WTMD’s Whatcha Got Cookin? – Grandma’s Crab Soup from The Local Oyster

Every Wednesday we will feature a recipe from a local chef, cook, or restaurant for you to try to make yourself, or to dream get yourself. Today’s recipe comes from Nick Schauman from The Local Oyster, who offer carryout soup for the whole family until they can open again.

“Whatcha Got Cookin?” is made possible in part by the Maryland Department of Agriculture’s Maryland’s Best Seafood Program.

“This is actually my Grandma’s Crab Soup.  I can still remember what her house smelled like when she made it.  She would roast a giant beef bone in the oven and then cook it on the stove top all day to make the stock.  Grandma would make her Crab Soup for every family gathering and cookout. It was a thing. After she passed away it became my Mom’s Crab Soup.  Again, whenever someone in the neighborhood had a party, Mom would bring the soup. Like I said, it was a thing…

Now we make Grandma’s Crab Soup from scratch twice a week at The Local Oyster.  Every time I eat it, It reminds me of playing on my Grandma’s kitchen floor. The recipe is pretty much the same except for a few minor changes (no more giant beef bone.)  It’s a lot of work and it’s time consuming but if you get it right, it will be worth it.

I hope you like my Grandma’s Crab Soup!”

Nick Schauman; Founder and Chief Shucker at The Local Oyster


7 oz.        carrots

7 oz.        sweet onion

2 oz.        celery

4 cups     water

15 oz.      tomato sauce

2 cups     chicken broth

1 Tbsp     chopped parsley (fresh or dried)

½ tsp       black pepper

2 ½ tsp    old bay

16 oz.      frozen vegetable medley

2 strips    bacon (optional)

1 lb.         Maryland crab meat


Peel carrots and onions.  Rough chop along with celery.  Add mirepoix to blender with 2 cups of water.  Blend until liquefied.

Cook bacon til crispy then let cool.  Mince into bacon bits.

Put liquefied vegetables into a pot on medium high heat.

Add tomato sauce, remaining water, chicken broth, parsley, pepper and old bay to pot.

Bring to a low boil then reduce heat and simmer for at least 90 minutes, adding water if the base becomes too thick. This step is very important. It’s only after around 90 minutes that the magic happens and it starts to taste like soup.

After the base has cooked, add frozen vegetables and bacon.  Cook a little longer until vegetables are slightly tender.

Turn off heat and gently stir in crab meat, as to not break it apart.

Let cool for 1 hour then cover and put in the refrigerator overnight. This step is also very important.  All the flavors need to meld in order for it to taste right.

Heat up the next day and enjoy!

Pro Tip.  Serve with buttered pumpernickel bread.

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