Cheesy Baked Crab Casserole in a white dish with a woman's hand holding a cracker with dip on it (with logo overlay)

Cheesy Baked Crab Casserole: Chinese Buffet Copycat

Crab casserole is served at Chinese buffet restaurants, and is so easy to make at home. It’s a delicious dip that makes a great appetizer.

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One of the places I’ve missed since everything closed with the COVID shutdowns is our local Chinese buffet. We used to go about once per month. It’s great because we can all get what we want and don’t have to wait for it. 

One of my favorite things, besides the sushi, is the baked crab. All I knew was it was crab and covered in cheese. Lots of cheese. And cheese is one of my favorites! 

So, since I was missing out on going to eat, we decided to make it ourselves. I wasn’t quite sure what exactly went into the baked crab. We just made some guesses based on what we remembered from the restaurant. And that’s how we came up with this Chinese buffet crab casserole recipe.

Most of the time, this is made with imitation crab meat. That’s how I prefer it. But you could also make it with lump crab meat if you prefer the taste or texture.

I made it on a weekend and we took it over to my in-law’s house. My father-in-law and I ended up eating half of the crab meat casserole before we even made lunch that day! I can’t wait to make this one for my dad next time we visit since he loves seafood, too.

Serving Suggestions

There are a lot of things you can use to serve your cheesy crab bake recipe. When I eat it at Chinese restaurants, I tend to eat it as-is with a fork. At home, we served it with Ritz crackers and made it into an easy recipe for a dip. I’ve also heard of people using sliced bell pepper to dip into the crab casserole. 

If you want to up the flavor, you can also try adding some Old Bay Seasoning, black pepper, lemon zest, or sweet onion. The cheese can also be subbed for a stronger cheese. For example, replace the mozzarella with Swiss cheese. 

Cheesy Baked Crab Casserole Step by Step

Ingredients

  • 8 oz imitation crab meat
  • 4 oz cream cheese (softened at room temperature)
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese (shredded)
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese (shredded)
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • Ritz crackers

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 350F. Shred the imitation crab and put it in a large mixing bowl. I like to use the kitchen shears to cut the crab into smaller pieces.

Crab casserole ingredients in stainless steel bowls: shredded imitation crab, cream cheese, sour cream, shredded mozzarella cheese, seasonings, worcestershire sauce, and shredded cheddar cheese all on a wooden surface

Add the cream cheese, sour cream, mozzarella cheese, and 1/2 cup of cheddar cheese and stir to combine.

Crab mixture with a wooden spoon in a stainless steel bowl on a wooden surface

Add the Worcestershire sauce, onion powder, garlic powder, and pepper.

Crab casserole mixture with a wooden spoon in a stainless steel bowl on a wooden surface

Spread the crab dip in a 2-quart casserole dish.

Crab casserole mixture in a white casserole dish next to a stainless steel bowl of shredded cheddar cheese all on a wooden surface

Cover with the remaining cheddar cheese.

Casserole dish covered with shredded cheddar cheese on a wooden surface

Bake for 30 minutes until the cheese is bubbly. Serve warm with Ritz crackers and garnish with green onions if desired. 

Woman's hand holding a cracker dipped in baked crab casserole over the casserole dish with a white and blue towel behind all on a wooden surface (vertical)

Cheesy Baked Crab Casserole Leftovers

Storage: Store the leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator. 

Reheating: Place the casserole back in the oven at 350F for about 10-15 minutes.

Recipe

Originally Published On: August 7, 2020

Updated On: June 9, 2023

Cheesy Baked Crab Casserole in a white dish with a woman's hand holding a cracker with dip on it

Cheesy Baked Crab Casserole

Crab casserole is served at Chinese buffet restaurants, and is so easy to make at home. It's a delicious dip that makes a great appetizer.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course:
Appetizer
Cuisine:
American
Keyword:
cheddar cheese
|
crab
Dietary Needs:
Egg-Free
|
Nut-Free
Meat:
Seafood
Servings: 4 cups
5 from 3 votes

Ingredients

  • 8 oz imitation crab
  • 4 oz cream cheese (softened to room temperature)
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese (shredded)
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese (shredded)
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • Ritz crackers

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350F
  • Shred the imitation crab and put it in a large mixing bowl
  • Add the cream cheese, sour cream, mozzarella cheese, and 1/2 cup of cheddar cheese and stir to combine
  • Add the Worcestershire sauce, onion powder, garlic powder, and pepper
  • Spread the crab dip in a 2-quart casserole dish
  • Cover with the remaining cheddar cheese
  • Bake for 30 minutes until the cheese is bubbly
  • Serve warm with Ritz crackers and garnish with green onions if desired
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Nutrition Facts
Cheesy Baked Crab Casserole
Amount Per Serving (0.5 cups)
Calories 212 Calories from Fat 144
% Daily Value*
Fat 16g25%
Saturated Fat 9g45%
Cholesterol 54mg18%
Sodium 437mg18%
Potassium 65mg2%
Carbohydrates 7g2%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 11g22%
Vitamin A 519IU10%
Calcium 230mg23%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutrition content will vary based on brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes, and more.

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20 thoughts on “Cheesy Baked Crab Casserole: Chinese Buffet Copycat”

  1. This recipe sounds delicious and it looks fairly straightforward to make too. We hardly ever eat crab – I’ve no idea why as I love it when we do have it!

    1. Oh man, that’s hard. My mom is severely allergic but always has been so she doesn’t know what she’s missing. This would probably work with shredded chicken, too.

  2. I have been searching for a special something to make my husband to celebrate our new home purchase—and he loves all things seafood; crab dip being a favorite.
    Going to give this a try. It looks delicious.

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