Summer is upon us, which means shellfish is about to make a regular appearance on the menu. Although you’ll never see us turn down a lobster roll, we’re just as happy to chow down on the slightly more affordable and equally tasty alternative that is crab. WIthout further ado, here’s a roundup of crab recipes that promise to deliver, whether you’re hankering for dressed-down seafood fare or a bowl of decadent mac and cheese.

RELATED: 75 Summer Seafood Recipes You Can Whip Up in No Time

Foodie Crush

1. Crab Cake Poppers

  • Time Commitment: 60 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Crowd-pleaser, beginner-friendly, special occasion-worthy
Coterie member Heidi Larsen pairs her miniature crab cake poppers with a spicy aioli so delicious it puts tartar sauce to shame. Suffice it to say, we’ll be reaching for this recipe whenever hors d'oeuvres are on the menu.

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Dr. Davinah Eats

2. Air Fryer Keto Crab Cakes

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Keto, air fryer, crowd-pleaser, gluten-free
Almond flour stands in for breadcrumbs, an air fryer gets things crispy in record time, and the seafood takes center stage in this gluten-free twist on the classic Maryland-style crab cake.

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Grandbaby Cakes

3. Crab-Stuffed Salmon

  • Time Commitment: 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Crowd-pleaser, beginner friendly
Why settle for a boring salmon fillet when you can stuff the sucker full of Cajun-spiced crab meat, drizzle it with lemon butter and dig into a first-rate flavor bomb of an entree instead?

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Brown Sugar Mama

4. Steak with Creamy Shrimp and Crab

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour
  • Why We Love It: Special occasion-worthy, crowd-pleaser
Here, tender filet mignon gets topped with a decadent and oh-so creamy combination of shrimp and crab meat to produce a surf and turf dinner that could make a Michelin-starred chef swoon.

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Mom’s Dish

5. Broccoli Crab Salad

  • Time Commitment: 20 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <10 ingredients, <30 minutes, beginner-friendly
This salad—an unexpected combination of cucumber, cruciferous veggies and crab meat swimming in a creamy dressing—is satisfying, indulgent and oh-so easy to make.

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Spend With Pennies

6. Crab-Stuffed Mushrooms

  • Time Commitment: 33 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <10 ingredients, beginner-friendly, crowd-pleaser
Delicious as an everyday side dish and fancy enough to serve at a party, these stuffed mushrooms boast a crab and cream cheese filling that’s downright dreamy and budget-friendly to boot.

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Spoon Fork Bacon

7. Hot Crab Dip

  • Time Commitment: 25 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, beginner-friendly, crowd-pleaser
Sorry spinach artichoke dip, but we found a new favorite. This creamy and comforting crab dip is the kind of appetizer that folks will hover over like fiends.

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I Am a Food Blog

8. Bun Rieu

  • Time Commitment: 5 hours
  • Why We Love It: Special occasion-worthy, high protein
Fans of pho will swoon for bun rieu, a lesser-known noodle soup that features melty crab meatballs swimming alongside pork and shrimp in a rich umami broth.

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Brown Sugar Mama

9. Crab and Spinach Artichoke Dip

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Special occasion-worthy, beginner-friendly
It’s not that we don’t love spinach artichoke dip; it’s just that we love it so much more when there’s lump crab meat in the mix.

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Gimme Some Oven

10. Butternut Squash and Crab Bisque

  • Time Commitment: 45 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, one pot
Here, salty crab and sweet, earthy butternut squash combine to create a silky and creamy bowlful of comfort that will have you coming back for more.

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Sally’s Baking Addiction

11. Homemade Crab Pretzels

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Crowd-pleaser, kid-friendly
The only argument against piling fresh Maryland-style crab dip on top of a fluffy soft pretzel is that you’ll be disappointed by crostini and crackers for the rest of your days.

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How Sweet Eats

12. Summertime Grilled Corn and Crab Pasta Salad

  • Time Commitment: 45 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Crowd-pleaser, make ahead
Face it: Your go-to pasta salad recipe is reaching retirement age, and this zesty crab and grilled corn number is ready to step up to the plate.

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The Modern Proper

13. Poke Bowl

  • Time Commitment: 38 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Gluten-free, dairy-free
There are so many ways to riff on this colorful and flavorful poke bowl—but no matter how you toss it together, we strongly suggest you go with store-bought crab salad for the finishing touch.

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Half Baked Harvest

14. Cheesy Avocado Crab-Stuffed Piquillo Pepper Ciabatta Pizzette’s with Sriracha Aioli

  • Time Commitment: 35 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Crowd-pleaser, make ahead
Stuff some grilled piquillo peppers (the kind you buy in a jar) with crab meat, avocado and an assortment of cheeses, slap it on a piece of toast, and drizzle some spicy aioli on top to make tapas that will be the talk of the town.

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Lexi’s Clean Kitchen

15. Grilled Peach, Avocado, and Crab Salad with Peach Dressing

  • Time Commitment: 25 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Gluten-free, Paleo, <30 minutes
Presenting a low-carb crab salad recipe that makes peach season taste even sweeter. (Hello, summer.) You’ll love how the caramelization on the grilled peaches brings out the sweetness of the crab meat.

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The Almond Eater

16. Charred Crab Dip

  • Time Commitment: 25 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, crowd-pleaser
You’ll need a special gadget (i.e., torch) to create this charred crab dip, but the resulting dish is so full of bold flavor, you needn’t think twice about playing with fire. If you don’t have a torch on hand, you can always broil it in the oven, checking on it every 30 seconds or so, until the top is melted to your liking.

