4100 Northpoint Blvd.
Baltimore, Maryland 21222

Call For Reservations: 410.477.1975

The History of Crab Cakes

The History of Crab Cakes

Crab cakes are a staple in Maryland cuisine.

Other than sitting around a newspaper-covered table with your favorite people picking the meat from the shells, crab cakes are one of the most popular ways to eat crab. It’s a staple in Maryland cuisine but has become a popular dish in many different regions in the country and cultures around the world. There a variety of recipes available and additions that people enjoy, including various spices, peppers, and herbs. If you’ve ever wondered about the origins of the crab cake, read on for some fun facts.

Indigenous Americans

The origins of the crab cake likely trace back to Native American cuisine, specifically from the Chesapeake region. The same process that was used then to remove the meat from the shells is the same that is used today — it’s done by hand. History also suggests that crab cakes were one of the first indigenous dishes adopted by the settlers.

The 1920s

Fast forward to the 20th century, Maryland, Virginia, and other areas in the eastern region quickly became the country’s leading source of crab meat. Until refrigerators were more readily available and before transport was available, crab meat was also mostly consumed in the Chesapeake region. Once refrigerated trains became available, the meat could then be transported throughout the country.

Types of Crab Cakes

Depending on what area you’re from on the east coast, you may be used to having crab cakes prepared a certain way. In the north, from Baltimore to Pennsylvania, crab cakes are often prepared using a thick cream sauce. They must be allowed for rest for several hours before being cooked. On the Eastern shore, the cakes are bound with a combination of egg and flour with little other additions to distract from the flavor of the crab. The western area is known for “continental” crab cakes, which includes bread or cracker crumbs as filler.  


Costas Inn has been a Baltimore tradition since 1971. You may recognize our restaurant, which was recently featured on the Food Network with Michael Symon on Burgers, Brew, and ‘Que! We were also voted the 2015 #1 Baltimore Seafood Restaurant by USA Today, as well as #1 Crab Restaurant 2014 in the Baltimore Business Journal. You may have also spotted Costas Inn during one of our 9 appearances on the Today Show or heard one of our many interviews on WJZ TV Channel 13 with Ron Matz and Marty Bass.

You can enjoy our famous crab cakes in-house or order them online for anytime eating. We also provide some of the best seafood catering in the Baltimore area! You can also get your fill from Costas even when you’re not in our dining room: follow us on Facebook, TwitterGoogle+Pinterest, and YouTube!

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Taste a Baltimore Tradition!

You can now order our famous and award winning Maryland crabcakes online and we'll ship them fresh to your door. We will gladly ship them nationwide. Crabs, crab cakes, party packages, clothing, seasonings, and more available to order online now!

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  • Online Gift Card

    Online gift cards make a great gift that can be redeemed for any products available at costasinn.com only. Not redeemable at the restaurant.

  • More Information About Crabcake Delivery: What Are Some of Our House Policies?

    Costas Inn Gift Card

    A 10.95 charge will be applied for next day delivery on Gift Certificates. If you desire regular shipping via USPS, please call Pete at 410-477-1975.  

    $25.00 - $100.00 buy
  • 5 oz. Maryland Jumbo Lump Crabcake

    One 5 oz. Maryland Jumbo Lump Crab Cake  Garnish and roll not included

    $20 buy
  • 10 Pack 5 oz. Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes

    A Costas tradition since 1971: 5 ounces of all Jumbo Lump crabmeat made with Costas seafood spices. A local favorite!

    $190 buy
  • What Makes a Maryland Crab So Special?

    8 oz. Maryland Jumbo Lump Crab Cake

    One 8 oz. Maryland Jumbo Lump Crab Cake.  Garnish not included

    $29 buy
Costas Inn
5 stars - based on 699 reviews
4100 Northpoint Blvd. Baltimore , Maryland
410-477-1975 URL of Map Categories: Seafood Price Range: $$ Takes Reservations: yes
Costas Inn
5 stars - based on 695 reviews
4100 North Point Boulevard Baltimore , Maryland 21222
(410) 477-1975 URL of Map Categories: Seafood & Crabs Price Range: $$ Takes Reservations: yes