Tempeh Wakame Crab Cakes

Vegan and Gluten Free

About a year and a half ago I traveled to Portland, where I indulged in the most amazing vegan crab cakes. It was my first time even having vegan crab cakes, and I was blown away! I couldn't believe they didn't have real crab in them, they were that good.

Now, every time I see vegan crab cakes on a menu, I have to try them. Unfortunately, I am often disappointed, because its pretty hard to compare to what I had the first time. Then again, Portland is known for having the best vegan food around, so it's hard to compete! Thus, why I finally decided to make my own!

So, what's in the recipe?

As you may know, I have been testing recipes for the past two weeks. Yes, there have been a lot of crab cakes in my house! Finally, yesterday, I came up with what I think is the perfect recipe. And, I can attribute it's amazingness to tempeh and wakame!

Tempeh, which is a highly nutritious and minimally processed soy protein, is used for the base. It is a perfect base, because the texture mimics the heartiness of a real crab cake.

So, how do we get that great fishy taste to mimic a real crab cake too? Wakame! Wakame is an edible sea vegetable/seaweed. It is perfect for giving that sea flavor to the cakes, and I like using it because it is also very cost friendly.  So, seriously guys, this is probably the best thing I have made in a really long time. It's a must try recipe!

Tempeh Wakame Crab Cakes
Serves 3
With the use of tempeh and wakame, these vegan crab cakes have an amazing texture and fishy taste, making this just about as good as the real thing. A must try recipe!
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
40 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
40 min
512 calories
36 g
8 g
33 g
20 g
5 g
288 g
1070 g
4 g
0 g
26 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 512
Calories from Fat 290
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 33g
Saturated Fat 5g
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 19g
Monounsaturated Fat 7g
Cholesterol 8mg
Sodium 1070mg
Total Carbohydrates 36g
Dietary Fiber 3g
Sugars 4g
Protein 20g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Tempeh Prep
  1. 8 ounces tempeh
  2. 1 cup water
  3. 1 tbsp tamari
Crab Cake Mixture
  1. 1/4 cup bell pepper, finely chopped
  2. 1/4 cup celery, finely chopped
  3. 2 tbsp vegan mayo
  4. 1 tbsp whole-grain mustard
  5. 1 tbsp sriracha (can sub hot sauce)
  6. 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  7. 3/4 tsp ground ginger
  8. 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  9. 1/4 tsp black pepper
  10. 1 cup breadcrumbs, gluten free
  11. 2 tbsp wakame + 1/4 cup warm water
  12. 2 tbsp safflower oil, for sautéing
Spicy Aioli
  1. 2 tbsp vegan mayo
  2. 1 tbsp sriracha
  1. First, steam the tempeh to flavor and remove bitterness. Crumble the tempeh into a saucepan and add the water and tamari. Cover and bring to a boil, then simmer for 10-12 minutes, or until the water is mostly evaporated. Stir occasionally to ensure tempeh doesn't stick to pan.Transfer contents to a mixing bowl, and let cool for 10-15 minutes.
  2. While the tempeh is cooling, prep the crab cake mixture. Chop the bell pepper, and celery, and set aside. In a small mixing bowl, add vegan mayo, mustard, sriracha, red wine vinegar, ginger, oregano, and black pepper. Mix until well combined. Set aside.
  3. Now ensure tempeh is only barely warm before proceeding (this will ensure the cakes stay together). Mash the tempeh using a potato masher or fork for a good minute. There will still be chunks of tempeh and this is okay. To the tempeh, add the chopped veggies, the mixture of sauces and spices, and 1/2 cup breadcrumbs (save the rest of the breadcrumbs for coating). Mix until well combined.
  4. In a small bowl, add wakame and cover with warm water. Let soak for 1-2 minutes until soft. Drain water, using a towel to squeeze out excess. Chop wakame pieces into smaller strips of seaweed. Add to tempeh mixture and blend in.
  5. Now for the crab cake mixture into cakes. I used about 1/4 cup per crab cake and you should get about 6-8, depending on your size. Using the rest of the breadcrumbs, coat the crab cakes lightly. They don't need to be fully covered. Now place in the fridge.
  6. Now, heat a skillet pan on medium-low to medium (you can clean and use the saucepan you used earlier for the tempeh too). Once heated for 2-3 minutes add 1 tbsp oil. Get the crab cakes out of the fridge and place in the skillet. I put all 6 in the skillet pan, but you can do this in two batches, just make sure you don't burn the oil! Heat crab cakes for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until golden brown.
  7. Mix your vegan mayo and sriracha to prepare the spicy aioli sauce. Serve with crab cakes and enjoy. This is a great appetizer or you can use crab cake patties in a sandwich for a great meal!
Adapted from Vegan Peace
Adapted from Vegan Peace
Happy Body Kitchen https://happybodykitchen.com/

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About the author

Sommer Chaka is a certified holistic nutritionist. She believes that by consuming a whole foods plant based diet, you can prevent, cure, and even reverse some of our most deadly diseases like cancer and heart disease.

She has a passion for food and helps teach others how to create flavor-packed meals that are quick and simple. Allowing you to create a happy healthy lifestyle and reach your goals.

She is available for consultations. Contact her at (832) 414-6362.