Are you craving crab dishes? Look no further! Here’s the best collection of Imitation Crab Recipes, from casseroles and salads to dips and pasta!
Suppose you’re craving some delicious crab-based dishes, but you can’t find any fresh crab in your neighborhood.
It’s annoying, isn’t it?
But thanks to this Japanese food invention, you can now incorporate crab flavors into your favorites.
Behold: imitation crab!
To those who aren’t familiar with it, imitation crab or crab stick is a magical ingredient formulated to have a similar flavor, color, and appearance to cooked fresh crab meat.
It’s made from a combination of starch and white fish, surimi.
You can find them at any grocery store, so visiting a wet market to purchase fresh crabs isn’t necessary now.
But I digress; here’s my best collection of imitation crab meat recipes that are sure to cure your longing for seafood—economically.
This imitation crab recipe is super easy to make and tasty enough to be your next appetizer!
It’s packed with flavorful ingredients such as cucumber, avocado, and brown rice (or black rice).
The addition of wasabi accentuates the taste of the imitation crab, enhancing it to another level.
Meanwhile, the vinegar adds extra flavor to the rice.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab sticks, avocado, cucumber, ginger, and seaweed sheets.
This enchiladas recipe is filled with seafood flavors from shrimp and imitation crab.
Now there’s no reason for you to visit a fancy restaurant just to satisfy your seafood enchilada cravings – you can create them at home.
Also, it’s cheaper!
To make a casserole dish of these, you need a handful of ingredients such as jalapeno, cream sauce, pepper jack cheese, flour tortillas, milk, sour cream, and ginger.
Ingredients line: Shrimp, imitation crab, garlic, jalapeno, and all-purpose flour.
If you love everything about pasta, this crab pasta salad recipe can liven things up.
Everything about this recipe is creamy and delicious.
The feta cheese takes the dish up a notch, while the presence of mayonnaise elevates the rich and sweet flavor of the salad.
Though the salad can already be enjoyed on its own, pairing it with lettuce cups, buttery crackers, or making a sandwich using bread or soft rolls makes it quite extraordinary.
Ingredients line: Dry small pasta shells, imitation crab meat, celery, green onion, and Old Bay seasoning.
This Minnesota Crab Louie is best served with a bed of lettuce and some crackers.
Topping tomato, hard-boiled egg, asparagus, and avocado makes a big difference in the overall flavor.
Aside from the imitation crab meat, another highlight of this recipe is the shrimp, which offers extra seafood flavor.
These ingredients become more interesting with the spicy kick from chili sauce and the sweet flavor profile from mayonnaise and whipped cream.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab meat, frozen shrimp, green bell peppers, celery, and chili garlic sauce.
Win the hearts of your guests at your game day party by serving these crescent bites.
This crowd-pleasing dish is sure to leave everyone’s mouth watery with its creamy filling from imitation crab meat, cream cheese, mayonnaise, and chopped green onion.
Quick tip: It’s encouraged to chop imitation crab meat into small pieces, so it stays put within the crescent bites when you finally sink your teeth into them.
Ingredients line: Cream cheese, imitation crab meat, mayonnaise, green onions, and crescent rolls.
If you haven’t tried this recipe, you’re missing out big time!
These crab rangoons are filled with key ingredients such as cream cheese, imitation crab meat, and egg roll wraps, leaving a creamy flavor profile in the dish.
Things get more interesting with the addition of Worcestershire sauce, green onion, garlic powder, and sugar.
If you’re planning to make a big batch, then storing them in the fridge is the right thing to do.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab meat, garlic powder, green onion, Worcestershire sauce, and cream cheese.
This sweet and spicy Kani salad features only a few ingredients: imitation crab, cucumber, and the special dressing.
Though it looks simple from the get-go, expect a burst of flavor with the combination of these ingredients.
The zing of the heat of the dish comes from the sriracha, while the inclusion of cucumber adds that crunchy and refreshing flavor.
Add deep-fried tempura bits at the last minute of the preparation to add extra crunchiness to the recipe.
Ingredients line: Cucumber, mirin, sriracha, tempura bits, and imitation crab sticks.
8. Crab Cakes
If you’re looking for something delicious, but you’re on a tight budget, then take this crab cakes recipe.
