Indulge in the sumptuous delight of our Crab Bisque recipe, where the distinctive crab flavor melds with a velvety broth. Savor each spoonful with the distinct flavor of freshly caught crab complemented by aromatic spices.

Looking for an easy crab bisque recipe? 

This easy recipe is a flavorful soup that's as luxurious as it is comforting. It involves tender chunks of crab meat swimming in a creamy, flavorful broth, seasoned to perfection with herbs and spices. It's the kind of dish that warms your soul and makes you feel like you're dining by the ocean.

Seafood and soup? This rich soup is like a combination of Louisiana gumbo and salmon chowder, with cajun seasonings and a creamy tomato-ey base topped with luscious crab meat. Make this better than the bayou easy bisque recipe for your next crab boil or a cozy family dinner. 

What Is Crab Bisque? 

Bisque, a creamy and luxurious soup, has a rich history that dates back to France in the 17th century. Initially, it was prepared as a shellfish-based soup, primarily using lobster or crayfish. The term "bisque" itself is believed to have originated from the Bay of Biscay, where the soup's main ingredient, shellfish, was abundant.

Originally, bisque was made by crushing the shells of crustaceans and simmering them with vegetables, herbs, and spices to create a flavorful broth. Over time, this technique evolved, and bisque became associated with a smooth, velvety texture achieved by blending the soup and straining out any remaining solids.

In the 19th century, bisque gained popularity outside of France and spread to other parts of Europe and the United States. It became a staple in upscale dining establishments and was often served as a starter course during elaborate meals.

Today, bisque remains a beloved dish worldwide, with variations featuring a wide range of shellfish, including crab, like this recipe!

What you'll love about this recipe:

  • SEAFOOD LOVERS – With fresh crab meat, this crab bisque is filled with rich seafood flavor. 
  • FLAVORFUL – The combination of crab meat, spices, rich seafood stock, brandy, and heavy cream creates a creamy, slightly spicy soup. 

What You Need to Make Crab Bisque

  • All-Purpose Flour – Helps thicken up the bisque and make it nice and creamy.
  • Vegetable oil – We use this to sauté our veggies. 
  • Chopped yellow onions, seeded and chopped green bell peppers, chopped celery, chopped carrot – These are the flavorful aromatics, giving our bisque that tasty base.
  • Bay leaves – Adds a subtle earthy touch to the bisque. 
  • Salt
  • Cayenne pepper – Gives a little kick and extra depth to our bisque. 
  • Gumbo crabs – Gumbo crabs are a type of crab commonly used in cooking, especially in dishes like gumbo and crab bisque. These crabs are typically small in size and are often sold already cleaned and cut in half. They add a rich seafood flavor to dishes and add depth to soups and stews.
  • Fresh or canned tomatoes – Add a bit of tanginess and sweetness to balance things out.
  • Brandy – Enriches the flavor of crab bisque, blending seamlessly with the other ingredients to create a delicious taste.
  • Seafood stock – This is the magic liquid that infuses our bisque with all that amazing seafood flavor.
  • Liquid crab boil (optional) – If you're feeling extra adventurous, this adds even more flavor and spice.
  • Chopped green onions and finely chopped fresh parsley leaves – Sprinkle these on top for a pop of freshness and color.
  • Heavy cream – Creates a super creamy bisque. 
  • Lump crab meat – The pièce de résistance! Adds big chunks of delicious crab to make our bisque extra special.

How to Make Crab Bisque

  • First, combine the flour and oil in a large stock pot or Dutch oven until smooth. Now, heat over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture is the color of peanut butter, which should take about 10 minutes. Don't worry if it doesn't look like peanut butter at first; just be patient, but make sure not to let the mixture get too brown.
  • Next, stir in the onions, bell pepper, celery, carrots, bay leaves, salt, and cayenne. Cook for about 10 minutes or until the vegetables are soft. Then, add the crabs and tomatoes.
  • Afterward, cook for an additional 10 minutes, and then add the brandy, stock, and crab. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 1 hour and 45 minutes.
  • Once the time is up, stir in the green onions and parsley. Don't forget to discard the bay leaves. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the cream until everything is combined.
  • Finally, serve the gumbo in bowls with a generous portion of fresh crab meat on top.

Expert Recipe Tips

  • Use a blender or immersion blender to get your bisque super smooth and creamy. No one wants to bite into chunks of veggies or shells!
  • For an extra velvety texture, strain your bisque through a fine mesh sieve after blending. It takes a bit of effort, but the result is worth it!
  • Hold off on adding the heavy cream until the very end. This keeps it from curdling and ensures your bisque stays silky smooth.
  • Can't find seafood stock? You can make your own homemade shellfish stock by boiling leftover crab shells in boiling water with spices. You could also use a combination of chicken stock or vegetable stock with a dash of fish sauce for a similar flavor profile. 
  • Make your crab soup cajun by adding cajun seasoning like Tony Chachere's or Old Bay seasoning. 
  • Not a fan of brandy? Use dry white wine or cooking wine instead. 

