I was watching Ina Garten make crab cakes on TV and they looked very yummy but I wondered if I could make them with tofu. After carefully crafting this tofu crab cake recipe, I enlisted my friends to act as taste testers and they gave it 2 thumbs up. These make great appetizers to serve at parties with other finger foods but you could certainly make a meal out of a pair and add a tasty fresh green salad or slaw on the side.
If you like, you can top with any kind of salsa but I prefer a fruit salsa, like mango. You won’t be disappointed at all the flavor in this dish. I didn’t have any Old Bay seasoning on hand so I added a pinch of this and that. If you want that traditional crab cake spice, then you should use Old Bay or at least a few key seasonings that are in Old Bay like: celery seed, red pepper and paprika.
If you want to add more depth to the crab cake or just change the flavor profile slightly, you can do that by adding fresh herbs. The recipe calls for parsley but you can definitely add more. Adding more herbs will not only enhance the taste but increases the healthiness of the dish. Fresh herbs each have a list of benefits significant to each individual herb.
When following, a plant based meal plan it is always a good idea to start your own herb garden. You can grow them on your counter top or plant fresh herbs in your garden. Pinterest is loaded with tips on how to grow an herb garden.
Looking for more tofu-inspired recipes? Here’s a few more to try:
- Breakfast Burrito with Tofu Scramble
- Spinach Tofu Benedict
- One Pot Thai Coconut Curry Tofu
- Pineapple Fried Rice with Tofu
- Vietnamese Tofu Noodle Bowl
Tofu "Crab" Cakes
- 1 block firm organic tofu
- 3/4 cup red onion small diced
- 1 1/2 cups celery small diced
- 1/2 cup red bell pepper small diced
- 1/2 cup yellow bell pepper small diced
- 1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley minced
- 1 Tbl capers drained
- 1/4 tsp hot pepper sauce recommended: Tabasco
- 1/2 tsp Vegan Worcestershire sauce
- 1 1/2 tsp crab boil seasoning recommended: Old Bay, or use the Crab Boil Spice Mix listed below.
- 1/2 cup whole wheat breadcrumbs
- 1 Tbl lemon juice + 1/2 Tbl lemon zest
- 2 Tbl dijon mustard
- 2 Tbl ground flaxseeds
- sea salt and pepper to taste
Homemade Crab Boil Spice Mix
- 1/2 tsp ground mustard
- 1/2 tsp sweet or smoked paprika
- 1/8 tsp ground celery seeds
- 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp ground ginger
- pinch crushed red pepper flakes
- pinch ground cloves
- pinch ground mace
- pinch ground cardamom
- pinch ground allspice
- Combine 2 Tbl ground flaxseeds + 4 T. water. Let stand for a few minutes
- Press tofu by cutting in half lengthwise and press each half between paper towels and newspaper to take out some moisture. Once wrapped in newspaper, put something heavy on top to help press out the moisture. Let it sit for 20.
- Place onion, celery, red and yellow bell peppers, parsley, capers, hot pepper sauce, Worcestershire sauce, crab boil seasoning, salt, and pepper in a large saute pan over medium-low heat. Add about 1/4 cup of water (in place of oil) and sauté until the vegetables are soft, approximately 15 to 20 minutes. Cool to room temperature.
- In a large bowl, mash the tofu with a fork into small pieces and toss with the bread crumbs, lemon juice and rind, mustard, and flaxseed mixture. Add the cooked mixture and mix well.
- Salt & pepper to taste and cover to chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- Shape into bite-sized crab cakes.
- For a lower fat version, heat the oven to 375 degrees and bake on parchment paper for 20 minutes, flipping half way through.
- Heat a small amount of oil over medium heat in a large saute pan. Add the crab cakes and cook for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, until browned. Drain on paper towels; keep them warm in a 250 degree oven.
- Serve hot with mango salsa.