Bread crumbs and the Worcestershire sauce are responsible for the crunchiness and complex flavor of these crab cakes.
On the other hand, the sweet and tangy variation comes from mayonnaise and mustard.
Now, if you happen to be into crab cakes, you’re in luck!
Here’s a gift to celebrate that: frozen crab cake recipes.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab meat, dill weed, lemon juice, mayonnaise, and olive oil.
Among the imitation crab recipes, this crab rangoon casserole is my favorite.
This recipe is easy to put together and packed with fresh ingredients, so you feel amazed every time you dig into this hearty casserole.
It’s topped with panko breadcrumbs, butter, and parmesan cheese, so expect a sweet, creamy, and crunchy meal!
Quick tip: You can double the toppings for additional crunch and creaminess.
Ingredients line: No yolk noodles, cream cheese, imitation crab meat, panko breadcrumbs, and butter.
10. Crab Bisque
If you’re looking for a soup recipe to serve using your imitation crab sticks, then here you are.
You can’t go wrong with imitation crab swimming in a rich, delicious broth of tomato cream.
I guarantee it’ll taste like a gourmet meal, but without the gourmet meal cost!
Ingredients line: Tomatoes, chicken broth, imitation crab meat, heavy cream, and Old Bay seasoning.
If you love pizza and crabs, then this last imitation crab-based recipe is your next go-to meal!
What I like about this crab bacon spinach pizza is it’s cheap and easy to customize.
To make one, just add fresh baby spinach, chopped scallions, and bacon on top of the pizza dough.
And oh…more cheese, please!
Ingredients line: Bacon, imitation crab meat, baby spinach, scallions, and alfredo sauce.
12. Seafood Chowder
Seafood chowder is rich, creamy, and full of flavor.
This chowder is made with shrimp, cod, and crab.
The veggies are carrots, potatoes, corn, and onion.
This is a seafood chowder recipe that is actually easy to make but has so much flavor that everyone will think that you spent days on it.
When looking for your next favorite imitation crab recipe, this will be high on the list.
Ingredients line: Cod, shrimp, imitation crab, bouillon chicken, and carrots.
I love it when Tex-Mex and seafood are combined, and this is especially true when it comes to crab and Tex-Mex.
Crab, even imitation crab, is my favorite seafood, and chimichangas are my favorite Tex-Mex food.
Combining the two in one dish is just a little slice of joy for me that I can really get behind.
If you find yourself trying to figure out what to make with imitation crab meat, look no further than this yummy recipe.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab, refried beans, tortillas, canola oil, and Mexican cheese blend.
14. Buffalo Crab Dip
Crab dip is a ridiculously fabulous crabmeat recipe.
Buffalo Crab Dip is a way to take that to the next level.
If you love that extra spicy flavor, then you are sure to love this dip.
Now, I am a wimp when it comes to spice, but I am in the minority on this topic.
So if you are looking for an easy-to-make hot dip with imitation crab meat that is sure to impress, look right here.
Ingredients line: Buffalo sauce, imitation crab, ranch dressing, baguettes, and cream cheese.
What is a crab roll, you may ask?
Well, it is a sandwich made with special hoagie-style bread that is jammed with crab meat, mayo, and seasonings.
It is a delicious recipe using imitation crab.
While you can have the most famous version of this sandwich, a lobster roll, you can alter it to be a crab roll.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab meat, lemon juice, sweet pickle relish, mayonnaise, and cajun seasoning.
Crab alfredo is so creamy and delicious, and Red Lobster really knows how to make a fantastic version.
You can use imitation crab meat to make this delicious main dish.
One variation to the recipe that I would recommend is to add freshly minced garlic.
Oh, and don’t forget some hot garlic bread!
Ingredients line: Half and half, unsalted butter, linguini pasta, imitation crab meat, and parmesan cheese.
Our Cheesy Garlic Biscuits (Red Lobster Copy-Cat Cheddar Bay Biscuits) recipe will pair perfectly with this pasta.
17. Crab Rangoon Dip
This is a hot dip that is cheesy, full of imitation crab, and frankly, all things lovely.
This dip is so creamy.
It is made with cream cheese, mayonnaise, and sour cream.
Then we have the cheese and spices.
