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How Long To Cook Crab Cakes In Air Fryer How Long To Cook Crab Cakes In Air Fryer


How Long To Cook Crab Cakes In Air Fryer

Written by: Lily Evans

Discover the perfect cooking time for crab cakes in an air fryer with our comprehensive guide. Learn the best techniques and tips for crispy and delicious results.

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Cooking crab cakes in an air fryer is a delicious and convenient way to enjoy this classic seafood dish. The air fryer’s hot circulating air ensures that the crab cakes become crispy on the outside while remaining tender and flavorful on the inside. Whether you’re a seafood lover or simply looking for a healthier cooking option, the air fryer is a fantastic tool to have in your kitchen.

In this article, we will explore the benefits of cooking crab cakes in an air fryer, provide step-by-step instructions for preparing and cooking them, and share some helpful tips and tricks to achieve the perfect crab cake every time. So, let’s dive in and discover the wonders of cooking crab cakes in an air fryer!

Key Takeaways:

  • Enjoy crispy, moist crab cakes with an air fryer, a healthier and faster cooking option. Experiment with seasonings and serving ideas for a delightful dining experience.
  • Follow step-by-step instructions to prepare, cook, and serve perfect crab cakes in an air fryer. Prioritize high-quality crab meat and avoid overcrowding the fryer for best results.

Benefits of Cooking Crab Cakes in an Air Fryer

Cooking crab cakes in an air fryer offers a multitude of benefits that make it a preferred method for many seafood lovers. Here are some of the advantages:

  1. Healthier Option: One of the primary benefits of using an air fryer is that it requires very little or no oil to cook food. This makes it a healthier alternative to traditional frying methods, which often involve deep-frying in oil. By using an air fryer, you can significantly reduce the amount of fat and calories in your crab cakes without sacrificing flavor or texture.
  2. Crispy Exterior, Moist Interior: The air fryer’s circulating hot air technology creates a crisp and golden-brown exterior on the crab cakes, similar to deep-frying. However, unlike traditional frying methods, the interior of the crab cakes remains moist and tender. This perfect balance of textures ensures a delightful eating experience.
  3. Easier and Faster Cooking: Cooking crab cakes in an air fryer is incredibly convenient and saves time in the kitchen. The air fryer preheats quickly, and the cooking time for crab cakes is usually shorter compared to baking in the oven. With its intuitive controls and preset cooking functions, the air fryer takes the guesswork out of cooking and allows you to enjoy delicious crab cakes in no time.
  4. Even Cooking: The air fryer’s hot circulating air ensures that the crab cakes cook evenly on all sides. This eliminates the need for flipping the crab cakes halfway through the cooking process, as required in other cooking methods. With the air fryer, you can achieve consistent results every time.
  5. Less Mess, Easy Cleanup: Unlike traditional methods of frying, cooking crab cakes in an air fryer creates minimal mess and splatter. Since there’s no oil to deal with, cleanup becomes a breeze. Most air fryer baskets are dishwasher-safe, making it even more convenient to clean up after cooking.

With the numerous benefits it offers, cooking crab cakes in an air fryer is a wise choice for seafood enthusiasts who want to savor the deliciousness of this dish in a healthier and more convenient way. Now that we’ve explored the advantages, let’s move on to the next section and learn how to prepare the crab cakes for cooking.

Preparing the Crab Cakes

Before you can cook crab cakes in an air fryer, you need to prepare the crab cakes mixture. Here’s a simple and delicious recipe to get you started:

  1. Gather the Ingredients: To make crab cakes, you’ll need fresh crab meat, bread crumbs, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, minced onions, minced garlic, chopped parsley, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Ensure that the crab meat is picked clean of any shells.
  2. Combine the Ingredients: In a bowl, mix together the crab meat, bread crumbs, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, minced onions, minced garlic, chopped parsley, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Be gentle with the mixture to avoid breaking up the crab meat too much. The goal is to have a well-combined mixture that holds together when formed into cakes.
  3. Chill the Mixture: Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate the crab cake mixture for about 30 minutes. Chilling the mixture helps it firm up, making it easier to shape into cakes.
  4. Shape the Crab Cakes: Once the mixture has chilled, take a portion of the mixture in your hands and gently shape it into a patty or cake, about ¾ inch thick. Repeat the process until you have used up all the crab cake mixture. The size of the cakes can be adjusted to your preference.
  5. Place on a Baking Sheet: Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and arrange the crab cakes on it. Leave some space between each cake to ensure even cooking.

Now that you have prepared the crab cake mixture and shaped the cakes, you are ready to cook them in the air fryer. In the next section, we will discuss the optimal cooking time and temperature for perfect crab cakes.

