Because your skillet could use a vacation

Photo: Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Claire Spollen; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Around this time each year, we remember to send our thanks to the Chesapeake Bay, the region that perfected our favorite summertime meal: crab cakes. We have a few favorite crab cake recipes—Crab Cakes with Creamy Fennel-and-Radish Slaw and Gulf Crab Cakes with Lemon Butter, to name just two—and almost all of the preparations we love involve popping the cakes into a hot skillet to cook until they’re golden brown. There’s another way to prepare crab cakes, though, and it’s high time we all tried it.

While we look forward to the arrival of crab cake season each and every year, we don’t always look forward to amount of attention and culinary care we have to pay the crab cakes as they’re being prepared. Sometimes we want crab cakes on busy weeknights. What then? That’s where oven-baked crab cakes come into play. Baking crab cakes in the oven is the solution, and it’s as easy as can be. It takes hot oil out of the equation too. Just preheat, bake, relax, and enjoy.

Our all-time favorite preparation for crab cakes is this recipe for our Best-Ever Crab Cakes with Green Tomato Slaw. It actually involves both the skillet and the oven, and we think you should definitely try it this season. The final result has all the tenderness and flavor you want from a crab cake, and each cake is perfectly formed through the split-style cooking method. If you’re looking for recipes that skip the skillet entirely, we found a few favorites around the web: Baked Maryland Lump Crab Cakes (Allrecipes), Maryland Crab Cakes (Martha Stewart), Crab Cakes (Food Network), and Baked Crab Cakes with Remoulade (Betty Crocker).

No matter how they’re prepared, we hope you get to enjoy a few delicious crab cakes by the seaside this season.

WATCH: How to Make Best-Ever Crab Cakes

Will you try oven baking your crab cakes this summer? Let us know if you do or if you’re forever dedicated to the classic skillet method.