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Dining Hall “Not So Crabby” Vegan Crab Cakes

“Not So Crabby Vegan Crab Cakes with Remoulade Dressing”  was named the 2016 Best Vegan Recipe by the National Association of College & University Food Services. Hearts of palm are used to emulate the texture and flavor of crab, while many of the other elements are locally sourced at Spring Manor Farm’s student-run garden.

UConn Dinning Hall's Vegan crab cakes artfully displayed on a porcelain plate

Not So Crabby Vegan Crab Cakes with Remoulade Dressing

“Not So Crabby Crab Cakes” serves 3

For the Crab Cakes

  • 1 pound hearts of palm, drained
  • 1 1/3 cup finely crushed vegan crackers, divided
  • 3 scallions (green and white parts), finely chopped
  • ½ cup red bell pepper, finely diced
  • ¼ cup vegan mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
  • 1 tablespoon flaxseed meal
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • ½ cup olive oil

Shred hearts of palm into a large bowl. Add 1/3 cup of the crushed vegan crackers, scallions, red bell pepper, mayonnaise, mustard, flaxseed meal, lemon juice, garlic powder, salt and cayenne pepper. Mix until just combined. Using your hands or a 2-ounce ice-cream scoop, form a ball, then a patty. Dredge both sides of crab cake patty in the rest of the finely crushed vegan crackers and place on sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Refrigerate for 30 to 40 minutes. Meanwhile, heat oil in large skillet over medium heat, then add crab cakes in small batches, and cook until browned on both sides, 4 to 5 minutes.

For the Cucumber Salad

  • 2 pounds cucumbers, peeled, deseeded, and julienned
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and toss until coated. Refrigerate until needed.

For the Herbed Remoulade Dressing

  • ¾ cup vegan mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon whole grain-mustard
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • ¼ teaspoon hot sauce
  • 2 tablespoons scallions, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons capers, finely chopped
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and whisk until thoroughly blended. Refrigerate until needed.

To Serve
Place three plates on flat surface. Put a bed of the Cucumber Salad on bottom of each plate. Place three Crab Cakes on top of each cucumber salad, and dollop each cake with 1 teaspoon of the Herbed Remoulade Dressing.


  1. Susan Randall Harbert says:

    My husband and I have been eating vegan for the month of October for the past few years. Made this recipe the night I received my copy of the UCONN magazine in the mail. This is, by far, our favorite main dish recipe to date! Hope you’ll be publishing more vegan recipes.

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