Maine Crab Fritters with Potato Chip Crust and Horseradish Sauce

Had you at the potato chip crust, right?

      These could be a lovely little starter, or a fun addition to a party buffet. Not quite as fussy as a crab cake, easier to cook, but still filled with crab flavor.

A cup of good crab is better than gallons of preservatives

      I’ve used the meat of the little Maine peekytoe crabs here, but use whatever domestic crab you can find in your area. I buy mine frozen. You’ll want crab that is fresh or frozen for the best quality, and which is unlikely to contain preservatives. Just 8 ounces makes around nine crabcakes, more if you make them slightly smaller for a party offering.

I had some slightly stale potato chips that kept slowly disappearing, so I thought it might be wise to get them out of my site and use them in this coating. Definitely a good move!

Yes, you definitely need a cast-iron frying pan

      Often fritters are cooked in more fat, but I find a little oil in the trusty cast-iron frying pan works best, they are the original non-stick pans without the chemicals! If you don’t own one, it is a good investment and will last generations with care. My pan “Dolora” belonged to my grandmother, and then my mother, and I’ll probably hand it down to one of my kids or grandkids.

Check out flea markets for an old one such as Wagner or Griswold; sometimes you can find them really cheap if they have rusted. But even the worst ones can be cleaned and re-seasoned for many more years of use. Of course, you can always buy a new one, just look for an American made brand and not from China which are not well made and prone to cracking.

Perfect for all types of frying, with little oil. I use mine many times during any given week, and it never lets me down. They are also great for baking cornbread, biscuits, bean dishes, chili, cassoulet, and berry desserts, especially cherry clafoutis!

Potato Chip Crusted Maine Crab Fritters with Horseradish & Lemon Cream Sauce

  • 8 oz. Maine peekytoe crabmeat, or other domestic crab
  • 2 tbsp. chick pea flour
  • 2 tbsp. finely minced onion
  • 1 tsp. anise seed, crushed
  • 1 tsp. French mustard
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • ½ tsp. sweet paprika
  • Pinch of salt
  • Few grinds of fresh black pepper
  • ½ cup crushed potato chips, stale is fine as long as they are still crisp
  • ½ cup fresh or panko breadcrumbs

      Gently pick over crab to find any remnants of shell. Place in a bowl and add flour, onion, anise, mustard, egg, paprika, salt, and pepper. Mix carefully, just until combined.

      Place potato chips and breadcrumbs on a baking sheet. Form the fritters using a tablespoon or small cookie scoop. I put some crumbs in the palm of my hand, scoop in the mixture, then sprinkle the top with more crumbs. Pat to mesh everything together. You should make about nine fritters. Press down the centers so they are rather flat when cooking for even browning.

      Heat olive oil in a cast-iron or non-stick pan, just enough to cover the bottom. You are not deep-frying here, but you need the oil for color. If you like, spritz them with olive oil and bake on a preheated baking sheet in a 475 degree oven, turning once, until golden.

      Cook a few minutes on each side, turning over when the fritters feel firm and a little peak underneath reveals the color. Drain on a rack and season with a touch more salt.

      These are delicious served on a bed of mixed greens with a little horseradish cream sauce on the side. For a gathering, make them a little smaller and pile on a platter with the sauce waiting.

Horseradish Cream Sauce

  • 1/3 cup non-fat plain Greek-style yoghurt, or non-dairy yoghurt
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise or vegan mayonnaise
  • 1 heaping tbsp. prepared horseradish
  • 1 tbsp. ketchup
  • 1 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Zest of a lemon on microplane
  • Dash of hot sauce of choice

      Combine everything, and mix well. Add more lemon juice to thin if desired. This is good on lots of things other than fritters from grilled vegetables to salmon.       

© Copyright 2023– or current year, The New Vintage Kitchen. Unattributed use of this material is strictly prohibited. Reposting and links may be used, provided that credit is given to The New Vintage Kitchen, with  active link and direction to this original post.

The New Vintage Kitchen does not accept ads or payment for mention of products or businesses.

Supporter of:  Slow Food       Fair Trade USA       Northeast Organic Farmers Association     EcoWatch    Let’s Save Our Planet No Kid Hungry   Hunger Free Vermont Environmental Working Group World Central Kitchen

66 Comments Add yours

  1. These look gorgeous!

    1. Thank you! You can’t go wrong with potato chips!

  2. Amie says:

    There’s nothing as sweet and delicate as Maine crabmeat! I never thought to pair with horseradish. Can’t wait to try this!

    1. Thanks Amie! These were definitely a hit at this house.

  3. Ally Bean says:

    What a delicious recipe. I’ve never made potato chip crust per se, but have used them crushed on top of a casserole. You’ve given me a good idea.

    1. Thank you Ally! This crust is great on any fish, but I’m sure you could use it on chicken too.

  4. Jenna says:

    Yes!! You had me at potato chip crust 🙂

  5. Suzassippi says:

    I love horseradish sauce and these look and sound wonderful. I love them served on the greens!

    1. We ate them for supper on the greens, and they are so good in that simple way. We reheated leftovers for breakfast!

  6. Looks delicious and I have to make this recipe. Never made crab cakes with potato chip crust before.

    1. I hadn’t either! But the potato chips worked nicely.

  7. This looks delicious. Thanks for the recipe. I never thought to purchase frozen crab. I grew up in Connecticut, where seafood is readily available and I miss that here in Vermont.

