crab salad

2016-01-07 a.o.

It is a rare crab that survives for me to make crab salad with it, unless of course I intentionally buy extra for this purpose. Crab meat fresh out of the shell is delicious. Fighting off the temptation to eat that meat while getting it out of the shell isn’t always easy. :-) But the result is so much better than canned crab meat.

This is about as simple as it gets. There are many, more complicated recipes out there, but this simple is quite satisfactory for me. The crab flavor can be delicate, don't drown it in ketchup.

Use as an appetizer or as a spread. Make it a day ahead if possible, it allows the crab flavor to come out better. I use the same recipe for smoked salmon and tuna, although more less ketchup there. Crab flavor is comparatively delicate and you don’t want to overpower it with ketchup. Sometimes I leave the ketchup out altogether.

For lack of the better product, canned crab meat will do. (Pic1) Drain it well—some are more water than meat—and check for pieces of shell in the meat before using. In the Van Camp brand name, I like canned lump meat better than claw meat.


Pic1: canned crab meat (*)
Pic2: fresh king crab meat


(*) The local Walmart used to sell this, discontinued it and substituted 'Chicken of the Sea' claw meat, an inferior product at double the price. I have not bought canned crab since.


This is what you need for 8+ servings:

  • 1 lb. lump crab meat, preferably fresh
    or whatever quantity you managed not to eat
  • up to 2 tbsp. mayonnaise
  • up to 1 tbsp. ketchup


  • Combine all the ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  • Mix carefully.
    Do not crush the crab meat into a paste.
  • Refrigerate overnight for richer flavor.
  • Serve and enjoy.

Serving suggestions: Serve

  • as canapés (Pic8)
  • on a croissant (Pic9)
  • on pumpernickel bread.(Pic10)
Pic2: crab meat, fresh — 2017-01-01
Pic3+4: canned crab meat — 2016-06-23


Pic5: fresh crab meat — 2016-01-07
Pic6: fresh crab meat — 2016-07-24
Pic7: fresh crab meat — 2019-09-01


Pic8: canapés — 2016-03-23
Pic9: croissant, no ketchup — 2017-01-01
Pic10: pumpernickel bread — 2016-01-07


dungeness crab


Pic5-7: the crab from yesterday's cioppino


Pic8-10: preparing crab salad


Pic11-13: crab salad croissant