Mastering the Art of Cooking Premade Crab Cakes






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Cooking premade crab cakes can be a quick and easy way to enjoy a seafood delicacy without all the prep work. These cakes are typically made with a blend of crab meat, breadcrumbs, spices, and other ingredients that are formed into a patty shape and sold frozen or refrigerated. While they can be delicious as is, knowing how to properly prepare and cook them can take them to the next level. In this guide, we will cover the essential steps for cooking premade crab cakes, including how to thaw, cook, and serve them to perfection. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party or simply looking for a quick and tasty meal, these tips will have you whipping up delicious crab cakes in no time.

Understanding the Basics: What are Premade Crab Cakes and How to Choose the Best Kind

Crab cakes are a popular dish that can be found on menus in seafood restaurants across the country. But what if you want to enjoy this delicious meal in the comfort of your own home? That’s where premade crab cakes come in. In this section, we’ll take a closer look at what premade crab cakes are and how to choose the best kind.

What are Premade Crab Cakes?

Premade crab cakes are exactly what they sound like – pre-made patties of crab meat mixed with various ingredients such as breadcrumbs, mayonnaise, mustard, and spices. They’re typically sold frozen or refrigerated and can be found in grocery stores or online.

The advantage of using premade crab cakes is that they save time and effort compared to making them from scratch. Plus, they’re convenient for those who don’t have access to fresh seafood or who prefer not to handle raw meat.

Types of Premade Crab Cakes

When it comes to choosing premade crab cakes, there are several types available on the market. Here are some common varieties:

  • Lump Crab Cakes: These contain large chunks of lump crab meat with minimal filler.
  • Claw Meat Crab Cakes: Typically made with claw meat rather than lump meat and tend to have more fillers.
  • Mini Crab Cakes: Smaller versions of traditional-sized crab cakes that can be used as appetizers.
  • Gluten-Free Crab Cakes: Made without wheat-based breadcrumbs or flour for those who need a gluten-free option.

The type you choose will depend on your personal preference as well as any dietary restrictions you may have.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Premade Crab Cakes

When shopping for premade crab cakes, there are several factors you should consider before making a purchase:

  1. Ingredients – Look for high-quality ingredients such as real crab meat, rather than imitation or processed seafood. Also, check for any preservatives or additives that may be present.
  2. Brand/Manufacturer – Stick with reputable brands or manufacturers who have a good reputation for quality crab cakes.
  3. Price – Keep in mind that higher prices may indicate better quality ingredients, but it’s not always the case.
  4. Reviews – Read customer reviews to see what others are saying about the product and whether they recommend it.

By taking these factors into account, you’ll be able to choose the best premade crab cakes for your needs.

Preparing the Wet Ingredients: Mixing Mayonnaise, Egg and Seasoning to Create a Flavorful Binder

Once you’ve chosen your premade crab cake, it’s time to start preparing the wet ingredients. In this section, we’ll take a closer look at how to mix mayonnaise, egg and seasoning to create a flavorful binder for your crab cakes.

Premade crab cakes can be a quick and easy way to enjoy a seafood delicacy without all the prep work. When choosing premade crab cakes, consider the type and quality of ingredients, brand/manufacturer, price, and customer reviews. To prepare a flavorful binder, mix mayonnaise, egg, and seasoning together. Breadcrumbs and other “secret ingredients” like diced onions or parsley are essential components in creating tasty premade crab cakes. Cooking methods like sautéing, baking, or frying can be used but ensure not to overcook the crab cakes and to use a well-greased pan. Pair crab cakes with side dishes like salad or coleslaw, sauces like tartar or aioli, and garnishes like citrus wedges or fresh herbs.

Why Use Wet Ingredients?

Wet ingredients are used to bind the crab meat and other dry ingredients together in order to create patties that hold their shape during cooking. The wet mixture also adds flavor and moisture which helps prevent the crab cakes from becoming too dry or crumbly.

Choosing Your Mayonnaise

Mayonnaise is an essential ingredient in any good crab cake recipe as it acts as both a binder and adds flavor. When choosing mayonnaise for your recipe, there are several factors you should consider:

  • Type of Mayo: Look for high-quality mayo made with real eggs rather than imitation mayo.
  • Fat Content: A higher fat content will result in creamier texture.
  • Flavor Profile: Some mayos have added spices or herbs which can enhance the overall flavor of your crab cakes.

Adding Eggs

Eggs are another important component of the wet mixture as they help bind all of the ingredients together. One egg per 1 pound of crab meat is typically recommended. When adding eggs to your mixture, be sure to whisk them thoroughly before incorporating them into other wet ingredients.

