Stories / Recipes

This is James Beard's Ultimate Crab Recipe

Frank Guerriero

March 18, 2019


Photo and Food Styling: Judy Kim

After his maritime childhood in the Pacific Northwest, our namesake transplanted to New York City to begin his decades-long reign as the “dean of American cooking.” But even as he wined and dined in the Big Apple, he never forgot his devotion to coastal cuisine and all things shellfish. This deviled crab recipe—rich with roux, brightly seasoned, and surprisingly easy—was among his favorites.

Beard started by quickly sautéing onions in butter, then whisked in flour to form a roux. After seasoning with mustard powder, cayenne, and Worcestershire sauce, he stirred in stock for a proper gravy. Then, he folded in the crab meat, topped the mixture with toasted bread crumbs, and baked it all to an irresistible golden brown. It’s a comforting, crowd-pleasing addition to your next seafood supper. Get the recipe.

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Frank Guerriero is the media assistant at the Beard Foundation. Find him on Instagram.