Hot Crawfish Dip

Looking for a unique dip to serve to a crowd? This Hot Crawfish Dip is hearty, gooey and slightly spicy! Studded with bite-sized crawfish tails, this creamy dip is satisfying and great for sharing for any occasion. 

A baguette scoops up crawfish dip

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Not gonna lie: this Creamy Crawfish Dip recipe has been a long time coming, and I’m thrilled to be sharing it with y’all today. 

This dip is wonderful year-round. Currently, it is football season, and dips like this are the best things to serve while watching a game. But this dip also wonderful for crawfish season, which runs from about February to May. You could serve it at Mardi Gras, too!

This was the final recipe developed in our Dallas house, and I shared it with friends at our going away party just a few days before we hit the road.

Whether you’re got fresh crawfish tails or the frozen variety, this recipe is an excellent choice for sharing.

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    What do crawfish taste like?

    To me, crawfish tail meat tastes similar to lobster. The meat is slightly sweet and a little salty. It’s light, and the tails are bite-sized. Crawfish tails are not particularly fishy, like some shrimp are.

    Want to learn more about this crustacean and how to use it? Check out Crawfish 101: Everything You Need to Know + Our Favorite Crawfish Recipes.

    Why I love this recipe:

    I love, love, love, love anything involving crawfish tails, and this Hot Crawfish Dip recipe is the stuff dreams are made of.

    It’s really satisfying and gooey and best served warm with your favorite dippers, whether they’re bread, crackers or chips.

    The crawfish, which are slightly sweet and salty and meaty, just sing when paired with the onion, bell pepper and garlic… and swim in a sea of parmesan and cream cheese to add wonderful creaminess to this dip.

    Think of it like a Hot Spinach Artichoke Dip… but without the spinach or artichokes and with Louisiana flavors.

    Love Cajun starters? Check out some of our favorites — The Best Cajun Appetizers!

    More dips and finger foods we love: Cheese Dip for Pretzels | Hot Boudin Dip | Heirloom Tomato Bruschetta | Pepperoni Pizza Rolls | Caramelized Onion Guacamole | Homemade Loaded Queso | Baked Boudin Balls

    Looking for more finger foods and dips? Check out my Appetizer Recipe Index for more ideas.

    Ingredients to make crawfish dip in bowls on a gray surface with a dark blue towel

    What you’ll need to make this recipe:

    The Speckled Palate participates in affiliate programs. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a commission from qualifying purchases. Please refer to my disclosure page for more information about these affiliate programs.

    Let’s talk ingredients!

    In addition to the tools above, you’re going to need some ingredients to make this recipe, too! Chances are, you might already have some of them in your fridge or pantry. Scroll down to the recipe card for the full measurements and instructions.

    This is what you’ll need:

    • Crawfish tails — we used the frozen variety from our local grocery store. Freshly peeled crawfish tails are also perfect here. If you’re using frozen, defrost them fully in the fridge.
    • Onion — yellow or white onion are what we need for this dip.
    • Green bell pepper — you’ll need about half of a large one. Chop the other half to use as a dipper.
    • Minced garlic — I prefer to chop my own, but you can use the jarred kind of that’s what you’ve got on hand. As I tell my kids, we measure garlic with our hearts, not with a measuring spoon. 😉 
    • Cream cheese — set this out ahead of time so it’s at room temperature. It will be more easy to incorporate into the dip.
    • Parmesan cheese — for a little extra cheesiness in the dip itself. It also adds a little saltiness. I really like grated parmesan here, but you could easily use fresh shredded, too.
    • Panko bread crumbs — or regular breadcrumbs, if that’s what you’ve got on hand. These add a lovely crunch to the top of our dip.
    • Seasonings — we’re using a combination of kosher salt and Creole seasoning. Tony’s and Louisiana are our favorite storebought seasonings for this, but you can easily make homemade Creole seasoning, too. You could also use Cajun seasoning if that’s what you have on hand.
    • Green onions — also known as scallions, we use these as garnish for the dip. These are paramount to any Cajun recipe.


    The liquid in the bag along with the peeled crawfish tails is fat. Do not discard it! This will provide extra flavor to our dip. It will be added to the pan with the tails themselves, so it does not have to be separated, either.

    Traditional dippers for Crawfish Dip

    • French bread or a crusty baguette slices
    • Sliced veggies, like bell peppers, celery and carrots
    • Crackers
    • Chips, like tortilla chips or pita chips

    How to make Hot Crawfish Dip

    Preheat the oven. Spray a casserole dish with nonstick baking spray, and set aside.

    Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat.

    Add the diced onion and bell pepper. Season with kosher salt. Cook over medium heat for 5-7 minutes, or until translucent. We don’t want them browning up, but we do want them to soften.

    Add the garlic, stirring it into the other veggies and cooking until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes, then turn down the heat to low.

    Crawfish tails on top of veggies in a pan
    Add the crawfish tails

    Add the crawfish tails and the liquid from the packaging, which is the crawfish fat, to the mixture, and stir until combined.

    Finally, stir in the cream cheese and parmesan. Stir until the cream cheese has melted and the parmesan is incorporated.

    Transfer the dip mixture into the prepared casserole dish. Top with panko.

    Bake until the panko is golden brown and the dip is bubbly, about 10-15 minutes.

    Serve with your favorite dippers, and enjoy!

    Erin’s Easy Entertaining Tips

    Nothing makes me happier than sharing a dip like this, which is a more unique recipe than a traditional dip or appetizer than you’d see at most parties. Truly, this is a great recipe for sharing. 

