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Frozen Crab Cakes in Air Fryer

Frozen crab cakes in air fryer instructions are here! How to get them perfectly tender without defrosting first. Quick air fryer snack or meal

air fryer crab cakes frozen

I honestly wasn’t so sure how well frozen crab cakes in air fryer would turn out. They need to be tender all the way to the center but a bit crispy on the outside too. We have directions for homemade and store bought frozen SeaPak too. One of many easy air fryer recipes on our site. (affiliate links present)

Air Fryer Frozen Crab Cakes

Ok so first we went all the way with canned meat (fresh would be better but we are in Idaho so ya’ know) first and made air fryer crab cakes. <—–You can certainly follow that recipe if you have the time. They are wonderful and you can add all of your favorite seasonings. Make a little spicy too if you love some heat to them.

For a quick seafood air fryer recipe though we have instructions on how to cook these right out of the box. If you haven’t tried frozen Maryland crab cakes yet let me tell you, they are amazing. Many times when fish isn’t fresh it’s just so so but even my husband said they were the best he had ever tasted.

If you love easy air fryer recipes too, here are some resources to start with:

cosori review

Ninja Foodi Frozen Crab Cakes

It doesn’t matter what brand of machine you have. This dual function machine works just the same, just larger and can pressure cook too. You’ll just need to air crisp on this go around. We have an AirWave (seen below) too, and it’s always a great Cosori air fryer recipe too.

This brand came with a little package of flavored butter inside. You could certainly just use that which would mean you wouldn’t need any other ingredients. I saved that to drizzle over all of them at the end, adding 2 tbsp of cold butter at the beginning.

You want to keep these babies moist is all. I’m sure you get that, and butter is best. Always. Hands down. No exception. 😉 There are plenty of seasonings within each cake so no need for any of that either.

how to cook frozen crab cakes

Now let’s move on to a few questions you might have before you get started. First off, do not defrost them. First off it takes quite a long time and is NOT necessary. If you follow the directions to a tee they’ll be perfection.

How long do you cook frozen crab cakes?

If you air fry them like we show you here you should set aside about 15 minutes. Seriously, that is all you need. If baking in the oven it could take up to 45 minutes to get them warmed and golden brown! Huge difference in cook time and let me tell you that the quicker method is so much better anyway.

How to Cook Frozen Crab Cakes in the Air Fryer

It’s quite simple really. Do not line your basket with parchment paper or anything. You want proper hot air flow to get the texture correct. I like to spray a bit of olive oil inside the basket so they don’t stick to begin with. Then preheat and you’re off.

  1. Set them inside sprayed air fryer basket with the flat side facing down
  2. I like to sit 1 tbsp of cold butter on the top of each one
  3. Close and cook inside preheated basket for 10 minutes
  4. Now this is the IMPORTANT part – Leave them inside the basket (do not open it) for 6 minutes to continue warming the center

We do this when making air fryer corn dogs and frozen pot pie in air fryer too. If you skip this step it won’t be completely done in the center.

cooking frozen crab cakes

Frozen Crab Cakes in Ninja Air Fryer

This is what ours looked like. The box contained 2 pieces with a total weight of 8 ounces. Remember there is a butter sauce packet in there too so each one was actually 3 oz sized crab cakes. If yours is much larger you would need to increase the timing. Mini crab cakes wouldn’t take as long, you get my drift.

If you’re following our homemade lump crab meat recipe above we have made them a similar size. Ensuring they are all the same is the most important aspect really. These were the perfect size for one person to devour though.

Sometimes when we are making things that should be really crispy I suggest using a bit of olive oil spray right at the end. That will really get the tops golden brown, I don’t think it would be necessary for these at all.

air fryer frozen crab cakes recipe

How to Cook Frozen Crab Cakes

Once your cooked crab cakes are done just scoop them up with a spatula, spoon some of the melted butter underneath on top or squeeze with some lemon juice. These had a ton of flavor but if you cannot find this brand at the grocery store and yours are blander, a bit of Old Bay seasoning will liven them right up.

If you want to go all out and have a seafood dinner, make our air fryer shrimp boil, Instant Pot crab boil or scallops in air fryer with them. Killer meals that everyone in your family will absolutely love for sure.

For leftovers, allow them to cool and slide into a zipped baggie. Push all the air out so they don’t dry out and place into the fridge. Reheat within 1-2 days in the microwave for about 1 minute. If you cut it in half before reheating it will warm evenly a lot better. Same goes for our air fryer tuna patties recipe if you make those too.

ninja foodi frozen crab cakes

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Frozen Crab Cakes in Air Fryer
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5 from 2 votes

Frozen Crab Cakes in Air Fryer

Frozen crab cakes in air fryer instructions are here! How to get them perfectly tender without defrosting first. Quick air fryer snack or meal
Course Appetizer, Entree, Snack
Cuisine American
Keyword air fryer, crab cakes, frozen, ninja foodi
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 100kcal
Author The Typical Mom



  • 2 crab cakes frozen, used SeaPack, 8 oz. total
  • 2 tbsp butter


  • Preheat air fryer to 380 degrees F for 5 minutes.
  • Place 2-4 frozen crab cakes at 4 oz. each into the basket. Put 1 tbsp pat of butter on top of each one.
  • Cook at 380 F for 10 minutes, then leave the basket closed for an additional 6 minutes (to continue to warm the center).
  • Remove from basket, spoon melted butter in the bottom of the air fryer basket on top of each one and enjoy.


Nutrition Facts
Frozen Crab Cakes in Air Fryer
Amount Per Serving (1 oz)
Calories 100 Calories from Fat 99
% Daily Value*
Fat 11g17%
Saturated Fat 7g44%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 30mg10%
Sodium 100mg4%
Potassium 3mg0%
Carbohydrates 1g0%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 350IU7%
Calcium 3mg0%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Frozen Crab Cakes in Air Fryer
5 from 2 votes (2 ratings without comment)
Recipe Rating

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