Seasoning Your Crab Cakes

Seasoning is crucial when preparing tasty premade crab cakes. Here are some common spices and seasonings used:

  • Old Bay Seasoning – A classic seafood seasoning that includes celery salt, paprika, black pepper among others.
  • Dijon Mustard – Adds tangy flavor without overpowering other flavors.
  • Worcestershire Sauce – Adds savory depth of flavor
  • Lemon Juice – Adds brightness and freshness to the mix.

It’s important not to over-season your crab cakes as too much seasoning can overpower the natural flavor of crab meat. Taste as you go and adjust seasonings accordingly.

Mixing Your Wet Ingredients

Now that you have all of your wet ingredients ready, it’s time to mix them together. Here are some tips for creating a flavorful binder:

  1. Combine mayonnaise, egg and any other seasonings in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Whisk the mixture until all ingredients are well-combined.
  3. Gently fold in premade crab meat into the mixture until everything is evenly distributed.

Be careful not to over-mix or crush any large chunks of crab meat during this process, as it can affect the texture of your finished product.

Perfecting the Dry Ingredients: Adding Breadcrumbs and Other “Secret Ingredients” to Give Texture and Flavor to the Crab Cakes

In addition to wet ingredients, dry ingredients are also an essential component in creating tasty premade crab cakes. In this section, we’ll take a closer look at how to add breadcrumbs and other “secret ingredients” that will give texture and flavor to your crab cakes.

Premade crab cakes can be a quick and easy way to enjoy a seafood delicacy, and choosing the right type and quality of ingredients is crucial. Wet and dry ingredients must be mixed carefully and cooked perfectly through methods such as sautéing, baking, or frying. Complementing the dish with creative sauce, side dish, and garnish options can elevate the presentation and flavor of the dish.

The Role of Breadcrumbs

Breadcrumbs are used as a binder in crab cake recipes. They help absorb moisture from the wet mixture which helps hold everything together. They also add texture and bulk without being too heavy.

When choosing breadcrumbs for your recipe, there are several options:

  • Fresh Bread Crumbs – made by pulsing fresh bread slices in a food processor.
  • Panko Bread Crumbs – lighter Japanese-style bread crumbs that create a crispy crust on top of the cake.
  • Seasoned Bread Crumbs – breadcrumbs already seasoned with herbs such as parsley or thyme.

Other Secret Ingredients

While mayonnaise, eggs, seasoning and breadcrumbs form the basis for most premade crab cake recipes, some chefs like to add secret ingredients that make their recipe unique. Here are some ideas:

  • Diced Onion or Shallots – adds sweetness
  • Chopped Bell Pepper or Jalapeno – adds heat
  • Minced Garlic – adds savory depth of flavor
  • Parsley or Cilantro – adds freshness

It’s important not to overdo it with additional ingredients since you don’t want them to overpower other flavors in your dish.

Mixing Your Dry Ingredients

Now that you’ve chosen your breadcrumb type and any secret ingredients you’d like to use it’s time mix them into your wet mixture. Here’s how:

  1. Combine all dry ingredient components including breadcrumbs (and any additional seasoning) into one mixing bowl.
  2. Gently fold breadcrumb mixture into pre-made wet mixture until evenly distributed.
  3. Add additional breadcrumbs as needed to reach desired texture.

It’s important not to over-mix the dry mixture once it has been folded into the wet mixture since this can cause your crab cakes to become too dense and crumbly.

Cooking Tips and Tricks: Sautéing, Baking, or Frying – Which Method Works Best for Your Crab Cakes?

Once you’ve prepared your premade crab cakes with wet and dry ingredients, it’s time to cook them. In this section, we’ll take a closer look at three popular methods of cooking crab cakes: sautéing, baking and frying.

Premade crab cakes are a great option for those who want to enjoy this seafood dish without all the prep work. When choosing premade crab cakes, consider the ingredients, brand, price, and reviews. Wet ingredients such as mayonnaise, egg, and seasoning are used to bind crab meat and other ingredients. Breadcrumbs and other secret ingredients add texture and flavor. Sautéing, baking, and frying are popular cooking methods. Side dishes such as salad or coleslaw, sauces like tartar or lemon herb butter, and garnishes like citrus wedges or fresh herbs can elevate your crab cake dish.


Sautéing is a quick and easy way to cook crab cakes on the stovetop. Here’s how:

  1. Heat some oil in a pan over medium heat.
  2. Place the crab cake patties in the pan.
  3. Cook for 3-4 minutes per side until golden brown.

Sautéed crab cakes have a crispy exterior with a tender interior that is perfect for those who prefer less oily food.


