½ lb crab meat
- In a large bowl whisk together the cream cheese, sour cream, mayo, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce and mustard.8 oz cream cheese, 6 oz sour cream, 2 tablespoon mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, 1 teaspoon hot sauce, ½ teaspoon mustard
- Stir in the onions, garlic, half of the parsley, remaining Old Bay and 1 ¾ cups of the shredded cheddar cheese until it's all mixed together.½ cup onion, 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, 1 teaspoon garlic, minced, 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- Fold the crab meat into the bowl, making sure it is fully combined.
- Spread the mixture in the prepared baking dish and sprinkle the remaining shredded cheddar cheese on top.
- Bake for 25 minutes, until the cheese has melted and the dip is bubbly.
- Switch the oven to broil and broil for 3-4 minutes, watching closely. Once the cheese is fully melted and is golden brown, remove the crab dip from the oven.
- Sprinkle remaining parsley on top to garnish and serve immediately with baguettes, crackers, carrots or celery sticks.baguettes, crackers, bread, carrots or celery for dipping
Recipes on Cookaholic Wife are for information purposes only. Nutritional Data provided has not been evaluated by a nutritionist.
Crab dip is one of my favorites, and your rendition sounds great! I'm looking forward to getting one or two more bushels before the season closes to pick, and then freeze!
I'm glad you decided to share the recipe -- sounds like one this household would love! Stay safe during the storm!
I love crab dip! This looks amazing.
Hi! I have followed your blog since The Nest. I want to make this to take to my aunt's on Thanksgiving. I'm thinking I could make it at home, put it in my Crock Pot, then warm it back up that way when I get there. Does that sound like it would work?
Woo hoo! Loyal follower! 🙂 I definitely think that would work. Depending on how long you need to travel, you might just want to keep it on low in the crock pot so it doesn't over-cook. Although I don't think you could really over-cook it, you might just end up with some crispier cheesy bits.
Mary K Olive
is that french's mustard or dry mustard