Kids love food on buns. I am not sure if it is because they get to eat with their hands, or because they love the bread (which I am sure is Thing 2’s main motivation), but if I can put a new food on a bun, I can usually get the kids to try it with an open mind. So when I saw a recipe for a crab cake burger that looked easy enough for a weeknight meal, I thought it would be the perfect way to introduce them to the wonderful world of crab!
I held off for a bit with this recipe, though. After successfully introducing shrimp earlier, I was hesitant to give them any additional seafood. I learned my lesson the hard way because, once they realized that they liked shrimp, I had to start making enough for everyone! And seafood is not the cheapest main ingredient out there. But, knowing that there is so much good nutrition in crab meat, including those wonderful omega-3 fatty acids as well as vitamin A, vitamin C, and a bunch of B vitamins, I couldn’t hold off for long. Crab is also low in fat, high in protein, and is considered a low-risk seafood for mercury.
My recipe was adapted from this Crab Cake Burger recipe that I found a few years ago. Along the way I have changed things to better suit my kids’ tastes. For example, they do not like Dijon mustard, but they do like Old Bay spice. They also do not like hot sauce, so I serve it on the side for DH. I also streamlined the preparation as much as I could without sacrificing flavor in order to make it as easy as possible for weeknight dining.
The result is a meal that is quick and easy to shop for as well as to assemble and cook. However, since crab is a little on the pricey side, I try to wait until I see a sale on crab meat or I stumble upon a coupon. (FYI, I did try making this with imitation crab that I ran through the food processor briefly before mixing with the rest of the ingredients. The kids ate the resulting cakes without complaint, but I think we all agree that the real thing is better!)
Crab Cake on a Bun
- 16 ounces lump crab meat (1 can)
- 1 egg (lightly beaten)
- 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1/4 cup light mayonnaise
- 2 teaspoons Old Bay spice (or more - season to taste)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon celery seed
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 teaspoons butter (or substitute)
- 6 whole grain hamburger buns
- hot sauce (optional)
Combine crab, egg, bread crumbs, mayonnaise, Old Bay spice, lemon juice, celery seed, onion powder and pepper.
Form mixture into 6 patties.
Heat oil and butter in a skillet over medium heat. Cook the patties until they are browned on each side, about 5 minutes per side.
Serve on whole grain hamburger buns, with optional hot sauce on the side.
Some people are allergic to shellfish, so you need to be watchful if this is the first time you are introducing crab to your kids. And of course, you only want to try this if you are willing to share your seafood from now on! 🙂
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