What To Serve With Crab Cakes: 15 Great Side Dishes

Crab cakes are such a great meal to serve. While they are seafood, they are not overpowering in their taste, and are a great option for those who prefer a more subdued flavor. However, that’s not to say that crab cakes are not super tasty in their own right — they really are!

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When it comes to different types of seafood, often it can be difficult to know what the best side dishes to serve them with are. However, when it comes to crab cakes, they are surprisingly versatile. There are so many great side dishes that work well with them, that you really are spoiled for choice.

So no matter if all you have is lump crab meat, spicy remoulade sauce, and bread crumbs, we'll turn your crab cake recipe or leftover crab cakes into a feast of homemade crab cakes and delicious sides. My favorite is the crab cake sandwich with lemon aioli.

We have compiled a list of our 16 favorite dishes that compliment crab cakes perfectly. We have chosen a wide range of different options, and there is a side dish to suit every taste included.

We hope this article will help to give you some inspiration for new side dishes to try, or will help you to reconnect with an old favorite that you may have forgotten about!

1. Roasted Vegetables

Our top choice of side dishes to accompany fish cakes are roasted vegetables. What we love about roasted vegetables is that there are so many options to choose from. Our personal favorites are carrots, potatoes, and parsnips. Some other great options are tomatoes, and courgettes too. 

There are many veggies that work well with crab cakes, and what is great about them is that they are super healthy. Honey glazed roasted vegetables work particularly well and are so easy to create. They have a sweet glaze that compliments the savory crab cakes, and the crunchiness of vegetables is divine. 

2. Mashed Potato

Potatoes can be served in all shapes and forms. While there are many that work well with crab cakes, our personal favorite is mashed potato. The smoothness of the potato mixed with the creaminess of the milk and butter used is fantastic. This works well with the crunch from the crab cakes.

You can choose to add cream to the mashed potatoes for extra creaminess, or you can add some cheese to the top of the side dish too. The flavor of mashed potato is so simple, but it works brilliantly when served as a side dish for crab cakes. 

3. Grilled vegetables

If you are serving crab cakes at a barbecue, grilled vegetables are something you almost certainly should consider serving as a side dish. They are so easy to create, and will only take a few minutes to prepare. Being grilled, the vegetables are nice and crunchy, rather than being slightly soggy. 

We would recommend placing vegetables such as peppers, onions, and tomatoes and courgettes on a kebab stick and cooking them over the barbecue until crispy. The smoke from the barbecue adds a layer of flavor, and if you sprinkle the veggies with paprika and salt, they taste fantastic. 

4. Sweet Potato Fries

If you love fries, but are looking for something slightly different, sweet potato fries are a great option. What we love about sweet potato fries is how crispy and light they taste. They have a completely different flavor to regular fries. This sweeter flavor balances out the crab cakes well. 

Sweet potato fries are super easy to make at home, and while you can purchase them frozen, homemade fries are the best. They are filling and do not take too long to cook. You can either choose to bake the sweet potato fries for a healthier option, or you can place them in the fryer if you prefer them crispier. 

5. Tartar Sauce

If you enjoy eating seafood, the likelihood is that you have previously tasted tartar sauce, and know how great it is. However, if you have not tasted this condiment before, you are missing out! It is super simple to make, and will enhance the flavor of the crab cakes.

Tartar sauce is the perfect dipping sauce for any fish dish, but in particular crab cakes. What we love about this sauce is that it is creamy and thick. It features mayonnaise, a small amount of sugar and Dijon mustard typically. However, the recipe can change.

6. Green Salad

If you are looking for a healthier side dish, there is nothing better than a green salad. While this is a super simple side dish to prepare, it compliments the crab cakes perfectly. We would recommend pouring a small amount of balsamic vinegar over the salad once prepared. 

What we love about a green salad is that it is low in calories, and it requires no fuss. It is simple yet effective. Our personal favorite additions are lettuce, spinach, and rocket. However, you can choose to use any type of leafy vegetable. Kale is a great addition if you prefer a particularly crunchy salad. 

7. Rainbow Slaw

If you are looking for an interesting side dish, rainbow slaw is a fantastic option to consider. What is great about rainbow slaw is that it looks impressive once served, but it is so easy to create. 

There are many ingredients you can choose to add, depending on your personal preferences. Our personal favorites are carrots, red cabbage, onions, sugar snap peas and red pepper. 

We then add some lemon juice, which compliments the crab cakes well, and then mix in some natural yogurt.  Rainbow slaw is full of flavor and works well as a side dish.

