10 Awesome Wine Pairings with Crab Cakes


Quick Answer: Wine Pairings with Crab Cakes

Crab cakes equally go well with white as well as red wines. They taste their best when paired with wines like Chardonnay, Viognier, Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Riesling, Champagne, Sangiovese, and Pinot Blanc. Pair any of these wines with your share of crab cakes for a lip-smacking and fulfilling dining experience.

This guide is what you’ll ever need to find the best wine for crab cakes to please your taste buds!

Let’s get started.

But first, let’s get to know a bit more about crab cakes before we get to know the details about the best wines to pair them with.

About Crab Cakes

Crab cakes seem to hold prominence in the United States.

They are a kind of fish cake that can either be grilled, deep-fried, baked, sauteed, or broiled.

A crab cake mainly consists of crab meat, eggs, bread crumbs, mustard, mayonnaise, and seasonings. This dish is considered a staple food in regions of Virginia and Maryland.

So, craving some crab cakes already? But before that let’s find the perfect wine match for them.

Best Wine Pairings with Crab Cakes

These are my top wine picks –

1. Chardonnay

TasteSweet and dry
Primary FlavorsApple and lemon
AcidityModerately acidic
Serving Temperature (C)50 degrees  
Glass TypeTraditional white wine glass
Storage (years)3-7 years
Wine BodyFull
Alcohol % (ABV)13.5 to 14.5%

Chardonnay comes with a neutral flavor.

It comes with subtle notes of citrus, blossom, apple, and almonds. It’s medium-bodied along with medium acidity and moderate to high alcohol levels.

Its dry taste and light golden shade make it visually enticing. With each sip, you experience a nuanced flavor every time.

Chardonnay is a good pairing option for crab cakes as it suits the seafood that goes in the making of the dish and doesn’t dominate it.

Here’s a video to get a complete gest about Chardonnay:

2. Viognier

TasteFruity and creamy
Primary FlavorsTangerine, mango, honeysuckle, and vanilla
AcidityLow acidity
Serving Temperature (C)50 degrees  
Glass TypeTraditional white wine glass
Storage (years)5-6 years
Wine BodyMedium bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)13.5 to 15%

Viognier is a white wine, primarily with fruity flavors. Its intensity ranges from light to spritz depending upon the manufacturer and how it is made.

It comes with hints of bitterness that surely won’t bother people who aren’t a fan of bitter wines. It has fewer tannins, a full-bodied texture, and moderate alcohol levels.

The fruity and subtle bitterness of Viognier perfectly strikes a balance when paired with delish crab cakes.

Discover more about Viognier through this insightful video:

3. Sauvignon Blanc

NameSauvignon Blanc
TasteDry and fruity
Primary FlavorsBlackcurrant, cedar, oaks, herbs
AcidityHighly acidic
Serving Temperature (C)59-68 degrees 
Glass TypeBordeaux / Standard red
Storage (years)7-10 years
Wine BodyMedium to full
Alcohol % (ABV)Over 13.5%

Sauvignon Blanc comes with low sugar levels and high acidity levels.

This gives it a refreshing feel in every sip as you experience a tingly sensation.

The dry taste along with medium-bodied texture and fruity notes like grapefruit, passion fruit, and white peach gives Sauvignon Blanc an identity of its own.

The crispiness of Sauvignon Blanc goes flawlessly well with deep-fried or baked crab cakes.

Check out this video about Sauvignon Blanc:

4. Chenin Blanc

NameChenin Blanc
OriginSouth Africa and France
TasteCan be either sweet or dry
Primary FlavorsQuince, yellow apple, pear
Serving Temperature (C)8-10 degrees C
Glass TypeTulip
Storage (years)5-10 years
Wine BodyLight -Medium-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)12-14.5% (South African)

Chenin Blanc is an aromatic and mineral-based white wine. It’s a versatile wine that goes with most of the dishes incredibly well.

It has an expressive terroir as the climate and soil of the vineyard decide the wine taste.

Chenin Blanc has an exceptional ability to produce age-worthy sweet wine as well as fine dry wines.

Chenin Blanc is a medium-bodied wine with fewer tannins, moderate alcohol levels, and high acidity making it one of the best beverages for crab cakes.

Check out this short video about Chenin Blanc:

5. Riesling

Primary FlavorsLime, green apple, jasmine
Serving Temperature (C)3-7 degrees C
Glass TypeWhite
Storage (years)10+ years
Wine BodyLight-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)Under 10%

Riesling is a white wine with rich fruity flavors as it’s rarely oaked and comes 100% pure. It’s intensely aromatic and brings along with it a variety of floral notes.

It comes in several variants like dry, semi-dry, and sweet as well as sparkling white wine. It comes back with the vibrant and powerful heritage of Germany.

