Easy Air Fryer Crab Cakes

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Super crispy on the outside and juicy and flavorful on the inside- these Air Fryer crab cakes are sure to be a total hit in your household.

They come together in minutes, and are air fried too, which means you can enjoy them guilt free.

I love a good crab cake, and when I find myself craving for it, I always turn to this easy recipe. The air frying really helps cut down the cooking time and effort, and lets me enjoy that perfect crispy and crunchy texture on the crab patties.

Tempted enough to give the recipe a shot? Scroll down and read on to know how to do just that.

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Why I Love This Air Fryer Crab Cakes Recipe

  • The recipe is super easy, and is perfect to whip up when I’m craving for some Maryland style crab cakes.
  • It is super versatile- I can enjoy it in a number of different ways.
  • It is protein rich and healthy, and a great dish to make for the entire family.
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Air Fryer Crab Cakes Cooking Time

  • Prep time 15 minutes 
  • Chill time 1 hour
  • Cook time 12-15 minutes 
  • Yields 8

Ingredients for the Air Fryer Crab Cakes

You’ll need two sets of ingredients to make these Air Fryer crab cakes.

Remoulade Sauce

  • Creole Seasoning or Old Bay Seasoning: Adds a kick of spice and depth of flavor to the remoulade sauce, giving it that authentic Southern taste.
  • Paprika: Lends a smoky flavor and vibrant color to the sauce, enhancing its overall appeal.
  • Minced Garlic and Ginger: Add a pungent, spicy-sweet flavor that complements the creaminess of the sauce and the sweetness of the crab.
  • Mustard: Contributes a tangy and slightly spicy element to the sauce, balancing out its creaminess.
  • Hot Sauce (Franks, Tabasco, or any other brand): Gives the remoulade an extra zing, making it even more flavorful and exciting.
  • Greek Yogurt or Sour Cream: Provide the creamy, tangy base for the remoulade, complementing the spicy and savory elements perfectly.

Crab Cakes

  • Egg: Acts as a binder for the crab cakes, helping all the ingredients stick together during the air frying process.
  • Mayonnaise and Mustard: Give the crab cakes their moistness and tangy flavor, enhancing the sweetness of the crab meat.
  • Hot Sauce: Adds a touch of heat to the crab cakes, creating a nice contrast with the other flavors.
  • Seafood Seasoning or Old Bay Seasoning: Enhances the natural flavors of the crab, adding a savory note to the dish.
  • Lemon Juice: Lemon juice provides a fresh, citrusy counterpoint to the rich crab meat, brightening up the overall flavor profile.
  • Crab Meat or Imitation Crab: Is the star of the dish, offering a sweet, delicate flavor and tender texture that’s highlighted by the other ingredients.
  • Saltine Cracker Crumbs: Help to bind the crab cakes and also add a bit of crunch, providing a nice textural contrast.
  • Diced Green Onions: Provide a hint of freshness and a slight bite, complementing the richness of the crab cakes.
  • Lemons for Lemon Wedges: Allows individuals to add an extra splash of citrusy brightness to their crab cake if they wish, rounding out this satisfying dish.

Ingredients for the Air Fryer Crab Cakes.

How to Make the Air Fryer Crab Cakes?

Once you have all your ingredients ready, here’s what you’ll need to do to make these crab cakes.

Step 1: Prepare the Remoulade Sauce

Add all the ingredients for the remoulade in a bowl, and mix well until incorporated. Place in the fridge to chill while you prepare the crab cakes.

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Step 2: Create the Binder Sauce

In another large mixing bowl, crack and whisk the egg. Add the mayonnaise, mustard, hot sauce, seasoning, and lemon juice. Gently fold the mixture until incorporated to create the binder sauce

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Step 3: Prepare the Crab Cake Mixture

In a large bowl, add the cracker crumbs and crab meat. Toss until mixed. Add the binder sauce and mix by hand. This process will create a bound crab mixture.

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Step 4: Refrigerate the Crab Cake Mixture

Refrigerate the crab mixture for 1 hour to allow the cracker crumbs to soak up the binder sauce. This will make for an easy forming. 

Step 5: Shape the Crab Cakes

With a 1/4-quarter cup, scoop out the mixture and form it into a ball. You can compress the cakes or leave them in a ball. I prefer the cakes to be round as they stay moist more than the compressed cakes. The compressed cakes are crispier throughout. 

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Step 6: Give the Crab Cakes an Extra Coating (Optional)

To get an extra crunchy texture on the outside, you can also coat the crab cakes in some more panko breadcrumbs or regular bread crumbs before you transfer them to the Air Fryer basket.

Step 7: Preheat the Air Fryer

Preheat the Air Fryer and place the crab cakes in the Air Fryer basket. Cook the crab cakes for 7-8 minutes or until they are deep golden brown. Make sure you flip the cakes midway through the cooking process so that they cook evenly.

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Step 8: Air Fry the Crab Cakes and Serve

Serve the Air Fryer crab cakes with some tartar sauce and lemon wedges on the side.

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Tips & Tricks to Make the Best Crab Cakes

Before you jump in and give this easy recipe a shot, here are some tips and tricks you might want to take note of.

