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 (Eastern Shore).

Therefore, she is the person who gets credit for this wonderful homemade soup 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 a seafood lover, enjoying specifically Maryland blue crabs straight from the Chesapeake Bay.

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!

As a matter of fact, I’ve made SO many crab recipes like this delish Crab Mac n Cheese because of how easy it is to find crab meat in the grocery store.

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!

See, 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.

Cream of Crab Soup Ingredients


Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make this Cream of Crab Soup:


Step-By-Step Instructions for Making Maryland Cream of Crab Soup

Step 1: Boil Milk, Half & Half, & Heavy Cream Over Medium-High Heat

In a large pot, bring your milk, half & half and heavy cream to a boil.

While doing this, begin your next step of creating your slurry mix.

Step 2: Make Paste or Slurry in Separate Bowl & Add to Soup

Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Recipe

This is a very important step for a nice, thick creamy soup consistency.

In a SEPARATE BOWL combine the cornstarch with COLD water.

In this case, the general rule of thumb is 1 tablespoon of COLD water mixed with 1 tablespoon of cornstarch per cup of soup.

So for this recipe (it makes six 1-cup servings), start with 4 tablespoons of cold water and 4 tablespoons of cornstarch.

You can always add more as you gauge the creaminess of your soup.

Be sure to WHISK WELL!

You can use one of the following tools to FULLY blended your paste (all from Amazon):

Step 3: Add Paste to Soup and Bring Back to Boil for 1 Minute

Add slurry

Stir your soup constantly while it is boiling.

If the soup seems too thin, make more paste with 1 T. corn starch & 1 T. cold water.

Mix that into the soup and heat through again, mixing constantly.

Then, continue to add 1 tablespoon cornstarch/1 tablespoon cold water paste until your soup gets to your preferred thickness.

Step 4: Gently Add Crab Meat to Soup

You don’t want to break up your fresh lump crab meat too much while adding it into your soup.

So, blend it in well but do it gently.

Step 5: Add Parsley, Old Bay Seasoning, Butter, Salt & Pepper

Once you’ve added these final ingredients (you can melt butter beforehand to speed up this step), stir and heat through over medium heat.

If you prefer more crab meat, add that now, along with additional Old Bay (1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning at a time) to your taste.

Now remove from heat and serve.

For a nice presentation, add a sprinkle of fresh parsley on top of each bowl of soup.

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

Indeed, this really is an amazing creamy 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 with a wonderfully creamy base.

Cream of Crab Soup: Maryland's Grand Prize Recipe

Substitutions and Additions To This Recipe

Cream of Crab Soup: Maryland's Grand Prize Recipe

Although I prefer this recipe just the way it is, some people have different tastes and substitute or add the following ingredients:

  • Seafood Stock, Fish Stock, Chicken Broth, or Vegetable Broth
  • Celery Salt
  • Olive Oil
  • Clam Juice
  • Bay Leaf or Bay Leaves
  • Dry Sherry or White Wine Vinegar
  • Lemon Juice
  • Substitute another seafood seasoning for Old Bay Seasoning
  • Use 1/4 cup flour in place of 4 tablespoons cornstarch
  • To cut back on salt, use unsalted butter

Toppings To Add To Your Soup

Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Recipe

Toppings you can add are:

Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Recipe

Storing Cream of Crab Soup

For any leftovers, allow your soup to cool to room temperature.

Then, add it to an airtight container with a tight lid and place it in the refrigerator.

Your soup will stay fresh for 2 to 3 days.

Grand Prize Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Reviews

Cream of Crab Soup: Maryland's Grand Prize Recipe

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!

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!
4.75 from 4 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American
Servings 6 people


  • 2 cups Whole Milk
  • 1 quart Half & half
  • 2 pints Heavy whipping cream (1 quart)
  • 4 tbsp Cornstarch
  • 4 tbsp 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

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

Maryland Crab Cakes With Remoulade Sauce

Hot Maryland Crab Dip

Maryland Deviled Eggs with Crab

Traditional Maryland Crab Imperial

And for more delicious soup recipes, you must try:

Traditional Gaspacho Soup

Cuban Chicken Soup

Crockpot Cabbage Soup

Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Recipe
Cream of Crab Soup: Maryland's Grand Prize Recipe
Maryland's Grand Prize Cream of Crab Soup Recipe
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34 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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