Recipes » Dirt Cheap Recipes » Crab Newburg over Old Bay Pasta

Crab Newburg over Old Bay Pasta

Transform a little bit of crab into a delectable feast with this easy crab Newburg over homemade old bay pasta recipe!

Part of learning how to feed a family of 4 for less than $250 a month is learning how to take advantage of the resources you have on hand. In this particular case, this entire delectable Crab dish cost less than $2.50 to feed the entire family, including leftovers for a second meal.


We live on the East Coast and had the pleasure of taking advantage of the recreational crabbing that is available here. Last fall we spent a fun weekend crabbing, which resulted in several packages of delicious crab meat being packed away into the freezer to enjoy later in the season.
Crab Newburg over Old Bay Pasta

Crab Newburg over Old Bay Pasta

For this particular recipe you’ll need:

  • 3 Tbs Butter/margarine
  • 3 T. Flour
  • 1/2 tsp Paprika
  • 1/2 tsp Old Bay Seasoning
  • 3/4 c. Water
  • 1 1/4 c. Milk
  • 1/2 c. Sherry (If you’re using Cooking sherry- keep in mind that it’s HEAVILY salted and it will change the flavor of the sauce). In a pinch, a light white wine can be substituted for the sherry. (such as Zinfandel, or Pinot Grigio).
  • Crab Meat or Cooked Shrimp (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • Old Bay Pasta or Freshly Baked Biscuits


Melt the butter in a medium saucepan, add the flour and seasonings, stirring well.

Allow it to brown slightly, add water, continually stirring, add milk. Bring to a light boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Add the sherry. Continue cooking until the mixture is thick and smooth.

Add the crab meat, stirring gently until warmed through. Canned crab meat can be used in place of fresh crab if you don’t happen to live near the coast!

Serve over fresh hot cooked pasta or freshly baked biscuits. Due to the colors of the pasta and the cream sauce, this isn’t a particularly pretty dish. You could add one to two teaspoons of chopped fresh parsley for a bit of color.

Budget101 Cost Breakdown:

Obviously, our cost is low because we were able to catch the crabs ourselves and unless you live near the coast, that’s not an option for you. However, even if you had to Purchase canned Crabmeat, you could STILL make this recipe for under $6. for your whole family.

Total Cost
Real Butter $2. lb (purchased on sale)

1 lb = 24 Tablespoons = .08 per tablespoon

Crab- 2 cups
Milk- 1 Gal for $3. = 16 cups =.19 per cup
Sherry – $1.98 bottle
Flour (5lb bag is $2.29)

20 c. flour in 5lbs/ 16T per cup= 320 Tbs per
5lb bag = .007 cents per Tablespoon

Total Cost of Recipe


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4 thoughts on “Crab Newburg over Old Bay Pasta”

  1. But let’s be realistic here. Very few are going to get crab meat for free and you can’t buy Old Bay seasoning or a bag of flour for 3 cents. This is, at the very least, a $30 meal.

    • I’m being Very realistic. I think perhaps you misunderstand how to calculate the cost of a recipe.

      If you add a splash of milk to your coffee, in your mind, did that cup of coffee just cost you $12. because you used a splash of milk and a teaspoon of sugar in it? I mean, by your calculations the container of coffee was $8, the milk was $2, and the sugar was $2, therefore that cup of coffee was $12.

      It’s not correct to add all of the ingredients. The correct way to figure the cost of a recipe is to add what you actually USE in the recipe.

      You’re not using an entire Bag of flour in the recipe, you’re using three tablespoons.

      a 5lb bag of flour is $2.29. There are 20 cups of flour in 5lbs. There are 16 tablespoons per cup which equal 320 Tbs per 5lb bag. Which means that it actually costs .007cents per Tablespoon, therefore the amount of flour in this recipe actually costs you 3¢.

      This meal is dirt cheap, even if you have to purchase a can of crabmeat to make it. I could easily make this recipe 20 times for $30!

      Here’s how to Properly figure out the cost of a recipe:

  2. I really enjoyed your crab newburg sauce, but I wanted to share the recipe my mom gave me years ago.
    This sauce is by far the best in flavor for crab, shrimp, or lobster newburg. I really found that the addition of curry powder really made the difference and most closely resembled the restaurant version we tried.

    4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    1 tablespoon paprika
    1/2 teaspoon curry powder
    1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    Pinch cayenne
    4 tablespoons unsalted butter
    1 shallot, minced
    2 cups milk
    2 tablespoons tomato paste
    1/2 cup dry sherry

    Put the flour, paprika, curry powder, nutmeg, cayenne, and salt in a small bowl and stir until combined. Set aside. Melt the butter over low heat in a large saucepan. Cook the shallot for 3 minutes until it begins to brown. Add the flour mixture to the browned shallot and stir until mixed well with the butter. Slowly whisk in the milk and tomato paste to the shallot and bring the mixture to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat; be careful not to let it boil over. Add the sherry and whisking constantly until the mix is creamy and thick.


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