How to Store Leftovers & Reheat

To store leftover crab bisque, let it cool to room temperature before transferring it to an airtight container. Seal the container tightly and place it in the refrigerator, where it can stay for up to 3-4 days.

When you're ready to reheat, simply pour the bisque into a saucepan and heat it gently over low to medium heat, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. Alternatively, you can reheat it in the microwave in a microwave-safe dish, stirring halfway through the heating process to ensure even warming.

What to serve with creamy crab bisque

Serve up a bowl of hot soup with some homemade white crusty bread, a crunchy baguette, or oyster crackers.

This crab bisque gives you a taste of cajun cooking right in your own kitchen. Enjoy the flavors of the bayou with this creamy soup! If you try this recipe, please rate the recipe card and leave a comment down below to help out the next reader! 

📖 Recipe

Crab Bisque

Until you have sunken into a bowl of real crab bisque, have you ever known serious food flavors? This is rich but light, spicy but just right, and perfectly balanced classic crab bisque.
5 from 7 votes
Print Pin Rate
Soups, Stews and Chowders
Author: Kita Roberts
Serves: 12 serving


  • ¾ cup flour
  • ¾ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 ½ cups chopped yellow onions
  • ½ cup seeded and chopped green bell peppers
  • ½ cup chopped celery
  • ½ cup chopped carrots
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 ½ teas salt
  • ½ teas cayenne
  • 6 gumbo crabs* - each cut in ½
  • 1 cup peeled - seeded, and chopped fresh or canned tomatoes
  • ½ cup brandy
  • 8 cups seafood stock
  • 1 teas liquid crab boil - optional
  • ½ cup chopped green onions - green parts only
  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 1 lb lump crab meat - picked over for shells and cartilage


  • Combine the flour and oil in a large stockpot until smooth.
  • Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture is the color of peanut butter, about 10 minutes. (For a while it may seem like a peanut butter color is not going to happen, but it will just don’t let the mixture get too brown).
  • Stir in the onions, bell pepper, celery, carrots, bay leaves, salt, and cayenne.
  • Cook about 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are soft.
  • Add the crabs and tomatoes.
  • Cook for 10 minutes longer then add the brandy, stock, and crab boil. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered for 1 hour and 45 minutes.
  • Stir in the green onions and parsley. Discard the bay leaves. Remove from heat and stir in the cream until combined.
  • Serve in bowls with a large portion of fresh crab meat on top.


from Emeril on Food  Bam. 


Serving: 1g | Calories: 548kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 47g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 22g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 239mg | Sodium: 1584mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 4g

Nutritional informations provided as a courtesy and is only an approximatation. Values will changes based on ingredients used.

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Recipe FAQs

While fresh crab meat is ideal for the best flavor and texture, canned crab meat can be a convenient alternative. Just make sure to drain it well before using.

Yes! Crab bisque actually tastes even better the next day as the flavors have had time to meld together. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.

Of course! You can simply omit the brandy if you prefer not to use alcohol. It adds a depth of flavor, but your bisque will still taste fantastic without it.


  1. Crack is whack unless in candle form...then it is totally OK. I do the whole huffing thing with cinnamon candles...and those cinnamon pine cones that appear every Christmas. It happens to the best of us!

  2. Any soup with cheese! Cheese makes everything better. It's a proven fact.

  3. Jen @ Savory Simple says:

    I've never been able to buy a Yankee Candle. I get migraines and I'm super sensitive to fragrances. It sucks because I know everyone loves them and I feel like I'm missing out! This soup sounds wonderful. I am a huge fan of bisque and as a Marylander I love anything with crab!

  4. I love candles, since having all these crazy munchins I have switched to the warmers that melt the wax. I love having my house smell like Pumpkin or apple spice, makes me happy! I would love to see a kicked up version of potatoe soup, I love this soup, but DH finds it boring and lacking. It doesn't stop me from making it though!

  5. Mary at n00bcakes says:

    Haha, I feel like fall time is *always* the time for candles. Rich fall flavors (be it autumn leaves, pumpkin pie, or some sort of plain 'old cinnamon) always seem to make a living space feel warmer. Which is good, because I'm too cheap to keep my heat on all the time.
    I really like this recipe - when I think of bisque I tend to think of something richer than what you have described; maybe more butter for a roux-like base. But this doesn't look too bad-for-your-health at all! What sort of additional flavor does the brandy add to this?

