The Easiest Crab Cakes | The Recipe Critic

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These easy-to-make crab cakes are filled with thick chunks of crab meat mixed together with creamy mayonnaise and sweet red bell pepper, topped off with a kick of red pepper flakes. The BEST crab cake recipe you will ever use!

These are perfect for a quick dinner, appetizer or snack! If you love seafood as much as I do try this Cajun Popcorn Shrimp, Grilled Lemon Garlic Scallops or Walnut Crusted Maple Salmon.

Crab cakes on a white plate.

Best Crab Cake recipe

Since you guys have been loving these salmon croquettes so much I decided to make for you the best crab cakes that you will ever eat! These seriously are SO good and simple to make. The best part, is my kids eat them not knowing they’re made with crab! The whole family will love these crab cakes. They work great as an appetizer, side dish or served as a quick snack. Whenever I make them, my family can’t get enough of their crispy texture and savory flavor.

Not only are they absolutely delicious, but these crab cakes are so quick and easy to make as well! If you’re ever in a pinch and need to make an appetizer that everyone will love, this is definitely the recipe to try! Everyone will be raving after the first bite. Serve them up with homemade tartar sauce or chipotle mayo for some kick. Don’t blame me if these homemade crab cakes become a new obsession!

What You Need to Make Crab Cakes

Combine all the ingredients together for a quick bowlful of flavor! The best thing about these crab cakes is that you probably have everything to make them in your pantry right now. This makes them so easy to whip up! Check out the recipe card below for exact measurements.

  • Crab Meat: Works best if it’s in lump form.
  • Mayonnaise: Sticks everything together making a creamy and soft texture!
  • Panko: Creates a light, crunchy breading. You can also use homemade breadcrumbs. Find my full recipe here!
  • Flour: Helps hold everything together and will give the cakes a crispy crunch on the outside.
  • Egg: Binds all the ingredients together.
  • Green Onion: Adds a sweet but savory flavor and hint of texture.
  • Red Bell Pepper: Adds fresh flavor and a bit of crunch.
  • Worcestershire Sauce: Helps to balance out flavors.
  • Cajun Seasoning: Adds a pop of spicy Southern flavor!
  • Lemon: Citrus complements the flavor of these crab cakes perfectly.
  • Vegetable Oil: This will help cook them to a crisp, golden brown.

How to Make Crab Cakes

It only takes 2 steps to whip up these homemade crab cakes. 2 steps!! They’re so easy but taste like they came from your favorite seafood restaurant!

  1. Preparing the Filling: In a large bowl add the crabmeat, mayonnaise, Panko, flour, egg, green onion, bell pepper, Worcestershire sauce, Cajun seasoning, and lemon juice. Mix together and shape into patties.
  2. Cooking the Cakes: In a large saucepan add the oil and then heat to medium-high. Add the patties to the pan and then fry until they are brown on each side for 4-5 minutes. Serve with your favorite sauce.
The process of making crab cakes from beginning to end.

Tips and Tricks

Making homemade crab cakes is a simple and delicious way to enjoy the fresh flavor of crab meat. With just a few basic ingredients and some easy-to-follow steps, you can customize your crab cakes to preference and create the perfect dish every time!

  • Which Crab Meat to Use: I recommend fresh, refrigerated, lump crane meat.
  • Smaller Crab Cakes: For smaller cakes, divide the mixture into smaller 1 to 2 inch size circles. For mini crab cakes, divide into even smaller pieces, about 1 to 2 tablespoons for each cake. Bake at the same oven temperature. The bake time is shorter for these smaller sizes, so keep an eye on them. You’ll know the crab cakes are done when the tops and edges are lightly browned.
  • Cooked Crab Cakes: According to the USDA’s official website, seafood is cooked through and safe to eat when the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees F.
  • Baking Crab Cakes: If you don’t want to pan fry your crab cakes, you can also cook them in the oven! Bake for 10 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit flipping once halfway through. They’re done cooking when the outsides turn a nice golden brown color.

Crab cakes on a skillet cooking.

Storing Leftovers

Storing crab cakes for later is super easy and convenient. This makes them the perfect make-ahead meal for busy weeknights! Simply place the cooked cakes in an airtight container and store them in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or in the freezer for 2-3 months. When you’re ready to enjoy them, simply reheat them in the oven or on the stovetop until they are hot and crispy.

  • In the Refrigerator: Crab cakes are best kept in the refrigerator once they have been cooked. It is best to store them in an airtight container for 3-4 days.
  • In the Freezer: Follow the instructions on how to prepare the crab cakes. Once ready to bake you can freeze the pre-made crab cakes in a Ziploc bag. Lay flat in the freezer for up to 1 month. If you are wanting to cook them before freezing, cook them and let cool. Once cooled, freeze them in a Ziploc bag and lay flat in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw before reheating for best results.
  • Reheating: When ready to serve the cakes, cook over medium-high heat to warm up. You can also use an oven to bake them at 350 degrees F for 12 to 15 minutes or until warmed through. If they are frozen, add a few extra minutes of cooking time.

Crab cakes on a white plate, topped with tartar sauce.

  • In a large bowl add the crabmeat, mayonnaise, Panko, flour, egg, green onion, bell pepper, Worcestershire sauce, Cajun seasoning, and lemon juice. Mix together and shape into patties.

  • In a large saucepan, add the oil and heat to medium-high. Add the patties and fry until they are brown on each side for 4-5 minutes. Serve with your favorite sauce.

Originally posted on December 29, 2019
Updated February 1, 2023

Serves: 8

Calories198kcal (10%)Carbohydrates7g (2%)Protein12g (24%)Fat13g (20%)Saturated Fat7g (35%)Cholesterol47mg (16%)Sodium576mg (24%)Potassium183mg (5%)Fiber1g (4%)Sugar1g (1%)Vitamin A722IU (14%)Vitamin C14mg (17%)Calcium40mg (4%)Iron1mg (6%)

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.

Course Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack

Cuisine American, Caribbean, Mediterranean

Keyword crab, crab cake recipe, crab cakes, homemade crab cakes

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