Crab Cakes with Ginger and Lime


Asian inspired crab cakes with fresh crab meat, lime, ginger, and sriracha.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Here’s an Asian inspired spin on a classic crab cake—fresh lump crab meat mixed with lime zest, grated ginger, and spicy sriracha sauce, formed into patties, egg-dipped, and dredged in crispy panko, and then lightly fried.

Yum! The crab cakes are small, so you can either serve them for appetizers or serve several as a main course.

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Crab Cakes with Ginger and Lime

Now, if you’re like me, you might want to make a double batch, because you can always use any extra crab mixture to top some butter lettuce and a few slices of avocado.

Or, you might find yourself picking at the mixture just to make sure it tastes good, until lo and behold half of it is gone, which, if you’ve made a double batch, still leaves you plenty for the crab cakes. Enjoy!

Crab Cakes with Ginger and Lime Recipe

  • Prep time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 16 appetizer sized crab cakes.


  • 8 ounces fresh lump crab meat, well picked through to remove any bits of shell
  • 3 scallions, including green parts, finely chopped (about 1/4 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger root
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice, plus a little more for sprinkling on at service
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon sriracha sauce, depending on how spicy you would like the crab cakes to be
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons of panko breadcrumbs for crab mixture plus 3/4 cup of panko breadcrumbs for breading
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • Lime slices for garnish


1 Prepare crab cake mixture:  In a medium bowl, combine the scallions, cilantro, ginger, lime zest, lime juice, and mayonnaise. Stir in the lump crab meat and the panko to combine. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for 1 to 2 hours.

2 Form into 1-inch round balls: Using your clean hands, form the crab mixture into 1-inch diameter round balls.

3 Coat in flour, egg, and panko: Set out 3 bowls, one for flour, one for the beaten egg, and one for panko breadcrumbs. Roll each crab ball in first the flour, then the beaten egg, and finally the panko. Set aside on a plate.

4 Cook crab cakes: Heat the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed sauté pan on medium high heat. Swirl in the butter.

After the butter has foamed up and melted, place the panko coated crab balls into the pan and press down gently with a metal spatula.

Do not crowd the pan, you may need to work in batches.

Cook a minute or two, until golden brown on one side, then gently turn the crab cakes over and cook until golden brown on the other side.

fry crab cakes in butter and olive oil

5  Remove to a paper towel lined plate or to a sheet pan in a low oven to keep warm.

6 Sprinkle with lime juice to serve, and serve with a slice of lime.

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Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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17 Comments / Reviews

No ImageCrab Cakes with Ginger and Lime

Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Damon

    I made these last night with leftover Dungeness crab, substituting garlic for scallions, which I didn’t have. It was amazing!

    Also, although Sriracha is listed in the ingredients (googling “crab cakes sriracha” was the hankering that brought me here) I didn’t see it in the directions, so I added it to the crab salad AND made a simple cocktail sauce with Sriracha and mayo. That worked out well too.

    Lastly: I baked them in my convection toaster oven instead of pan frying them, 450F for ~16 minutes.

    Saving this in my recipe collection. Thank you!


  2. caroline

    Great! Added a little serrano chile, kimche and fish sauce


  3. Dawn

    Sriracha is just a long cooked sauce of fairly hot chilis with garlic – very popular in the US, except with people who live near the factory. :-) A close match would be Korean Gochujang sauce or paste, with an added finely crushed clove of garlic. Hope that helps!

  4. Laura

    Can I use immatation crab

  5. Dena Palmquist

    This recipe is my absolute favorite! We live in dungeness crab country and are lucky to have a bounty of this beautiful seafood. Fresh ginger is the key flavor point. When I double (or triple) this recipe, I dial back the ginger and cilantro a bit to keep balance. Perfection!

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