Caribbean Pumpkin Crab Bisque


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While this Caribbean Pumpkin Crab Bisque is a bit time-consuming, this dish is worth the effort. It is so delicious and reminiscent of Caribbean food. You can taste all the layers of flavor from the coconut’s sweetness to the tomatoes’ acidity to the richness of the crab and cream.

It’s honestly like nothing you’ve ever enjoyed before. You may not ever put these flavors together but they work.

A side view of a bowl of Caribbean pumpkin crab bisque.

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Don’t let the daunting list of ingredients scare you. There are a lot of them for sure and I’m not going to lie, as I mentioned this Caribbean pumpkin crab bisque is time-consuming but it’s well worth it. Everyone I’ve made it for has asked for the recipe.

  • Curry Powder
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Onion
  • Celery
  • Red Bell Pepper
  • Garlic Cloves
  • Fresh Ginger
  • Shrimp Bouillon
  • Crushed Tomatoes
  • Brown Sugar
  • Anchovies
  • Sriracha
  • Milk
  • Salt
  • Cream of Coconut – found in the cocktail mixer aisle
  • Pumpkin Puree
  • Heavy Cream
  • Lime Juice
  • Unsweetened Coconut Milk
  • Crabmeat – I prefer claw but backfin or lump would work too. Do not use imitation!
  • Almonds and Green Onions, for garnish
Vegetables sauteeing in a pot with curry

What does pumpkin crab bisque taste like?

The flavors of this bisque are warm and comforting. The curry and sriracha add subtle heat and the coconut contributes to the familiar Caribbean taste. Pumpkin and crab round out and balance the ingredients.

What you’ll love about this recipe:

  • IMPRESSIVE – This bisque is so full of flavor that your guests and family will want more and ask you to make it often.
  • FULL OF FLAVOR – Caribbean pumpkin crab bisque is so full of flavor from the wide variety of ingredients. The layers of flavor bring warmth, sweetness, and acid which are perfectly balanced.
  • UNIQUE – At first glance you may not think pumpkin, coconut, and crab go together. One taste will change your mind. It’s really like nothing you’ve ever had before.

What else can I serve with this pumpkin crab bisque recipe?

My suggestion for sides would be just about anything you’d serve with soup. A nice salad, some great bread, or a slice of quiche.

What drinks go with bisque?

Since this is a seafood bisque I would choose to serve either a chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, or pinot grigio.

While you could go with a lighter red such as a pinot noir, a light white wine compliments the seafood better.

Bisque in a pot with a spatula in it.

What is Sriracha?

Sriracha is a Thai-style hot sauce made from chiles, vinegar, garlic, sugar, and salt. It gets its heat from red jalapeños and is moderately spicy.

Sriracha is a completely different flavor profile than say Tabasco or other hot sauces so I don’t recommend any substitution for it.

If you prefer to make your own sriracha. Then you always have some on hand.

What is the difference between soup and bisque?

Bisque is a type of soup, though it’s worth mentioning that not all soups are bisque. Bisque refers to a soup, usually seafood-based, think lobster bisque, and frequently cooked with wine, though not always. It is puréed and spiked with cream for a thicker consistency. A bisque can also be vegetable based.

Chicken noodle soup is a classic soup as is French onion. Tomato basil bisque is a vegetable based bisque or you could try this seafood version of creamy tomato seafood bisque.

Overhead view of a tomato based bisque in a bowl on a table.

What can I substitute for shrimp base?

I could not find shrimp base at any grocery store near me. So I improvised with excellent results. I used shrimp bouillion.

What can I substitute for anchovies?

This Caribbean Pumpkin Crab Bisque uses one anchovy. Anchovies add a mild salty fishy umami. I’ve made it with and without anchovies and it’s equally delicious. Don’t stress if you don’t want to buy anchovies just to use one.

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How do I store Caribbean Pumpkin Crab Bisque?

This bisque makes about 3 quarts or six 8-ounce servings and can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

It is best reheated on the stovetop. Do not microwave. 

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Caribbean Pumpkin Crab Bisque

This will quickly become your favorite fall recipe.
5 from 8 votes
Prep Time25 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Course: Salads and Soups
Cuisine: Caribbean
Servings: 6


  • 1 ½ teaspoons curry powder
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 small or ½ large onion chopped
  • ¾ cup celery chopped
  • ¼ cup red bell peppers chopped
  • 1 ½ garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger
  • 1 cube shrimp bouillion prepared as directed on package
  • 1 18-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 4 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 ½ anchovies
  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha
  • 3 cups milk
  • ¾ tablespoon salt
  • ½ cup cream of coconut such as Goya or Coco Lopez
  • 15 ounces pumpkin puree not pumpkin pie filling
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 12 ounces unsweetened coconut milk such as Goya
  • ½ pound backfin crabmeat bluecrab
  • Sliced green onions toasted almonds and additional cream for garnish


  • Place a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat and dry toast the curry for about 5 seconds. Be careful not to burn it.
  • Place the vegetable oil in the pot immediately. Add the onions and celery, cover, and allow to cook for 10 to 12 minutes or until the vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the red bell peppers, cover, and cook until tender, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic and ginger. Mix well.
  • Add the prepared shrimp bouillon, crushed tomatoes, and brown sugar. Mix well.
  • Add the anchovies, Sriracha, milk, and salt. Mix well and bring to a boil. Add the Coco Lopez and simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Add the pumpkin puree, bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and mix in the cream, lime juice, and unsweetened coconut milk. Working in batches, puree in a blender until smooth.
  • Once the soup is pureed, add the crabmeat. Do not puree the soup with the crabmeat.
  • Finish each bowl with toasted almond slices, and sliced green onion, if desired.

Recipe adapted from Grillsmith Pumpkin Crab Bisque Recipe, A Front Burner Brands Restaurant

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5 from 8 votes (6 ratings without comment)

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