Cream of Crab Soup Recipe: Maryland’s Grand Prize Winner!

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Cream of crab soup fits right into the category of the saying, “Maryland is for Crabs”.

Ms. Charlese Smith was the Grand Prize Winner in the Soup Division for this recipe at the 53rd Annual National Hard Crab Derby in Crisfield, Maryland.

So she is the person who gets credit for this wonderful recipe!

Thank you Charlese!

Although this particular recipe is a CREAM soup recipe, you can also make my traditional, tomato based Maryland Crab Soup recipe that’s out-of-this-world delicious!

Cream of Crab Soup

Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Recipe

Being born and raised in Maryland, I grew up eating crabs all of my life.

I remember the days of my Dad getting a bushel of crabs and the family gathered around the table hammering and picking all night long.

As a result, it’s a ritual that I fondly remember, but also one that we don’t do nearly as often as we used to.

Because I love any recipe involving crabs, when I saw this recipe for Grand Prize Maryland Cream of Crab Soup, I jumped on it.

Not gonna lie though, when I went to the store to get the crab meat already picked and ready to use, I felt a little bit guilty.

The reason? I didn’t have to spend hours picking the crabs.

However, not having to work for that crab meat definitely has an appeal to it!

History Behind Grand Prize Maryland Cream of Crab Soup

Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Recipe

So, I found this recipe on Pinterest and clicked on the link to a site called Just A Pinch.

Being that this recipe is a Maryland recipe and that it won the Grand Prize in an annual National Hard Crab Derby, held in Crisfield, Md, known as the ‘Seafood Capital of the World’, I had to make it!

We Marylanders have a lot of pride in our state.

For instance, we are super proud of our Maryland State Flag.

So much so, that we wear it on our clothes as much as we can!

But, I digress.

Back to the recipe.

Items You’ll Need To Make This Cream of Crab Soup

  1. A Good Stockpot – This Cuisinart 6 quart Stockpot with Lid (Amazon) is the perfect choice for making cream of crab soup.
  2. Soup Mixing Spoon – I really like the OXO Brushed Stainless Spoon (Amazon). It’s a good quality mixing spoon.
  3. Soup Bowls – I have 2 recommendations: My go-to soup bowls are the thick mug style bowls with handles (Amazon). They’re great for when you want to cozy up on the couch while eating your soup. The handle doesn’t get hot so you can hold it with one hand. I also love this Porcelain Fluted Bowl Set (Amazon). I have a set for my family and bought a set for my nephew who’s living off-campus at Clemson University. They’re a nice big size and come in bright, cheery colors.
  4. Soup Spoons – This soup is too good to use regular ole spoons. You need some good soup spoons. This Set of 8 Stainless Steel Soup Spoons (Amazon) are worthy of this recipe.

Maryland’s Grand Prize Cream of Crab Soup Printable Recipe:

Maryland's Grand Prize Cream of Crab Soup Recipe

Maryland’s Grand Prize Cream of Crab Soup Recipe

Housewives of Frederick County
A true Maryland specialty – Cream of Crab Soup. This comes from a Marylander who won the Grand Prize for her recipe!
4.67 from 3 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American
Servings 6 people


  • 2 cups Milk
  • 1 quart Half & half
  • 2 pints Heavy whipping cream (1 quart)
  • 4 tbsp Cornstarch
  • ¼ cup Cold water
  • 1 to 2 lbs Maryland jumbo lump crab meat, Tip: Use crab claw meat to make it chunkier
  • 1 tbsp Fresh parsley
  • 3 tsp Old Bay Seasoning, Use more based on your taste preferences
  • ¼ cup Butter
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • tsp Pepper


  • Bring milk, half & half, and heavy whipping cream to a boil.
  • When it starts to boil, make a paste (or slurry) in a SEPARATE BOWL with the cornstarch and COLD water. The general rule of thumb is 1 tablespoon of COLD water mixed with 1 tablespoon of cornstarch per cup of soup. Be sure to WHISK WELL (use a mini whisk, battery operated frother, or shake aggressively in a jar with a lid) until the paste is FULLY blended.
  • Add the paste to the soup and bring back to a boil for 1 minute, mixing constantly.
  • If the soup seems too thin, make more paste with 1 T. corn starch & 1 T. cold water. Mix into the soup and heat through again, mixing constantly.
  • Keep adding the 1 tablespoon cornstarch/1 tablespoon cold water paste until your soup gets to the preferred thickness.
  • THEN add your crab meat.
  • Adding crab meat after the cornstarch paste is so that you don't break up the delicate chunks of crab while whisking the cornstarch.
  • Add fresh parsley, Old Bay Seasoning, butter, salt and pepper and heat through.
  • Add extra crab meat & Old Bay Seasoning based on your preferences.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Soup is ready to serve.
Keyword crab recipe, crab soup, cream of crab soup, maryland cream of crab soup
Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Recipe
Cream of Crab Soup: Maryland's Grand Prize Recipe

How to Make Your Soup Chunkier & Thicker

Indeed, this really is an amazing cream of crab soup recipe!

In particular, after making this recipe for a 2nd time, I’ve decided that using a combo of crab claw meat and jumbo lump crab meat makes it nice and chunky.