    I'm looking forward to some warm, tasty butternut squash soup this fall! Delicious!

  6. I just have to say that the bisque is amazing!!! You won't regret making this!!! Thank you for my drive by fooding!!!

  7. amanda @ fake ginger says:

    bahaha! I avert my eyes whenever I walk past the Yankee store in the mall. They're so good.

    Love this soup! I was obsessed with crab last fall/winter and I have a feeling it'll be the same this year. I wanna make this today!

  8. The Mom Chef ~ Taking on Magazines One Recipe at a Time says:

    I have their Mountain Lake candle right here on my desk. It's such a clean, fresh scent. When it's not burning, I have been known to just remove the lid, stick my nose in and inhale deeply. Yeah, I know what you mean. I gave my sister-in-law a Christmas present of their candle of the month club once. She loved it.

    Anyway....the bisque is amazing-looking. Since Emeril and Mario are good friends and Mario would say to use what's local whenever possible (if it grows together, it goes together), I say you did good with the blue crabs.

  9. that bisque looks absolutely delicious!

    i love any kind of soup recipe, especially if it's slow-cooker adaptable.

  10. I love any kind of soup but let's see, how about a butternut squash bisque! Sounds great on this chilly fall day (:

  11. i'd love to see soups with squash. My parents have been picking them from the garden by the ton!

  12. I'd like to see a good, hearty gumbo!

  13. butternut squash or roasted red pepper soup!!!

  14. i already like on fb

  15. There's a Corn Chowder with Chilies (Pioneer Woman) that I've made a lot the last couple of years. It'll heat you up! Not only is the chowder hot (duh!), but the chilies will clear out your sinuses, so it's a twofer! 😉

  16. I'm hoping you meant for us to leave a comment for each extra entry we do... that's the way it usually works. If not, sorry for what's about to transpire! 😉

    I'm following you on Facebook.

  17. I'm following Muir Glen on FB.

  18. I'm following you on Twitter -- @sharinlilbit

  19. I've subscribed to your RSS feed via Google Reader.

  20. Belinda @zomppa says:

    They really may...this bisque though looks like it has some incredible flavor of its own!

  21. What a great giveaway, and that soup looks awesome! The soup I'd like to see is a vegetarian chili for fall, maybe with sweet potatoes or butternut squash.

  22. I follow Pass the Sushi on Facebook.

  23. Frances Tran says:

    some delicious lobster bisque for sure! ^^

  24. Rachael {SimplyFreshCooking} says:

    Pretty much any soup with kale! And yeah, those candles are ridiculous! I want to eat a bowl of this soup right now btw... and I would. Totally don't even care if it's after 10pm! Yummy!

  25. Priscilla | ShesCookin says:

    I've been buying Muir Glen tomatoes for years - now I have to buy their No Salt diced tomatoes, but at least they have them and they're organic! Must try their spaghetti sauce. I'm in the mood for meatball soup, so how about Albondigas 🙂

  26. Priscilla | ShesCookin says:

    Oh, hit post before I mentioned what gorgeous pics these are! Plus, I'm following Muir Glen on FB and Twitter now. Already follow you 🙂

  27. Ambergreen says:

    Love hearty vegetables soup. Also following you on Twitter.

  28. I never had butternut squash soup until recently and I love it!!!

  29. I follow Pass the Sushi on Facebook

  30. I get your emails 🙂

  31. i follow you on twitter!

  32. I'd love to see a Guinness chili. Not technically a soup, but tasty none the less.

  33. I follow Pass the Sushi on Facebook.

  34. I follow Muir Glen on Facebook.

  35. I subscribe via email.

  36. I follow you on Twitter.

  37. black bean soup--my favorite!

  38. a butternut squash soup! i followed you on twitter 🙂

  39. Christina C. says:

    I'd be interested in a lactose-free clam chowder please!

  40. Christina C. says:

    I follow on Twitter (@kawaiidragon88)

  41. Christina C. says:

    I'm subscribed to the RSS feed.

  42. Broccoli, blue cheese, and nutmeg soup! It's warm and seasonal and indulgent and oh-so-good to come home to on cold evenings!

  43. nicole @ I am a Honey Bee says:

    pasta fagioli is one of my favorites. that would be a great soup to make

  44. How about a hearty barley stew with tender beef-yum.

  45. bianca @ sweet dreaming says:

    i'd love to see a butternut squash soup!

  46. My kids love crab so I know they'd love this crab bisque. Chicken Vegetable Soup with Rice or Small Pasta is a favorite soup in our family.

  47. I'd like to see some delicious corn chowder.

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