This Easy Crab Cake recipe is not only simple to follow, it makes the most amazing crab cakes. Juicy, full of meaty crab chunks and with beautiful fresh flavors.

These easy crab cakes can be served as a snack or appetizer or even as a main dish with a nice fresh Cucumber Dill Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette!

Cast Iron pan with crab cakes and lemon

If you are looking for an easy and delicious recipe to impress your guests, look no further, this Crab Cake Recipe is always a winner.

These crab cakes are so juicy and full of fresh flavors from the lemon zest and fresh herbs (parsley or cilantro), that the are irresistible. Don’t you hate it when you go to a restaurant, order an expensive plate of crab cakes, to only realize that they probably used more bread crumbs than crab meat?! With this Crab Cakes Recipe, you can be certain that your crab cakes will be bursting with sweet crab flavor and texture.

How to Make Crab Cakes

The best part is that you will see that this is an easy crab cake recipe. First, you just have to make sure you are using high quality crab meat and fresh ingredients. After that, you add all the ingredients to a bowl, stir to combine, and shape the crab cakes, like little crab patties. If you have time, you can refrigerate them before cooking. This will help them maintain their share when cooking. When ready, sear them on each side until golden brown and serve with Tartar Sauce and a squeeze of lemon juice.

What is a Crab Cake?

A crab cake is a variety of fishcake that is very popular in the United States, made of crab meat and other ingredients, such as bread crumbs, mayonnaise, eggs, and seasonings.

Crab Cakes with sour cream and parsley

What is a good sauce for crab cakes?

I love to dip crab cakes in Tartar Sauce! This easy tartar sauce recipe takes just minutes to prep and is perfect for crab cakes but also for any other fish dish you may have!

Tartar Sauce Recipe

  • 1 cup full fat mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon or Stone Ground mustard
  • 1 tablespoon minced sweet onion
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice, or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

To make the Tartar Sauce, mix all the ingredients in a medium bowl until fully combined. Serve with crab cakes.

Pile on crab cakes on a plate with sour cream

What side dishes go with crab cakes?

I personally like to serve them with a simple green salad with tomatoes and cucumbers. Here are a few more suggestions:

crab cakes in a cast iron pan
4.97 from 51 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
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Easy Crab Cakes

A Crab Cake Recipe that is easy to follow and makes the most amazing crab cakes. Juicy, full of meaty crab chunks and with beautiful fresh flavors.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Refrigeration Time (Prep) 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 8 crabcakes


  • 1 pound jumbo lump crab meat
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 large egg beaten
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon or Stone Ground mustard
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • 4 dashes hot sauce or to taste
  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs unflavored
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon white ground pepper or to taste
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • Lemon wedges for serving


  • Check the meat for any hard and sharp cartilage, remove and discard them.
  • In a small bowl combine mayonnaise, egg, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce and Old Bay seasoning.
  • Add the crab meat, bread crumbs, chopped parsley, lemon zest, salt, and pepper to the bowl. Gently fold mixture together with your hands until just combined. Take care not to shred the crab meat any more.
  • Shape into 6-8 crab cakes, about ½ cup each and place on a plate or baking sheet. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  • Add 2 tablespoons oil to a large nonstick pan and heat over medium heat. Cook crab cakes until lightly browned, about 3-5 minutes. Add more oil if needed and gently over. Cook 3-5 minutes.
  • Serve immediately with tartar sauce and lemon wedges.



Prep time includes 60 minutes refrigeration.
4.97 from 51 votes

Nutrition Information

Calories: 232 | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 50mg | Sodium: 938mg | Potassium: 153mg | Vitamin A: 145IU | Vitamin C: 6.8mg | Calcium: 42mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Main Course
Cuisine American

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About the author

Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!
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Recipe Rating


  1. I’m from Maryland and ware very possessive of our crab cakes. This is the first one that is the closest to what we do. You really don’t need the hot sauce or lemon. Be very careful when mixing in crab as to not shred it5 stars

    1. We’re from the Eastern Shore of Maryland. We have a recipe from a local seafood restaurant that is the ultimate keeper. So simple. Crabmeat (1 lb), grated fresh breadcrumbs (about a slice….just eyeball it), eggs (2), mayo (1 TBS), dry mustard (1/2 tsp), salt (1 tsp or less), black pepper (1/2 tsp) and celery seed (1 tsp). Yes, celery seed is the secret ingredient! Trust me on this one. No extra crab seasoning (we prefer J.O. Spice No. 2 when we use it). Try your next batch with those ingredients. If you love the taste of crabmeat unadulterated, I think you’ll love these! i will not divulge how the recipe was obtained….I will take that secret to my grave!

  2. Was wondering if you can use canned crab meat? If so, how much would you suggest? This is my first go to site for recipes. Thank you for many great meals.

    1. I’ve only made the recipe as written, but I’m sure that would work just fine Cathy! The recipe calls for 1 pound jumbo lump crab meat, so I would use an equivalent amount. Let us know if you try it!

    1. I’ve only made the recipe as written, but I’m sure that would work just fine Darlene! Let us know if you try it!

  3. Can you use a can of salmon instead of crab and use the same ingredients? Thanks a bunch, we love salmon patties, but if you have a recipe I would love to have it. Thanks again.

  4. Ugh, I used the whole tsp of salt. Noe I wasted expensive crab meat. Way too salty. I guess I should have used better judgement but no one really mentioned the salt amount.3 stars

    1. Oh no, I am sorry to hear that Steve. Did you use Kosher salt? We enjoyed this recipe as written, but you can definitely adjust the amount of salt if you prefer it less salty.

  5. I see salt and pepper on the ingredient list, but not in the instructions. Do you add for your taste preference, or…?

    1. Hi Natasha, you can add them to taste or in the quantities listed. I would add these in step 3 of the recipe.