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Pure and Simple Crab Cakes

These may not be the most budget friendly meal you will see on here, but they are definitely worth the splurge for a pound of lump crab meat.  A simple crab cake with virtually no filler make for a light, delicious spring or summer meal.  They are best served with a quick spicy remoulaude sauce.  Go ahead, enjoy!  They are good for you!

Pure and Simple Crab Cakes


Abbi @ onceamonthmeals.com


  • 16 ounces lump crab meat
  • 0.5 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 0.25 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • 0.25 cup light mayonnaise
  • 1 egg
  • 0.25 tsp Old Bay seasoning


In a large bowl, mix together all ingredients.  Using an ice cream scoop, form 8 crab cakes, placing on a baking sheet.  If preparing the same day, refrigerate for at least 1 hour.  If freezing, proceed to freezing instructions. Heat a small amount olive oil in a large skillet and cook through for 3-4 minutes on each side until browned.

Freezing Directions:

Wrap crab cakes individually and place in gallon size freezer bags.  To serve, thaw crab cakes, heat a small amount olive oil in a large skillet and cook through for 3-4 minutes on each side until browned.

Servings: 8

Nutritional Information:  Serving Size = 1 crab cake. Calories – 123 , Total Fat – 4.4 g, Total Carbohydrates – 6.8 g, Protein – 13.3 g.  Dietary Fiber: 0 g    WW Plus Points: 3

**conversion chart image provided by Erik Spiekermann

49 Responses to “Pure and Simple Crab Cakes”

  1. Mary says:

    Do you bake or fry these crab cakes. If baking, what temp, how long?

    • Tricia says:

      You should heat a small amount olive oil in a large skillet and cook through for 3-4 minutes on each side until browned

      • Northern Neck Crabber says:

        Best if fried in a cast iron skillet w/clarified butter. Just sayin’ . . . . if you’re gonna do it right . . . . might as well do it. I’m from Virginia and grew up catching, cooking and eating everything Blue Crab.

  2. Darcie says:

    After you mix together and put on a baking sheet and refrigerate for an hour….then what? there are no instructions unless you are freezing them.

  3. ed nettekoven says:

    Old Bay seasoning, what are the ingredients? Can You help me out? Many Thanks.

  4. Chris says:

    Hi! When freezing, what do you wrap the crab cakes in before putting them in a gallon freezer bag?

  5. Tess says:

    These look super awesome! Thanks for sharing!!

  6. Kathie says:

    These look yummy! Do you know the cholesterol level on these?

    • abbi says:

      Per serving, it is 109mg according to the nutrition calculator. If you are looking to reduce that level, I think these would hold together just fine with egg white only instead of the whole egg.

  7. Murch says:

    Help! It says form 8 crab cakes but than the servings are 4 at 1 cake per serving? Trying to stay on track with weight watchers and I’d like to be sure……..

  8. marge says:

    Fantastic recipe. Made these for mother’s day. Make recipe exactly as directed. Makes 4 fabulous crabcakes. I will only use this recipe for crabcakes. I used jumbo lump crab. Cost a little more but was worth it. I made mashed red potatoes on the side,and fresh asparagus with bernaise sauce. better than a restaurant!

  9. […] this recipe for crab cakes and just had to try it.  Firstly I was surprised to see how expensive lump crab […]

  10. Michele says:

    I’ve made crab cakes many times and can’t wait to make these. I just might chop a scallion or two as an add in. :-)

  11. Ana says:

    Thank you! I have been trying to find a pretty pure crab cake recipe (hate fillers) and yours sounds just perfect. I’ll have to sub out the panko for something gluten free, but that won’t be hard. Thanks!

    • Nicol says:

      I’m going to try a gf panko that I saw at the store. What did you use and how did it turn out?

      • Kelly says:

        Nicole, I’ve made these adapted to our needs, I used almond meal instead of panko and it worked great! The GF Panko would be a great substitute as well.

  12. Sujin says:

    How do you make everything stick together? Mine just fell apart:(

    • abbi says:

      Did you include the egg and either refrigerate before trying to cook (or freeze if made ahead of time)? When you form the cakes, you should be able to form them into patties/cakes similar to a burger and refrigerating before cooking helps to keep them together.

  13. zegator says:

    Great recipe! Thanks. So-do you have a great remoulaude sauce recipe to top it with? Mighty fine.

  14. […] *adapted from this recipe from Once a Month Mom […]

  15. Kristine says:

    Or forego the crab and use tuna (in water and drained). I added some minced bell pepper and onion too! (I’ll admit that a recipe is merely a guide….the rest is art!)

