Although the exact origins of crab Louie salad are somewhat unclear, most will agree that the recipe originated somewhere on the West Coast in the early 1900s. The salad typically calls for Dungeness crab, but you can use any quality crab meat (we opted for jumbo lump Maryland crab).
What makes this recipe so popular
In addition to the tender, delicate crabmeat, this composed salad includes hearts of romaine lettuce, slices of hard-cooked egg, steamed asparagus spears, tomato wedges, cucumber, and a sprinkling of chopped chives for garnish.
The dressing is a thick and creamy version of thousand Island made with mayonnaise, ketchup, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce, and red wine vinegar, and flavored with garlic and chopped sweet onion.
More crab recipes
Pasteurized crab meat is a versatile ingredient and generally has a long shelf life in the fridge. Here are a few more reader favorites featuring crab that you might enjoy:
- Crab-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms: Filled with a crab cake style stuffing and topped with cheese, this recipe can be served either as a first course or as a light dinner with a salad on the side.
- Quick Baked Crab Cakes: Six simple ingredients and a few minutes of hands-on time make these crispy baked crab cakes the perfect choice for a quick weeknight dinner.
- Linguine with Crab: This easy and elegant pasta dish has a light sauce made with fresh tomatoes, scallions, white wine, and butter tossed together with pasta and lump crabmeat.
Crab Louie Salad
- 1 lb jumbo lump crabmeat
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 3 hearts of romaine lettuce, 3/4 to 1 lb
- 2 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped
- 4 hard-cooked eggs, sliced
- 2 medium tomatoes, cut into thin wedges
- 1 English cucumber, peeled and sliced
- 4 lemon wedges
- 12 spears asparagus, steamed until tender
For the dressing:
- 1/4 cup ketchup
- 1 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 teaspoons horseradish
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons sweet onion, very finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, very finely chopped
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Prepare the dressing first. In a small bowl, whisk together the ketchup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, vinegar, mayonnaise and vegetable oil.
- Continue whisking until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Stir in the onion and garlic. Season to taste with black pepper and divide the dressing between 4 small bowls for serving.
- Place the crabmeat in a bowl and check thoroughly for any bits of shell that might remain. Add the lemon juice and a few grinds of black pepper. Toss to combine and set aside.
- Remove 16 of the outermost leaves from the romaine, wash and pat dry. Arrange four of these leaves in a spoke pattern on each of four plates. Wash and dry the remaining lettuce, chop roughly and mound it in the center of each plate. Top with crabmeat and sprinkle with chives.
- Arrange the egg slices, tomato wedges, cucumber and asparagus spears around the edges of the plate. Serve with dressing and a lemon wedge.