Classic crab cakes are transformed using calorie-saving ingredients, and the results are restaurant-worthy.

By Lisa Lillien
July 08, 2019 10:36 AM

Lisa Lillien is the author of the popular Hungry Girl website and email newsletter, featuring smart, funny advice on guilt-free eating. She is also the author of thirteen books, six of which debuted at number one on the New York Times Best Sellers list. Read her PEOPLE.com blog every Monday for slimmed-down celebrity recipes and more.

While crab itself is pretty healthy, it’s frequently loaded up with butter and/or mayo and fried into patties. Call it guilt by association! I made over classic crab cakes with some of my best calorie-saving ingredients, and the results are restaurant-worthy. If you want to impress someone, make a batch ASAP—even if that someone is you!

Best-Ever Crab Cakes
Serves 4

½ cup panko breadcrumbs
1 ½ tsp. finely chopped parsley
Dash each salt and black pepper
8 oz. (about 1 cup) canned lump crabmeat, drained
2 Tbsp. finely chopped onion
2 Tbsp. finely chopped celery
1 tsp. chopped garlic
2 Tbsp. reduced-fat cream cheese
3 Tbsp. (about 2 large) egg whites or fat-free liquid egg substitute
1 Tbsp. light mayonnaise
1 ½ tsp. creamy mild Dijon mustard
½ tsp. lemon juice
½ tsp. light butter

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1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray.
2. In a medium-large bowl, combine breadcrumbs, parsley, salt and pepper. Mix well. Add crabmeat, onion, celery and garlic. Mix until uniform.
3. In a medium bowl, stir cream cheese until smooth. Add egg, mayo, Dijon mustard, lemon juice and butter. Whisk until smooth and uniform. Fold into crabmeat mixture.
4. Evenly form mixture into 4 balls, and place on the baking sheet, evenly spaced. Flatten each one into a patty about 1-inch thick. Bake for 8 minutes.
5. Carefully flip patties. Bake until firm, lightly browned, and cooked through, about 8 more minutes.

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Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes

Nutritional Information: ¼th of recipe (1 large crab cake): 119 calories, 3g total fat (1g sat fat), 368mg sodium, 8g carbs, 0.5g fiber, 1g sugars, 14g protein

‘Til next time… Chew the right thing!

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