Crabless Crab Cakes

A few days ago, a wonderful chef Ronit Penso of Tasty Eats posted a recipe for Corn and Shrimp Cakes. They looked so appetizing that I was tempted to make them right away. There was only one problem: all shellfish is not kosher. There are a few kosher substitutes that are made to look like shrimp, crab, lobster tails, etc. To me, they all taste the same, and since I don’t know the taste of shellfish to begin with, I can’t tell you how true they are to the original.

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I used the crab-flavored ones because they are easier to work with. For that same reason I use them in California rolls sushi: they are packaged as strips that could be cut lengthwise or across, chopped, diced, pulverized, whatever…


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This is what my fake crab meat looked like when it emerged from the food processor. Other than that, I made only one other change in Chef Ronit’s original recipe: instead of part semolina, part regular flour, I used spelt flour, to make my Crabless Crab Cakes gluten free.  I kept the rest of the ingredients and followed Chef Ronit’s method.

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We were very happy with the finished product. Thank you, Chef Ronit, for this delightful addition to my repertoire. For Chef Ronit Penso original recipe, please click here.

19 Comments Add yours

  1. I am so happy you posted this. When I saw Ronit’s recipe, I too wondered if it could be made with kosher ingredients and gluten free. Yum!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you Dolly, for posting your version for the cakes. I’m glad you’ve enjoyed it. Thank you also for the link to my blog.
    One thing I didn’t understand is the use of spelt as a gluten free flour. As much as I know, from a client who has celiac, spelt is a type of wheat and contains gluten. Maybe you’ve used a special gluten-free type? I’ll be happy to hear about, as I could use it for said customer.
    For gluten free purposes in dishes like this one, I usually prefer to substitute semolina with fine cornmeal/polenta, which has similar texture as is not as heavy as flour.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Thank you, your approval is important to me! Perhaps I should clarify in my recipes: “Spelt does indeed contain gluten and should not be eaten by anyone who is gluten-sensitive or has celiac disease, but the presence of gluten does not make spelt wheat” ( “…there are significant differences between common wheat and spelt, including that the molecular structure of the protein in spelt is more brittle and soluble, allowing it to be assimilated more easily.” ( “Spelt does not seem to cause sensitivities in many people who are intolerant of wheat.” (ibid.) “Although celiacs and those with gluten intolerance should not consume spelt, SOME people with food allergies can eat it without reaction. Consult your doctor about your own food allergy test results and follow the diet recommended for you, but do not unnecessarily restrict spelt consumption based on the faulty logic behind the new government labeling requirements” (
    The reason I am using spelt is my husband’s Adult ADHD. There were some studies a few years ago regarding diets effective for Attention Deficit and Autistic Spectrum Disorders. As an experiment, I implemented a diet based on those studies at my school and collected data for three years. The results were nothing short of spectacular, both in terms of behavior modification and academic achievement. That was BEFORE FDA in its wisdom declared that spelt is wheat.
    That said, I would not recommend spelt to a celiac without consulting a physician.
    I do use finely ground corn meal in most of my recipes, but it does taste differently, and in certain foods I prefer the taste of spelt or whole wheat which is at least gluten-reduced. I am about to bake my challahs, and I can’t use corn meal for that!
    I apologize for a lengthy response, but I wanted to give you the sources.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Interesting read. I love spelt and use it often, so I’m glad to hear it’s even more beneficial than I already know. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  4. They look so delicious Dolly.. they will go down very well at the party thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. We aim to please – I am so glad you like them!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Christy B says:

    Great to see this variation on the traditional crab cakes! Tasty treats 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, dear Christy! I don’t know what “real”crab cakes taste like, but these are yummy!

      Liked by 2 people

  6. Reblogged this on koolkosherkitchen and commented:

    Today is a National Crab Day , according to (does that mean we have to walk sideways?). Crabs are not kosher, though, so here is a repeat of Crabless Crab Cakes. Enjoy, Beautiful People!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for pingback.


    1. Thank you for reblogging.


  7. purpleslob says:

    Fake crab tastes really close to real, in my mouth, anyway.
    And SOOOO much less trouble!! I’ll happily eat fake anyday, just I don’t have to spend 10 min cracking the shell, to get 1 bite!!
    Thanks for the explanation of the spelt too!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And just imagine: to catch those real crabs, you have to run sideways! 😻
      Thank you so much for your comment, dear Melinda!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. purpleslob says:

        Bwahahaha!! That’s why it’s so hard!!
        My pleasure!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Try it – you’ll see! 😻

        Liked by 1 person

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