Crab Salad: This easy recipe uses imitation crab meat and a few other simple ingredients you can get at the grocery store! The creamy salad is perfect for a quick lunch, side dish, or a potluck!
Quick Overview: In only 10 minutes, you’ll have a dish that’s ready to eat or you can store in an airtight container to serve later! Serve alone, serve on hoagie rolls, or even on top of salad greens.
Why you’ll love this imitation crab salad recipe
If you love seafood dishes (or dare I say, even if you don’t) you’ll absolutely love this imitation crab recipe.
- The creamy dressing gives this seafood salad recipe a great flavor!
- It’s so easy. In just 10 minutes you’ll have a dish that you can serve with something like this fried shrimp recipe, or just eat it by itself for a quick lunch or even a light dinner.
- It uses simple ingredients. You can find all of them at your favorite grocery store.
- It keeps well. If you’re looking for a salad recipe to feed a crowd, this is it! You can make it in advance, and even easily double/triple the recipe.
8 ingredients – yes! That’s all it takes to make this crab salad.
Make sure to scroll to the recipe card towards the bottom of this post to see the ingredients and instructions all in one place.
- 16 oz package flake crab meat – you can use the leg-style crab meat as well but this gives a better texture.
- 1/2 cup mayo – our favorite is Kraft mayo (not Miracle Whip) but any will do!
- 1/2 cup diced celery – My husband isn’t a huge fan of celery in salad recipes but I absolutely LOVE it. It helps give a “crunch” to a creamy texture. (Although I omit the celery when making a crab salad sandwich.)
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard – the flavor of the dijon mustard adds the right about of “kick” to this salad.
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder – it’s only a small amount but I feel it’s necessary.
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder – a simple ingredient but it packs the perfect flavor.
- 1/4 teaspoon salt – definitely optional but I feel it adds a nice touch. However, imitation crab can have salt in it too so maybe make sure it doesn’t have too much salt before adding.
- Pinch black pepper – not necessary but we prefer it!
No cooking, and very little prep, this crab salad comes together and ready to eat, in minutes!
- Taking pieces of the flake crab meat, you can pull the crab meat apart with your hands or you can use a knife and cut it in to small, bite-size pieces. Place in a medium bowl.
- Next, pour the remaining ingredients on top of the crab meat.
- Stir until evenly mixed.
- Serve this simple crab salad recipe cold, as a side dish, main dish on a bed of lettuce, or even on bread or dip with crackers!
Absolutely! It’s often enjoyed right out of the package with melted butter but delicious in a no-cook recipe like this easy crab salad recipe.
There are different versions out there but the majority of crab salads are made of imitation crab, mayonaise, and spices.
Imitation Crab Meat: If you can’t find the flake-style of crab meat, you can use the leg-style. You can cut it in to small pieces but it won’t have the same texture. However, if you use a cheese grater, you could possible shred the crab meat to get it similar to a flake-style.
Real Crab Meat: You can use fresh crab if you like the real thing but it will be quite a different result, especially if you use a canned crab meat. If you use real, snow-crab meat, that will be even better but of course feel free to experiement! We prefer the imitation crab meat for this recipe. If you have real crab meat, you may love to use it for this crab bisque!
Mustard: You can definitely try using regular mustard but we prefer the “twang” that dijon mustard has! Regular yellow mustard may have more of a “zing” so maybe add a little and taste test before adding the amount that we use for dijon.
Celery: You can absolutely make this crab meat salad without celery, and I actually prefer to make it without it if I’m serving on bread for crab salad sandwiches. (Although we do love celery in sandwich spreads, like this tuna salad recipe.)
Red or Green Onions: We use onion powder in this recipe but added chopped red onion or chopped green onion may be another variation that would be delicious!
Red Bell Pepper or Green Pepper: I absolutley love the flavor of bell peppers, so adding a bit of chopped bell pepper would add another level of “crunch” to this recipe.
Seasoning: We stick with common ingredients for this recipe but feel free to use other items like seasoned salt, instead of of table salt, or even Old Bay Seasoning for a additional flavor! Fresh dill or fresh parsley are also something that may be a good fit for a flavor boost!
Hot Sauce: Love an extra kick? Add a few drops of hot sauce, to your desired spice level!
If making this cold salad ahead of time or simply storing leftovers, store in an airtight container for 3-4 days.
Make a large batch of this easy recipe to eat for busy lunch days or even serve as a side dish for a quick, weeknight dinner idea!
What goes well with crab salad?
This cold crab salad recipe pairs amazing well with these dishes:
- Fish tacos
- BBQ Ribs or BBQ Pork Steaks
- Smoked Chicken or these Smoked Cornish Hens
- Soup like this Brocolli Cheddar Soup
If you love this easy salad recipe, then you’ll also love these easy, savory salads!
Did you make this? I’d be so grateful if you left a review below to let me know what you thought! Then, the next time you need a quick and easy recipe, come back to Fantabulosity to browse all of my easy recipes!
The BEST Crab Salad
- 16 ounces imitation flaked crab meat
- ½ cup mayo
- ½ cup diced celery
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- pinch black pepper
- Tear apart the flaked crab meat, or cut in to small, bite-size pieces and place in medium sized mixing bowl.
- Pour the remaining ingredients on top of the crab meat. Stir to fully blend ingredients. Serve!
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more.