It has two different kinds of cheese, fresh garlic, onions, and spices.
As if that alone isn’t enough, we then add in the crab meat and the perfectly baked wonton chips.
Make a double batch, folks, because this one will go fast.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab meat, garlic, lemon juice, mayonnaise, and mozzarella cheese.
I love casseroles.
I especially love cheesy casseroles.
So when the idea of a cheesy crab meat casserole came up, I got darn near giddy.
Let’s talk about the cheese in this recipe for a moment.
It calls for cream cheese, sour cream, cheddar cheese, and swiss cheese.
This is serious, folks!
I may be in love with this casserole.
Ingredients line: Cheddar cheese, sour cream, cream cheese, sweet onion, and imitation crab meat.
Mac and cheese AND crab meat were meant to be together.
I don’t know why it took so long for folks to understand this.
Yes, making this recipe does take a tiny bit of patience, but it is so worth it.
Take your time making the sauce, and then after about 30 minutes in the oven, you will have something incredible.
Ingredients line: Mustard, Old Bay seasoning, elbow macaroni, panko breadcrumbs, and imitation crab.
This is one of those recipes that you can throw together on a random Tuesday, and people will think that you are a hero.
First, cook up the pasta.
While the pasta is cooking, saute the garlic and onion.
Then you add in the crab meat, wine, and lemon and cook that all together.
By the time the pasta is done, your sauce is done, and you are all set.
Ingredients line: Linguine pasta, butter, sweet onion, imitation crab meat, and white wine.
This is a spicy Japanese salad that is made with imitation crab, cucumber, carrots, and a spicy sesame dressing.
You can put this recipe together in just 10 minutes.
It is a salad that is crunchy and creamy at the same time.
If you are a bit wimpy like me, you can leave the sriracha sauce out of the recipe.
But if you like spice, you go on ahead and add it.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab sticks, cucumber, carrot, white sesame seeds, and rice vinegar.
22. Egg Crab Salad
If you are a fan of egg salad and you love crab meat, you will love this recipe.
This is essentially a twist on the classic egg salad.
It has sweet corn, imitation crab meat, celery, cheese, and chives.
Check out the full ingredient list and enjoy this creamy mayo-based recipe.
Ingredients line: Eggs, imitation crab meat, canned corn, swiss cheese, and celery.
This is a refreshing salad that has some delicious ingredients and yet is still easy to put together.
This salad has fresh avocado, tomato, lettuce, and eggs.
Oh, and of course, it has imitation crab meat to boot.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab meat, romaine lettuce heart, eggs, smoked paprika, and ketchup.
24. Mini Crab Po’boy
A crab Po’boy is essentially a crab salad stuffed sandwich.
These were made famous in New Orleans.
The bread is usually a large fluffy hot dog bun or at least bread that is similar to that and that shape.
If you’ve been wanting to whip up Shrimp Cocktails, but don’t have the time to do all that peeling and deveining on actual shrimp, never fear.
Enter the Mexican Crab Cocktail.
By swapping out the troublesome shrimp for the more convenient imitation crab meat, you get all the seafood cocktail flavors you’ve been craving with none of the hassle and fuss!
Ingredients line: Imitation crab, cilantro, cucumber, jalapenos, and limes.
A ceviche is an interesting dish.
It’s a chilled dish made from raw fish that’s cooked/cured in citrus like lime juice.
It has a flavor akin to the pique of pico de gallo or the vibrancy of fresh salsa.
The thing is, it must be made fresh and needs to be consumed immediately to minimize the risk of food poisoning.
But why risk it when you can negate the danger entirely by using imitation crab meat instead of raw fish?
It takes none of the flavor away and keeps your tummy safe!
Ingredients line: Avocado, poblano pepper, onion, imitation crab meat, and jalapeno.
Crab Twice Baked Potatoes are so good!
The potatoes are cut in half with one half serving as a base while the other is processed together with butter, milk, and sour cream to form the filling.
Top the whole thing off with a generous dollop of imitation crab, cheese, and green onions to seal the deal.
Ingredients line: Russet potatoes, olive oil, unsalted butter, imitation crab meat, and cheddar cheese.
28. Crab Poke Bowl
Do you love sushi?
If so, why limit yourself to a handful of rolls before some spots your sushi platter and starts helping themselves to them?
