Wegmans Crab Cakes and Pilaf

The east coast has this fantastic grocery store (it reminds me a lot of Whole Foods, but they also sell regular old groceries like things that have {gasp} refined sugars) called Wegmans.  It also has similar prices to Whole Foods (read: it’s expensive!), but we were told some of their ready-made food is pretty darn tasty…particularly their crab cakes.  Crab cakes are a new thing to me.  I’m thinking it’s our proximity to Baltimore, Maryland (apparently known for crab cakes) or maybe it’s just another “east coast thing” that I need to learn about, but either way, this was my second time eating crab cakes and I think I like them.  Maybe I need to actually go to Baltimore to see what all the fuss is about. 😉

Anyway, Dane and I went to Wegmans on a search for some pre-made crab cakes, but alas, they only had the “ready-to-make” ones.  So, after some convincing by the guy behind the counter that they were easy to bake and came with instructions, we went for it.  The crab cakes were $8 each (ouch!) and came in their own oven safe container to bake them in.  All we had to do was preheat the oven to 400 degrees, dump the crab cakes out of their paper wrapping and bake.  (In retrospect, we should have tried to pan fry them because we both prefer a crispier texture, which baking did not attain.)

Here’s a picture that shows the oven safe dish they came with a little better.  You’ll need to take the crab cakes out of the paper before they are baked.

We thought some rice pilaf would make a good side dish, so I went with my go-to recipe by Rachel Ray, which I would love to share with you today!  I’ve always loved rice pilaf, especially Near East brand that you buy in a box at the grocery store.  The bummer is that it’s so expensive! (I’ve seen it for upwards of $4 per box.)  This recipe is super inexpensive and delicious…double win!


  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/3 cup orzo pasta
  • 3/4 cup white rice
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken broth (I use chicken bullion cubes dissolved in water)
  • Salt and/or pepper to taste

{modified from this recipe}

This recipe can also be made with brown rice, but the cook time is longer and the measurements are slightly different.  Here’s a link to Rachel Ray’s version here.

Orzo pasta is what makes plain ol’ rice become pilaf.  Orzo is just mini pasta.  You can substitute the orzo for broken up bits of pasta, but it just won’t look as pretty.  😉

I start by microwaving 1 1/2 cups of water in a pyrex liquid measuring cup to make it easier to dissolve the bullion cubes (note: if you want to make a lower sodium version of this, you can just use water, but it tastes so yummy using chicken stock!).

In a medium saucepan, melt the two tablespoons butter (can be substituted with extra virgin olive oil) over medium heat.  Add the orzo pasta and rice and stir constantly for about 3 to 5 minutes being sure that the pasta and rice don’t burn.  I also add a little bit of salt at this point (but not too much since the chicken stock adds plenty of flavor).

Once the rice is golden brown, add the chicken stock.

Bring to a boil.  Then cover and turn down to a simmer.

Simmer for 18 minutes and then fluff with a fork and serve.

We baked the crab cakes until they reached an internal temperature of 150 degrees, which took about 12 full minutes.

Here’s the final product!

Like I said above, I think we should have tried pan frying the crab cakes, but they weren’t bad.  I’m not sure if I just don’t really love crab cake, or if I just haven’t had the right one.

Anyone else like crab cakes?  Where should this new-to-the-east-coast girl go for the best crab cakes around?

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3 Responses to Wegmans Crab Cakes and Pilaf

  1. Eileen says:

    I think you should definitely try a restaurant crab cake some where. And I agree pan frying you might have liked them better. But they sure look good, and I am definitely going to try the pilaf! I wish we had a Wegman’s near us. You are so lucky!

  2. Dee says:

    I LOVE crabcakes! And I agree with the above poster that you should try a restaurant crab cake. G&M restaurant outside of Baltimore and Mike’s Crab House in Riva, MD are both excellent choices. As well as Timbuktu in Hanover, MD. I’ve never had one from Wegman’s but a coworker suggested it, hence my googling and stumbling across your page!

    • karen says:

      Thanks for the suggestions! I can’t wait to try a “real” one! My cousin also mentioned that the sauce that goes with it is important to her. Looks like I’ll have to start a hunt for the perfect crab cake. 😉

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