Air fryer crab cakes make an excellent appetizer or lunch. The air fryer makes them nice and crispy without all the fat from frying.
When I was a little girl, my mother would buy frozen crab cakes at the PX. She served them as appetizers when my parents had a party for the Big Brass. She would always save one for me.
The biggest difference between the frozen crab cakes my mother used to buy then and the crab cakes now is that the old ones were made from crab meat. The frozen crab cakes now are made from a combination of crab and imitation crab. I have no issues with this. Imitation crab meat is still made with fish and it’s a lot less expensive. If you like California roll, you like surimi.
One of the reasons I have not eaten crab cakes for a while is that they had to be fried to make them crisp. Air fryers have become a popular kitchen appliance in recent years, and for good reason. They allow you to enjoy all of your favorite fried foods with less oil and fat. It makes them a healthier option. One dish that is particularly well-suited for the air fryer is crab cakes.
If you’re looking for a healthier way to enjoy crab cakes, give air frying a try. Not only is it a healthier option, but it also results in a crispy and delicious crab cake. With an air fryer, you can have a restaurant-quality crab cakes in the comfort of your own home. So, next time you’re craving crab cakes, give air frying a try, you won’t regret it.
Spices in Air Fryer Crab Cakes
If you have been following me for a while, you know I like Penzey’s spices, especially some of the hand-crafted spice mixes. The newest spice mix as of this writing is Outrage of Love. It’s a combination of spicy and lemon, a perfect fit for crab cakes.
I also use Mis Rubins Creole Magic spice mix. It’s an all-purpose spice blend that can be used to make red beans, gumbo, and other Cajun recipes. It gives a little kick.
The third spice I use is freeze-dried dill. I love the flavor of fresh dill and freeze-dried dill tastes similar to fresh without the dried out flavor that I can’t stand. Of couse, if you have fresh dill on hand, please use that.
Why Do I Need to Freeze?
The mixture of crab, mayonnaise and bread crumbs is relatively loose. Freezing the cakes for about 40 minutes makes them less likely to fall apart. I recommend using a flexible cutting board because the cakes won’t stick. Bend the cutting board, and the cakes come right off.
~~ Cakes ~~
- 8 ounces imitation crab meat
- 4 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 3 tablespoons breadcrumbs
- 2 teaspoons dried red onion
- ½ teaspoon Outrage
- ½ teaspoon Creole Magic
- ½ teaspoon freeze-dried dill
- ½ teaspoon True Lemon
~~ Breading ~~
- ½ cup flour
- 1 teaspoon Outrage
- 1 teaspoon Creole Magic
- 1 egg
- ½ cup panko breadcrumbs
~~ Sauce ~~
- 2 tablespoons Homade Chili sauce
- 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
- ⅛ teaspoon Tabasco
~~ Garnish ~~
- 3 slices Bread, thinly sliced
- ½ cup cabbage, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon cilantro, chopped
To make the crab cakes
- 8 ounces imitation crab meatPut the crab in the food processor with an S blade.
- Process the crab until it is in small pieces about the size of rice.
- 4 tablespoons mayonnaise, 3 tablespoons breadcrumbs, 2 teaspoons dried red onion, 1/2 teaspoon Outrage, 1/2 teaspoon Creole Magic, 1/2 teaspoon freeze-dried dill, 1/2 teaspoon True LemonAdd the mayonnaise, breadcrumbs, and seasonings.
- Process until the mixture starts to form balls. Remove the mixture from the food processor.
- Form 6 disks on a flexible cutting board.
- Put the cutting board into the freezer, and let the cakes harden for about 40 minutes.
For the breading
- While that is happening, make the breading. Gather 3 breading trays.
- 1/2 cup flour, 1 teaspoon Outrage, 1 teaspoon Creole Magic, 1 egg, 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbsPut the flour Outrage and Creole Magic into one breading tray. Put an egg into another tray and use a fork to break it up. Put the panko in the last tray.
- Put the cakes in the flour and coat on both sides, shaking off any excess.
- Next dip the cakes in the egg on all sides. Shake off any excess.
- Finally, put the disks in the panko on both sides.
- Put the cakes on an air fryer rack. You can refrigerate the crab cakes at this point until you are ready to serve, up to three hours.
- Put the cakes in the air fryer and set the fryer to 360 °F for 15 minutes. Check at the 10-minute mark to make sure they are not burning.
For the Sauce
- 2 tablespoons Homade Chili sauce, 1 tablespoon mayonnaise, 1/8 teaspoon TabascoWhile the cakes are cooking, make the sauce. Combine the sauce ingredients and set them aside.
For the Garnish
- 1/2 cup cabbage, 1 tablespoon cilantroMake the garnish by thinly slicing cabbage and mixing it with finely chopped cilantro. Set the garnish aside.
- 3 slices BreadTake three slices of thinly sliced bread and cut each in half, leaving 6 slices. Toast the bread in the air fryer at 400 °F for 4 minutes.
- When the toast is done, spread some of the sauce on each. Top with a crab cake. Put the remaining sauce on top of each cake.
- Place the cabbage garnish on top.
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