Cooking Time and Temperature

Now that you have prepared the crab cakes and are ready to cook them, it’s important to set the right cooking time and temperature in the air fryer. Follow these steps to ensure perfectly cooked crab cakes:

  1. Preheat the Air Fryer: Preheat your air fryer to 375°F (190°C) for about 5 minutes. This will ensure that the air fryer is hot enough to give your crab cakes that crispy exterior.
  2. Place the Crab Cakes in the Air Fryer: Once preheated, carefully place the crab cakes into the air fryer basket, leaving space between them for proper air circulation and even cooking. Avoid overcrowding the basket to ensure good airflow.
  3. Cooking Time: Set the cooking timer for 10 minutes. However, cooking time can vary depending on the size and thickness of the crab cakes as well as the specific model of your air fryer. It’s always a good idea to start with a shorter cooking time and check the doneness to avoid overcooking.
  4. Flip the Crab Cakes: After 5 minutes of cooking, gently flip the crab cakes using tongs or a spatula. This will help to ensure even browning on both sides.
  5. Continue Cooking: Close the air fryer and let the crab cakes cook for the remaining time or until they are golden brown and crispy on the outside. Be sure to monitor the cooking process closely to prevent burning.

Once the crab cakes are done cooking, it’s time to check for doneness before serving them. We’ll discuss this in the next section, so keep reading!

Cook crab cakes in the air fryer at 375°F for 12-15 minutes, flipping halfway through. Check for an internal temperature of 145°F to ensure they are fully cooked.

Checking for Doneness

Checking the doneness of your crab cakes ensures that they are cooked to perfection and ready to be enjoyed. Here are some indicators to look for to determine if your crab cakes are done:

  1. Visual Appearance: When the cooking time is complete, visually inspect the crab cakes. They should have a golden brown color on the outside, indicating a crispy and flavorful crust. Avoid cooking them for too long, as they may become overly browned or burnt.
  2. Internal Temperature: Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of a crab cake. The minimum safe temperature for cooked seafood is 145°F (63°C). Insert the thermometer into the center of a crab cake to ensure it has reached the appropriate temperature. If the crab cakes are not yet fully cooked, place them back in the air fryer for an additional 1-2 minutes.
  3. Texture and Firmness: Gently press the top of a crab cake with your finger. If it feels firm and holds its shape, it is a good indication that the inside is properly cooked. If it feels mushy or falls apart, it may need more time in the air fryer.
  4. Flakiness: Break open a crab cake to check its flakiness. The crab meat should be cooked fully and have a tender, flaky texture. If the meat appears translucent or raw, it needs more cooking time.

Remember that cooking times may vary depending on the size and thickness of your crab cakes as well as the specific model of your air fryer. It’s always better to slightly undercook the crab cakes and adjust the cooking time accordingly rather than risk overcooking them and making them dry.

Now that you’ve determined that your crab cakes are perfectly cooked, it’s time to serve them up and enjoy their delicious flavors. Let’s move on to the next section to discover some serving ideas and tips for enhancing your meal.

Serving and Enjoying the Crab Cakes

Once your crab cakes are cooked to perfection, it’s time to present them in an appetizing manner and savor their delightful flavors. Here are some tips on serving and enjoying your crab cakes:

  1. Plating: Place the cooked crab cakes on a serving platter or individual plates. You can garnish them with a sprinkle of fresh parsley or a lemon wedge for an added touch of freshness.
  2. Sauces and Dips: Serve your crab cakes with a selection of sauces and dips to enhance their taste. Popular choices include tartar sauce, cocktail sauce, remoulade sauce, or a squeeze of lemon juice. These accompaniments complement the flavors of the crab cakes and provide a nice contrast of tanginess or creaminess.
  3. Pairing: Consider serving your crab cakes with complementary side dishes. Freshly steamed vegetables, a crisp green salad, or even a buttery corn on the cob can make for a well-rounded meal. You can also serve them as an appetizer with a light salad or on top of a bed of mixed greens for an elegant presentation.
  4. Texture and Flavor Contrast: To add an interesting twist to your crab cakes, you can experiment with different textures and flavors. Consider adding a crunchy slaw or pickled vegetables as a topping. Alternatively, you can serve them on a toasted brioche bun with lettuce, tomato, and a dollop of your favorite sauce for a delicious crab cake sandwich.
  5. Enjoying the Flavors: Take a moment to savor each bite of your crab cakes. Appreciate the delicate sweetness of the crab meat, the crispiness of the exterior, and the flavorful seasonings. Pair each bite with a sip of a refreshing beverage, such as a chilled glass of white wine or a citrus-infused sparkling water, to amplify the overall dining experience.

By paying attention to plating, pairing, and incorporating a variety of flavors, you can elevate the enjoyment of your crab cakes and create a memorable dining experience for yourself and your guests.

Now that you have the knowledge to prepare, cook, and serve delicious crab cakes in an air fryer, let’s wrap up this article with some final tips and tricks to help you achieve perfection in your crab cake creations.