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The Defined Dish

17. Seafood Gumbo

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour
  • Why We Love It: Whole30, gluten-free
Attention, gluten-free friends: Cassava flour can be used to make a wheat-free roux for a rich and warming seafood gumbo. It may take an hour to make, but that time is well spent.

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Dinner at the Zoo

18. Crab Legs with Garlic Butter

  • Time Commitment: 20 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, <10 ingredients
Here, three different types of crab and copious amounts of garlic butter come together to produce a simple, yet elegant seafood dinner.

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Saving Dessert

19. Crab Mac-N-Cheese

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour
  • Why We Love It: high protein, kid-friendly
It’s no secret that shellfish can seriously elevate a bowl of mac-and-cheese—but, um, lobster isn’t always in our budget. The solution? Swap in a couple cans of lump crab meat and call it a day.

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Yellow Bliss Road

20. Crab Dip Cheese Ball

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <10 ingredients, no cook
The ever-popular crab dip appetizer just got a cool new look…and your party spread just got considerably prettier.

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Upstate Ramblings

21. Jalapeño Crab Bites

  • Time Commitment: 35 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <10 ingredients, crowd-pleaser
Lump crab cakes get an extra kick from jalapeño tabasco sauce in this simple-yet-exciting update on a classic.

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I Am a Food Blog

22. Crab Rangoon Deviled Eggs

  • Time Commitment: 20ish minutes
  • Why We Love It: <10 ingredients, beginner-friendly, crowd-pleaser, gluten-free
Ditch the wonton wrapper and turn that crab Rangoon into deviled egg filling for a gluten-free appetizer that won’t disappoint.

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Clean Eating Magazine

23. Corn Chowder with Crab and Old Bay

  • Time Commitment: 25 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, gluten-free, beginner-friendly
Because corn and crab chowder is a no-brainer, and Old Bay makes everything better.

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Food Faith Fitness

24. Crab Avocado Salad

  • Time Commitment: 5 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Paleo, vegan, keto, no-cook
This healthy and flavorful crab salad scores bonus points for presentation—provided you score the right avocado for the job, that is.

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Mom On Timeout

25. Crab Melt

  • Time Commitment: 10 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, crowd-pleaser
Topped with melted gruyere and loaded with seafood, these crab toasts are an oh-so delicious and decidedly grown-up take on an open-faced grilled cheese sandwich.

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Stay Snatched

26. Air Fryer Crab Legs

  • Time Commitment: 18 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, <10 ingredients, air fryer
Another quick and easy recipe (thank you, air fryer) that makes a big impression with little more than fresh crab and butter.

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Two Sleevers

27. Crustless Crab Quiche

  • Time Commitment: 50 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Instant Pot, gluten-free
Finally, a recipe that acknowledges what we’ve always known to be true: The crust of a quiche is truly superfluous.

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Girl Gone Gourmet

28. Bacon Orzo Pasta with Crab

  • Time Commitment: 15 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, <10 ingredients
A 15-minute recipe that combines bacon, crab and carbs is a weeknight dinner dream come true.

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Recipe Tin Eats

29. Singapore Chili Crab

  • Time Commitment: 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Special occasion-worthy, gluten-free
Fresh crab meat is always tasty, but the star of this show is a Singapore chili sauce so divine you’ll be tempted to suck it down with a straw.

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Whitney Bond

30. Coconut Crab Cakes with Mango Arugula Salad

  • Time Commitment: 20 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, crowd-pleaser, beginner-friendly
We love a crispy crab cake as much as the next person, but the standard recipes start to seem a little snoozy after a while. Enter: This tropical twist on the old stand-by—a flavorful combo of coconut and mango that tastes like a breath of fresh air.

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Shanna Schad/Pineapple and Coconut

31. California Salad Roll

  • Time Commitment: 2 hours
  • Why We Love It: Make ahead, nut-free
Chewy, nutty farro and fluffy Israeli couscous take the place of sticky rice in this deconstructed version of the popular sushi roll. (Psst: You can use fresh or imitation crab in this one, but we’re casting our vote for the former.)

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This Silly Girl’s Kitchen

32. Fried Green Tomato Crab Salad Sandwiches

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Beginner-friendly, one pan
Fried green tomatoes and crab salad come together to create a Southern-inspired sandwich you’ll want to eat on repeat.

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Half Baked Harvest

33. Brie Crab Cake Pretzel Slider Melts with Strawberry Pineapple Salsa

  • Time Commitment: 25 minute
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, beginner-friendly, make ahead
Crab, brie and pretzel bun might sound like a bizarre love triangle, but it’s actually true romance, friends.

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How Sweet Eats

34. Crab-Topped Salmon

  • Time Commitment: 50 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Special occasion-worthy, beginner-friendly
Salmon gets dressed up with a simple crab salad and, once again, the result is restaurant-worthy.

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Sally’s Baking Addiction

35. Maryland Crab Cakes

  • Time Commitment: 55 minutes
  • Why We Love It: Crowd-pleaser, beginner-friendly
Seasoned with Old Bay and spiked with lemon—you’d be hard-pressed to find a more authentic Maryland-style crab cake than this.

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Spend With Pennies

35. Crab Rangoon

  • Time Commitment: 23 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, <10 ingredients, crowd-pleaser
Put down the takeout menu and prepare to be amazed by how quick and easy it is to whip up a Chinese restaurant favorite in your own kitchen.

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Mom’s DIsh

37. Crab Mushroom Canapés

  • Time Commitment: 25 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, <10 ingredients, crowd-pleaser
PSA: Crusty baguette topped with a cheesy mixture of mushroom, crab and scallion is a recipe for dinner party success.

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RELATED: 16 Easy, Keto-Friendly Seafood Recipes

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