This Gluten Free Crab Cakes recipe uses coconut flour, making it totally grain free. It also uses avocado oil mayo for a dairy free crab cake!
Crab cakes are such a lovely thing to serve. They're light, but full of flavor, and make a particularly elegant option for brunch. Most crab cake recipes include bread crumbs or crumbled crackers, meaning they're not gluten free.
I use coconut flour here instead so that everyone can enjoy them! This gluten free crab cakes recipe is also paleo and keto. It's the perfect thing to serve if you're hosting a brunch where you're unsure of the guests' dietary preferences. Crab cakes also make a really fun appetizer for a dinner party! Make them bite-sized if you wish.
I hope you love these as much as I do!
Gluten Free Crab Cakes Recipe
For the Crab Cakes:
- 16 oz lump crab meat
- 1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
- 1/4 cup sliced green onions
- 1 tsp Old Bay seasoning
- 4 T avocado oil mayo
- 1 1/2 T coconut flour
- S&P to taste
For the Lemon Garlic Aioli:
- 1/3 cup avocado oil mayo
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 lemon
- S&P to taste
For the Crab Cakes:
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
- Finely dice 1 red bell pepper for ~½ cup & thinly slice green onions for ~¼ cup.
- In large bowl gently combine the following until just mixed together: 16oz lump crab meat, ½ c diced red bell pepper, ¼ c sliced green onions, 1 tsp Old Bay seasoning, 4 T mayo, 1½ T coconut flour and S&P to taste.
- Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Use a ½ cup scoop to form crab mixture into 4 uniform patties. Set on sheet and freeze. When patties are frozen, transfer to freezer bag/container.
- Take 4 frozen crab cakes and dust lightly with coconut flour (don’t cake on or cakes will be dry).
- Line baking sheet with parchment and bake crab cakes for 15-20 min, flipping halfway through.
- Serve crab cakes with Lemon-Garlic Aioli.
For the Lemon Garlic Aioli:
- Combine the following: 1/3 cup mayo, 1 minced garlic clove, ½ tsp lemon zest, juice of 1 lemon, S&P to taste
What is the nutrition like in this Gluten Free Crab Cakes recipe?
Packed with veggies and lean protein, my gluten free crab cakes recipe is quite healthy. Here are some of the vitamins and nutrients included:
- Crab: Crab is super high in vitamin B12 and is also an excellent source of protein, copper, selenium and zinc. Crab is also a great source of Omega-3s. Just make sure to get real crab meat, rather than imitation crab, to get these nutrients!
- Bell Peppers: Loaded with vitamin A, vitamin C, potassium, folic acid and fiber, bell peppers are a super healthy food to include in your diet.
- Green Onions: Also known as scallions, green onions are a good source of fiber. They also contain allicin, which scientists think may help prevent cancer growth. Like other onions, green onions are also full of antioxidants.
- Coconut Flour: Coconut flour may benefit heart health, blood sugar stability, and digestion. Furthermore, a 1/4 cup serving offers 6 grams of protein and 20% of daily iron needs.
- Garlic: Garlic has been used in homeopathic remedies for thousands of years and is thought to reduce the risk of heart disease, high cholesterol and some types of cancer.
- Lemon: Just one lemon provides 51% of the daily recommended vitamin C. This is important not only to fight colds, but for long term health as studies show consuming produce with vitamin C helps prevent heart disease and stroke. Consuming lemons can also help protect against anemia and kidney stones.
What makes these low carb crab cakes?
Two factors makes this a low carb crab cake recipe compared to many other recipes.
First of all, my recipe calls for 100% real crab meat. Real crab meat is significantly higher in protein and lower in carbs compared to imitation crab meat.
Second, I use coconut flour in place of any type of bread crumbs. Coconut flour is simply dried, ground coconut meat. Compared to other flours, only a very small amount of coconut flour is needed. This helps achieve low carb crab cakes that are still delicious and have a great texture.
How do I choose high quality crab meat?
As with any recipe, your end result will depend in part on the quality of the ingredients you use. I find this to be particularly important with seafood. Low quality seafood simply doesn't taste good.
For this recipe, the most important part is making sure you buy real crab meat. This sounds simple, but many of the products you find at the grocery store are actually imitation crab. What is imitation crab? It's little bits of white fish that are turned into a paste and mixed with other ingredients before being shaped to look like crab meat. Yeah, not super appetizing. Make sure to check the ingredients carefully to make sure you're getting 100% crab.
As with all seafood, the other thing to look for is wild caught versus farmed. Buying wild caught seafood is more sustainable and better for the environment and often superior nutritionally. If you can't buy fresh caught crab, canned wild caught crab is also a great choice.
As I live nowhere near the coast myself, I love getting wild seafood like crab from Vital Choice Seafood. They offer frozen Dungeness crab meat, frozen wild Alaskan tanner crab meat and canned wild Dungeness crab meat. Not only is it always high quality, it shows up frozen (or canned) so I don't have to worry about it going bad before I cook it!
Are these crab cakes meal prep friendly?
Yes! These crab cakes are super meal prep friendly. Make the aioli ahead of time and store in the fridge. Then follow the crab cake recipe through the step where you place them in the freezer. Once the crab cakes are frozen, transfer them to a freezer container or freezer bag and keep frozen until you're ready to cook.
For any recipe like this, where it freezes well AND can go directly from the freezer to the oven, I love to make a double or triple batch. That way you can just pull a few out when you need a quick, healthy option for lunch or dinner!
What should I serve with this healthy crab cake recipe?
In our Prep Dish meal plans, we serve these crab cakes with roasted asparagus and tomatoes. (Simply roast trimmed asparagus and cherry tomatoes in a little olive oil, salt and pepper at 400 F for 15-20 minutes.) Any simple vegetable side like this will work though!
Crab cakes are also delicious on top of or alongside a salad. They would be great with this Superfood Salad with Lemon Balsamic vinaigrette or my Watermelon, Feta & Arugula Salad. A simple green salad with my Lemon Herb Vinaigrette would be excellent as well! End with some grilled fruit and you have a meal that's simple, elegant and super fresh.
Want to learn more about how to cook seafood?
Listen to episode 39 of my podcast, Meal Prep Monday: Overcome Your Fear! 3 Seafood Items You Should Not be Intimidated By
And read my article on 5 Tips for Choosing the Best Quality Fish.
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