8. Corn Chowder

If you prefer warm sides, then a corn chowder is a fantastic option to consider. We think corn chowder is the best choice because the taste of the corn compliments the crab cakes. This chowder is not overpowering in its taste, and it is great to serve in the winter months. It is warming, and filling, and the buttery garlic taste works well with the crab cakes. It is a fairly easy side dish to create, and one that will be popular for many people. 

9. Bread rolls

If you are looking for an easy and simple side dish, there is nothing better than a bread roll. When this is served with real butter, this works perfectly as an accompaniment to crab cakes. 

The crab cakes can be placed inside the rolls, or they can be eaten separately. Either way, a fresh bread roll is always a popular choice for many people. While you can choose to purchase bread rolls, we would recommend baking them fresh. Fresh bread rolls are the best option when served slightly warm. 

10. Wine

When it comes to seafood, alcohol can be a great drink to serve. If you are over the legal age to consume alcohol, we would recommend serving white wine. While you can serve any type of wine to accompany the crab cakes, a white wine would be the best option. 

Some of our favorite white wines to serve are Cava, Champagne, and Pinot Blanc. However, other types of white wine can be complimentary too. Dryer white wine is the best option to serve on the whole. 

If you do not enjoy drinking white wine, you can alternatively incorporate it into a sauce if you prefer. A creamy white wine sauce can be the perfect side dish for crab cakes.

11. Steamed Vegetables

If you are not as keen on grilled or roasted vegetables, you can choose to steam them instead. Steamed vegetables are a great option if you are cooking within a shorter time frame. They are super easy to prepare, and the cooking time is far lower in comparison to grilled or roasted vegetables.

When it comes to steamed vegetables, there are so many options to choose from. To an extent, what you choose to serve as a side dish to the crab cakes will be down to personal preference. However, from experience, we have found that peas, carrots, cauliflower, and broccoli are particularly great steamed vegetables to serve.

12. Quinoa Salad

If you are looking for a side dish that is light, but is a little more complex in comparison to green salad, quinoa salad is a great option for you. We love quinoa salad as the quinoa works well with the crab cakes. In addition to this, it adds a good amount of texture to the salad too. 

While a plain salad can be great, it can feel as though it is lacking slightly in flavor and ingredients. A quinoa salad helps to rectify this, and it is a tasty side dish to serve. It does not take long to prepare, and it is enjoyed by most people.

13. Dipping Sauces

While we have already covered a white wine sauce and tartar sauce, there are many other types of dipping sauces you can serve with crab cakes. While it is down to personal preference, one sauce in particular that works well is mayonnaise.

Mayonnaise is not too strong in its flavor, and it works well with the main dish. In addition to this, garlic mayonnaise is also a great option. However, you can choose to serve mustard, or even ketchup if these are dipping sauces that are appealing to you and your guests.

14. Mac and Cheese

When it comes to the best side dishes, is there anything better than mac and cheese? It really does go with just about any meal, and crab cakes is no exception to this. The creaminess of the mac and cheese sauce compliments the crab cakes very well.

When cooking the mac and cheese, while you can use a ready-made or box recipe, we would recommend creating your own. A fresh mac and cheese is a delicious side dish. It is also a side dish that will appeal to the majority of people, especially if you have picky eaters in your family. 

15. Pasta 

In addition to mac and cheese, there are many types of pastas that will work well when served with crab cakes. Our personal favorites are the creamier white sauce pasta dishes. While you can serve a tomato based pasta dish, the flavors do not compliment the crab in the same way.

As we have already discussed, a white wine based sauce is a fantastic option, a carbonara is also a tasty alternative. You can really get creative when it comes to a pasta side dish, and you can customize it in any way you like. 

You can choose to add ingredients such as cheeses, spinach, avocado, and pesto sauces. All of these are great accompaniments to crab cakes.

16. Corn on the Cob 

Last, but certainly not least, we have corn on the cob. While this is one of the simpler options, it should not be ignored. What is great about corn on the cob is that it takes under ten minutes to prepare and cook, and it tastes delicious alongside crab cakes. This is a great option for children as they will likely enjoy this side dish.

Summary

We hope that you have found this article useful. As you can see, there are so many amazing side dishes that you can serve with crab cakes. While our recommendations compliment the crab cakes well, ultimately the majority of side dishes are a great option. 

Don’t be afraid to choose your favorites and to try out some new options too. You may end up finding your new favorite side dish!

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Cassie brings decades of experience to the Kitchen Community.
She is a noted chef and avid gardener. Her new book "Healthy Eating Through the Garden" will be released shortly. When not writing or speaking about food and gardens Cassie can be found puttering around farmer's markets and greenhouses looking for the next great idea.
Cassie Marshall
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