    1. Many of the local fish market tuck the Maine crabmeat away in the freezer, and luckily it does freeze nicely.

  8. Ronit says:

    Utterly delicious! Great idea, to add aniseed to the crab mix. 🙂

    1. Thank you Ronit. The anise adds just a touch of somethin’-somethin’!

  9. Angela says:

    Oh, my… what a treat they would be.

    1. Thanks! They disappear rather quickly!

  10. NativeNM says:

    Looks amazing Dorothy!

  11. Anonymous says:

    Sounds sinfully good, Dorothy.

    1. Thank you! They were really tasty!

  12. Yes, you had me at the potato chips but I’m a huge fan of anything crispy, tasty, and easy. 😉

    1. Thanks Laurie! These are all the above!

  13. Mary says:

    I can practically taste them! That Horseradish sauce will be unbelievably nice with a crispy crab cake! Oh Yes!! :))
    And I didn’t mention the chips!!!

    1. Thank you! I really love the crispy coating.

  14. Nancy says:

    Another homerun! These look delicious! The potato Chip crust has me even more interested!
    Thank you! Happy Weekend!

    1. Thank you Nancy! I love potato chips, and they worked really well here.

  15. This looks delicious!

    1. Thank you Elaine! They were easier to make and cook than regular crab cakes, and everyone loved them.

  16. Beth says:

    A good cast iron skillet is a necessity in my kitchen! This looks delicious! Do you think they would “fry” well in an air fryer?

    1. Absolutely! I haven’t tried them in mine, but a little spritz of oil and you are all set!

  17. Christy B says:

    We have the cast iron pan ✅ Now just need to make this one! Do you deliver??? 😀

    1. Sadly, my delivery days are over, but you’ve got the skills, and probably, once in a while, the time!

  18. Eha says:

    Trying to practice ‘healthy’ eating I don’t usually have chips in the house, but this does sound moreishly crunchy so shall buy when I get the crab. Usually get mine ffresh rom he fishmarkets but may just try frozen to see what it’s like . . . these look so moreish!

    1. Thank you! I usually use fresh whole wheat bread crumbs for something like this, but I had those potato chips leftover and I thought I’d use them up, and I’m glad I did! Do good, and just a little naughty!

  19. lisinmayenne says:

    If I were a poet, I would have to write an ode to your cooking, Dorothy . . . you always make me feel so hungry! 😉 What a lovely recipe, I imagine they disappear pretty quickly? Horseradish sauce in various permutations is a favourite of ours, we have a decent patch to hand in the garden. I like the young leaves chopped into salads at the moment, they do a great job of livening up a lettuce. 😊

    1. Thank you so much Lis!
      That’s one thing I haven’t grown, but I remember how good the leaves are. I have vivid memories of my uncle grating, or maybe grinding, the roots and walking into the house it made our eyes sting! But it is SO good!

      1. lisinmayenne says:

        Yes, it’s definitely an outside job if possible . . . but definitely worth the pain!

      2. Oh yes, I love the zing and flavor of horseradish! Brings me back to my childhood I think.

      3. lisinmayenne says:

        It can be a bit invasive, but would make a good job of breaking up that clay. 😉

      4. Yes! I have lots of space away from everything else, and the garden centers have starts right now. I’ll have to go have a look.

  20. Now, that looks mighty tasty. Two orders to go, please. 🙂

    1. Coming right up!

  21. Mouthwatering Dorothy!

    1. Thank you so much! They really pleased the family!

  22. Bernadette says:

    Dorothy, I am drooling at the thought of that salty crunch surrounding the delicate crab. Will make for sure.

    1. It’s my new favorite coating Bernie! How could it not be? Potato chips!

  23. Gail says:

    You’re making me hungry for Maine seafood. It’s the best!!!! 🦀🦞🦐

    1. Oh, absolutely Gail! From lobsters to crabs, oh, and clams and oysters. Mussels, and all the wonderful fish!

      1. Gail says:

        Yum, Yummy, Yumolicious! 😍🍃😋

      2. 🦞🦀🐠🍤💕

  24. This looks absolutely mouth-watering, D! And you’re so right about the potato chip crust!

    1. Thank you! How could anything made with potato chips not be good?

      1. Nope, nope nope! No way, no how!

  25. nancyc says:

    That potato chip crust does sound good!!! 🙂

    1. It’s my new favorite Nancy!

  26. JOY journal says:

    Fantastic! I will definitely be trying this one this week.

    1. Hope you enjoy it as much as we did! There wasn’t a crumb left.

  27. Oh yum! I have never heard of chick pea flour, AP flour will have to work for me. Another great recipe Dorothy.

    1. Thanks Diane! You might find the flour as garbanzo bean flour, but AP will work too!

  28. terrie gura says:

    Oh, yes, anything with potato chips! Haha
    That’s a brilliant way to shape the fritters; I’ll have to remember to reach for my cookie scoop. I’m sure it helps keep your hands from getting so sticky. And I know from experience how easy it can be to find a good, old fashioned cast iron skillet on the cheap. I am ashamed to report selling my great-grandmother’s two skillets in a yard sale for about $2 apiece. What can I say? I was young and dumb, and had no idea the treasure I was letting go… they weren’t even rusted. 🙁

    1. I’m crying over those pans Terrie! But, traditions begin somewhere, and a new tradition is better than none. I have a couple of cast iron pans that I got in a flea market as well, and I often think about all the meals that were cooked in them.

  29. Sandhya says:

    What a mouthwatering recipe for crab fritters and the sauce too.

    1. Thank you! We love them!

  30. Did not expect to see aniseed in a crab recipe. Is that a common ingredient in Maine crab fritters?

    1. No, it’s just a flavor combination I happen to love. They play together nicely!

Please leave your valued comment here...