Crab Cakes With Key Lime Mayonnaise


Enjoy a taste of the beach with this favorite (and fast) dinner.

Southern Living Crab Cakes With Key Lime Mayonnaise on a plate to serve with lettuce

Greg Dupree, Food Stylist: Chelsea Zimmer, Prop Stylist: Christina Daley

Active Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
30 mins

Crab cakes are the ultimate vacation splurge. Golden, crispy cakes of full of tender, faintly sweet flaky crab meat are a true coastal indulgence.

But why wait for your next beach trip when you can whip them up at home in no time? Easier than fried fish or fried shrimp, these crab cakes get quickly seared in a skillet until crispy—no deep-frying required.

Fresh crab meat is easy to source at your local seafood market; just be sure to pick through it for any leftover bits of shell—that’s not the kind of crunch you’re looking for! Served with Key Lime Mayonnaise and Mango Salsa, these crab cakes will make you feel like your toes are in the sand.


  • 3/4 cup finely crushed saltine cracker crumbs (from about 20 crackers)

  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper (from 1 small pepper)

  • 1/4 cup finely chopped scallions (from 2 scallions), plus more for garnish

  • 2 large egg yolks

  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt

  • 1/2 tsp. Old Bay seasoning

  • 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

  • 1/4 cup, plus 1/3 cup mayonnaise, divided

  • 1 lb. fresh lump crabmeat, drained and picked over

  • 1/2 tsp. Key lime zest plus 1 Tbsp. juice (from 1 Key lime)

  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter

  • Mango Salsa

  • Mixed greens (optional)

  • Key lime slices, for garnish (optional)


  1. Form Crab Cakes:

    Stir together cracker crumbs, bell pepper, scallions, egg yolks, salt, Old Bay, Worcestershire, and 1/4 cup of the mayonnaise in medium bowl until combined. Gently fold in crab until combined. Form crab mixture into 4 (3- to 3 1/2-inch-wide) patties.

  2. Make Key Lime Mayonnaise:

    Whisk together lime zest and juice with remaining 1/3 cup mayonnaise in a small bowl until combined. Set aside.

  3. Cook Crab Cakes:

    Heat butter in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high until foamy. Add crab cakes to pan; cook until golden brown and cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes per side, adjusting heat as needed to prevent overbrowning. Remove from heat.

  4. Garnish and serve:

    Serve crab cakes with Mango Salsa, mayo, and mixed greens, if desired. Garnish with scallions and Key lime slices, if desired.

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