These savory vegan crab cakes are made with an easy toss and fry recipe that takes little effort or prep. Filled with delicious garbanzo beans, artichokes, and cajun seasoning, these cakes will become your new favorite appetizer!
I know a lot of people think that the vegan version of a dish won’t be as good as the original, or be as flavorful. I assure you that’s not the case—especially when it comes to these Vegan Crab Cakes.
In this recipe, traditional crab meat is replaced with flavorful artichoke hearts and hearts of palm, which have a texture very similar to crab meat.
And they're loaded with healthy, protein-packed garbanzo beans - so they're great for you too!
These vegan crab cakes are:
- Loaded with flavor!
- Simple to make in under 30 minutes.
- Perfect for a party appetizer.
- Hearty enough to serve on their own for a light lunch or dinner.
If you love vegan cooking, make sure you grab a copy of my free vegan cheat sheet while you’re here. It’s packed with all my favorite plant-based substitutions to help you vegan-ize any recipe!
How to Make Vegan Crab Cakes
- Blend main ingredients - Combine the garbanzo beans, artichoke hearts, and heart of palm in a food processor after draining and pulse a couple of times.
- Mix other ingredients - In a bowl, combine all the other ingredients except the oil and ¼ cup breadcrumbs. Mix well.
- Chill - Add the bean mixture to the bowl and mix well. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Make the cakes - Once chilled, use ¼ cup of the mixture to make about 10 cakes.
- Fry - Heat the oil in a skillet and fry the cakes for 4 minutes on each side. Drain and enjoy!
Tips and Variations
Storage - Store this crab cakes recipe in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 4 days. I have not personally tested freezing these, although I don’t see the harm in it. I would suggest separating the cakes between sheets of wax paper when freezing for the best results.
Reheating - Reheat using the oven, air fryer, or microwave. For best results, let the crab cakes thaw naturally before warming them up from the freezer. They might fall apart or dry out otherwise.
Use all heart of palm - If desired, you can swap out the artichoke hearts for more heart of palm. This won’t change anything about the structure of the cakes, so no worries there. These are the hearts of palm that I buy.
Use all artichoke hearts - Just like you can use all hearts of palm for your cakes, you can also swap out the heart of palm for all artichoke hearts. I do this often as I love the flavor that artichoke hearts add to the recipe. I use this brand of artichoke hearts.
Add fresh herbs - If you really want to liven up this recipe, add some fresh herbs such as parsley, dill, or chives.
Add other seasonings - Experiment with other seasonings besides cajun if you prefer. You can try a Mexican blend, Italian blend, Greek blend, etc. These Slap Ya' Mama seasonings are delicious!
Use other beans - If you’re not a fan of garbanzo beans, you can swap them out for another bean option such as white cannellini beans. The beans will need to be fully cooked and seasoned before being added to the recipe.
Vegan Crab Cakes FAQs
What Are Vegan Crab Cakes Made Of?
It’s very common to find garbanzo beans, hearts of palm, or artichoke hearts in most vegan crab cakes. This is because, when chopped, their texture matches that of a traditional crab cake. The beans simply hold it all together well and act as a stellar binding agent as well as an added protein.
Can Vegans Eat Crab Meat?
Nope. Vegans don't consume anything that comes from an animal. This means that crab meat is a no-no, along with any other animal meat. This also means they don’t eat dairy or gelatin since it’s made from products that come from animals. Anything that causes cruelty to an animal is out for vegans.
If you decided to give these Vegan Crab Cakes a try, please let me know in the comments below or on social media!
Other Vegan Appetizer Recipes You Might Like
- Easy Vegan Meatballs
- 5-Minute Vegan Ricotta Cheese
- Cucumber Tomato Salad
- One-Bowl Vegan Cornbread
- Vegan Zucchini Fritters
And don’t forget to grab a copy of my free vegan cheat sheet too! It’s packed with my favorite easy substitutions to help you make just about any recipe vegan!
Vegan Crab Cakes
- Drain the beans, then combine the garbanzo beans, artichoke hearts, and heart of palm in a food processor. Pulse slightly to create large chunks that resemble flakes of crab meat.
- In a medium bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients except the oil and about ¼ cup of the breadcrumbs. Mix well. Add the bean mixture to the bowl and mix well again. Place in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes.
- Place the remaining breadcrumbs on a small plate. Using about ¼ cup of the mixture, mold them into thick patties and roll them in the breadcrumbs. Heat your oil in a skillet over medium heat and fry the patties for 4 minutes on each side. Refrain from flipping them more than once if possible.