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Maryland Crab Cakes

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The company website comes right out and tells it like it is: "There are two things you need to know about OLD BAY Seasoning. It's great on seafood and it's great on everything else." It's the "everything else" factor that has developed a cult following of spice addicts who threw out the salt and pepper years ago replacing them with a few shakes from the iconic blue and yellow tin. In fact, OLD BAY Seasoning is 76 years old this year and shows no signs of being shaken off by a newer, hipper food seasoning. According to the company, about 77 million ounces of OLD BAY were sold last year, a true testament to its success. While OLD BAY lovers sprinkle it on everything from chicken, pizza and pasta to corn-on-the-cob, salads and more, it's mostly used to flavor crab and shrimp. The name was inspired by a steamship line that traveled the Chesapeake between Maryland and Virginia. Its flavor profile is a zesty and complex blend of mustard, paprika, celery salt, bay leaf, black pepper, crushed red pepper flakes, mac, cloves, allspice, nutmeg, cardamom and ginger. One of my favorite Maryland crab cake recipes includes only a teaspoon and a half of OLD BAY Seasoning, but that's all that is needed to bring the zing to luscious lump crab. Serve it with a spring salad or in a toasted hamburger bun with tartar sauce. Or, make mini crab cakes for scrumptious East Coast appetizers!

Maryland Crab Cakes


  • 1 lb. jumbo or premium lump crabmeat
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • ¼ cup green onions, sliced thin
  • ¼ cup celery, finely diced
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1-¼ cups breadcrumbs (plain or seasoned)
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Dash of Sriracha
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 1-½ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Lemon wedges for garnish


  1. Drain the crab meat and place in a bowl. (Do not break up lumps.)
  2. Set aside.
  3. In a small skillet, heat 1 tablespoon butter and 1 teaspoon olive oil.
  4. Over medium high heat, cook green onions and celery until softened.
  5. When cooled, place in a medium bowl.
  6. Add eggs, breadcrumbs, mayonnaise, mustard, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, Sriracha, parsley, Old Bay seasoning and salt.
  7. Mix well.
  8. Add crab and gently combine, trying not to break up lumps too much.
  9. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1-2 hours.
  10. Shape the crab mixture into 6-8 cakes about 1 inch thick.
  11. In a 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat the remaining tablespoon of butter and tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat.
  12. When butter is frothy, add the cakes and cook until dark golden brown on one side, about 4 minutes.
  13. Very gently, flip the cakes over and cook until dark golden brown.
  14. Carefully remove crab cakes from skillet and serve with salad or in a bun.
  15. Serve with lemon wedges.

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