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11 November 2020

My favorite crab cake recipe for tender crab cakes loaded with seasoned lump crab meat, drizzled with homemade creamy crab cake sauce, always a hit.

Who’s in the mood for Crab Cakes? Crab cakes are a wonderful recipe item to keep on your menu. They’re always a hit, and you can serve them as a dinner or an appetizer. Everybody loves them.

The key to making the best crab cakes is nailing the consistency before cooking them so they don’t fall apart. Good crab cakes are light and delicate, not dense. These are made with a lot of crab, with just enough other ingredients to help hold them together.

The Crab Cake Sauce, which is a creamy Cajun sauce, can be whipped together in no time while the crab cakes are cooking up for you.

Let’s talk about how to make crab cakes, shall we?

Crab Cakes with Cajun Cream Sauce - Ready to Serve

Crab Cakes Ingredients

  • Bread Crumbs. Or use crushed saltine crackers. Panko bread crumbs are great, too. This is your binder.
  • Seasonings. Cajun seasoning or use Old Bay Seasoning), garlic powder, salt and black pepper.
  • Egg. 
  • Mayo. 
  • Hot Sauce. 
  • Mustard. 
  • Worcestershire  Sauce. 
  • Lemon Juice. 
  • Vegetables. Celery, shallot, and serrano pepper.
  • Parsley. 
  • Crab. Use jumbo lump crab meat if you can.
  • Butter. 

Crab Cake Sauce Ingredients

How to Make Crab Cakes – the Recipe Method

Dry Ingredients. In a large bowl, combine some bread crumbs or cracker crumbs with Cajun seasoning, garlic powder and a bit of salt and pepper.

Wet Ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine an egg with mayonnaise, hot sauce, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, celery, shallot, serrano and parsley.

Combine and Mix. Gently fold the wet ingredients into the dry and mix it all up with a fork. Add the crab meat and hand mix. If the crab cakes are not holding together, add in a bit more bread crumbs and possibly mayo and mustard to help them bind.

Crab Cakes mixture

Make the Crab Cake Patties. Form them into 6 large crab cakes and set them on a large plate. Alternatively, form them into smaller patties for appetizer or small plate portions.

Hand formed crab cakes, ready to cook

How to Make Crab Cake Sauce

Make the Crab Cake Sauce. Simply process some mayonnaise, mustard, hot sauce, apple cider vinegar, pickled jalapenos, celery, Cajun seasoning (or Old Bay Seasoning), lemon juice and minced garlic in a food processor until smooth.

Cajun Cream Sauce in a food processor

Store for Now. Pour into a medium bowl and cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Pouring Cajun Cream Sauce into a bowl

Cook the Crab Cakes. Heat a large pan to medium heat and add the butter. Add the crab cakes and cook them for 3 to 4 minutes per side, or until they are nicely browned on both sides. You can also bake them at 350 degrees F for 20 to 30 minutes on a baking sheet, or until they are cooked through. I prefer pan frying to get them nicely browned.

Cooking crab cakes in pan with some olive oil

Serve! Serve with the homemade crab cake sauce and lemon wedges. I love some extra crab cake sauce on mine. Such a great recipe.

Crab Cakes with Cajun Cream Sauce - Ready to Serve

Boom! Done! Your crab cakes are ready to serve, with delicious crab cake sauce. So creamy with a nice level of spice to it. I love these crab cakes. This is my favorite crab cake recipe. 

Recipe Tips and Notes

  • Heat Factor. These crab cakes are in the mild-medium range of spiciness. You can up the heat a bit with extra serrano peppers and/or Cajun seasonings, or use a spicier Cajun blend. I like to make mine with a pinch of ghost powder. Check out my homemade Cajun seasoning blend recipe.
  • Firm Crab Cakes. As mentioned, it’s important to get the feel for forming the crab cakes properly, otherwise they can fall apart. They should be slightly firm, but not too firm, otherwise they can be dense and mushy on the inside. Refrigerate them for 30 minutes to help firm them up before cooking if needed.
  • Crab Cake Sauce. Everyone loves a good creamy crab cake sauce. My version is a base of mayonnaise with a touch of mustard, hot sauce and other flavor-building ingredients. It’s basically a Cajun Remoulade Sauce, the perfect sauce for crab cakes. French fries, too! Skip the tartar sauce. This is way better.

