Serves a Crowd

Jane's Crab Cakes

October  4, 2022
10 Ratings
Photo by Rocky Luten
  • Prep time 1 hour
  • Cook time 15 minutes
  • Serves 8
Author Notes

Like many of us, I learned not only to cook, but to really love and appreciate good food, at my mother's side. Raised in Oklahoma, by a mother who never cooked, she took it upon herself to learn and practiced with raising and feeding three boys. She and my dad spent mom's last few summers at their house on Maryland's Eastern Shore, where she delighted in the bounty of fresh Maryland crabmeat. She did not take kindly to the subpar crabcakes that were foisted upon diners... overstuffed with bread filling and whatnot... As in most everything she did, she believed that simplicity stood out. And in her mind, a crabcake should explode with chunks of crab... and the snap of horseradish... and who can argue with that? - saenyc —saenyc

Test Kitchen Notes

This is a crab cake in its purest form—fresh lump meat adorned with little more than crushed saltine crackers, mayonnaise and Tabasco. These have a nice, crisp crust and spicy bite from crab's classic partner, Old Bay. They are great spritzed with lemon but would also work well with a homemade tartar sauce. - Emily —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 tablespoons mayonaisse
  • 4 teaspoons drained horseradish
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 pinch salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 teaspoons Old Bay (generous)
  • 4 teaspoons Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 dash (or 4) of Tabasco
  • 2 pounds lump or backfin crabmeat (well-picked for shell)
  • 1/2 cup crushed Saltine crackers
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  1. In a large bowl combine egg, mayo, horseradish, mustard, salt & pepper, Old Bay, Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco.
  2. Toss mixture gently with crab and saltines.
  3. Form the mixture into 3/4 inch patties.
  4. Refrigerate for an hour, if possible.
  5. Heat oil and butter until foam subsides.
  6. Saute cakes 6-8 minutes a side, until golden. Drain on paper towel.
  7. Enjoy!

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Cory Baldwin
    Cory Baldwin
  • boulangere
  • EmilyNunn
  • Miranda Rake
    Miranda Rake
  • testkitchenette

13 Reviews

Charleen November 12, 2018
I wanted so much to like these but I found them to be flat ond one dimentional. They need some sauted onion and sweet pepper. The plain saltines don't add any taste. Maybe butter crackers, like Ritz? I did like the addition of horseradish.
Cory B. June 15, 2018
These were delicious!
csemsack June 15, 2018
Has anyone actually made the crab Cakes?
Mary June 9, 2018
What is that delicious looking sauce on the side? Would love to have the recipe!
Nan July 11, 2018
yes what is that delicious sauce on the side, recipe please
hazeddazed March 31, 2011
lovely and it sounds delicious!
boulangere March 30, 2011
Your mother was beautiful, and clearly so is your memory of her. Obvious in your recipe. So nicely done!
EmilyNunn April 26, 2010
I love the horseradish, too! And 4 teaspoons!

Your mom is so Grace Kelly/Mad Men glamorous. If I may combine those two icons.

Thanks for the recipe.
Miranda R. April 24, 2010
so perfectly captured, the picture and the story.
testkitchenette April 22, 2010
Love comes to mind when reading your story. Your mom was very glamorous too! I have had crabcakes on my mind for a while, thanks for bringing them to the forefront!
MrsWheelbarrow April 19, 2010
I love the addition of horseradish. (By the way, I just read that the Maryland crabs look abundant this year!)
saenyc April 20, 2010
I heard that too! I sure hope so... they've been putting in a lot of safeguards to help save the Bay.... hope it's not too late!
shayma April 19, 2010
mmmmm fab. and your story- v sweet.