Gluten Free Mini Crab Cakes Recipe

Mini Crab Cakes with Lime and Cilantro Aioli Recipe

Serving mini crab cakes when entertaining is kind of like running around all day in four-inch Manolo Blahnik heels. I love the idea, but the practicality is challenging.

These gluten-free, grain-free mini crab cakes with lime and cilantro aioli are the perfect little bite for entertaining. They are baked in mini muffin pans, so there is no frying involved. No muss, no last minute fuss. They can be prepared ahead, popped into the oven and are a snap to serve. And to make matters even better, they re-heat well if needed.

The heat from the jalapeno peppers and Old Bay Spice in the crab cakes is accented perfectly with the lime and cilantro aioli.

So put on your party shoes, grab a cocktail and enjoy!

5 from 1 vote
Gluten Free Mini Crab Cakes Recipe
Print Recipe

Gluten Free Mini Crab Cakes w/ Lime and Cilantro Aioli Recipe

Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Chill time5 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Appetizer, Snack
Servings: 24 servings
Calories: 101kcal
Author: Gluten Free & More


Mini Crab Cakes

  • 8 ounces cream cheese – room temperature
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons good quality mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning
  • 1 medium shallot – finely minced
  • 2 jalapeno peppers - ribs and seeds removed, finely diced
  • Zest on 1 lime – finely grated
  • 1 pound fresh or canned lump crab meat – picked over for cartilage
  • 3 tablespoons pecans – finely chopped

Lime & Cilantro Aioli

  • ½ cup good quality mayonnaise
  • Zest of ½ lime – finely grated
  • Juice of ½ lime
  • 1 tablespoon cilantro - leaves only, finely chopped (about 6 sprigs)


Mini Crab Cakes

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Generously grease 1 – 24 muffin / 2 - 12 muffin pans with gluten-free baking spray or butter.
  • Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese in a large bowl until smooth. Add the egg, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, Old Bay Seasoning, shallot, jalapeno peppers and lime zest and mix until well blended. Fold in the crab meat.
  • Put 1 tablespoon of crab mixture into each muffin cup and press down gently. (Can be made 1 day ahead and refrigerated at this point.) Top each crab cake with some chopped pecans.
  • Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees or until golden brown and set. Let cool for 5 minutes in pan. Run a knife or small offset spatula around each cake and gently lift out. (Can be baked 2 hours ahead – let cool, refrigerate and then bring to room temperature. Arrange on a baking sheet and re-warm for 6 to 8 minutes at 350 degrees.)
  • Serve with lime & cilantro aioli.

Lime & Cilantro Aioli

  • Mix all ingredients together until well blended. (Can be made 1 day ahead and refrigerated.)


Nutrition Facts
Gluten Free Mini Crab Cakes w/ Lime and Cilantro Aioli Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 101 Calories from Fat 72
% Daily Value*
Fat 8g12%
Saturated Fat 2g10%
Cholesterol 27mg9%
Sodium 237mg10%
Potassium 67mg2%
Carbohydrates 1g0%
Protein 4g8%
Vitamin A 160IU3%
Vitamin C 2.8mg3%
Calcium 22mg2%
Iron 0.3mg2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the blog owner’s. This blog accepts free manufacturers’ samples and forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation. Affiliate links may be included in this post.

Disclaimer: All nutrition facts on Simply Gluten Free are meant only as a guide and may differ depending on product brands used or ingredient substitutions. Some errors may occur, so you are encouraged to confirm the recipe’s ingredient and nutrition suitability for your own diet.
Have you tried this recipe? Give it a star rating and let us know your thoughts in the Ratings & Reviews section below.
Tags: Cake Cilantro Crab Lime Mini
  1. gfe--gluten free easily
    May 31, 2009

    Beautiful, Carol! I love all the ingredients so I can only imagine how delicious they are!! Love that you bake them in mini-miffin pans and can prepare them ahead of time, too. Thanks!

    Thanks for the heads up on Lea & Perrins in other countries. It's one of those things that makes you want to bang your head against the wall though! If they can make it fine without gluten, why not just make it that way all the time/everywhere?? Maddening.


  2. H.Peter
    May 31, 2009

    “½ cup good quality mayonnaise”

    Yes, it HAS to be good quality mayo. I fully agree.

  3. Peter M
    May 31, 2009

    Crab cakes don't need much help but when presented this beautifully…you know trays upon trays will get gobbled up.

  4. Peter G
    May 31, 2009

    Carol, these are absolutely delightful! And very easy too! Nice flavours and beautiful can’t be beat!

  5. JennK/CinnamonQuill
    June 1, 2009

    These look perfect! I always convert fish recipes to match our eating habits and replace the fish with mashed navy/garbanzo beans. Sounds a bit strange, but it works! Looking forward to trying these.

  6. RecipeGirl
    June 1, 2009

    These are wonderful! I love that they're made in mini muffin pans, & lime/cilantro aioli sounds yummy.

    I did crab cakes today too, though mine are a bit more involved & def. not gluten free!

  7. Diane-The Whole Gang
    June 1, 2009

    So adorable. I love the idea of making these in the muffin pan. Brilliant! Can I serve this on Father’s Day? Is it manly? Still working on the manly dish. I think it will involve buffalo.

  8. aforkfulofspaghetti
    June 2, 2009

    You got me at crab – the rest of your post was all a big bonus! Simply delicious-looking, Carol. Fabulous. So wonderful for summer.

  9. Sue
    June 2, 2009

    What a fabulous recipe. I guess the egg takes the place of the bread crumbs. I was thinking that the nuts did too, but then I saw you used them only on top. How smart to give the idea of a crust, but with nuts instead.

  10. Naomi Devlin
    June 3, 2009

    yum!They look fabulous. Can I just ask what old bay seasoning is? x x x

  11. plumpestpeach
    June 3, 2009

    I love the min muffin pan idea, way better than frying in general, and way cuter! I made mini meat loaves that way and haven't made them any other way since. Cheers! Jess

  12. Toni
    June 3, 2009

    I loved your comment about running around in Manolo Blahniks all day! Great analogy, and a reason why I would have shied away from anything like this. But since your post makes it sound possible, easy and delicious – I'm in!

  13. Allie
    June 3, 2009

    those look great! I'm writing this recipe down to use for my next party! thanks…

  14. Sophie
    June 23, 2009

    This is really beautifully plated :)! This is truly gourmet gluten-free, lovely!

    I hope to still get involved in this month's challenge, thank you again for the invite.

  15. Max mickle
    July 6, 2009

    Thanks for the mini crab cakes recipe. Last summer I ate them at a party and has been looking for an authentic recipe ever since. Now I will be able to make them myself. Thanks again.

  16. MollyS
    September 29, 2010

    I'm dairy free as well so I substituted with Tofutti non-dairy cream cheese substitute and it worked perfectly. I had extra mix left over so the next night I made full size crab cakes, cooked in a pan with a bit of olive oil, and they were delicious!

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  18. Gloria Tabone
    January 13, 2016

    I made these once as is and everyone loved them. I am going to make them again but omit the zest and serve them with gluten free spicy remoulade sauce (copy cat recipe from outback steakhouse).

    1. Carol Kicinski
      January 18, 2016

      Mmm sounds good Gloria!
      xo, Carol

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