Free: Healthy Freezer Meals Recipe EbookGet It Now
Perfect for summer (or any time you need a quick and tasty meal), this simple crab salad recipe is easy to make, healthy and full of flavor! It’s similar to egg tuna salad, succulent lobster salad, salmon salad, or classic chicken salad, except it’s made with succulent crab meat instead and has flavors that pair better with crab. Combine this seafood salad with some crunchy vegetables, and this salad has it all — flavor, texture, and nutrition for a healthy lunch, appetizer, or even part of your dinner.
Why You’ll Love This Crab Salad Recipe
- Refreshing, savory, and tangy
- Crunchy veggies, juicy crab meat, creamy dressing
- No cooking required
- Ready in just 10 minutes
- Naturally gluten-free, low carb, dairy-free, and high in protein
- Stores well for meal prep
- The best crab salad recipe for sandwiches and more!
Crab Salad Ingredients
This section explains how to choose the best ingredients for crab meat salad, what each one does in the recipe, and substitution options. For measurements, see the recipe card below.
- Lump Crab Meat – Some crab salad recipes use imitation crab meat, but real crab meat tastes much better and doesn’t have all the fillers or added sugar. A good option is the chilled cans in the grocery store seafood department — look for “lump crab meat” over other types and drain any excess liquid. If you’re lucky enough to have it, leftover meat from crab legs tastes even better.
- Celery – Adds a nice crunch. You could also use 1/4 cup of diced carrot or red bell pepper.
- Red Onion – I used red onion, but you can use shallots or green onion instead if you prefer.
- Mayonnaise – Makes up the base of the creamy dressing. You can use homemade mayonnaise or store-bought. Greek yogurt would also work as a substitute, but you may want to omit or reduce the lemon juice if you use yogurt.
- Lemon Juice – Adds tang. You can use bottled lemon juice for convenience, but fresh lemon juice tastes better.
- Dijon Mustard – Adds a flavorful kick, a hint of acidity, and brightness to the dish.
- Spices – You’ll need a combination of Old Bay seasoning, sea salt, and pepper.
- Fresh Herbs – I used fresh dill, fresh chives, and fresh parsley, but this recipe for crab salad works with any other fresh herbs, such as tarragon or basil. I don’t recommend dried herbs here, but if you must, use 1/3 the amount of fresh.
How To Make A Crab Salad
This section shows how to make crab meat salad, with step-by-step photos and details about the technique, to help you visualize it. For full instructions, including amounts and temperatures, see the recipe card below.
- Whisk the dressing. In a small bowl, use a whisk to mix the mayonnaise, lemon juice, mustard, Old Bay seasoning, salt and pepper together, until smooth.
- Combine the crab salad ingredients. In a large bowl, combine lump crab meat, celery, onion, and fresh herbs.
- Mix together. Pour the mayo mixture over the crab meat salad and gently fold in until well coated.
TIP: Be gentle when mixing the salad.
Use a folding motion to avoid breaking up the lumps of crab too much. You want to leave some good-sized chunks of crab for added texture and flavor.
- Chill if you have time. Serve right away, or if you have time, refrigerate to let the flavors develop.
- Crab Pasta Salad – Add cooked elbow macaroni, penne, or even bow tie pasta to the bowl. For lighter options, try zucchini noodles or shirataki noodles. Rinse the cooked pasta in cold water, pat with paper towels to remove excess moisture, and mix in. (I recommend doubling the dressing if adding pasta.)
- Make It Spicy – To make this crab salad recipe spicy, try adding a tablespoon of hot sauce, a sprinkling of red pepper flakes, or some chopped jalapeno peppers. You could also use cayenne pepper, Cajun seasoning, or sriracha to give it a kick.
- Add Shrimp – Air fry shrimp, cool completely, and mix them into the crab meat mixture.
- Add Avocado – Dice an avocado and fold it in.
This crab salad recipe stores very well, so I love making it ahead! Keep leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Freezing is not recommended, as the mayo-based dressing will separate.
What To Eat With Crab Meat Salad
There are countless ways to enjoy this easy crab salad recipe! Here are some ideas:
- Classic Sandwich – Just slather this salad in between slices of bread for crab salad sandwiches! For healthier lighter options, try my almond flour bread, flourless protein bread, or airy cloud bread.
- Lettuce Wraps – A great way to serve this salad is slathered onto lettuce leaves. I served it in romaine (pictured above), but butter lettuce also works great.
- Crackers – Use this salad as a dip with your favorite crackers for scooping. For healthy options, try flax seed crackers, buttery almond flour crackers or even cheese crisps.
- Veggies – You can even use cucumber slices, carrots, celery, or mini peppers as a cracker-like option for dunking into this crab salad recipe. You can also use it to make cucumber subs or a bell pepper sandwich.
More Easy Crab Recipes
Crab makes any meal feel a little more special. Try it in these easy dishes:
Crab Salad Recipe
Crab Salad Recipe (10 Minutes!)
Make this easy crab salad recipe with tender crab, zesty lemon, fresh herbs & creamy dressing. It's perfect for sandwiches or as an appetizer.
Like this video? Subscribe to my YouTube cooking channel for healthy recipes!
Tap underlined ingredients to see where to get them. Please turn Safari reader mode OFF to view ingredients.
Tap on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, lemon juice, mustard, Old Bay seasoning, salt and pepper, until smooth.
In a large bowl, combine the lump crab meat, celery, onion, and fresh herbs.
Pour the mayo mixture over the crab salad and gently fold in until well coated. (Be gentle to avoid breaking up the lumps of crab too much.)
Serve right away, or if you have time, refrigerate for 1 hour to let the flavors develop.
Last Step: Leave A Rating!
This helps other readers and also helps me continue to provide free recipes on my site.
Serving size: 1 cup
Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy. Have questions about calculations or why you got a different result? Please see our nutrition policy.
Want to save this recipe?Save This Recipe Now
© Copyright Maya Krampf for Wholesome Yum. Please DO NOT SCREENSHOT OR COPY/PASTE recipes to social media or websites. We’d LOVE for you to share a link with photo instead. 🙂