Best Crab for Making Crab Cakes

You can use any type of crab to make crab cakes. I enjoy purchasing Alaskan King Crab Legs from our local market, then extracting the meat from the shells for lump crab cakes. You’ll get beautiful huge chunks of crab in every bite this way. It’s an expensive option, however.

Crab claw meat is also great for making chunky crab cakes. Making crab cakes from canned crab is the most budget friendly option. They’re still big on flavor. 

We took an anniversary trip to the Chesapeake Bay a few years ago (and had lots of Maryland crab cakes) and chartered a crab boat with a local captain. He took us out early in the morning, where we caught a couple of bushels of blue crab. Such a wonderful trip. I used some of that crab meat to make this crab cakes recipe and they were outstanding. Fresh crab meat is the way to go if you can obtain it. You can ready all about my Chesapeake Bay trip here.

Crab Cakes with Cajun Cream Sauce - On a plate, ready to Serve

Try Some of These Other Popular Crab Recipes

Try Some of These Other Popular Seafood Recipes

If you enjoy this recipe, I hope you’ll leave a comment with some STARS. Also, please share it on social media. Don’t forget to tag us at #ChiliPepperMadness. I’ll be sure to share! Thanks! — Mike H.

Crab Cakes with Cajun Cream Sauce
Print Recipe
5 from 10 votes

Crab Cake Recipe with Creamy Crab Cake Sauce

My favorite crab cake recipe for tender crab cakes loaded with seasoned lump crab meat, drizzled with homemade creamy crab cake sauce, always a hit.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: crab, seafood
Servings: 6 crab cakes
Calories: 339kcal

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup bread crumbs or crushed saltine crackers
  • 2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning or more to taste
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 2 tablespoon mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon of your favorite hot sauce
  • 1 tablespoon whole grain spicy mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Juice of a lemon
  • 1 stalk celery chopped
  • 1 shallot chopped
  • 1 serrano pepper chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley
  • 1 pound fresh lump crab meat
  • 2 tablespoons butter

FOR THE CAJUN CREAM SAUCE

  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon whole grain spicy mustard
  • 1 tablespoon of your favorite hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup pickled jalapeno peppers
  • 1 tablespoon diced celery
  • 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
  • Juice from half a lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic minced

Instructions

  • In a large bowl, combine the bread crumbs, Cajun seasoning, garlic powder, salt and pepper to make the crab cakes. Mix well.
  • In a separate bowl, combine the egg, mayonnaise, hot sauce, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, celery, shallot, serrano and parsley.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix with a fork. Add the crab meat and hand mix. Form them into 6 crab cakes and set them on a large plate.
  • Next, make the Cajun Cream Sauce by processing the mayonnaise, mustard, hot sauce, apple cider vinegar, pickled jalapenos, celery, Cajun seasoning, lemon juice and minced garlic in a food processor until smooth. Pour into a bowl and refrigerate until ready to use.
  • Heat a large pan to medium heat and add the butter. Add the crab cakes and cook them for 3 to 4 minutes per side, or until they are nicely browned on both sides. Serve with the Cajun Cream Sauce and lemon wedges.

Video

Notes

Heat Factor: Mild-Medium. Up the heat a bit with extra serranos and/or Cajun seasonings, or use a spicier Cajun blend.

Nutrition

Calories: 339kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 78mg | Sodium: 1113mg | Potassium: 297mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1595IU | Vitamin C: 10.7mg | Calcium: 73mg | Iron: 2.1mg

NOTE: This recipe was updated on 11/11/20 to include new information. It was originally published on 12/1/18.