Maryland crab cakes

Talk to someone from the Mid-Atlantic states, and you’ll soon realize that crab cakes are not taken lightly. Nor should they be, as crab meat is something that should be savored, and not masked with a bunch of filler. Yes, it’s expensive, but well worth it every once in a while. Any self-respecting person from that part of the country will also tell you that Old Bay seasoning is pretty much a staple in any and all crab cakes. While yes, it is just a blend of existing seasonings that you probably have in your cabinet, there is something nostalgic about Old Bay, and I really do think it makes a difference.

I am a firm believer that the right sauce will elevate your crab cakes that much more. My personal choice is often the Remoulade Sauce (page 90) or even the spicy Chipotle Dipping Sauce (recipe here). The Pineapple Salsa (recipe here) with entrée-sized portions of these will make you think you’re dining out on some tropical island!

1 large egg
2 tablespoons Paleo Mayonnaise ( recipe here)
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
¼ teaspoon Tabasco
¼ teaspoon lemon juice
1½ teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
~ fresh black pepper, to taste
1 pound (½ kg) fresh jumbo lump crab meat, picked over for shells
1 tablespoon red pepper, finely diced (optional)
2 teaspoons sliced green onion
1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley
¼ cup (40 g) almond flour + 1/3 cup (50 g) for dredging

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together egg, mayonnaise, mustard, Worcestershire, Tabasco, lemon juice, Old Bay and pepper.
  2. Place crab meat in a separate bowl, trying not to break up too many of the big chunks of crab.
  3. Pour the liquid mixture over the crab and, using your hands, gently mix all together. Add in peppers (if desired), green onions, and parsley, as well as ¼ cup (40 g) almond flour, and combine all. Set additional 1/3 cup (50 g) almond flour aside in a separate bowl.
  4. Form mixture into crab cakes of desired size (I like to use a ¼-cup [40-gram] measuring cup to create appetizer-sized portions). Dip top and bottom of the crab cakes in the almond flour, and set on greased sheet pan. Refrigerate for at least one hour.
  5. Preheat oven to 400°F (205°C). Place crab cakes in oven for 15–20 minutes or until golden brown.

Variations—Feel free to get creative and add in some celery, jalapeños, or other ingredients into the crab cakes as you see fit. Just be forewarned that some folks are purists and may scoff at such additions. Blue crab is very much the favorite crab of choice for those who spend time on the Chesapeake, but Dungeness also works fine for these.

Tips & Tricks—If you would rather pan fry these, go right ahead! I just find doing a bunch of them in the oven is easier.

Ingredient Notes—As with any of our recipes that call for Worcestershire, seek out one that does not contain HFCS or any gluten-containing ingredients. The Lea & Perrins reduced sodium brand in the United States does have sugar and molasses, which we are personally okay with, given the minimal amount used in the recipe. If you’re going super strict and want to ditch the sauce, go right ahead!