Best Crab Meat For Crab Cakes
The Chesapeake Bay is home to Marylands famous blue crabs. Opinions vary on what the best crab variety is and its usually determined by where you live. Maryland crabs are known for their unique buttery flavor and Dungeness crabs, found on the west coast, are known for their impressive size. If you arent steaming your own crabs for crab meat, let me help you navigate which crab meat is best for crab cakes.
Whichever crab variety you use, make sure you purchase crab meat labeled hand-picked or fresh-picked which means that the crab meat has been picked through for shells and cartilage.
Crab meat sold out of the shell has been cooked and can be consumed. Its very rare to find raw crab meat sold out of the shell its almost always cooked before its picked out of the shell. At the market, you can find canned, frozen, or fresh crab meat. Unrefrigerated canned crab meat doesnt have an ideal flavor for crab cakes. If you need to use canned, look for canned crab meat in the refrigerated section of your market. The fresher the crab meat, the better the crab cake will taste. Ask your grocer where to find the freshest crab meat in the store. I purchase fresh crab meat sold in a 1 lb plastic tub from the seafood counter in my grocery store. Sometimes the tubs are behind the glass or found on ice next to the seafood counter.
Why I Love This Recipe
Tired of eating food that is dripping with grease? Me, too which is why these crab cakes are perfect. Loaded with flavor and crunch without the greasy mess!
- Ready in under 30 minutes
- Easy to make as a meal or appetizer
- Looks beautiful on a plate
Part of the reason that I love this simple fried crab cake recipe is that it reminds me of this Air Fryer Hamburgers recipe. Both are simple to make without hardly any leftover mess!
Easy Homemade Crab Cakes
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These homemade crab cakes are so quick and easy to make! If you’re a fan of seafood like I am you will LOVE these!
This week has been a busy and tough one since everyone here has come down with what is either a very bad cold or the flu. I honestly haven’t felt like doing very much cooking this week, but I also didn’t want to spend a bunch of money on takeout so I made these delicious little things!
On a side note I apologize for the lack of updates this week! I’m sure you understand though.
These delicious little crab cakes were perfect for an easy meal served with some home fries and veggies. It honestly takes barely any effort at all to make these!
Basically, all the ingredients for this recipe are combined in a bowl and then formed into small patties and then fried up in a skillet with some vegetable oil.
The crab cakes only need about 2-3 minutes per side to brown up in the skillet since the crab meat is already cooked. I then lay them out on a paper towel to make sure any excess vegetable oil is drained.
Once the crab cakes are ready they are delightfully crispy with a soft and flavorful flaky inside.
I love to use fresh dill when cooking seafood and it tastes so wonderful in this recipe along with the other spices.
A little dab of my homemade tartar sauce tastes spectacular with the crab cakes!
These crab cakes also make for a great appetizer as well!
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Make Ahead And Freezing Instructions:
To Make Ahead: These crab cakes are great made in advance! Just keep them covered in an airtight container in the fridge, and pan fry right before serving!
To Freeze: You may freeze these crab cakes before pan frying. Just wrap each one in plastic wrap and place in a freezer safe bag. Freeze up to 1 month. Let thaw in the refrigerator overnight before pan frying.
More Crab Recipes To Try
If youre a fan of crab, I have several wonderful recipes. My Hot Crab Dip is the most popular with our friends and family and Crab and Artichoke Dip is delicious as well. Crab Stuffed Mushrooms never disappoint our dinner guests either.
If you made any of my recipes and shared them on , make sure to tag me @willcookforsmiles and #willcookforsmiles so I can see all the things you tried!
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Tips For Making Crab Cakes
- Which Crab Meat to Use: There are a few types of crab meat that is best to use when cooking or using it for more recipe. I recommend fresh, refrigerator, lump crane meat.
- Smaller Sizes: For smaller crab cakes, divide the mixture into smaller 1 to 2 inch in size circles. For mini crab cakes, divide into even smaller and try it with 1 to 2 tablespoons. Bake at the same oven temperature. The bake time is shorter for these smaller sizes. The crab cakes are done when the tops and edges are lightly browned.
- Cooked Crab Cakes: According to the USDAs official website, seafood is cooked through and safe to eat when the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees F.
- Baking Crab Cakes: Bake for 10 minutes flipping once until they are cooked throughout and golden brown.
Ingredients In Maryland Crab Cakes
Lets walk through each ingredient so you understand its importance. While there are a few flavorful and binding ingredients, the real star of this crab cake is the crab itself. These flavors and binders simply enhance the true taste of crab.
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How To Make Gluten
- In a large bowl, whisk together the egg, mayonnaise, gluten-free Dijon mustard, gluten-free Worcestershire sauce, Old Bay, lemon juice, and salt.
