crab cakes with homemade tartar sauce
photo by Jennifer Johnson
There are countless recipes for crab cakes, and depending on where you live, the ingredients will vary. This is our take on a pretty classic recipe, replacing some mayonnaise with yogurt for a slightly healthier sauce. You can make them any size you like—bigger served on a hamburger bun for dinner or with a poached egg for breakfast, or made into a bite-sized appetizer for entertaining.
- 12 ounces lump crabmeat, picked through
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley, plus extra for garnish, optional
- 1 tablespoon plain Greek yogurt
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
- 1 large egg, beaten
- Kosher salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
- Tartar sauce
- 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons finely diced pickles or cornichons
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon drained capers, roughly chopped
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- Juice from 1/4-1/2 lemon
- 2 tablespoons canola oil, for cooking
- Lemon wedges, for serving
- Squeeze out any excess moisture from crabmeat. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, add parsley, yogurt, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, Old Bay Seasoning, and egg. Season with salt and pepper. Add breadcrumbs and stir until mixture is combined. Add drained crabmeat and stir to combine (mixture should hold together as a ball). Using a 1/4 measuring cup, fill with mixture and gently press to form shape, then invert to release into your hand. Place on a plate and gently press mixture together if it’s still a bit loose. Continue until all of crab mixture is used, making 8 cakes. Cover plate with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 1 hour.
- Make tartar sauce. In a medium bowl, combine yogurt, mayonnaise, pickles or cornichons, vinegar, capers,mustard, and juice from 1/4 lemon. Season with salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Taste for flavor and adjust as desired, adding remaining lemon juice if needed. Transfer to a serving bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to chill until ready to serve, at least 1 hour (mixture will thicken slightly as it chills).
- Remove crab cakes from refrigerator. Heat a large nonstick pan over medium-high heat. Add oil, and when slightly shimmering, add crab cakes. Shake pan to make sure none of them are sticking. Cook until nicely browned on bottom, about 4-5 minutes. Flip and continue to cook for another 4-5 minutes. Transfer cakes to a paper towel-lined plate and drain slightly.
- Serve with tartar sauce and lemons.
Makes 8 crab cakes.