Paleo-Friendly Crab Cakes Recipe

Last Update: September 28, 2022

What’s the secret to the moist, tender texture of these Maryland-style crab cakes? Coconut flour, which keeps the cakes together without the heaviness of breadcrumbs.  Full of lemon zest and bright, fresh herbs, we like them served in a crunchy lettuce-leaf wrap and served with avocado and lemon slices on the side.  

Paleo-Friendly Crab Cakes

Yield: 10 crab cakes 
Active Time: 15 minutes 
Total Time: 20 minutes  


4 (6-ounce) cans white-lump crab meat, drained  
1/2 cup Paleo mayonnaise  
2 tablespoons dijon mustard  
Juice of 1 lemon  
Zest of 4 lemons  
1 teaspoon coconut aminos  
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar  
1/4 teaspoon cayenne  
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder  
1/4 teaspoon onion powder  
Pinch paprika  
4 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning  
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 small bunch flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped  
3 tablespoons chopped chives  
1 egg, lightly beaten  
3 tablespoons coconut flour
 Coconut oil


Combine the crab meat in a large bowl with the mayonnaise, mustard, lemon juice and zest, coconut aminos, apple cider vinegar, spices, salt, and herbs. Mix gently with your hands until well combined, taking care not to break up the lumps of crab up too much. Mix in egg and coconut flour. Refrigerate mixture for 30 minutes to an hour so flavors can combine.

Just before cooking, preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Heat a tablespoon of coconut oil in a skillet over medium heat. Form crab batter into fairly compact 1/2-cup patties and when oil is hot, taking turns, carefully place crab cakes in pan and fry until browned, about 3 minutes. Carefully flip crab cakes and fry on other side until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Place on baking sheet and put in oven to cook through, 5 minutes. Serve with lemon on the side.  

Photo credit: Paul Delmont

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Merce Muse

Thrive Market Food Editor

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