This Paleo, Keto Crab Cakes recipe is perfect if you enjoy crab cakes, but want to enjoy them without carbs. Inspired by the Maryland-style crab cakes that I get when in Baltimore, this recipe brims of sweet delicate lump crab meat, sauteed onions, and spices. Besides this recipe, in this post, I explain why typical crab cakes are not keto-friendly, and provide other keto-friendly date night dinner ideas.
Why share a Keto & Paleo Crab Cakes recipe?
Crab cakes are one of my favorite restaurant meals. Whenever my husband and I would go out to a nice restaurant for a date, I would almost always order crab cakes. When I made the decision to go keto, it was right before Valentine’s Day.
While I was excited to start and stick to my new lifestyle, I knew I wouldn’t be able to go out on Valentine’s Day and enjoy restaurant crab cakes since they aren’t keto-friendly.
I decided to share this post because I imagined that I wasn’t the only one wanting a grain-free crab cake option.
Why aren’t crab cakes keto-friendly?
Most crab cakes you find out in restaurants or premade in the grocery store are not keto-friendly. They include breadcrumbs to act as a binder.
Breadcrumbs are not approved food for the keto lifestyle since they are an empty carb and are made of bread.
Plus, many of the remoulade sauces served with crab cakes are laden with hidden sugar, making them a big no for the keto lifestyle.
How can I have crab cakes while keto?
My keto crab cakes don’t have a single bread crumb. I replaced all the breadcrumbs you’d find in most crab cake recipes with almond flour.
This recipe also includes some other simple swaps. The swaps make these crab cakes not just easy to fit into a keto diet but also make them Whole30 and paleo-friendly as well.
If you’d like to have this dish and are currently on Whole30 or Paleo, then you should swap the mayo that I’m using for one that is Whole30 approved. One popular paleo-friendly mayo is this one.
How to Make Keto Crab Cakes
Making keto crab cakes is really no more complicated than making any other crab cakes.
Start by heating a skillet with olive oil over medium heat. I like these skillets from 360 Cookware.
Next, saute the chopped shallots and pepper with the garlic in olive oil until the shallots are translucent. This only takes a couple of minutes. When the veggies are soft and the shallots are translucent, you can remove the pan from the heat and set it aside.
After, put the crab meat into a large bowl and check for shells and remove any shells if necessary. Season the crab meat with spices and fold in the mustard, lemon juice, and cooked veggies.
In a separate small bowl whisk together the eggs and mayo until the eggs are fully beaten. Mix this into the crab meat mixture. Once the mayo mixture is fully incorporated into the crab mixture, you can add the almond flour in.
Mix the crab with the almond flour and form patties. Put the crab cakes in the fridge and let them chill for about half an hour. This chill time allows them to set a little so that they don’t fall apart once they hit the pan.
Once the crab cakes have chilled for a while, heat a pan with half an inch of olive oil on the bottom and cook the crab cakes for 3 to 4 minutes per side.
That’s it! Just a few easy steps and you are enjoying a delicious date night meal at home.
What to Serve with these Paleo Crab Cakes
Easy Side Dish Ideas
I love to serve these Keto Crab Cakes with a simple Caesar salad. I top the salad with my Keto Creamy Caesar dressing that takes only a few minutes to make in a blender.
Keto Creamy Caesar Dressing RecipeGet this recipe
Besides a salad, these also go well with a simple green vegetable. One option is to serve these with a side of this easy sauteed asparagus.
Easy Sauteed Asparagus Recipe with LemonGet this recipe
Date Night Drink Recipes
For me, a date night always includes a cocktail. One of my favorites to make is Keto Mojito.
Easy Keto Vodka MojitoGet this recipe
You might also opt to enjoy any of these Keto Drink Recipes. There are 15 options, including some that do not have alcohol.
Keto Dessert Ideas
Keto Pumpkin Cheesecake BarsGet this recipe
Gluten-free Strawberry Cheesecake BitesGet this recipe
Other Quick Keto Date Night Recipes
If crab cakes aren’t your choice of a fantastic date night meal or you have trouble finding the lump crab in the grocery store, you could try one of these other fancy feeling meals for a keto date night.
- Seared Scallops & Cauliflower Rice Risotto
- Keto Date Night Dinner Recipes (there are more than 20 options)
- The Ultimate Surf & Turf
- 1 lb lump crab meat
- 1 lb claw crab meat
- 1 shallot thin slices
- 3 baby bell peppers thin slices
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 cup Real Hellmann’s Mayo
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
- 1 tsp white pepper
- 1/4 cup Fresh parsley chop or rip by hand
- 1.5 tbsp Old Bay
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tsp dry mustard or 2 tbsp mustard from a bottle
- 1/4 cup almond flour
- Olive Oil for pan frying
- Heat a medium skillet on medium heat with olive oil
- Add peppers, onions, and garlic to pan and cook until translucent (~3 minutes). Remove from heat and set aside.
- Put crab meat into a large bowl. Use your hands to feel for shells. Remove if necessary.
- Mix eggs and mayo in a small bowl
- Add salt, pepper, parsley, Old Bay, lemon juice, mustard, onion/pepper/garlic and egg/mayo mix to crab meat. Mix to fully incorporate.
- Add almond flour and mix (the purpose of the almond flour is to hold the crab cake together when you form a patty in your hand. This was enough for me, but if you want more hold, simply add 1 tbsp at a time)
- Form crab cakes and allow to chill for 20-30 minutes
- Wipe the pan used for onions, pepper and garlic
- Heat the pan to medium with about 1/2 inch of olive oil
- Cook crab cakes until browned on both sides (3-4 minutes per side)