Tips and Tricks for Perfect Crab Cakes in an Air Fryer

To ensure that your crab cakes turn out perfectly every time you cook them in an air fryer, here are some tips and tricks to keep in mind:

  1. Use High-Quality Crab Meat: The quality of crab meat you use will greatly impact the flavor and texture of your crab cakes. Opt for fresh crab meat whenever possible, or choose high-quality canned crab meat that is free from fillers or preservatives.
  2. Prioritize Chunkier Crab Cakes: For a more satisfying eating experience, use larger chunks of crab meat in your mixture. This will give the crab cakes a meatier and more substantial texture.
  3. Refrigerate the Crab Cakes: After shaping the crab cakes, refrigerate them before cooking. Chilling them helps them hold their shape and ensures they cook evenly in the air fryer.
  4. Preheat the Air Fryer: Always preheat your air fryer before cooking the crab cakes. This helps achieve that perfect crispy exterior. Once preheated, add the crab cakes and start the cooking process.
  5. Avoid Overcrowding: Avoid overcrowding the air fryer basket, as this can impede air circulation and affect the cooking time and results. Cook the crab cakes in batches if needed or use multiple layers in a large-capacity air fryer.
  6. Do Not Flip Too Early: To ensure a crispy crust forms on the crab cakes, avoid flipping them too early in the cooking process. Wait until the halfway point to carefully flip them, allowing each side to develop a golden brown color.
  7. Test for Doneness: Use visual cues, internal temperature readings, and texture tests to determine if the crab cakes are fully cooked. Remember that overcooking can result in dry and less flavorful crab cakes.
  8. Experiment with Seasonings: Feel free to customize the seasonings in your crab cake mixture. Add a pinch of Old Bay seasoning, cayenne pepper for a kick, or chopped fresh herbs like dill or cilantro for extra flavor and freshness.
  9. Grease the Air Fryer Basket: To prevent the crab cakes from sticking to the air fryer basket, lightly grease it with cooking spray or brush it with a small amount of oil before adding the crab cakes.
  10. Clean the Air Fryer Properly: After cooking, make sure to clean your air fryer thoroughly. Remove any leftover crumbs or residue to maintain its performance and longevity.

By utilizing these tips and tricks, you’ll be well on your way to creating the perfect crab cakes in your air fryer. Remember to have fun, be creative, and enjoy the process of cooking and savoring this delicious seafood dish.

Now that we’ve covered all the essential information, it’s time to wrap up this article.


Cooking crab cakes in an air fryer is a convenient and delicious way to enjoy this classic seafood dish. Not only does the air fryer produce crispy and flavorful crab cakes, but it also offers several benefits such as healthier cooking, faster cooking times, and easy cleanup.

By following the step-by-step instructions provided in this article, you can prepare and cook crab cakes in your air fryer with ease. From mixing the ingredients to shaping the cakes and checking for doneness, each stage is important in ensuring a successful outcome.

Remember to take advantage of the versatile nature of crab cakes by exploring different serving options and pairing them with complementary side dishes. Whether you choose to serve them as an appetizer or a main course, the flavors and textures of the crab cakes are sure to delight your taste buds.

Lastly, don’t forget to experiment and personalize your crab cake recipe by incorporating your favorite seasonings and ingredients. The air fryer provides a great opportunity to get creative and customize your crab cakes to suit your preferences.

With the tips and tricks shared in this article, you are well-equipped to achieve perfection in your air-fried crab cakes. So, grab your air fryer, some fresh crab meat, and get ready to impress your family and friends with delicious homemade crab cakes!

Happy cooking!

Frequently Asked Questions about How Long To Cook Crab Cakes In Air Fryer

Can I cook frozen crab cakes in the air fryer?

Yes, you can definitely cook frozen crab cakes in the air fryer. Just follow the recommended cooking time and temperature for frozen seafood in your air fryer’s manual, and you’ll have delicious crab cakes in no time.
What temperature should I set my air fryer to for crab cakes?

For crab cakes, it’s best to preheat your air fryer to 375°F. This temperature allows the crab cakes to cook through evenly and develop a crispy exterior without overcooking.
How long should I cook fresh crab cakes in the air fryer?

Fresh crab cakes typically take about 12-15 minutes to cook in the air fryer. However, it’s always a good idea to check on them halfway through and adjust the cooking time based on your air fryer’s performance.
Can I use oil when cooking crab cakes in the air fryer?

While you can lightly spray or brush the crab cakes with oil before air frying, it’s not necessary. The air fryer’s circulating hot air will still give the crab cakes a crispy texture without the need for excessive oil.
How do I know when crab cakes are done in the air fryer?

You can tell that crab cakes are done in the air fryer when they are golden brown and crispy on the outside. Additionally, you can use a food thermometer to ensure that the internal temperature of the crab cakes reaches 145°F, indicating that they are fully cooked.

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