Zucchini Crab Cakes - The Poor Man's Delicacy

Having been born and raised in Maryland I can say that there are a lot of different opinions on how to make a good crab cake. Whether it's with bread crumbs or without, mustard or no mustard, it seems everyone has their own tried and true way of making them. But I have to wonder... how many of them make zucchini crab cakes?

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OK. First, if you are from Maryland, please know I mean NO disrespect by calling these things crab cakes. I know what it means to a Marylander to cherish all things crab, but these zucchini 'crab' cakes are not only pretty tasty, they are really simple to make.

And very friendly to the grocery budget too.

Of Course, You Have To Use Old Bay

Old Bay Seasoning is what makes Maryland crab cakes... well... Maryland. It's a spice that was created there, and to this day, is still made there.
From Wikipedia...

Old Bay Seasoning is a blend of herbs and spices that is marketed in the United States by McCormick & Company and produced in Maryland. It is produced in the Chesapeake Bay area where it was developed by German immigrant Gustav Brunn in 1939, and where the seasoning is very popular to this day. At that time, crabs were so plentiful that bars in Baltimore, Maryland, offered them free and salty seasonings like Old Bay were created to encourage patrons to purchase more beverages. Old Bay is just one of many crab seasonings created during that era, yet it is one of only a few that survived. 

So basically, if you're making crab cakes, even zucchini crab cakes, Old Bay Seasoning is a must!

And if you have never tried it! OH MY!! Please order some immediately! You won't be sorry.

Zucchini? Really? Is It Worth It?

Seeing that I have made these for the 25+ years I have been married, with no complaints, I would say YES, they are totally worth making.

No need to spend extra money on crab, especially fake crab, just shred up some zucchini and let the Old Bay Seasoning do the rest.

But First, Let Me Share Some Secrets to Successful Zucchini Crab Cakes

Making sure you have drained and/or squeezed the moisture out of the shredded zucchini is important.

This is one step you don't want to forget. Zucchini itself holds a lot of moisture, so if you don't work that out, you will have some VERY mushy cakes on your hands.

Grab Your Milk Bag or Some Cheesecloth

Once you have shredded your zucchini, allow it to drain in a colander for at least 30 minutes with just a dash or two of salt sprinkled and mixed in. This will allow some of the moisture to drain through, but it's not enough.

What I have found to be REALLY helpful is placing the drained, shredded zucchini in a milk bag (or cheesecloth) and squeezing like crazy to get as most of the moisture out I can.

Just adding in this one simple step has taken my zucchini crab cakes from just 'OK' to 'WOW!'

To Egg or Not To Egg.. Just Don't Forget the Starch

Whether you're an egg-er or not an egg-er, this recipe will either way.

Eggs help bind the mixture together, but if you'd like to stay away from using them, using a flax-egg substitute will work with a little help.

A flax-egg can easily be mixed up by combining 1 Tablespoon of flax meal with 3 Tablespoons of water (per egg). Stir the two together and let them sit for a few minutes.

Once you have the all the ingredients for the zucchini crab cakes together, sift the potato starch over mixture and mix through. This will help the cakes stay together nicely,

And Now Onto The Recipe

Zucchini Crab Cakes


  • 2 cups shredded and drained zucchini
  • 1 cup gluten-free bread crumbs (or regular bread crumbs)
  • 2 teaspoonOld Bay Seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon mayonnaise (vegan mayonnaise if desired)
  • 1 teaspoon gluten-free Worcestershire sauce (optional)
  • 2 eggs or flax-eggs
  • 2 to 3 Tablespoons avocado oil for frying


  1. In a large bowl, combine zucchini, egg, seasoning, and mayonnaise. Stir in bread crumbs. Mix well.
  2. Shape mixture into patties.
  3. In a medium skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat until hot. Fry patties in oil until golden brown on both sides.

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  1. Great idea to add some zucchini into these! Old bay does make everything more tasty

  2. Such a great way to use zucchini! Love this idea!

  3. Seriously!! THIS IS GENIUS! I am sooo on board! Crab + Zucchini, YES PLEASE!

  4. I’ll take a stack of these please! This recipe is a must!

  5. Angela Cardamone @marathonsandmotivation.comAugust 8, 2018 at 7:18 PM

    Yum! These sound so amazing, I am looking forward to giving them a try!! :-)

  6. I used to work in a crab house in MD so I know all about old bay - and I love it! I also love the zucchini addition!

  7. what a great idea! I'll have to make these with all my garden zucchini

  8. Thanks Deborah. Yes, Old Bay does make everything taste amazing!! So glad I can still get my hands on it down here!

  9. Yes! Please do! I think you'll really like it. It taste amazing!

  10. Kelly, that's Awesome! Which one did you work at? The best ones always seemed to be the small mom and pop ones.

  11. Thanks Angela. I hope you do. And then come back and let me know what you think.

  12. Ha ha. Thanks Abbey! You really can eat a whole plate full of these guys!

  13. Thanks Gigi. I know. Crazy right? So easy and delicious!!

  14. Thanks Emily! Yes, with the abundance of them this time of year - it's an easy one for sure.

  15. Very creative! Don't forget the tartar sauce. They came out pretty darn good. Thank you for sharing.

  16. Ha ha. Thanks! Yes, but not too much.. the crab cakes are delicious on there own. Thanks for stopping by. Checked out your site. May just have to surprise my hubby with some soft shelled crabs sometime soon. Didn't realize I could order those here to Florida. Very cool!

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