  • Remember that different Air Fryers cook differently, and to get the perfectly cooked crab cakes, you’ll need to check the crab cakes once in between the cooking process.
  • Also make sure you lay a parchment paper inside the Air Fryer basket or lightly spray it with some cooking spray before you place the crab cakes in there. The cooking spray will ensure that the crab cakes don’t end up sticking to the basket.
  • If you don’t have the saltine cracker crumbs that the recipe calls for, you can use panko breadcrumbs or classic bread crumbs too!
  • To lend some extra flavor to the crab cake mix, I like to add a dash of Worcestershire sauce too.
  • To bring some freshness and a bit of tanginess into the crab cakes, you can also add a bit of lemon zest.
  • I also like to add some finely chopped bell pepper into the crab cake mixture to make them more nutritious and healthy. I love using red bell pepper, but you can use almost any other kind of pepper of your choice.
  • If you don’t have an Air Fryer, you can also bake them! Simply start off with some cooking spray on a baking sheet, and place the coated crab cakes
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Serving Ideas & Suggestions

The best way to serve these Air Fryer crab cakes is to team them up with a dipping sauce of your choice.

You can use tartar sauce or Worcestershire sauce if you want to. And of course, don’t forget to top the crab cakes with some chopped green onion and lemon juice right before you serve.

I also think these crab cakes would taste amazing when served with a simple potato salad.

Another great idea is to use the crab cake as a patty along with a toasted brioche bun and some sauce and lettuce to turn it into a delicious burger.

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How Do I Store Leftover Crab Cakes?

If you have any leftover crab cakes, you can transfer them to an airtight container and refrigerate them for up to 2 days.

If you ended up with more crab mixture than you wanted, just cover it with plastic wrap or put it in a freezer safe container and freeze it.

You can reheat crab cakes in the microwave or in the Air Fryer, depending on your personal preference.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Make the Crab Cakes Ahead of Time?

You sure can! You can either prep the patties and make them ahead of time and freeze them, or just freeze the mixture, which you can then defrost and then put together when needed.
Remember that to cook frozen crab cakes in the Air Fryer, you might need a longer cooking time.
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air fryer crab cakes

Easy Air Fryer Crab Cakes

Yield: 8
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 1 minute
Total Time: 31 minutes

Delicious Air Fryer Crab Cakes

Ingredients

  • Remoulade Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon creole seasoning or Old bay seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon paprika 
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic 
  • 1 teaspoon minced ginger 
  • 1/2 tablespoon mustard 
  • 1-2 teaspoons hot sauce; Franks, Tabasco, or any other brand.
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt, or sour cream
  • Crab Cakes
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise 
  • 1 tablespoon mustard 
  • 1-2 teaspoons hot sauce; Franks, Tabasco, or any other brand of your choice.
  • 2 teaspoons seafood seasoning or old bay seasoning
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1lb chunk crab meat or imitation crab
  • 1 cup saltine cracker crumbs 
  • 1/8 cup diced green onions 
  • Lemons for lemon wedges

Instructions

Step 1: Prepare the Remoulade Sauce
Add all the ingredients for the remoulade in a bowl, and mix well until incorporated. Place in the fridge to chill while you prepare the crab cakes.

Step 2: Create the Binder Sauce
In another large mixing bowl, crack and whisk the egg. Add the mayonnaise, mustard, hot sauce, seasoning, and lemon juice. Gently fold the mixture until incorporated to create the binder sauce

Step 3: Prepare the Crab Cake Mixture
In a large bowl, add the cracker crumbs and crab meat. Toss until mixed. Add the binder sauce and mix by hand. This process will create a bound crab mixture

Step 4: Refrigerate the Crab Cake Mixture
Refrigerate the crab mixture for 1 hour to allow the cracker crumbs to soak up the binder sauce. This will make for an easy forming. 

Step 5: Shape the Crab Cakes
With a 1/4-quarter cup, scoop out the mixture and form it into a ball. You can compress the cakes or leave them in a ball. I prefer the cakes to be round as they stay moist more than the compressed cakes. The compressed cakes are crispier throughout.

Step 6: Give the Crab Cakes an Extra Coating (optional)
To get an extra crunchy texture on the outside, you can also coat the crab cakes in some more panko breadcrumbs or regular bread crumbs before you transfer them to the Air Fryer basket.

Step 7: Preheat the Air Fryer
Preheat the Air Fryer and place the crab cakes in the Air Fryer basket. Cook the crab cakes for 7-8 minutes or until they are deep golden brown. Make sure you flip the cakes midway through the cooking process so that they cook evenly.

Step 8: Air Fry the Crab Cakes and Serve
Serve the Air Fryer crab cakes with some tartar sauce and lemon wedges on the side.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 273Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 112mgSodium: 1097mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 1gSugar: 3gProtein: 18g

Did you make this recipe?

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More Air Fryer Recipes

If you enjoyed trying this crab cake recipe in the Air Fryer, and are inspired enough to try some more Air Fryer recipes, here are a few good ones you might want to take a look at.

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