    There are a few things you can do if you’re planning to 

    • Defrost your crawfish tails early. I do this in the fridge. They can hang out there for 4-5 days once defrosted.
    • Make the dip early… but don’t add the panko or bake it off until right before you plan to serve it. Keep it wrapped in plastic wrap in the casserole dish you’ll bake it in until it’s go-time.
    • Double or triple the recipe. Yes, that’ll make a lot of dip, but this dip has been known to disappear quickly when we have just a handful of friends over. If you’re hosting a large gathering, having a double batch is always a good idea.
    Hot crawfish dip in a casserole dish surrounded by baguette slices and garnished with green onion

    Frequently Asked Questions

    What is crawfish dip made of? 

    Crawfish dip combines crawfish tails with a few veggies, cream cheese, parmesan and crunchy breadcrumbs on top.

    Where can I find crawfish tails? 

    We’ve had good luck in the frozen section of our local grocery stores here in Texas. You can also order them online from a trusted retailer, like Cajun Grocer.

    What do you serve with seafood dip? 

    I like to serve French bread with this dip, but you could easily use crackers, veggie slices or even chips, if desired.

    What appetizers go with crawfish boil? 

    You could easily bring this Crawfish Dip to a crawfish boil. Be sure to cover it with foil after baking so that it can stay warm before serving, or reheat it at the party.

    How does crawfish taste? 

    To me, crawfish tastes a lot like lobster. It’s a little sweet with a meaty flavor. Obviously, crawfish tails are smaller and less meaty than lobster tails because a lobster is several times larger than a crawfish. It doesn’t have a super fishy taste.

    Close up of crawfish dip, topped with browned panko and sliced green onions

    Quick tips and tricks for the best Crawfish Dip

    • Make sure your crawfish tails are defrosted. Throwing frozen crawfish tails and fat into this dip won’t work. Defrost the tails in the fridge before using.
    • Mise en place is key. Prep and chop everything before you start putting the dip together. It’ll take a lot less time.
    • Add extra heat ​if you like it spicy. Swirl in some hot sauce or some cayenne pepper to give this dip even more of a kick.
    • How to store: Keep leftovers in an airtight food storage container stored in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Reheat in the microwave in 30-second bursts until warmed through.

    More crawfish recipes to try:

    Now who wants to make this goodness? Check it out…

    Hot crawfish dip in a casserole dish surrounded by baguette slices and garnished with green onion

    Hot Crawfish Dip

    Erin Parker, The Speckled Palate
    Looking for a unique dip to serve to a crowd? This Hot Crawfish Dip is hearty, gooey and slightly spicy! Studded with bite-sized crawfish tails, this creamy dip is satisfying and great for sharing for any occasion.
    5 from 45 votes
    Servings 8 servings
    Calories 357 kcal
    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 15 minutes
    Total Time 25 minutes


    • ¼ cup unsalted butter
    • 1 large yellow onion diced (2 cups diced or 340g)
    • ½ large green bell pepper diced (¾ cup diced or 100g)
    • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
    • 2 garlic cloves minced
    • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
    • 16 oz. 1 lb. defrosted crawfish tails
    • ½ teaspoon Creole seasoning
    • 8 oz. cream cheese softened
    • ¾ cup grated parmesan cheese 80g
    • ½ cup panko breadcrumbs
    • 1 green onion diced

    As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.


    • Preheat the oven to 425°F.
    • Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat.
    • Add the diced onion, bell pepper and garlic. Season with salt.
    • Cook for 5-7 minutes, or until translucent and softened.
    • Add the garlic. Stir it into the other veggies, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
    • Lower heat to low.
    • Add the crawfish tails and the crawfish fat (the liquid in the packaging.) Stir until combined.
    • Measure in the cream cheese and parmesan, stirring until both have melted.
    • Transfer the dip to the prepared casserole dish, and top with panko.
    • Bake until golden brown and bubbly, about 10-15 minutes.
    • Garnish with chopped green onion.
    • Serve warm with your favorite dippers and enjoy.


    Do not discard the liquid from the crawfish packaging, as that is the crawfish fat and important for flavor.
    This dip can be served without the panko and baking, though we really like the extra crunch this gives the final dish.
    How to store: Store leftovers in an airtight food storage container for 3-4 days. Reheat in the microwave in 30-second bursts until warmed through.
    How to make ahead of time: Make the dip up until the point where it bakes. Transfer the dip into the casserole dish, and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for up to 2 days. Before serving, top with panko and then bake until golden brown and gooey.


    Serving: 1gCalories: 357kcalCarbohydrates: 10gProtein: 33gFat: 20gSaturated Fat: 11gPolyunsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 246mgSodium: 633mgFiber: 1gSugar: 3g
    Keyword appetizer, appetizer recipe, appetizers, baking recipe, crawfish appetizer, crawfish dip, crawfish dip recipe, dips, easy appetizer recipe, fall appetizer, game day recipe, hot crawfish dip, hot dip, hot dip recipe, Louisiana food, louisiana recipe, louisiana recipe baking
    Course Appetizers & Starters
    Cuisine Cajun
    Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
    A woman with dark curly hair wearing a black tank top in front of a white wall

    About the Author:

    Erin Parker is a Southern gal living in Texas with her husband and two daughters. She started The Speckled Palate to share what she was cooking as a newlywed… and over the years, it’s evolved to capture her love for hosting. Specifically, the EASIEST, lowest key entertaining because everyone deserves to see their people and connect over good food. Learn more about her

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