A few months ago, I attended my friend’s going away celebration, that was a potluck dinner. Everyone brought their favorite dish and we toasted to the lady of the hour. One of the dishes I fell in love with was a “crab cake” that was so delicious! I was absolutely shocked to later find out that the dish was VEGAN! Wait! What? How? I couldn’t fathom how something so yummy could not contain any seafood.
Being a Maryland girl in LA, I often miss the amazing and fresh seafood we have back home and the way we make a true authentic crab cake. So I made it a mission to do a little research and come up with my own variation of this amazing dish!
You may be wondering how the same texture of “crab” is achieved in a vegan form. The answer is a combination of artichokes, hearts of palm and chickpeas! When shredded these produce lump pieces that almost identically resemble crab. Add in some vegan mayo, Old Bay and a few other seasonings and boom you’ve got your crab cakes!
These flaky cakes are crispy due to the panko breadcrumbs and are hearty and rich in protein due to the chickpeas. They can also be made larger to be served as a main dish, or smaller for an appetizer. I was so pleased with how yummy they are and how similar to crab cakes they taste! Top with a little mayo, aioli or your own sauce and a little lemon juice and you’re good to go!
I will definitely be serving these up at my next party or event to see how many people I can fool by thinking they are the real thing! 🙂
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VEGAN CRAB CAKES – serves 4-6
- 1 15 oz can of chickpeas, unsalted
- 1 14 oz jar of hearts of palm, chopped into large pieces
- 1 14 oz can of artichoke hearts
- ¼ cup vegan mayo (I made my own using this recipe!)
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs (plus a little more for breading)
- 3 tablespoons Old Bay seasoning
- 2 teaspoon regular or dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon celery, chopped finely
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped finely
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon fresh or dried parsley, chopped finely if fresh
- 1/4 cup oil (vegetable, olive, grapeseed or sunflower seed)
- 2 lemons, cut into wedges
- Dill or spring onion, for garnish
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Place chickpeas, hearts of palm and artichoke hearts into food processor and pulse slowly to mash. Careful not to over process, as you don’t want it to be mushy. (I noticed my chickpeas didn’t chop up as much so I hand mashed them once out of the food processor)
- Scoop the mixture into a large mixing bowl and carefully hand mash any whole chickpeas you still see in the mixture.
- Add in vegan mayo, panko breadcrumbs, old bay, mustard, celery, garlic, salt, pepper and parsley and carefully mix together until well combined.
- Use your hands to create “crab” patties with the mixture to your desired size.
- Pour 1/2 cup additional panko breadcrumbs into a shallow dish (pie dishes work well). Coat each patty in a little panko and lay on a plate. Refrigerate for 15 minutes.
- In a medium skillet, add enough oil to over the base of the pan on medium heat.
- Pan fry each patty for 3-4 minutes on each side until both sides are golden brown.
- Transfer to a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes.
- Serve over a bed of greens, with a dollop of vegan mayo and a lemon wedge!
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