Easy No Filler Crab Cakes Recipe | Lump Crab Cakes

Easy No Filler Crab Cakes Recipe

Easy No Filler Crab Cakes Recipe

For New Year’s Eve this year we splurged and had some delicious king crab legs. Because, let’s be honest, there has never been a year we’ve wanted to celebrate the ending to more than 2020!

*edited to add: I wrote this post in January 2020 and haven’t posted it til now…which is okay because it’s just in time for Summer crab season!*

We are usually able to hand pick our crab legs at Costco, but due to social distancing and food handling restrictions this year, the fish market was not open in its usual capacity. All of the fish was prepackaged, which meant the smallest bundle of king crab legs would still be too much meat for 2-3 people. But we bought it anyway and figured we could use the leftovers in some creative way.

And here we are – An easy recipe for no filler crab cakes that I made with all the leftover crab meat!

These crab cakes are rich and delicious, but most importantly, they are chock full of lump crab meat – there are absolutely no fillers here! They are held together with just the right amount of crispy, crunchy, buttery breadcrumbs, and accented with fresh accents of crisp celery and peppers.

Homemade Tartar Sauce

How to Make Easy No Filler Crab Cakes

  • 3 cups (or 1 pound) shredded/chopped fresh crab meat (any crab will do, but I like king crab best!)
  • 1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup Parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 Tablespoons mayo
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1-1/2 Teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • 1 Teaspoon garlic salt (or plain granulated garlic powder if you’re watching your sodium intake)
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil


Ingredients for Homemade Healthy Tartar Sauce – Don’t Skip this Sauce!


Directions: How to Make Easy Crab Cakes with No Filler

  • In a large pan, sautée your onions and peppers in olive oil until cooked down and onions are translucent. Set aside off the heat to cool while you prepare the rest of the recipe.
  • Shred and chop your fresh crab meat. Sift through to make sure there are no shell pieces hiding in there. Cover with paper towels and press to remove any excess moisture.
  • In a large mixing bowl combine the eggs, Worcestershire sauce, Old Bay seasoning, black pepper, and garlic salt. Whisk together until light and airy.
  • Add the lump crab meat to the large bowl with the egg mixture. Stir to combine. Once that is mixed, add in the Panko breadcrumbs, cooled onions and peppers, and the parsley. Stir to combine.
  • Cover and refrigerate the mixture for at least 30 minutes. This will help the cakes stick together and not fall apart as much when we cook them.
  • Once mixture has cooled, shape into small sized patties. This is easiest to do with wet hands so the mixture doesn’t stick to your hands. Keep wetting them as needed.
  • Place each patty carefully into a hot pan over medium heat with 1 tablespoon of butter or oil. Sautee for about 5 minutes each side, or until they start to turn golden brown. I like mine with a healthy sear so I left them on until dark brown.
  • Serve these no filler crab cakes immediately, with this homemade tartar sauce


How to get Crab Cakes to Not Fall Apart

One of the tricks to get your crab cakes to stick together is to chill them before pan frying. Don’t skip this step! If the cakes are still falling apart, you can add a bit more of the breadcrumbs to the mix.


What to Serve with Lump Crab Cakes

Serve immediately with my homemade healthy tartar sauce, made from tart Greek yogurt and zesty dill pickles! This cool, refreshing dip is the perfect complement to the hot, buttery crab cakes. Trust me on this. You’ll want to eat this sauce on everything. 

I hope you found this recipe helpful. It’s the perfect dinner for a warm Summer night, and all the rich flavors from the juicy crab cakes pair perfectly with the cool and refreshing tartar sauce.

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