Introducing a foolproof way to make deliciously crispy yet perfectly tender crab cakes using your air fryer or Ninja Foodi. This method allows you to cook frozen crab cakes in no time, making them an ideal snack, dinner, or party appetizer. Say goodbye to the hassle of thawing and experience the magic of air frying!
Frozen crab cakes can rival freshly made ones, especially when cooked in an air fryer. The secret lies in the gentle thawing process that keeps the inside soft and tender, while creating a delightful crispy crust on the outside.
Shouldn’t I just use the directions on the packaging?
While it may be tempting to follow the instructions on the packaging, it’s important to take into account the unique cooking method of the air fryer. This compact convection oven uses dry heat to rapidly circulate air, resulting in faster cooking times. Delicate foods like crab cakes require adjustments in time and temperature compared to traditional methods.
🤔 Why make frozen crab cakes in the air fryer?
Less cleanup: Unlike deep frying or baking in the oven, air frying requires minimal cleanup. No oil splatters or dirty sheet pans to deal with, just a quick clean of the air fryer basket.
Perfect texture: The air fryer allows you to achieve a crab cake with a crispy exterior and a tender interior that stays intact, without the risk of falling apart.
Quick cooking: In just 10 minutes, you can have a perfectly cooked crab cake, depending on its size. Mini crab cakes cook even faster, saving you precious time in the kitchen.
No waiting around: Once the crab cakes are placed in the air fryer, you can set it and forget it. No need to flip them either, making this method incredibly convenient.
No thawing required: Frozen crab cakes can go straight from the freezer to the air fryer, resulting in a delightful combination of thawing and crisping in one go, without the need for overnight thawing.
🦀 Ingredients & Equipment
Frozen Crab Cakes: Look for frozen crab cakes in the frozen seafood section of your local grocery store. Popular brands include Phillips, Handy crab cakes, Dockside Classics, SeaPak, and Gorton’s. You can even find them at Walmart and Aldi.
Air Fryer or Ninja Foodi: Any air fryer will do the job. If you have a Ninja Foodi multicooker or Ninja Foodi Grill with air frying capabilities, you’re all set.
📖 How To Air Fry Frozen Crab Cakes
1️⃣ Preheat your air fryer to 375F for 3-5 minutes.
2️⃣ Place the frozen crab cakes in the bottom of the air fryer basket and set the timer for 12 minutes. Keep in mind you might not need the full cooking time.
3️⃣ At the 5-minute mark, check on the crab cakes to assess their progress. This is when you can decide if you need the full 12 minutes or not.
4️⃣ Cook for an additional 5-8 minutes, or until the crab cakes develop a golden brown crust on the outside and are warmed through on the inside. The exact timing may vary depending on the heat intensity of your air fryer.
5️⃣ Carefully remove the crab cakes from the air fryer using a spatula and serve them hot with your favorite sauce.
⏲ Best Time & Temperature To Air Fry Frozen Crab Cakes
The cooking time for air frying crab cakes depends on their thickness and size. These are general recommendations:
- Mini Frozen Crab Cakes: 8-9 minutes at 375F
- Standard Size Crab Cakes: 10-12 minutes at 375F
- Homemade Crab Cakes: 8-12 minutes at 350F
Always keep an eye on the crab cakes during the last 5 minutes of cooking to avoid burning or overcooking.
🔥 Storing & Reheating
Storing Leftover Crab Cakes: Store any leftover cooked and cooled crab cakes in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Reheating: To reheat cooked crab cakes, place them in the air fryer at 325F for 5-8 minutes, until they are warmed through and regain their crispy exterior.
Have more questions? Check out the following FAQ section for answers.
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