One solution would be to make a whole bowl all to yourself!
This recipe for Crab Poke Bowl is the bowl version of a popular member of the sushi platter: The California Maki.
The imitation crab meat, seaweed, and rice get you all the familiar sushi flavor while the mangoes provide a nice, refreshing contrast.
Ingredients line: Mango, English cucumber, avocado, imitation crab meat, and basmati rice.
29. Seafood Nachos
Seafood Nachos are an interesting appetizer in the sense that, nachos are famous for their use of cheese, and there’s an old culinary adage that seafood should never be prepared with cheese.
I guess exceptions to the rule are popping up all over because this dish is prepared with both cheese and imitation crab and the result is simply delicious!
They’re perfect to snack on, for your Friday night poker game, or to serve on game day.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab, onion, cheddar cheese, paprika, and tortilla chips.
If you’ve never had imitation crab before and want something basic to test the waters with, why not try cooking up a batch of these golden brown beauties?
Imitation crab, also known as surimi, is the seafood version of hotdogs, and is really yummy!
They come pre-cooked even if they are sold frozen: some people even eat them straight out of the package with soy sauce or a dip of some sort.
Why do that though when you can enjoy them perfectly seasoned in all their crispy, golden-brown glory?
Ingredients line: Imitation crab sticks, lemon, tartar sauce, Old Bay seasoning, and tempura mix.
This recipe for Crab Sushi Stacks is a unique take on your generic sushi roll.
It uses imitation crab in its entirety and is bigger in size overall while retaining all of the familiar sushi flavors we all know and love.
It’s also quick and easy to make, depending on whether you already have cooked rice on hand.
Ingredients line: Seaweed, imitation crab, cucumber, avocado, and wasabi sauce.
This recipe for Crustless Crab Quiche is super fun!
They’re easy and super quick to make and you can use a muffin tin to make them somewhat bite-sized or even a pie tin to make one huge piece.
You’re looking at 10-15 minute prep time tops!
The egg custard provides an excellent crustless base once baked while the imitation crab adds a sweet, savory seafood taste throughout.
Ingredients line: Flour, eggs, milk, imitation crab meat, and scallions.
Are you looking to serve something different for your next holiday?
Are you undecided between pizza, pasta, or seafood?
Have the best of all three by serving up some Crab Alfredo Flatbread!
It’s super quick to make while skimping none of the flavors.
Piping hot bread is slathered with creamy alfredo sauce, mozzarella cheese, and imitation crab.
And the best part is, you can have it on your table in about 15 minutes!
Ingredients line: Flatbread, alfredo sauce, imitation crab meat, mozzarella cheese, and Italian seasoning.
One thing I love about imitation crab meat is its ability to go well with almost everything, most especially salads because of its sweet, seafood-savory flavor.
This recipe for Imitation Crab Salad provides a great balance of flavor you can try for yourself.
And feel free to mix and swap the ingredients listed; just remember not to use boiled eggs since they can easily overpower the imitation crab’s taste.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab sticks, corn, pickles, greek yogurt, and fresh dill.
35. Sushi Bake
I must have been living under a rock all this time since I’ve only discovered the joys of Sushi Bake within the past couple of years.
And when I first did hear about it, my mind immediately rejected the idea since I questioned, isn’t sushi supposed to be raw?
Not so, apparently!
Baking the sushi enhances the flavor so very well!
It also give a nice Western touch to a traditional Eastern dish.
Ingredients line: Furikake seaweed seasoning, rice vinegar, imitation crab, soy sauce, and mirin.
I’m a huge Jalapeno Popper fan but never would have thought it possible to make them with imitation crab until I came across this recipe.
It’s got all the familiar flavor that Jalapeno poppers are supposed to have, but instead of using ground pork or beef, imitation crab is used instead.
Spice lovers will notice a subtle seafood twist to the flavor that’s so refreshing!
Ingredients line: Jalapeno, sweet corn, Japanese mayo, imitation crab, and cream cheese.
If you’re looking for something to serve on game night and want something with a little more oomph, then this recipe for Crab Poppers With Sriracha Aioli is for you!
If you aren’t familiar with sriracha, it’s a hot chili sauce that originates from Thailand.
