Crab and Shrimp Seafood Bisque

Crab and shrimp seafood bisque recipe

The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 30 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
421 Calories
20g Fat
29g Carbs
30g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 421
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 20g 26%
Saturated Fat 11g 57%
Cholesterol 166mg 55%
Sodium 1023mg 44%
Total Carbohydrate 29g 11%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Protein 30g
Calcium 310mg 24%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

If you're a purist, you know that a true bisque is a seafood soup, but it is often used to describe any creamy soup. The soup is French, but the origin of the word "bisque" is not clear. It might be derived from Biscay, as in the Bay of Biscay, a gulf that lies off Europe's west coast, bordering western France and northern Spain. 

This seafood bisque is made with crab and shrimp, but you may choose to substitute another seafood or add a third, such as lobster, scallops, or firm, flaky fish. 

Bisque is super easy to prepare and cook for a weeknight meal: It's ready in just 15 minutes. Serve with freshly baked biscuits or crusty bread. If it's a lunch or main course soup, add your favorite salad.



  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons green onion (chopped)
  • 2 tablespoons celery, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 8 ounces cooked baby shrimp (or other seafood)
  • 8 ounces crabmeat
  • 2 tablespoons sherry wine
  • Garnish: parsley, cilantro and/or green onion tops (chopped)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for crab and shrimp seafood bisque
    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  2. Melt the butter in a Dutch oven or large saucepan over medium-low heat; add the chopped green onion and celery. Sauté, stirring, until tender.

    Green onions
    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  3. Blend the flour into the butter and vegetables until well incorporated. Continue cooking, stirring, for about 2 minutes.

    Blend with flour
    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  4. Warm the milk in another saucepan over medium heat.

    Warm milk
    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  5. Slowly stir the warmed milk into the butter and vegetables. Continue cooking, stirring until thickened.

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  6. Add the freshly ground black pepper, tomato paste, and heavy cream. 

    Add ground pepper
    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  7. If desired, puree the soup in a blender or food processor (see the tips) at this point and then return it to the saucepan. 

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  8. Stir in the shrimp, crab, and the sherry. Bring it to a simmer.

    Stir in shrimp
    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  9. Serve hot, garnished with parsley, cilantro, and/or chopped green onion tops.

    Garnish bisque
    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  10. Enjoy!

    Use Caution When Blending Hot Ingredients

    Steam expands quickly in a blender, and can cause ingredients to splatter everywhere and/or cause burns. To prevent this, fill the blender only one-third of the way up and puree in small batches. Vent the top, and cover with a folded kitchen towel while blending.


  • Sherry is a wine fortified with brandy. Dry sherry is a good choice for this recipe. After sherry is opened, it should be stored in the refrigerator.

Recipe Variations

  • Feel free to add small cooked bay scallops or lobster instead of shrimp.
  • Replace the green onions with finely chopped shallots.
  • If desired, garnish the soup with thinly sliced green onion tops, cilantro, or parsley. Or add a spoonful of sour cream and swirl it in. 

How to Store and Freeze

  • This recipe will keep in the fridge, covered, for 3 to 4 days.
  • To freeze, cool the soup and transfer to covered, freezer-safe, airtight containers. Date and label them, and freeze for up to 6 months.
  • Defrost the bisque in the fridge and reheat gently over low heat to prevent it from getting too grainy and/or curdling. Stir well.