There are few things as satisfying as a good crab dip recipe. This dish is the perfect blend of creamy, cheesy, and s lightly spicy flavors, with a hint of sweetness from the crab meat. It's perfect for any party or gathering and is always a hit with guests. Best of all, it's easy to make and can be prepared ahead of time.
🌟 Why this recipe works
This hot crab dip is so easy to make in just 40 minutes. It's as easy as mixing everything together and baking it in a small baking dish or pot, which means minimal cleanup required and an easy recipe to make for home cooks.
The crab dip recipe is the perfect blend of creamy, cheesy, and slightly spicy flavors. The cheddar cheese and mozzarella add a creamy richness to the dip, while the pecorino cheese gives it a slightly sharp flavor.
And the combination of garlic, crab meat, Worcestershire sauce, mayo, and Tobasco sauce give it a perfect balance of heat and flavor. The end result is a hot crab dip that is utterly addictive and completely irresistible.
Dips are usually served with crackers and tortilla chips, but for this hot crab dip, you can serve it with fried food, like battered prawns, calamari, or fish and chips.
You can also use it as a condiment for burgers or wraps and even crunchy veg sticks, making this recipe a versatile choice at parties and BBQs.
So, if you're looking for an appetizer dish that will impress your friends and family, look no further than this crab dip recipe.
🍽 Key ingredients
All you need is a mixing bowl, a few ingredients, and 40 minutes to make this dish. Here's what you'll need:
Crab meat - The main ingredient in this dish is fresh or canned crab meat. It's what gives the dip its distinct flavor and smell. Jumbo lump crab meat, or imitation crab meat, will work well in this recipe.
Shredded cheese - A combination of cheddar, mozzarella, and pecorino cheese adds creaminess and depth of cheesy flavor to the dip.
Mayonnaise - Mayonnaise is used as the base for this dip and helps to bind all the ingredients together.
Garlic - Although this recipe only requires a couple of cloves, it does add a pungent flavor to the dip without being overpowering.
Sauces - Worcestershire sauce, Tobasco sauce, and mustard all play their part in giving this crab dip layers of flavor.
Lime - The lime or lemon juice helps to cut through the richness of the dip and adds a touch of acidity.
If you don't have fresh crab meat, you could substitute it for canned tuna or salmon instead. Depending on which substitute you use, the flavor of the dip will change considerably.
This cheesy crab dip recipe requires a mixture of cheese flavors, like creamy, sharp, soft, smokey, and salty, to really give it that WOW factor. So if you don't have mozzarella cheese, pecorino, or cheddar cheese, you could substitute them for gouda, Pepper Jack, Brie or camembert, cream cheese, and Parmesan cheese.
If you don't like things too spicy, you could leave out the Tobasco sauce or substitute it with a milder hot sauce.
Sour cream is the perfect 1:1 substitution for mayo in this easy crab dip recipe, as it provides a similar creamy texture.
- 1 teaspoon of old bay seasoning,
- 1 teaspoon of paprika,
- ½ teaspoon of cayenne pepper,
- 1 teaspoon of chili powder
🔪 How to make
This delicious crab dip recipe is easy to follow and only requires some basic kitchen equipment and lots of cheese! It's the perfect appetizer for any party or gathering and can be made ahead of time so you can enjoy the party too.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit (160 degrees Celsius).
Mix all ingredients in a bowl until well combined.
Then transfer the mixture to a shallow baking dish and bake for 30 - 35 minutes.
Remove the hot crab dip from the oven and allow it to cool for 10 to 15 minutes. Garnish the warm crab dip with chopped green onion and serve with Ritz crackers, toasted bread, or pita chips.
💭 Cooking tips
Don't be stingy with the cheese
When adding the cheese to the mixture, don't be afraid to really pack it in there. The more cheese, the better!
📖 Recipe variations
If you're feeling adventurous, there are a few things you can do to change up this recipe.