The authentic stuff has a mighty kick so you’d best be careful; thankfully the ones usually available in Western supermarkets have been toned down a few notches.
These poppers go very well with beer since beer excels at quelching the heat from the poppers.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab, garlic, panko breadcrumbs, butter, and green onion.
These delicious Tortilla Crab Wheels make for excellent appetizers or side dishes!
They’re also nice to have up your sleeve since whipping them up takes only about 10 minutes.
Creamy and elegant, they’re perfect to serve guests at a garden party or potluck.
Ingredients line: Tortillas, mayo, imitation crab meat, cucumbers, and eggs.
This recipe for Crab Artichoke Dip is hearty and filling, and can be served all on its own.
Co-starring for the imitation crab in this dish is the poblano pepper.
It’s a great middle-of-the-road pepper, which will entertain the majority of journeymen spice eaters but isn’t hot enough to burn your tongue to a crisp.
What we have here is the perfect potluck fare!
Ingredients line: Cream cheese, artichoke hearts, imitation crab meat, dijon mustard, and poblano pepper.
This recipe for Seafood Stuffed Shells calls for jumbo pasta shells, cooked perfectly al-dente, then stuffed with cheese and imitation crab in a creamy white sauce.
They’re great for serving at dinner parties since they’re delicious and will look really good on the dinner table.
So the next time you’re looking for pasta and seafood to serve, you’ll have this to offer!
Ingredients line: Jumbo pasta shells, raw shrimp, cream cheese, imitation crab meat, and parmesan.
41. Seafood Lasagna
If you’re looking for something really special and the previous entries haven’t really measured up, then maybe this recipe for Seafood Lasagna would make the cut.
It’s made from shrimp, scallops, imitation crab, and clams together with lasagna pasta and bathed in a rich, white sauce.
It’s absolutely delicious, and will be sure to wow your guests come dinnertime!
Ingredients line: Clams, bay scallops, imitation crab meat, raw shrimp, and lasagna noodles.
It’s a little sad that the Maryland Style Crab Imperial has been declining in popularity.
It’s an iconic restaurant dish and a classic; it’s also one of the few ways you can serve lumped crab meat.
Serve together with a side of sauteed greens or mashed potatoes for a complete meal, or you can even use it to stuff your holiday bird.
Nonetheless, this dish is very tasty and deserves a popularity upsurge.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab meat, mayonnaise, Italian parsley, Old Bay, and sugar.
43. Seafood Pot Pie
Now we come to one of my all-time favorites: Seafood Pot Pie!
Think freshly baked pie crust stuffed to the brim with sweet and seafood savory shrimp and imitation crab together with crispy bacon and mixed vegetables, perfectly seasoned in a creamy white sauce.
Make extras, this will be gone fast!
Ingredients line: Pie crust, bacon, imitation crab, shrimp condensed soup, and Monterey jack cheese.
If you like #43, but aren’t in the mood for pie or would like to stuff your delicious imitation crab in something else, try this recipe for Crab Stuffed Whitefish, please!
The presentation for this dish is also top-notch, so this definitely one of the recommended recipes for occasions like those.
It’s a whole side of white fish fillet, laid flat, upon which the stuffing is laid out, you then roll the fillet into a tube, then cut them up into the appropriate size.
Ingredients line: White fish, olive oil, imitation crab meat, Old Bay seasoning, and garlic.
Ahh, the Baked Seafood Burrito!
It’s so good it verges on decadent.
What it is, is you take your standard burrito wrap, and stuff it tight with succulent shrimp, juicy imitation crab, and veggies then douse it with red enchilada sauce.
It’s truly delicious, and is a guaranteed crown pleaser!
Ingredients line: Imitation crab, Mexican cheese blend, enchilada sauce, small shrimp, and burrito wraps.
While we’re on the topic of stuffing food, why not also stuff avocados?
Avocados provide a sweet, earthy taste that complements the savor of the imitation crab.
They make a great appetizer or even a light lunch!
Ingredients line: Avocado, imitation crab meat, garlic, tarragon, and yellow bell pepper.
Here’s a perfect way to express yourself through not just your cooking, but your art as well!
Making them isn’t difficult, but can be tricky, so care is needed.
Once you get the hang of it though, not only will have something tasty to eat, but something pretty to look at.
