classic Maryland crab cakes

Classic Maryland Crab Cakes: A Timeless Seafood Delight

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Welcome to a culinary journey to the heart of Maryland, where the iconic crab cake reigns supreme. If you’re a seafood lover or simply enjoy indulging in delicious coastal cuisine, then you’re in for a treat! In this recipe, we’ll guide you through crafting the perfect Maryland crab cakes—a dish that embodies the rich flavors of the Chesapeake Bay region. With a crispy exterior and tender, flavorful crab filling, these crab cakes are sure to impress your taste buds and transport you to the shores of Maryland. So, let’s dive in and discover the secrets to making this classic seafood delight!

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For the Crab Cakes:

  • 1 lb lump crabmeat, picked over for shells
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Old Bay seasoning
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

For Serving (Optional):

  • Lemon wedges
  • Tartar sauce
  • Cocktail sauce
  • Remoulade sauce


  1. Prepare Crab Cakes Mixture: In a large mixing bowl, combine mayonnaise, egg, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, Old Bay seasoning, parsley, breadcrumbs, salt, and pepper. Mix well until all ingredients are evenly incorporated.
  2. Add Crabmeat: Gently fold in the lump crabmeat, being careful not to break up the crab chunks too much. It’s important to handle the crabmeat delicately to preserve its texture.
  3. Form Crab Cakes: Divide the crab mixture into equal portions and shape each portion into a round patty, about 1 inch thick. Place the crab cakes on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to firm up.
  4. Cook Crab Cakes: In a large skillet, heat butter and olive oil over medium heat. Once hot, add the crab cakes to the skillet, working in batches if necessary to avoid overcrowding. Cook the crab cakes for 4-5 minutes on each side, or until golden brown and heated through.
  5. Serve: Transfer the cooked crab cakes to a serving platter and garnish with lemon wedges. Serve hot with your choice of sauces, such as tartar sauce, cocktail sauce, or remoulade sauce.

Cook Notes and Variations

  • Fresh vs. Canned Crabmeat: While fresh lump crabmeat is preferred for its flavor and texture, high-quality canned crabmeat can be used as a more affordable alternative.
  • Breadcrumbs Substitute: For a keto or low-carb version, replace the breadcrumbs with crushed pork rinds or almond flour.
  • Grilling Option: Crab cakes can also be grilled for a smoky flavor. Simply brush the grill grates with oil and grill the crab cakes over medium heat for 3-4 minutes per side.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q: Can I make crab cakes ahead of time? A: Yes, you can prepare the crab cakes in advance and refrigerate them for up to 24 hours before cooking. This allows the flavors to meld together, resulting in even more delicious crab cakes.

Q: What is the best way to reheat leftover crab cakes? A: To reheat leftover crab cakes, place them on a baking sheet and bake in a preheated oven at 350°F (175°C) for 10-12 minutes, or until heated through. Alternatively, you can reheat them in a skillet over medium heat for 3-4 minutes per side.

Q: Can I freeze crab cakes? A: Yes, you can freeze uncooked crab cakes for up to 3 months. Place the formed crab cakes on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and freeze until firm. Once frozen, transfer the crab cakes to a resealable plastic bag or airtight container, separating each layer with parchment paper to prevent sticking. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before cooking.

Keto and Low-Carb Version

For a keto or low-carb version of Maryland crab cakes, omit the breadcrumbs entirely or use a keto-friendly breadcrumb substitute like crushed pork rinds or almond flour. You can also use a sugar-free mayonnaise and Worcestershire sauce to further reduce the carb content.

healty meal, low carbs meals, keto meal

Indulge in the timeless flavors of Maryland with these classic crab cakes that are sure to please seafood enthusiasts and casual diners alike. Whether served as an appetizer, main course, or party snack, these crab cakes are guaranteed to impress with their irresistible taste and texture. So, gather your ingredients, roll up your sleeves, and embark on a culinary adventure to the Chesapeake Bay with this delicious recipe!

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