Dungeness Crab Sliders


Who lives in a pineapple under the sea? If you have a 9-year-old like I do, you probably know the answer to that question. SpongeBob himself would approve of this tasty crabby patty slider. I have eaten spider crab from the Mediterranean, blue crab in New England, stone crab in Miami, soft shell crab in Louisiana and even the impostor “crab with a K,” but, in my opinion, nothing compares with the delicate sweet flavor of the Dungeness crab found here in the Northwest. An afternoon of picking crab from the Bell Buoy in Seaside, Oregon is just as much of a beach activity as a long walk on the promenade, flying a kite on the beach or twenty mindless games of ‘Fascination.’

This recipe adds lots of flavor without losing the delicious texture of the Dungeness crab. You can buy Dungeness crab meat at most good grocery stores here in Oregon, or you can spend the afternoon cracking your own whole cooked crabs. Try to keep the succulent legs and knuckles intact and also try not to eat all the crab before it makes it into the patty. I gave a nod to the Waldorf salad in the Apple Fennel Slaw. The sweet slaw pairs well with the crab. You can use regular white sugar in the dressing, if you don’t have the agave nectar, but the agave adds a tasty dimension. 

Serves 4 to 6

Crab Patties


1 pound Dungeness crab meat strained and squeezed of excess liquid

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1 small red pepper finely chopped

1 large shallot finely chopped

½ cup fresh bread crumbs (about 2 slices of bread; crusts trimmed)

2 tablespoons milk

¼ cup mayonnaise

¼ teaspoon Thai chili paste (sambal oelek)

Juice and grated rind of ½ lemon

1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning

½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

½ teaspoon dry mustard

1 egg

2 cups panko bread crumbs

Olive oil for frying


Green Curry Mayonnaise


½ cup good quality mayonnaise

1 teaspoon green curry paste (or more to taste)

½ teaspoon fresh squeezed lemon juice


Apple, Fennel and Walnut Slaw



¼ cup mayonnaise

¼ cup plain Greek yogurt

½ teaspoon Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons walnut oil

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

3 teaspoons agave nectar

½ teaspoons celery seeds

Kosher salt and black pepper to taste


2 fennel bulbs tops and bottoms trimmed, cored and thinly sliced

1 honeycrisp apple; peel left on, julienned (or grated)

2 celery stalks sliced thin½ cup toasted walnuts



Mix mayonnaise ingredients together in small bowl. Melt butter in a sauté pan and sauté peppers and shallots over medium heat until tender, 5-6 minutes. Place in larger bowl and let cool. Place bread crumbs and milk in a small bowl and set aside. In another small bowl mix mayonnaise, chili paste, lemon juice and rind, Old Bay, Worcestershire, dry mustard and egg. Add crab meat to cooled vegetables. Toss gently to mix. Add softened bread crumbs and mayonnaise mixture. Stir gently, trying not to break up the crab meat. With your hands form into patties and coat with panko (mixture will be a bit hard to handle) and place patties on baking sheet covered with parchment. Chill patties for an hour or up to 4 hours. Preheat oven to 350°F. Fry patties in hot oil until golden brown on both sides and place on baking sheet. Bake in hot oven for about 10 minutes until cooked through. Serve on buns with lettuce and green curry mayonnaise. Mix dressing ingredients together and toss with slaw. Add toasted walnuts. Season with kosher salt and pepper to taste.

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