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Close up of two crab cakes staked on a plate drizzled with spicy aioli

Air Fryer Crab Cakes with Spicy Aioli + Lemon Vinaigrette

  • Author: Kathryn | Urban Foodie Kitchen
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 10 -12 crab cakes 1x
  • Category: Seafood
  • Method: Air Fryer
  • Cuisine: American


These crab cakes get their crunch from the air fryer instead of traditional pan-frying, which makes them lighter and healthier than the typical version. Topped with spicy aioli and lemon vinaigrette they are as appropriate for date night as they are for an easy yet elegant weeknight dinner.



For the crab cakes

  • 16 ounces lump crab meat
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped red or orange pepper
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped green onion
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil mayonaise 
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard 
  • 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs 
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper 
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten 
  • avocado oil spray 

For the aioli

  • 1/4 cup olive oil mayonaise 
  • 1 teaspoon minced shallots
  • 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar 
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard 
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

For the vinaigrette

  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon honey 
  • 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, about 1 1/2 lemons
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest 
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

To serve 

  • 2 cups of baby arugula 
  • balsamic glaze, to taste


  • Make the crab cakes.  Combine the crab meat, red pepper, onion, mayonaise, dijon, panko and ground pepper in a large bowl.  Mix well.  Add the egg and mix again until combined.   Using about a 1/4 cup of the crab mixture form into cakes that are about 1″ thick.  Lightly spray them with avocado oil. 
  • Cook the crab cakes.  Arrange the crab cakes in a single layer in your air fryer.  It’s likely you’ll need to cook them in 2-3 batches depending on your air fryer.  Cook at 375°F for 10 minutes.  Remove from air fryer and keep warm.  Repeat if necessary.  
  • Make the aioli. Mix the mayo, shallots, vinegar, dijon and cayenne pepper.  Set aside until ready to serve. 
  • Make the viniagrette. Mix the white wine vinegar, honey, lemon juice and lemon zest in a small jar.  Add the olive oil and mix again until combined.  
  • Serve.  Divide the arugula between two plates.  Top with crab cakes.  Drizzle with aioli and vinaigrette.  If desised add a small drizze of balamic glaze.  


  • See the notes in the blog post for directions on how to pan fry these crab cakes if you don’t have an air fryer. 

Keywords: air fryer recipes, seafood recipes