Dr. Sunil - Is It Bad For You? Approved by Dr. Sunil

Are Crab Cakes Bad For You?



Short answer

Crab cakes are quite bad for you, due to the high amounts of cholesterol and fat. It is important to note that crab cakes aren't just crab, yet a concoction of deep-fried ingredients that contain crab.



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Long answer

You might think that crab cakes would be good for you because they contain crab. While omega-3 fatty acids and omega 6 fatty acids are important, the fact is that crab cakes do not offer the same benefits as eating a steamed crab. Crab cakes are a take on fishcakes and can be made in a variety of ways using any number of ingredients.

Particularly popular on the Atlantic coast, and specifically Maryland, there are two types of Maryland crab cakes - Boardwalk and Restaurant. Boardwalk crab cake is the less healthy of the two, being stuffed, breaded, and deep-fried. Restaurant crab cakes are prepared with no filler and served on a plate or atop an open-faced sandwich.

The amount of calories will depend on the size and ingredients, but a good ballpark estimate is around 100 to 160. Crab cakes are also quite high in cholesterol and fat - a large portion of the fat coming from mayonnaise - while only having low amounts of dietary fiber. There is a good amount of calcium that is to be had and while iron doesn't come in a great abundance, crab cakes do still supply an appreciable amount.

The thing to remember is that if you are eating crab cakes, you aren't eating crab. You are eating something that contains crab meat. Crab meat may be good for your health, but crab cakes are not.

Possible long-term side effects

  • diabetes
  • heart disease
  • weight gain, obesity

Ingredients to be aware of


  • good source of calcium

Healthier alternatives

  • steamed crab

Our Wellness Pick (what is this?)

Handy Gluten Free Crab Cakes

  • Gluten-free recipe
  • Convenient size
  • Ready-to-cook
  • 24-count case
Learn More!

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Jeff Volling
Published on: 12-29-2015
Last updated: 12-15-2023

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Jeff Volling
Published on: 12-29-2015
Last updated: 12-15-2023

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