Recipe: Healthy Crab Cakes

It’s been a while since I’ve shared a healthy, easy-to-make recipe, so I wanted to remedy that with my Healthy Crab Cakes concoction. I’m originally from the South, and most of the seafood I grew up eating was battered and fried, including crab cakes. They were my absolute favorite seafood dish then, and still are to this day, but I wanted to create a healthier version to satisfy those cravings.

My recipe is an adaptation of a Cooking Light version that I found a couple of years ago while purging my magazine collection before our move to San Diego. I eliminate mayonnaise, use less breadcrumbs, and add extra herbs and spices to enhance the taste profile.

Crab Cakes
Crab cakes with over-roasted asparagus and garlic bread (this was a race week meal for G)

Healthy Crab Cakes


  • 2/3 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs, divided)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh, flat-leaf parsley (you could certainly use dry parsley instead)
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped green onions
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ½ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning (or other similar seasoning)
  • ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 8 oz. lump crab meat (fresh or canned), well drained
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 lemon, quartered


  • Combine 1/3-cup panko and next 9 ingredients (through eggs) in a large bowl and stir well. Add the crab; stir gently just until combined. Place the remaining 1/3-cup panko in a shallow dish (I like to use a glass pie dish). Using wet hands, shape crab mixture into 4 equal balls. Coat balls in panko, then gently flatten them to form 4 (4-inch) patties.
  • Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the oil to the pan; swirl to coat. Add crab patties; cook 3 minutes on each side or until golden. Serve with lemon wedges, asparagus and garlic bread, or a salad.

Note: While eliminating mayonnaise saves on fat and calories, it can be a little harder for the crab cakes to stick together. The second egg should take care of this, but if your crab cakes are falling apart before you start to cook them, you can add a bit more panko. Overall, I think the taste without the mayonnaise it so much more flavorful and fresher.

Here’s the nutritional breakdown for one crab cake:

Calories: 181

Fat: 7.8g

Carbs: 8.8g

Protein: 16.3g

G ran the Monument Valley 50-mile race last weekend (recap to come), and I was able to pace him for the last 14 miles – what a beautiful and fun experience! We had a fabulous time road-tripping there and back, and can’t wait for our travel adventures in April to Zion for Greg’s 100-mile race and Kauai to celebrate his birthday!

Take care,


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