The fruity flavors, acidity, and wine body of Riesling endorse the meaty and spicy flavors of crab cakes and will complement them exceptionally well.

Get more details about Riesling through this quick video:

6. Champagne

Primary FlavorsCitrus, yellow apple, cream
Serving Temperature (C)3.3- 7.3 degrees C
Glass TypeFlute
Storage (years)5-20 years
Wine BodyLight-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)12.20%

Champagne is the perfect blend of grapes like Pinot Meunier, Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay and is exclusively prepared in the Champagne region of France.

That’s how it gets its name. It is a sparkling white wine that generates a velvety feel in every sip.

Sparkling wines like Champagne go incredulously well with fried crab cakes. This wine comes with notes of egg and bread that’ll complement the mayonnaise added to your crab cakes.

To better understand the nuances of Champagne, check out this quick video:

7. Sangiovese

Primary FlavorsCherry, roasted tomato, oregano
Serving Temperature (C)15-20 degrees C
Glass TypeUniversal
Storage (years)10+ years
Wine BodyMedium to Full-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)13.5-15 %

Sangiovese is a red wine whose flavors depend upon the region from where the grapes have been obtained.

You can get a dry, semi-sweet, and sweet Sangiovese wine bottle based on the sugars added to it.

Along with the fruity flavors mentioned above, Sangiovese comes with savory notes of tomatoes, smoke, herbs, and tobacco.

With medium to high tannin levels and medium to full-bodied texture, Sangiovese makes an incredible pair with crab cakes.

Click on the below-given link to know more about Sangiovese:

8. Pinot Blanc

NamePinot blanc
TasteDry and Sweet
Primary FlavorsPear, Citrus, Apple, and Almond
AcidityModerate - Highly Acidic
Serving Temperature (C)7 - 10 degrees
Glass TypeTulip Wine Glass
Storage (years)1 - 3 years
Wine BodyMedium - Full-bodied
Alcohol % (ABV)12 -14%

Pinot Blanc has been derived from grapes of Pinot Grigio that themselves are a variation of the grapes of Pinot Noir.

It is a white wine with low tannin levels and mildly spicy and smoky notes.

It comes with low tannin levels and refreshing fruit flavors backed with earthy notes to make it a complete package of excitement.

The Pinot Blanc flavors perfectly balance the spice of crab cakes, making it a delectable combination of sweetness and spice.

Check out this video to better understand Pinot Blanc:

Wine Pairing Guide for Crab Cakes

Crab cakes are prepared using a wide variety of cooking methods like baking, deep-frying, and broiling.

A glass of sparkling wine like Champagne works wonders when paired with fried crab cakes. You can also opt for Cava instead of Champagne to try new flavors.

Try coupling your crab cakes with Sauvignon Blanc if you’ve added ingredients like herbs, jalapenos, and Asian Chile sauce to your dish to poise and improve the taste.

Pinot Blanc isn’t very acidic and comes with a soft velvety texture making it one of the best wine options to go for crab cakes.

Chardonnay is considered a classic wine alternative for crab cakes due to its fruity flavors, wine body, and tannin levels.

Types of Crab Cake Preparations

Maryland crab cakes are prepared using either of the two styles viz. boardwalk-style and restaurant-style aka gourmet-style.

In the restaurant-style method, they don’t use bread crumbs rather the cakes are broiled on buttered pans over open flames.

While in the boardwalk-style method bread crumbs and eggs are used and the cakes are dipped in them to develop a crispy layer post-deep-frying.


Why are crab cakes considered healthy?

A single unit of crab cake weighs approximately 60 g and comes with around 160 calories. They are low in fats and loaded with nutrients like sodium, potassium, proteins, vitamin C, iron, and cobalamin, making them an excellent option to boost your heart health.

Which crab is used for preparing crab cakes?

Crab cakes are a Maryland staple and are prepared from fresh lump crab meat. The meat is bound together with fillers added along with other ingredients to keep the cakes intact and in proper shape.

For how long can crab cakes be stored in the refrigerator?

Cooked crab cakes can be stored and preserved in the refrigerator for about 3 to 5 days, while raw crab cakes should be preserved in a freezer and can last for about a week.

Bottom Line

Now that you’ve made it to the end, I hope this article was useful enough for you to hunt down your ideal wine pair for your share of crab cakes.

If you found this article useful do share it with your loved ones.

Also, don’t forget to share with us your ideal wine pair for crab cakes, in case we missed out on it.



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About Irene Clark

Irene is a supermom of 4 kids who always has a smile on her face. She's an amazing dancer - you should see her moves! - and she loves to eat, especially with wine. She also loves pop music and travels across the country with her family and friends.

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