Red Pepper Crab Cakes with Lemony Mayo

The hubs and I both love crab cakes.  But, every restaurant has a different idea of what a crab cake should be.  Hubs spent some of his youth in Baltimore so he knows a good crab cake when he sees one.  Unfortunately some restaurants believe that a crab cake only needs to have some crab in it to be considered a crab cake.  This means that a lot of times what you receive should you order one is a bread and spice patty with a few flecks of crab running through it.  And, this is exactly why I hardly ever order crab cakes at a restaurant.  Who wants to pay a sky high price for something that is mostly made of bread crumbs?  Ummm no thanks!

This recipe comes from Cooking Light magazine and I could tell just from the photo that accompanied it, that they are REAL crab cakes.  It makes sense because if they are going to fit the mold of being light, then they can’t be nothing but bread.  There is in fact, very little bread in this crab cakes.  All you really need is just enough to help hold them together.  But, the cake should be overwhelmingly made of crab.

You also don’t want a crab cake that just tastes like garlic, celery, and Old Bay seasoning.  I mean those flavors are nice, but isn’t the whole point of eating crab, that you want it to taste like crab?  Don’t drown out that lovely crab flavor with a bunch of spices!

These babies were a total winner and the lemony mayo is so simple but it was so delicious!  The amount of lemon really cuts through and gives the sauce such a great brightness.  Lump crab was on sale when I made these but even still it wasn’t cheap.  So, I cute the recipe in half when I made them.  It still produced 4 gorgeous cakes.



1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
1 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
3 tablespoons finely chopped celery
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
1 pound lump crabmeat, shell pieces removed
2/3 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, divided
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 large egg
1 large egg white
1/4 cup canola mayonnaise
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice


1. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 teaspoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add bell pepper, celery, and green onions to pan; sauté for 4 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Place vegetable mixture, crab, panko, 1 tablespoon dill, ground red pepper, egg, and egg white in a large bowl, stirring gently to combine. Working quickly with damp hands, gently shape about 1/2 cup crab mixture into a 3/4-inch-thick patty. Repeat procedure with remaining crab mixture, forming 8 patties. Wipe pan with paper towels. Return pan to medium-high heat. Add remaining 2 teaspoons oil; swirl to coat. Add patties to pan; cook 3 minutes on each side or until golden and thoroughly heated.

2. Combine remaining 1 tablespoon dill, mayonnaise, lemon rind, and lemon juice in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Top each crab cake with about 2 teaspoons mayonnaise mixture.


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