Baking is another method that works well with pre-made crab cakes since it requires minimal effort but yields consistent results every time. Here’s how:

  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
  3. Place your premade crab cake patties on the lined baking sheet.
    4 Brush each patty lightly with melted butter or oil
    5.Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden brown.

Baked premade crabcakes are less greasy than fried ones but may not have as crispy an exterior as those fried using other methods.


Frying is one of the most popular ways to cook pre-made crabcakes because it produces an irresistible crispy crust while keeping their juicy interior intact.Here’s how:

1.Heat up enough oil in deep saucepan over medium-high heat
2.Place your premade crabcake patties carefully into hot oil
3.Fry each side for about two minutes until nicely browned
4.Remove from heat and drain on paper towels.

Fried premade crab cakes have a crispy exterior that is irresistible and an interior that is juicy and flavorful.

Tips for Cooking Perfect Crab Cakes

Here are some additional tips that will help you achieve perfect crab cakes, regardless of the cooking method you choose:

  • Use a non-stick pan or well-greased baking sheet to prevent sticking.
  • Flip your crab cakes only once during cooking to avoid breaking them apart.
  • Don’t overcrowd the pan or baking sheet as this can lower the temperature of the oil which may cause your crabcakes to become soggy.
  • Avoid overcooking your premade crab cakes since they can quickly dry out if left too long on high heat.

Serving in Style: Creative Ideas for Side Dishes, Sauces and Garnishes to Elevate Your Crab Cake Dish

Once you’ve cooked your pre-made crab cakes to perfection, it’s time to serve them up in style. In this section, we’ll take a closer look at some creative ideas for side dishes, sauces and garnishes that will elevate your crab cake dish.

Side Dishes

When it comes to side dishes for crab cakes, there are several options that complement the flavors of the dish:

  • Salad – A simple green salad with vinaigrette dressing is a great way to balance out rich flavors of the crab cakes.
  • Coleslaw – A sweet and tangy coleslaw can add crunch and freshness to your meal.
  • Grilled Vegetables – Grilling veggies like asparagus or zucchini can add smoky flavor that pairs well with crab meat.
  • Fries or Chips – Keep it simple with crispy fries or chips as classic sides.


Sauces can add an extra layer of flavor and texture when paired with premade crab cakes. Here are some popular sauce options:

  • Tartar sauce – This classic seafood sauce is made from mayonnaise, pickles relish mixed together
  • Remoulade Sauce – Made from mayonnaise mixed with herbs like thyme or parsley along with mustard among others; adds depth of flavor without overpowering natural taste of good quality real lump or claw meat.
  • Aioli Sauce – Garlic infused mayo perfect for those who love garlicy flavor
    -Lemon Herb Butter – melted butter infused lemon herb makes a light yet flavorful dipping option.


Garnishing adds a touch of elegance while enhancing presentation. Here are some garnishing ideas:

1.Citrus wedges such as lime ,lemon slices etc placed on the plate alongside crabcakes
2.Fresh herbs such as dill, parsley, or cilantro can be chopped and sprinkled on top of the crab cakes for added color and flavor
3.Arrange salad greens around the plate.
4.Lemon zest- sprinkle some lemon zest on top of your crabcakes for a


What is the best way to cook premade crab cakes?

The best way to cook premade crab cakes is to use a frying pan. Heat a small amount of oil in the pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, place the crab cakes in the pan and cook them for 3-4 minutes on each side or until they are golden brown. Alternatively, you can bake the crab cakes in a preheated oven at 375°F for about 10-12 minutes or until they are hot and crispy.

Can I cook premade crab cakes in the microwave?

Yes, you can cook premade crab cakes in the microwave, but it is not recommended as the crab cakes may lose their texture and flavor. To microwave the crab cakes, place them on a microwave-safe plate and heat them on high for about 1-2 minutes or until they are hot. However, it’s best to use the oven or stovetop for a better result.

How do I know when the premade crab cakes are fully cooked?

You can tell when the premade crab cakes are fully cooked by checking their internal temperature. The crab cakes should reach a temperature of 165°F when cooked. You can use a food thermometer to check the temperature. Alternatively, you can touch the center of the crab cake with a fork to feel if it is firm and hot throughout.

Can I freeze leftover cooked premade crab cakes?

Yes, you can freeze leftover cooked premade crab cakes. Once they are cooked, let them cool down to room temperature, then wrap them tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and place them in an airtight container or freezer bag. Label the container with the date and place it in the freezer for up to 3 months. To reheat the frozen crab cakes, thaw them in the refrigerator overnight, and then cook them in a frying pan or oven until they are hot.

Jessica Hartley

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