Ingredients line: Imitation crab, eggs, vegetables, salt, and cooking oil.
This is a recipe for Tenshinhan or crab omelette over rice.
What it is is freshly steamed rice doused in a sweet savory sauce and generously sprinkled with crab omelette.
It’s super delicious and will look nice on your dinner table.
The best part about it is, it’s so easy to make!
Ingredients line: Chicken broth, soy sauce, eggs, imitation crab meat, and potato starch.
Of all the things to stuff imitation crab into, mushrooms have to be my favorite.
I’ve mentioned in one of my other posts that mushrooms are a perfect culinary canvas since they take on the flavor of anything they’re cooked with.
They have a naturally earthy, neutral taste that complements anything it’s paired with.
Ingredients line: White mushrooms, imitation crab, panko breadcrumbs, mayonnaise, and dried oregano.
The Inkigayo Sandwich has got to be the most interesting sandwich I’ve ever come across since it’s sweet, earthy, and savory all at the same time!
Think club sandwich: In one layer we have strawberry jam, the next we have potato salad, and lastly, the imitation crab.
It isn’t one to inspire a taste if you’ve never had one yet, given the unorthodox ingredients, but it’s really quite popular with K-pop idols; but that may be because of a different reason entirely!
Ingredients line: Imitation crab sticks, strawberry jam, cabbage, bread, and small potatoes.
The bottom line
There are different and fun ways to cook imitation crab.
From casseroles, and salad, to soup and pizza, nothing goes wrong when we go right at it.
Also, it’s amazing how it works perfectly with almost everything!
Learn these recipes so you don’t have to worry about not having some fresh crabs when those seafood cravings hit you out of the blue.
Imitation crab meat is your answer!
Trust me; it’s worth a shot!
Do you know some recipes that make use of imitation crab?
Feel free to share it with us!
More Crab Recipes
- How To Cook Imitation Crab
- Crab Toast Recipes
- Cold Crab Recipes
- Canned Crab Meat Recipes
- What To Serve With Crab Cakes
- Crab Appetizers
- Crab Meat Recipes
- How To Cook Frozen Crab Cakes
- How To Reheat Crab Rangoon
- How To Reheat Crab Legs
- What To Serve With Crab Legs
- Can You Freeze Cooked Crab
- California Roll Sushi
- Seafood Enchiladas
- Crab Pasta Salad
- Minnesota Crab Louie
- Crab Crescent Bites
- Oven-Baked Crab Rangoons
- Spicy Kani Salad
- Crab Cakes
- Crab Rangoon Casserole
- Crab Bisque
- Crab Bacon Spinach Pizza
- Seafood Chowder
- Imitation Crab Chimichangas
- Buffalo Crab Dip
- Crab Salad Roll Sandwich
- Red Lobster Crab Alfredo (Copy-Cat)
- Crab Rangoon Dip
- Crab Meat Casserole
- Imitation Crab Mac & Cheese
- Crab Linguini With Lemon Butter Sauce
- Japanese Kani Salad
- Egg Crab Salad
- Avocado & Crab Salad
- Mini Crab Po'boy
- Mexican Crab Cocktail
- Imitation Crab Ceviche
- Crab Twice Baked Potatoes
- Crab Poke Bowl
- Seafood Nachos
- Fried Crab Sticks
- Crab Sushi Stacks
- Crustless Crab Quiche
- Crab Alfredo Flatbread
- Imitation Crab Salad
- Sushi Bake
- Crab Stuffed Jalapeno Poppers
- Crab Poppers With Sriracha Aioli
- Tortilla Crab Wheels
- Crab Artichoke Dip
- Seafood Stuffed Shells
- Seafood Lasagna
- Maryland Style Crab Imperial
- Seafood Pot Pie
- Crab Stuffed Whitefish
- Baked Seafood Burrito
- Crab Stuffed Avocado
- Heart Shaped Imitation Crab Omelettes
- Tenshinhan (Crab Omelette Over Rice)
- Crab Stuffed Mushrooms
- Inkigayo Sandwich (K-Pop Idol Sandwich)
- Check out our list of Imitation Crab Recipes for your next meal!
- Gather the ingredients.
- Start cooking your new dish!
- Enjoy, and share this list on your social media.