Hot crab dip with cocktail sauce
For a bit of a zing and sweetness, add ¼ cup of cocktail sauce on top of the mixture before baking.
Cold crab dip recipe
If you want to make a cold crab dip, you can! Simply, remove the cheese and add 1 package of cream cheese and ½ cup of sour cream to the mixture. Once it's thoroughly mixed, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and keep it in the fridge for 3 days.
Cold crap dip recipe with dill
Add some herbs to the dip for additional flavor. Dill is the perfect complement for fish and seafood recipes, and it makes all the difference in this recipe. Combine half a cup of finely chopped dill with the cold crab dip.
🥗 What to serve with
This crab dip recipe is best served with Ritz crackers, toasted bread, or pita chips. But feel free to get creative and serve it with fresh veg sticks, pretzels, or whatever you like! Here are a few ideas to pair with it.
When it comes to breadsticks, they have to be chewy in the middle and crunchy on the outside. And these parma sticks stuffed with prosciutto and parmesan cheese are perfect for this crab dip. Or try my homemade pita bread, it is delicious for dipping!
These fried wontons filled with lump crab meat, spices, and cream cheese are the perfect finger food and go so well with this recipe. Crab rangoon is easy to make and can be made ahead of time, which is always a bonus. It pairs great with cucumber sandwiches.
These crab cakes are fried to perfection and filled with lump crab meat, crushed crackers, and spices. They're crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside and make the perfect appetizer or main course. Serve them with a side of this crab dip, and you're good to go!
🙋 Frequently asked questions
How long can crab dip sit out at room temperature?
If you're planning on serving this crab dip at a party or gathering, it's best to keep it out for no more than 2 hours. After that, the cheese will start to harden, and it won't be as enjoyable to eat.
Can I make crab dip ahead of time?
Yes! This crab dip can be made up to 3 days in advance. Simply prepare the mixture and store it in an airtight container in the fridge until you're ready to bake it.
🧊 Storing and ♨️ reheating
Leftover crab dip is great for storing and eating over the next few days.
To refrigerate - Any leftover crab dip can be transferred to an airtight container or you can cover the dish in plastic wrap and keep it in the fridge for up to 4 days.
To freeze - Crab dip can also be frozen for up to 2 months. Store it in a freezer-safe container or wrap it tightly in plastic wrap before freezing.
To reheat - If you're reheating from the fridge, simply place the crab dip in a baking dish and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175 degrees Celsius) for 10-15 minutes, or until it's warmed through. If reheating from frozen, thaw the crab dip in the fridge overnight and then bake it.
Alternatively, you could reheat the dip in the microwave for 1 to 2 minutes.
🍳 Related Recipes
For more delicious crab recipes check my collection of best crab meat recipes.
👪 Serving size
You can expect a crab dip of this size to be plenty enough to serve for 6 people. And it's easily scalable to fit your crowd requirements too.
This crab dip recipe is perfect for any party or gathering. It's easy to make, can be made ahead of time, and is always a hit with guests. And, leftovers store and reheat well, so you can enjoy this dip for days to come. So, what are you waiting for? Get dipping!
Watch how to make it
Love this appetizer recipe? Please leave a 5-star 🌟rating in the recipe card below and/or a review in the comments section further down the page.
Try one of my comfort appetizer recipes for your next family meal! And if you have any questions, I'm here to help!
Baked Crab Dip
- ½ pound crabmeat
- 1 cup cheddar cheese - shredded
- ½ cup mozzarella - shredded
- ¼ cup pecorino cheese - finely grated
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 2 cloves garlic - pressed
- 3 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
- 1 lime - juice
- 1 teaspoon tabasco
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- salt and pepper - to taste
- Preheat the oven to 325 F (160 C).
- In a medium bowl, mix all ingredients together well, then transfer to a casserole dish and bake for 30 - 35 minutes.
- Allow to cool somewhat, then serve with crackers or pita chips.