Also, to make your ‘slurry’, which is the cornstarch and water combination that thickens the soup, you want to make sure your water is cold.

The general rule of thumb is 1 tablespoon of COLD water mixed WELL with 1 tablespoon of cornstarch per cup of soup.

Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Recipe

This recipe makes approximately 6 cups of soup, so create your slurry first based on this amount.

My suggestion based on one of our reader’s comments below (Thank you Steve!) is to create your slurry FIRST using a mini whisk or frother (both from Amazon).

Add the slurry to the soup BEFORE adding the crab meat so as not to break up the delicate lumps of crab.

Add slurry
Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Recipe
Cream of Crab Soup: Maryland's Grand Prize Recipe

Toppings To Add To Your Soup

I add Ritz crackers or oyster crackers and sprinkle on Old Bay Seasoning (because I’m a Marylander and that’s just what we do) and it’s sooooo delicious!

Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Recipe
Cream of Crab Soup: Maryland's Grand Prize Recipe

Additionally, if you’re one who likes onions, add some chopped spring onions to the soup just before eating it.

Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Recipe
Cream of Crab Soup: Maryland's Grand Prize Recipe

Grand Prize Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Reviews

Similarly, like me, my husband grew up eating crabs all of his life too.

With this in mind, he was the true test as to whether or not I will be making this recipe again.

If soup all over his goatee is any indicator, that would be a resounding yes!

Next time we’ll both be wearing our Old Bay t-shirts (Amazon) whenever I make this soup or we dive into a bushel of Maryland crabs!

For more crab recipes, check out our posts on:

Maryland Crab Pizza

28 Crab Meat Recipes That You Don’t Have To Be A Marylander To Love

Crab Cakes With Remoulade Sauce

Maryland Hot Crab Dip

Maryland Deviled Eggs with Crab

Traditional Maryland Crab Imperial

And for more amazing soup recipes, you must try:

Traditional Gaspacho Soup

Cuban Chicken Soup

Crockpot Cabbage Soup

Cream of Crab Soup: Maryland's Grand Prize Recipe
Maryland's Grand Prize Cream of Crab Soup Recipe
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29 thoughts on “Cream of Crab Soup Recipe: Maryland’s Grand Prize Winner!”

  1. 5 stars
    Absolutely delish! Thank you for this recipe!! I can never find the perfect cream of crab soup, and now I can make it myself!! 🦀😋

  2. Really enjoyed it. I cut the recipe in half and worked out fine. I think I was impatient and may have added a bit too much slurry as it came out really thick. Anyone figure out the calorie and carb count???

    • Hi Carol, So glad you liked it! Yes, there’s a fine line between making it too thin and making it too thick. I will get the calorie and carb count and let you know. Thank you!

  3. So for our monthly wine club foodie.dinner. The dinner is on 911 so it’s an American theme so I’m gonna do something red white and blue and why not cream of crab! red for the Old Bay white for the soup and blue for the blue crab! My question is I was going to add Sherry or have Sherry on the side to mix in any experience with that? Any recommendations for a wine pairing?

    • Oh how fun! And what a great idea for the American theme! So, I’m not a wine connoisseur, but I found some info on Williams Sonoma website: “many wines can go with crab. Here are the basic rules: The wine should be white, not too oaky, fairly crisp with acidity and minerality. Save richer, more buttery, oakier whites for lobster” I hope this helps! Have a great time!

  4. 4 stars
    I’ve made this recipe multiple times and the only major adjustment I made from the start was to add the cornstarch slurry before adding the crab meat. You need to whisk the cornstarch in pretty aggressively to avoid lumps and that breaks up the lump crab meat you spent all that money on. After years of trial and error I’ve found 1/3 cup of cornstarch to 1/2 cup cold liquid aggressively shaken together in a jar is the ideal thickener for most any gravy, stew or soup. I also add more crab meat and old bay because more of both is better.

  5. I will make this recipe. It sounds so good and it is easy. Thanks for sharing this recipe. My husband grew up in St. Mary’s County and I am from Texas. I love all the crab recipes that I can find. I have lived here for 23 yrs. and for 25 yrs. before that I was visiting this area to visit our relatives. Thanks again!

  6. 5 stars
    This looks amazing! Can’t wait to try it out. I’m not even much of a soup person but have always loved a great crab soup and this looks better than anything I’ve ever had!!!

  7. I can’t wait to try to make this! I love anything with crab in it! Thanks for sharing the recipe and the tips about the ritz crackers! I’m getting the T-shirt too!

  8. I’ve attempted to make this twice and it’s so delicious, however the cornstarch and water mix makes clumps in the soup???? does anyone know a way to solve this? I use the exact amount and mix it together very well and pour into the pot and stir

    • Hi Jenise, So sorry you’ve been getting lumps in the soup. Try adding more cold water to the cornstarch and mixing well before adding it to the soup. It may be that 1 teaspoon of water isn’t enough. I Googled the cornstarch to water ratio and it says 1 tablespoon of cornstarch to 1/2 cup of cold water. Let me know if that works for you next time. Also, it says to only cook for one minute after adding the cornstarch and water. If you cook it longer than that, the cornstarch will break down. I hope this helps. I will change the details in the recipe. Thank you for your input!


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