Crab Pretzels that are truly next level! Homemade soft pretzels are topped with the best homemade jumbo lump crab dip.
This simple but decadent Crab Pretzel Recipe really showcases what Maryland crab recipes are all about. The rich and bold flavors of this crab dip pretzel will have you wanting to take a trip to the coast.
Try more delicious crab recipes like my Maryland Crab Cakes or enjoy my Maryland Crab Dip along with your next snack or meal.
Easy Maryland Crab Pretzel Recipe
While crab pretzels are a Maryland staple, I’ve noticed many other states don’t even have their own version of this delicious treat!
You know I am a born and raised seafood lover, and knowing so many of you have no idea how delicious this is…well, you know I had to get to work and share my own recipe for this Maryland staple.
If you’re on the east coast during the colder seasons of the year, hot and cheesy crab dip is a must. This Crab Dip Pretzel Recipe is the perfect comfort food for those chilly winter days. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t enjoy these delicious crab pretzels all year long!
In Maryland, you’ll find crab pretzels on most restaurant and pub menus throughout the year. It’s one of my favorite things to order at happy hour.
This Crab Pretzel Recipe is definitely on the decadent side. The lump crab meat elevates this dish while the bold flavors in the Old Bay give these pretzels a classic, familiar, and of course, beloved flavor.
If you aren’t familiar with Old Bay, I encourage you to give it a try! Any Marylander will let you know that Old Bay (also known as J.O Spice or J.O Crab Seasoning) is crucial to any crab or shrimp recipes.
Whether you’re sharing your pretzel or indulging, this delicious recipe is sure going to hit the spot.
Maryland Crab Pretzel Ingredients
Soft Pretzels: I used Homemade Soft Pretzels for this recipe, but you can also use frozen pretzels. I really like Auntie Anne’s frozen soft pretzels.
Crab: for authentic Maryland crab pretzels you’ll need either a 1/2 pound lump crab meat or jumbo lump crab meat.
Cheeses: for the mixture of gooey goodness, you’ll need whipped cream cheese, Monterey Jack, and mozzarella cheese. You’ll want to make sure you have plenty of cheese, enough to top your pretzel.
Wet ingredients: for these flavorful crab pretzels you’ll need tartar sauce, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, and hot sauce if you like an extra dash of heat.
Herbs and spices: you’ll notice all of my crab recipes include the Maryland classic, Old Bay. In Maryland, we like to sprinkle extra Old Bay and some fresh parsley over top of our crab pretzels after they finish baking. You can use as much or as little as you want.
How Do You Make Crab Pretzels?
1. Make the pretzels. Make my homemade soft pretzels through step 7 and bake for 10 minutes instead of 15. I usually make the crab dip while the pretzels are baking.
2. Make the crab dip. In a large mixing bowl, combine the whipped cream cheese, tartar sauce, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, Old Bay, and lemon juice. Next fold in the crab meat, half the Monterey Jack cheese, and half the mozzarella cheese with a rubber spatula. Careful not to break up the crab meat!
3. Prepare the crab pretzels. When the pretzels are ready, remove them from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 350° F. Allow the pretzels to come to room temperature, then spoon the crab dip over each one.
4. Bake the crab pretzels. Top the pretzels with the remaining cheese and bake for 5-8 minutes, until the cheese is melted. When finished, garnish with parsley and Old Bay Seasoning if desired before serving.
If you’ve tried this recipe, leave a review below to let me know how you liked it!
What Goes Well With Crab Dip?
Crab dip can be served with toasted baguette, sturdy crackers, or raw vegetables. You can even use it to make Crab Rangoons. If you have any leftover crab dip from this pretzel recipe, store it in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
How Do You Heat Up A Crab Pretzel?
Once you’ve spread your crab dip mixture on top of your pretzels, bake them at 350° F for 5 to 8 minutes or until the cheese has melted. Sprinkle your warm crab dip pretzels with a bit of Old Bay and they’re ready to serve.
Can You Reheat Crab Dip In The Microwave?
Crab dip, or any leftovers, can be safely heated in the microwave after being initially baked. If you have leftover crab dip you can heat it in the microwave using 30-second intervals until it’s heated to your liking.
You can also bake at 350° F for 10 to 15 minutes, depending on the amount of crab dip or until it’s heated through the center.
Can I Use Frozen Pretzels For This Recipe?
While I do recommend using a homemade pretzel recipe for the best results, you can opt for frozen soft jumbo pretzels. If you’re using frozen pretzels, you’ll want to cook them thoroughly according to the cooking instructions before adding the crab mixture.
Where Do I Buy Real Crab Meat?
If you don’t live in Maryland, it can be a bit tricky to find super fresh lump crab meat. However, don’t fret! Call or check with your local grocery store’s seafood section. If they don’t have any you may want to Google your nearest fish market or seafood delivery service.
Easy Appetizer Recipes
- Air Fryer Onion Rings
- Jalapeño Popper Dip
- One Pan Skillet Enchiladas
- Spinach and Artichoke Dip Wonton Cups
More Crab Recipes To Try
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- 4 homemade soft pretzels
- 6 ounces whipped cream cheese
- 1/4 cup tartar sauce
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce
- 1-2 teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/2 pound lump crab or jumbo lump crab meat*
- 1/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
- 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley, to garnish
- Make my homemade soft pretzels through step 7 and bake for 10 minutes instead of 15. I usually make the crab dip while the pretzels are baking.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the whipped cream cheese, tartar sauce, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, Old Bay, and lemon juice. Next fold in the crab meat, half the Monterey Jack cheese, and half the mozzarella cheese with a rubber spatula. Careful not to break up the crab meat!
- When the pretzels are ready, remove them from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 350° F. Allow the pretzels to come to room temperature, then spoon the crab dip over each one.
- Top the pretzels with the remaining cheese and bake for 5-8 minutes, until the cheese is melted. When finished, garnish with parsley and Old Bay Seasoning if desired before serving.
- If you've tried this recipe, leave a review below to let me know how you liked it!
- You can use lump crab or jumbo lump crab meat for this recipe. In my opinion, the only time it’s really beneficial to use jumbo lump crab meat is for crab cakes where you really want the crab to shine. In a dip, it’s not quite as important to only have jumbo lump crab meat since there are plenty of other ingredients. You will save a lot of money using lump crab meat instead!
- Try to make sure you are using a tartar sauce you’ve tried and enjoyed, recently I made this using a new tartar sauce I haven’t tried before and it was not as good. I really enjoy the Whole Foods brand tartar sauce.
The combination of crab and cheese with seasonings is so good! Perfect for an appetizer or main course for two with a salad.
This combines two of my favorite things — crab dip and soft pretzels! Genius idea and so delicious.
I used to live back east and miss all the crab dishes! I love this recipe to help me enjoy eating like I’m still back east without having to do the cold and snow! Perfect!
Such an interesting recipe! crab and pretzels sound yummy and I am definitely giving it a try!
This is such a great idea! They may be popular in Maine, but I have never heard of them before. Luckily, I do have Old Bay in my spice cabinet.
Crab and cheese is a delicious combo, my family loved these!