Virginia's She-Crab Soup Recipe

Virginia's She-Crab Soup Recipe
Staff Writer

Christopher Brown


Whether sitting down for a noon meal (“lunch” elsewhere but “dinner” at Virginia’s) or for an evening meal (“dinner” elsewhere but “supper” at Virginia’s), guests here can expect a heaping serving of authentic Charleston-born gentility and truly Southern gustatory pleasures. Country Fried Steak Served with Red-Eye Gravy, Stuffed Pork Chops, Fried Pickles, and Brown Sugar-Glazed Ham and more come directly from the recipe file of the restaurant’s namesake, one Mrs. Virginia Bennett. A native of Charleston, Mrs. Bennett believes in the tradition of breaking bread and sharing good food with her large brood. For years, she, her six children, and husband Warren J. convened in their home to dine on Sunday afternoons (which later become Thursday afternoons) for a multigenerational family dinner.

Now, everyone’s invited to share in the tasty tradition, which is served seven days a week at the restaurant. Executive Chef Jason Murphy literally sat down with Virginia to look over every single one of her recipes and tweak as needed. As luscious as the food is (especially the fried okra with house-made remoulade that will leave you crying for more), the smart, mercifully gingham-free décor is not to be overlooked. Guess who had a say in all of that that? If you look around on a Thursday afternoon, you might just see the grand dame herself.

Adapted from "The Charleston Chef's Table" by Holly Herrick.


In a large soup pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the carrots, onion, and celery. Stir to coat and cook until the vegetables have softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high and add ½ cup of sherry (reserving the rest for later). Stir and cook until the sherry has reduced by half.

Stir in the flour to create a roux. Cook the roux over medium-low heat (do not allow it to color), until it has thickened and formed a loose paste, 3-5 minutes. Add the heavy cream, whisking to incorporate with the roux. Cook over medium heat until the soup base has thickened, about 10 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and cook another 20 minutes, or until the soup has thickened enough to slightly coat the back of a spoon and the crab is cooked. Taste and adjust salt and pepper as needed. Discard the bay leaf. Serve in shallow bowls that showcase the soup’s silky texture and pale pink blush. If desired, garnish each soup with a drizzle of the remaining sherry.


Calories per serving:

1,251 calories

Dietary restrictions:

Low Carb Egg Free, Peanut Free, Tree Nut Free, Soy Free, Pork Free

Daily value:



  • Fat 125g 193%
  • Carbs 19g 6%
  • Saturated 77g 387%
  • Fiber 1g 3%
  • Trans 1g
  • Sugars 11g
  • Monounsaturated 36g
  • Polyunsaturated 5g
  • Protein 16g 32%
  • Cholesterol 544mg 181%
  • Sodium 587mg 24%
  • Calcium 234mg 23%
  • Magnesium 40mg 10%
  • Potassium 442mg 13%
  • Iron 1mg 6%
  • Zinc 2mg 13%
  • Phosphorus 345mg 49%
  • Vitamin A 1,434µg 159%
  • Vitamin C 13mg 22%
  • Thiamin (B1) 0mg 13%
  • Riboflavin (B2) 1mg 33%
  • Niacin (B3) 2mg 9%
  • Vitamin B6 0mg 9%
  • Folic Acid (B9) 61µg 15%
  • Vitamin B12 4µg 60%
  • Vitamin D 5µg 1%
  • Vitamin E 6mg 28%
  • Vitamin K 32µg 40%
MORE FROM EDAMAM Have a question about nutritional data? Let us know.