Creamy Crab Dip With Cream Cheese

Creamy crab dip in a bowl, served on a platter with cut up vegetables and crackers

The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 10 mins
Servings: 16 servings
Yield: 2 cups
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
91 Calories
8g Fat
1g Carbs
3g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 16
Amount per serving
Calories 91
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 8g 11%
Saturated Fat 3g 17%
Cholesterol 27mg 9%
Sodium 150mg 7%
Total Carbohydrate 1g 0%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Total Sugars 1g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 0mg 2%
Calcium 27mg 2%
Iron 0mg 0%
Potassium 52mg 1%
*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.)

This easy creamy crab dip is made with canned crabmeat, but feel free to use freshly cooked crab if you have it. Or use convenient imitation crabmeat, which is made with white fish and often a small amount of crabmeat. Either way, your seafood dip will be a hit. 

Cream cheese and mayonnaise are combined with the crabmeat to make this creamy, tasty dip. Carrot and celery sticks are excellent choices for dipping as well as crackers or chips. It's a very easy dip to prepare with just a few simple seasonings. Whip some up for the family to enjoy on movie night.   


Click Play to See This Recipe Come Together


  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened

  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise

  • 3 tablespoons milk

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1 dash cayenne pepper (or Tabasco sauce, to taste)

  • 1 (6-ounce) can crabmeat, drained, cartilage removed, finely chopped

  • 1 pinch Old Bay seasoning, garnish

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for creamy crab dip recipe gathered

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  2. In a small bowl, combine the cream cheese, mayonnaise, milk, salt, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper or Tabasco sauce, to taste. Blend well. 

    Cream cheese, mayonnaise, milk, and condiments stirred together in a small bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  3. Gently fold in the chopped crabmeat.

    Chopped crabmeat evenly folded into cream cheese mixture in the bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  4. Cover and refrigerate the crab dip until it is thoroughly chilled.

    Crab dip in a bowl covered with plastic wrap

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  5. If desired, sprinkle with Old Bay seasoning. Serve chilled.

    Creamy crab dip sprinkled with seasoning, served with cut up vegetables and crackers

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack


To soften cream cheese quickly, unwrap it and place it on a microwave-safe plate. Microwave on 100 percent power for 15 to 20 seconds. Another way is to cut the block of cold cream cheese into small pieces and beat it with an electric mixer on high speed until it's smooth and creamy.

Recipe Variations

  • Add 1 or 2 tablespoons of finely chopped green onions.
  • Add a few tablespoons of parsley or fresh chopped cilantro or chives.
  • Double the amount of crab in the dip.
  • Add 1 teaspoon of fresh chopped dill or about 1/2 teaspoon of dried dill weed.
  • Sprinkle paprika instead of Old Bay over the top of the dip.
  • Replace the crab with imitation crab made with pollock or hake. There's usually a small amount of crabmeat in these products, so don't use them if you have an allergy to shellfish. Check the labels to be certain.
  • Add some chopped cooked shrimp and/or scallops to the dip for a seafood dip. Or make it with shrimp instead of crabmeat.
  • For an extra-special dip, make it with cooked chopped lobster.

How Long Does Crab Dip Last?

Creamy crab dip will keep in the fridge in an airtight container for up to three days. While you can technically freeze crab dip, it is not recommended since freezing greatly affects the texture.

Is Crabmeat in a Can Real?

Canned lump crabmeat is real crab that has been cooked and shelled. Imitation crab, which is often sold in a shrink-wrapped package, is made largely of white fish and sometimes a small amount of crab.