Varsha’s Favorite Vegan Crab Cakes

Crab CakesDr. Varsha Rathod, rheumatologist and functional medicine physician at PALM Health, shares her favorite vegan crab cakes recipe for delicious appetizers or a healthy dinner.



  • 2 cans of hearts of palm, chopped up medium-sized. Save some liquid.
  • 2 tbsp of vegan mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp of Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp of old bay seasoning
  • 1/3 cup of finely chopped shallots/onions
  • 1/3 cup mixture of mixed finely chopped celery and red bell pepper
  • ¼ cup of finely chopped parsley (Italian or curly)
  • ½ cup of chickpea flour (besan)
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Dash of black pepper


  • ¾ cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • Dash of cayenne
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil for cooking the cakes

Tartar Sauce (optional):

  • ¼ cup vegan mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp of kosher dill pickles finely chopped, or use capers
  • ½ tbsp of chopped parsley
  • ¼ tsp dry dill
  • ¼ tsp old bay seasoning
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Mix all ingredients in a mixing bowl and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  2. Hand-shape the size of the patties that you desire, either cocktail-size or larger for a dinner portion. If the mixture is too dry, add some of the liquid from the cans of hearts of palm, one tablespoon at a time.
  3. Dip the patties in the breading mix and lightly pan-sauté until golden brown on both sides.

Tartar Sauce

  1. Mix ingredients well and refrigerate. Add more mayonnaise if desired.

These vegan crab cakes are great plated on a large bed of salad, or as cocktail appetizers. Dr. Rathod recommends preparing the mix, keeping it refrigerated for up to 5 days, and making it fresh as needed.