    I’m on day two of cooking! Cost me $170 at the grocery and I have enough food to feed my two football players AND not break the bank! I have some easy fix tuna patties out of it all……of the boys don’t get to them first!

  16. Donna says:

    This is a recipe that I have used for years. The only one I’ve used because it is the best. Pretty sure I got it from the back of the Old Bay Seasoning container.

  17. Marsha says:

    This is very similar to my families receipe. We are from Chesapeake bay area. We add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon yellow mustard depending on the size of the receipe.

  18. Britani says:

    We don’t do mayo at our house as my husband won’t eat it. Do you think I could sub something? Maybe greek yogurt? Thoughts anyone?

  19. Allison says:

    Help!!! I accidentally added 1/2 cup of mayo instead of 1/4. Any suggestions? My cakes are currently chilling in the fridge.

  20. sarah says:

    This is a great recipe to customize for your own flavor pallet! We added a little lemon over the crab to freshen the flavor as it was 2 days old. Since we didn’t have a full 16 oz of dungeness, (from Central coast of CA) also added some finely minced celery and celery leaves and minced red onion. doubled up on the old bay and added a couple of pinches if sweet/hot red chile flakes from a local farmer. oh and freshly ground pepper!
    After forming the patties we added a light sprinkle of the panko crumbs to each side. Now its not so simple, but it sure was good!!

  21. Juliane says:

    I have never made anything with crab. Do I use the cans of lump crab (Chicken of the Sea)I found next to the tuna or is this meant for lump crab from the seafood section of the store?

  22. […] Favorite recipe to date? Pure and Simple Crab Cakes […]

  23. Jaime says:

    How long can these stay good in the freezer?

  24. Stephanie says:

    These crab cakes were absolutely incredible! And they were so easy! I made 6 from the recipe and froze 2; my husband isn’t a fan of seafood so I have a great meal waiting for me when he’s in the mood for something else. Thank you so much for this recipe!

    • Lisa says:

      Stephanie – so glad you loved these! And sometimes it is fun to have your own little treat waiting in the freezer isn’t it?

  25. Karen says:

    i used claw crabmeat instead of the lump and i baked mine at 400* until they got a nice brown color. they werent to bad.i used an ice cream scoop and got 10 crab cakes.

    • Lisa says:

      Karen – Thanks so much for sharing your adaptations to this recipe with us! Ice Cream scoop is a brilliant idea for the perfect sized crab cake!

  26. Ames Russell says:

    I use same method except do NOT add any bread type filler. After making patties, I sprinkle with crumbled Ritz crackers, and then pan fry with a blend of peanut oil and butter!

  27. Debra Darcey says:

    Thank God for minimalists. I live in MD near Baltimore/Eastern Shore. I maintain I have never had better crab imperial than mine, no matter how much the restaurant charges because I add next to nothing
    For great dinner/appetizers I use 1 lb. JUMBO LUMP crabmeat (expensive, but worth every penny);1 egg; 1/4 c. or less (add 1/2 of it at a time so you don’t add too much); SQUEEZED LIME JUICE (lemon if that’s all you have); add a LITTLE mayo; chopped green or spring onions (start with one bunch, taste and add more to taste). Between the egg, mayo and crumbs, you want just enough that it will stick together. Add parsley, lemon pepper (McCormick). The secret to success is that you can always add more, not less. Stuff into large mushrooms with stems removed. I have tried to add stems to crab mix – makes it tough – don’t do it. Butter baking dish. Place mushrooms, mushroom side down, onto the baking dish. Pour dabs of melted butter over mushrooms (as much as will keep tops from burning). Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes, sometimes longer. Rich and filling. For PURIST CRAB LOVERS. GREAT COLD. Very RICH. 3-4-5 per serving depending on mushroom size. If you do not like mushrooms then put into buttered casserole dishes – it’s the same recipe for CRAB IMPERIAL.

    • Debra Darcey says:

      Actually, I forgot, the mushrooms should be dipped in melted butter before stuffing with crabmeat mixture. And use BUTTER, not margarine or anything else. Maybe not the healthiest, but this is my birthday splurge.

      • Debra Darcey says:

        I’m going to assume that it goes without saying that the mushrooms get stuffed with the crab mixture prior to baking.

  28. Eli says:

    Breadcrumbs are for amateurs. Three ingredients. Period.

    Jumbo or Super Lump
    Old Bay Seasoning

    No filler. Ever. Only buy crab in season and straight from the dock.

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