11+ Best Imitation Crab Meat Brands for (Almost) Seafood

Imitation crab meat brands offer a tasty alternative to real crab, with options like Osaki Fish Cake and Trans-Ocean Crab Classic.

imitation crab meat brands

Crab is essential in seafood dishes like soups, casseroles, and salads. If you can’t use real crab due to allergies or high prices, imitation crab is a good alternative. Many imitation crab brands make imitation crab from Surimi, a paste made from fish like Alaskan pollock. With added wheat and egg whites, it tastes just like the real thing, and some people even prefer it.

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1. Osaki Fish Cake

You will find Osaki Fish Cakes in the frozen section of most Asian grocery stores. They are called fish cakes because they are made of fish.

However, they are an imitation crab meat brand whose packaging makes them stand out. The pieces of meat are wrapped individually. That makes it easier to ration and keeps the entire package from clumping together (and makes it the best imitation crab for sushi).

2. Trans-Ocean Crab Classic

This imitation crab meat brand is fully cooked and ready to eat straight out of the package. It is sold in 8-ounce packages that resemble the kind that tuna comes in.

It is usually sold in that portion of the store. One thing to watch for is that even though Trans-Ocean Crab Classic is mostly made from Alaskan pollock, it does contain some king crab meat. If you are trying imitation crab due to a shellfish allergy, you may want to steer clear of this one.

3. Trans-Ocean Simply Surimi

Trans-Ocean makes the list again with Simply Surimi. This one takes the crab out of it completely, making it from minced Alaskan Pollock.

Simply Surimi comes in leg-style if you are making sushi or crab legs. You can pick up the flake style if you need some for a salad or crab cakes.

4. Aquamar Surimi Sticks

This crab-flavored seafood is made from wild-caught Alaskan pollock and other proteins such as egg whites.

Aquamar Surimi Sticks come in stick form to easily slice up and make sushi, salads, sandwiches, and more. It is a good, low-fat source of protein.

5. 365 Surimi Seafood

Whole Foods is known for its 365-line of organic foods. If you are looking for an organic imitation crab meat brand, you will find it here. Like many others, it is made from pollock.

But being organic, it may not have the same consistency as other brands. Many people like it better because there is not much sodium in it, leaving them more room to add seasonings.

6. Best Imitation Snow Crab

Best is a seafood brand from Malaysia well-known for making imitation foods such as crab, tofu, and fish. Best is not made with Alaskan pollock, unlike many other imitation crab meat brands.

Instead, they use golden threadfin bream and bigeye tuna. These differences give Best a different flavor that people love.

7. Great American Seafood Fresh Imitation Crab Flakes

Be careful with this one from Great American Seafood because it contains a small amount of real crab meat. But if you are looking for crab flavor without the full-price cost, you will find it with this one.

Made with pollock as well as Pacific Whiting, these fresh imitation crab flakes taste the most like the real thing.

8. Oyster Bay Imitation Crab Meat

Oyster Bay Imitation Crab Meat, 2.5 Pound -- 12 per case.

Oyster Bay offers its imitation crab meat brand at a higher price than some of the others. You will get a product they claim tastes the most, like a real crab with a mild sweet flavor.

Made from surimi and other ingredients, they carefully make it look and feel like an actual crab. The texture will be hard to dispute.

9. Trans-Ocean Crab Supreme

This leg-style crab substitute is bigger than the other picks from Trans-Ocean. You will find them here if you need big chunks of meat for your sushi or salads.

There is snow crab meat added, giving this more of the actual flavor of the real thing. But at just over $5 for a 20-ounce package, the price does not compare.

10. Great Catch Imitation Crabmeat

A mixture of pollock, cod, and whiting held together with wheat, and potato starch makes the Great Catch imitation crab meat brand.

Low fat and ready-to-eat, this meat will taste like the real thing in your dishes. But it will cost you a fraction of what you would pay for a real crab.

11. High Liner Foods Flake Style Imitation Crabmeat

High Liner is a great imitation crab because of the way it binds together. It will allow you to cut it into the size and shape you need for the dishes you want to make. But since it is flake style, it will also pull apart easily for more delicate recipes.

Are there different types of imitation crab?

Yes, there are various types of imitation crab meat you can get. The most popular forms of imitation crab meat come in chunks, sticks, shreds, and flake-style.

What is the name of fake crab meat?

Fake crab can also be known as surimi, the main ingredient that helps create imitation seafood, such as crab, eel, and lobster. Other names for fake crab include krab, imitation crab, and mock crab.

Is imitation crab meat fake?

Imitation crab meat is fake in regard to including crab meat. However, real minced fish is an ingredient. Imitation crab meat is made from minced fish, egg whites, sugar, starch, and salt. There are additives to help imitation crab resemble the flavor, color, and texture of real crab meat.

Is there imitation crab without shellfish?

Most of the imitation crab you can find in stores are made without shellfish since most mixtures use minced Alaskan pollock.

However, it is rare to find a manufacturer label that doesn’t include a warning that the product may contain shellfish. While it is unlikely to find shellfish in most brands, ensure you check the label before consuming it.

To be extra cautious, avoid eating imitation crab meat if you have a shellfish allergy.

Final Thoughts

If you are on a budget or prefer the taste of imitation over real, you can still enjoy crab salads, crab soups, crab legs, and sushi. Imitation crab meat brands have perfected the art of turning fish into an acceptable crab substitute.

And if you still want the real thing, canned crab meat can get you the flavor you want without breaking your budget.

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