In two weeks, three generations of football fans will converge behind the bumper of a Honda SUV for an event of epic culinary proportions: our annual Notre Dame tailgate. No matter the team’s record (which lately is a bit…lackluster), every person in attendance brings her food A-game. My winning strategy: Hot Crab Dip.

Hot Crab Dip - the BEST easy party appetizer. Made with cream cheese, sweet crab, and shredded cheese. Perfect for football food for game day and tailgates. @wellplated

This post is sponsored by Kettle Brand Chips.

Although the final score of last Saturday’s game left Irish fans rather, um, crabby this Hot Crab Dip is guaranteed to beat even the worst football blues. It’s ultra creamy, packs big chunks of sweet, juicy crab, and the kick of spice at the end will have you reaching back into the dish on replay.

Plus, unlike fickle football scores, Hot Crab Dip always emerges victorious.

Even if you don’t actively cheer for a football team, you can still celebrate a great excuse to gather with friends and eat dip for dinner.

Hot Crab Dip high-five!

The BEST Hot Crab Dip with cream cheese, shredded cheese, jalapenos, and chunks of juicy crab. @wellplated

I first made this Hot Crab Dip for my sister when she came to stay with me in Milwaukee last week. A proud connoisseur of cream cheese dips of all kinds, she gave the Hot Crab Dip her seal of approval, and she never suspected that I’d lightened up the recipe with Greek yogurt. With her blessing, I know this Hot Crab Dip is ready for the finals: our Great Big Notre Dame Tailgate.

Once a year, Ben’s parents (who also met at Notre Dame) and their college friends throw an enormous tailgate. Ben and I started tagging along a few years ago, and now our friends, along with their new babies are invited too. It’s a multigenerational football-food feast. We fire up the grill, Ben’s dad’s pours his legendary Bloody Marys, and everyone brings a homemade dish to contribute.

Hot Crab Dip — THE BEST. Bubbly, cheesy, and a hit everywhere I bring it! @wellplated

We take our spread seriously; Ben’s mom started brainstorming the menu in July. I debated what to bring for a while, but after tasting this Hot Crab Dip, I know I have a winner.

In addition to being a crowd-pleaser, this Hot Crab Dip also gives me the opportunity to show off another festive tailgate addition, Kettle Brand Chips. Because the chips come in so many fun flavors and the bags are different colors, you can pick chips that match your team. For Notre Dame, I picked New York Cheddar (gold) and Jalapeno (green), both of which pair perfectly with the Hot Crab Dip.

The BEST Hot Crab Dip recipe. @wellplated

Since potato chips are not something I eat every day, when I do, I go for the best, and I have a serious weakness for Kettle Brand Chips. They are SO CRUNCHY and, unlike many potato chips, are made of real-deal ingredients and contain zero preservatives or MSG, a rarity among flavored potato chip brands. Just thinking about it makes me want to reach back into the bag and go for another dip!

Hot Crab Dip — the perfect party appetizer recipe! @wellplated

No matter how your team performs this weekend, or if you have “a team” at all, you’ll score a touchdown for bringing this Hot Crab Dip to your next game day or dinner party.

Hot Crab Dip. INCREDIBLE baked crab dip recipe made with cream cheese, chunks of crab, and jalapenos. @wellplated

Hot Crab Dip: the kick is good!

Tools I used to make this recipe:

Hot Crab Dip

Yield: 6 -8 servings
Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
35 mins
Total Time:
50 mins
Hot Crab Dip - the BEST easy party appetizer! Made with cream cheese, sweet lump crab, shredded cheese, and jalapeños for a little kick.


  • 8 ounces light cream cheese — softened to room temperature (do not use fat free)
  • 1/2 cup non-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 8 ounces lump crab meat — I used canned
  • 1 jalapeno — cored and finely chopped
  • 3 large chopped green onions — (or 4 small) divided
  • 1/2 cup shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese — divided
  • For serving: Kettle Brand Chips Jalapeno-flavored and New York Cheddar-flavored potato chips


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat a small casserole dish with baking spray.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese, Greek yogurt, lemon juice, hot sauce, Worchestershire sauce, garlic powder, and salt. With a spatula, fold in the crab meat, jalapeno, half of the green onions, and 1/4 cup of the cheddar cheese until evenly combined.
  3. Transfer the dip to the prepared casserole dish and spread in an even layer. Bake until hot and bubbly, about 30 minutes. Sprinkle the remaining cheese and green onions over the top, then return to the oven and bake until the cheese is melted, about 5-10 additional minutes. Serve hot with potato chips for dipping.

Recipe Notes

  • Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in a 350 degree oven, until warmed through.
  • This dip also tastes good at room temperature. For a tailgate, try covering it in foil, then reheating it on the grill (be sure to use a grill-safe dish!)
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Easy Appetizer Recipe, Hot Crab Dip

Nutrition Information

Amount per serving (1 (of 8) without chips) — Calories: 118, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 58mg, Sodium: 355mg, Carbohydrates: 4g, Sugar: 3g, Protein: 11g

Did you try this recipe? I want to see! Follow Well Plated on Instagram, snap a photo, and tag it #wellplated. I love to know what you are making!

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I am sharing this post in partnership with Kettle Brand Chips. As always, all opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands and companies that make it possible for me to continue creating quality content for you!