- Add the parsley, gluten-free bread crumbs, and then the crab meat on top. With a rubber spatula or large spoon, very gently fold together the ingredients so you do not break up the crab meat.
- Cover the crab cake mixture with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or up to 24 hours.
- Spay a baking sheet with gluten-free cooking spray. I used olive oil spray.
- Using a ½ cup measuring cup, portion the crab cake mixture into 6 mounds on the baking sheet. If you are baking the crab cakes, do not flatten them. Use your hands or a spoon to compact each crab cake. If you are frying the crab cakes, you will need to flatten them into patties.
For Baked Gluten-Free Crab Cakes:
- Preheat oven to 450°F.
- For extra flavor and browning, lightly brush each crabcake with melted butter . This is an optional step, but I highly recommended it!
- Bake for 15-20 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges and on top or at an internal temperature of 165°F.
- Store the leftover crab cakes in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
- Reheat in the microwave or in the oven for 10-15 minutes at 325°F.
For Fried Gluten-Free Crab Cakes:
Gulf Coast Crab Cakes With Country Remoulade
These bite-size crab cakes are perfect for entertaining. You can serve a few, plated with remoulade, as an appetizer or simply set a platter out and let your guests dig in while they sip on pre-dinner cocktails. Either way, these crab cakes are guaranteed to impress.
Get the Recipe: Gulf Coast Crab Cakes with Country Remoulade
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Air Fried Crab Cakes In 2020 Crab Cakes Air Fryer
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Air fryer fifteen minute old bay crab cake sliders is a. Be sure to check out these other great.
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Delicious air fryer crab cakes that are so easy to make. Easy air fryer crab cakes my forking life.
How To Prepare Crabmeat For Crab Cakes
You can buy lump crab meat already cleaned and prepped. But if you have access to fresh crab and Dungeness crabs in particular, I recommend it. The crabs are sold cooked and already cleaned.
- Tip: Whether buying already prepped crab meat, or whole cooked crab, look for the freshest crab or crab meat you can find it should smell sweet, not fishy.
We like to use a nutcracker to crack the crabs beyond what the fishmonger has done, and then use cocktail forks to gently pull out the crab meat. You can also use cooking shears to cut through the crab shells to get to the meat. Remove any bits of shell, trying not to break up the lumps of crabmeat as you pick through it.
We started with two 2-pound Dungeness crabs, which were then cleaned and cracked, resulting in about 1 1/4 pounds of lump crab meat. This yielded a dozen homemade crab cakes.
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Best Type Of Crab Meat To Use For Crab Cakes
Did you know there is more than just one type of crab meat? Like any recipe, the key to a great meal starts with the best ingredients.
Here are the 4 different types of crab meat and which ones you should choose to make the very best crab cakes!
- First up is jumbo lump crab meat. It has an off-white shade and is harvested from the crabs swimmer fin muscles. Since crabs only have two fin muscles, it requires a LOT of crabs to form one serving of this crab meat. So, dont be surprised when you see how expensive this meat is! Theyre astoundingly delicious, though, and may be eaten on their own or as a salad topping.
- Next is lump crab meat. It has the same shade as jumbo lump, albeit a tad bit smaller. Its packed with flavor, comes from the body of a crab, and makes for an excellent crab cake! This is one of the most popular options.
- Third on the list is backfin, or flake crab meat. Its also harvested from the crabs body, but also includes some shreds of lump meat. As for its consistency, its a bit flakier than jumbo lump. Combine a few portions of backfin with lump meat, and youll have the best combination of crab meat for your crab cake.
- Last is claw meat. It has a darker shade than the rest on the list. The claw isnt as sweet, but definitely more flavorful. Its the most affordable out of all the crab meats and is perfect for stews and soups.
So, always ask your grocer where you can find the freshest crab meat in their store.
What Is The Best Way To Cook Them
Two most common ways to cook crab cakes is to pan fry or bake them. While both are excellent choices, many people tend to favor one method over the other. Baked method will give you cake that are plump, soft, and juicy with rounded tops. Pan fried cooking method will give you a beautiful crisp on the outside and juicy, tender center.
While you can choose either method, I prefer to pan sear my cakes and that is the recipe I will share here.
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How To Make Crab Cakes With Canned Crab
Making traditional New England-style crab cakes couldnt be easier. In this blog post, well show you how to make crab cakes with canned crab meat.
For these cakes, we used Chicken of the Sea jumbo blend crab meat which is pasteurized and sold refrigerated. We bought this at Costco. It has about 1/3 lump meat and the remainder smaller pieces. This made some nice cakes and had a good amount of larger crab pieces.
How To Make Crab Cakes
I promise you they are not that hard to make.
There you go! You should be able to get crab cakes that are crisp on the outside and tender and moist on the inside.
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