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Charleston She-Crab Soup – enjoy a southern flavor with this recipe.

I recently returned from vacation in coastal South Carolina and discovered She-Crab Soup! I found this recipe at my resort and made it while on vacation. It was as good or better than what we ordered in restaurants.

Charleston She-Crab Soup

Thanks to Manzanita for sharing this recipe.

Charleston She-Crab Soup

  • Author:
  • Recipe Type: Reader's Recipes, Seafood Recipes, Soup Reicpes
  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 10 minutes
  • Serves: 10
Charleston She-Crab Soup

Charleston She-Crab Soup is a delicious soup and is a dish that is so well known in the South.


  • 1/2 cup finely diced onion
  • 1/2 cup finely diced celery
  • 10 tablespoons butter
  • 8 scant tablespoons flour
  • 6 cups fish stock
  • pinch mace
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon tomato paste
  • 2 cups cream
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons brandy
  • 10 ounces white crabmeat
  • 1 teaspoon crab roe


Sauté onion & celery in butter until tender. Add flour, fish stock, mace, salt & pepper. Simmer for 15-20 minutes. Add cream, sherry, brandy & simmer for 2 minutes. Add crabmeat & roe. Optional: add tomato paste for color. Serve in preheated soup cups & a dollop of whipped cream with an additional sprinkle of crab roe on top.

I've heard that if you're unable to find crab roe in the store (it seems to be a regional thing) you can substitute finely chopped or crumbled hard-cooked egg. I was also told an equal amount of chicken stock plus a can of clam juice can be substituted for the fish stock. I haven't tried these, so who knows?

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  • Tom O’Shields

    I’m a chef who grew up on the South Carolina coast. You CANNOT make she crab soup without the crab roe. It’s just some other kind of crab soup.

    • Pat

      What is crab roe? Where would I find it?

      • Stephanie

        You are going to find this inside the crab itself, it will be the little egg sacs inside the shell.

  • John B. Rogers

    give Sodium;Calories;
    fat;Cholesterol. I would thinks this is a once in a while soup due to the high numbers that are not for a steady healthy diet.

  • Nicolleq

    Do you have to add the ‘brandy’ & ‘sherry’?

    • Stephanie

      You don’t have to add it, but it won’t taste the same if you leave it out.

  • http://none James

    Add the flour by itself to the butter and veg. Let cook to almost brown over low heat. This is called roux. Add stock after roux is cooked. Color can better be obtained with paprika.

    Otherwise looks good.