Chef John's Crab Cakes Recipe -
Chef John's Crab Cakes Recipe
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How to Make Crab Cakes
See how to make a cakes recipe that really shows off quality crabmeat. See more

Chef John's Crab Cakes

Recipe by  

"These are what crab cakes are supposed to be like. They are basically a fried lump of crabmeat, held together with a minimum of filler. Delicious!"

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 4 crab cakes Change Servings
  • PREP

    15 mins
  • COOK

    8 mins

    1 hr 23 mins


  1. Mix saltine crackers, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, seafood seasoning, Worcestershire sauce, egg, salt, and cayenne pepper in a large bowl.
  2. Stir in crabmeat until mixture is combined but still chunky. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  3. Sprinkle breadcrumbs on a plate.
  4. Shape chilled crab mixture into 4 small thick patties; coat completely with bread crumbs.
  5. Melt butter in a skillet over medium-heat; cook crab cakes until golden brown, about 4 minutes per side.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Apr 15, 2012

Excellent! If you are looking for a true Maryland crab cake, look no further. This is it! I have lived in Maryland, minutes from the Chesapeake Bay for 25 years, and this is practically identical to mine (I just use 12 crushed Ritz crackers, no bread crumbs), but I will try Chef John's version. I'm very lucky, get fresh crabmeat all summer and Old Bay is a must, if you can get it. You must try this recipe!

Most Helpful Critical Review
Aug 13, 2012

I really don't get why everyone raves about this recipe. I am still looking for a crab cake that doesn't fall apart when you fry it. They were bland. Sorry.

May 16, 2012

Your searching for the perfect recipe is over! This is crabmeat held together with an egg and crackers. Serve with tartar sauce and enjoy!

May 10, 2012

I have searched and to make a long story short......these are great, Chef John. Just what I was looking for in a crab cake. One of the best. Thank you so much. Making these for a party.

Jul 15, 2012

This was a great recipe had to make two substitutions Ritz crackers for saltines and added chipotle mayo with the regular mayo. was a hit Thanks Chef John

Jun 06, 2012

Well, I didn’t have fresh crabmeat, so I had to go with what I could buy out of the seafood section of our grocery store. Other than that my only deviation was to use panko instead of bread crumbs. I had no problem forming the patties, as mentioned on Chef John’s video, and mine seemed to stay together quite well. I served these atop a salad of mixed greens, green onions, toasted almonds and feta, along with a balsamic vinaigrette. These were good, although I’m sure they would have been better with fresh crabmeat.

Jul 06, 2012

Very good crab cakes, made the Maryland way. Just enough filler to hold the cakes together, and nothing to detract from the taste of the crab.. My only suggestions are to add a tablespoon of fresh minced parsley and to eliminate coating the cakes in the bread crumbs before frying. These crab cakes are delicious with fresh corn on the cob, sliced tomatoes and a potato salad. Oh yeah, a cold brew or two. If any are left over (rare) they are delicious cold on saltine crackers.

Jul 05, 2012

WOW...These crab cakes are even better than the ones at a high class restaurant. I will most definatly make them again for guests, that is if I don't eat them all. Make sure you use the cayenne pepper.


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  • Calories
  • 297 kcal
  • 15%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 10.8 g
  • 3%
  • Cholesterol
  • 151 mg
  • 50%
  • Fat
  • 15 g
  • 23%
  • Fiber
  • 0.6 g
  • 2%
  • Protein
  • 28.5 g
  • 57%
  • Sodium
  • 728 mg
  • 29%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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