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Mini crab cakes stacked on a wooden board with a side of aioli dipping sauce and fresh limes

Mini Thai Crab Cakes with Spicy Aioli

  • Author: Asian Caucasian
  • Prep Time: 15 min
  • Cook Time: 8 min
  • Total Time: 23 min
  • Yield: 12 mini cakes 1x
  • Category: Appetizer
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: Thai


These crispy, golden Mini Thai Crab Cakes are packed with flaky fresh lump crab meat, red Thai chili peppers, and Panko bread crumbs for texture, then dipped in a Sambal aioli for a bit of heat. It’s the perfect seafood appetizer!


  • 1 pound lump crab meat (broken up and picked over for shells)
  • ½ yellow bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 red Thai chili peppers (or 1 jalapeño pepper), seeded and finely chopped
  • 3 green onions, sliced
  • Zest from 1 lime
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ½ cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil

Spicy Aioli:


  1. In a mixing bowl, combine together the crab meat with the yellow peppers, chili peppers, green onions, lime zest, salt, and cilantro. Mix in the egg and Panko bread crumbs until thoroughly combined. Form small 2-inch round cakes with the mixture and set them on trays until ready to cook.
  2. Heat the canola oil in a heavy cast iron skillet on high heat. When oil is lightly smoking lower the heat to medium-high and drop the cakes into the pan. Brown on both sides, about 4 minutes each side. Place the cakes on paper towels to drain oil. Keep warm until ready to serve. Serve cakes on a platter with spicy aioli dipping sauce.
  3. Make the aioli sauce: In a small bowl, mix together the mayonnaise and sambal oelek. Serve with the crab cakes.


  • I used the leftover crab cakes (if there are any!) on top of a salad. You can also make sliders with these mini crab cakes!
  • You can freeze these crab cakes before or after cooking. Freeze the pre-made crab cakes in a ziplock bag. Lay flat in the freezer for up to 1 month. If you want to freeze already-cooked crab cakes, let them cool first. Freeze them in a ziplock bag and lay flat in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • Store the crab cakes in the refrigerator once they have been cooked. Storing them in an airtight container is best. They will stay fresh for 3 to 5 days.
  • When ready to serve the crab cakes, cook them over medium-high heat to warm up or use an oven to bake them on a baking sheet at 350*F for about 12 to 15 minutes or until warmed through. If they are frozen, add a few extra minutes.

Keywords: crab, crab cakes, Thai appetizer