Spicy Crab Cakes (Low carb, Gluten free)

19 May

When avoiding wheat flours that contain gluten, there are many other types of flours that one can use in its place, such as rice, sorghum, or tapioca flours which are still high in carbs. Since we are also on a low carb diet to promote weight loss, we choose to use the alternatives of almond or coconut flours.

This is a crab cake recipe that I came up with for our Friday night treat, and I chose to use coconut flour because I felt that the slightly sweet taste would work well with the sweetness of the crab meat and the heat of the chipotle pepper, while acting as a glue to hold the delicate patties in shape. Crab cakes often have fillers such as potato, which increases the carbs and can also disguise the flavor of the crab… I skipped this, since we like our crab cakes to be ALL about the crab.The Parmesan cheese takes the place of breadcrumbs as a coating, and browns up nicely in the oven. This is similar to the method used in Parmesan Perch.

Crab cakes should be refrigerated for a minimum of 30 minutes prior to baking, to help them hold their shape.

Spicy Gluten Free Crab Cakes

  • 1/4C celery, finely diced
  • 1 medium leek, washed well and finely diced
  • coconut oil for sauteing
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2T mayonnaise
  • 2T heavy cream
  • 6 oz crab meat (I used refrigerated in a packet)
  • 1/2 chipotle pepper, canned, finely diced (seeded if you prefer milder)
  • 2tsp capers, diced
  • 2Tb fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 Tb coconut flour
  • kosher salt and ground pepper to taste
  • 1/4-1/2 C Parmesan cheese, finely grated

Saute the celery and leek in coconut oil until tender, 2-3 minutes, and set aside. In a medium bowl, mix together egg, mayonnaise and cream. Gently fold in the crab meat. Add the leeks, celery, chipotle pepper, capers and parsley, mixing gently. Add coconut flour, 1 Tb at a time, mixing well. Add salt and pepper to taste. The mixture will be soft, but should be manageable. If it is too delicate, add a small amount of additional coconut flour. Divide mixture into about 6 medium patties, dredging each one in the grated Parmesan cheese before setting on a plate. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes to chill cakes and make them a little easier to handle. When they are chilled, bake at 450 degrees on a silicone baking mat or parchment-lined sheet for 10-12 minutes, or until lightly browned. Serve immediately with tartar or roumelade sauce.

Sauce: The sauce I used was a base of 1/2C mayo and 2Tb cream seasoned with a finely diced gerkin pickle, dash of hot sauce, 1/2 diced chipotle and 1tsp dijon mustard with a squeeze of lemon.


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6 responses to “Spicy Crab Cakes (Low carb, Gluten free)

  1. A Table in the Sun

    May 20, 2012 at 9:12 am

    Hi Gretchen,
    I like the idea of coconut flour with the crab……and chipotle in the sauce. Sounds yum. I’m going to give your crab cakes a try.

    • Gretchen without Gluten

      May 20, 2012 at 7:19 pm

      I’m glad it sounds good to you, we really enjoyed these! If you try them, I would love to hear how they turn out for you.

  2. Dana

    October 1, 2012 at 10:55 pm

    I made your crab cakes last week. They were great! I froze what we didn’t eat. Had them again tonight and (if you can believe it) they were better! I was gonna ask you about the carb count, but I
    don’t care, it will be my go to crab cake recipe from now on. Thank you.

    • Gretchen without Grain

      October 2, 2012 at 6:58 am

      Hi Dana, I’m so glad you tried these and liked them! It reminds me that it’s time to make them again *soon*! The carb count is very low… and there are actually more carbs from the leeks (or onions if you sub) than from the coconut flour. There are about 10 net carbs per batch… so for 6 cakes, that’s 1.7 carbs per piece. Hard to believe, isn’t it?! Thanks for commenting, and visiting my blog 🙂

  3. shikoomkoom

    January 11, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    I also love the idea of the coconut flour 🙂 I’ve never tried it before though, does it make a noticeable difference?

    • Gretchen without Grain

      January 14, 2013 at 7:50 am

      The coconut flour is ideal in this recipe for those who are avoiding grains, and it also has a delicate sweetness that compliments the crab nicely. It definitely helps to hold the patty together as well. If you try them, let me know what you think!


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