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Egg Rolls with Sweet & Sour Crab

Egg Rolls with Sweet & Sour Crab

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  • 2 Tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 Cup finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 large clove garlic, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon finely chopped ginger
  • 1/2 Cup packed finely shredded Napa cabbage
  • 1/4 Cup ketchup
  • 1-3 Tablespoon Sriracha or other hot chile sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 Cup sake
  • 2 Tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 Tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoon cornstarch
  • 8 Ounces fresh lump crabmeat, drained and picked over for shells
  • Nonstick cooking spray, for the pan
  • One package egg roll wrappers
  • 2 scallions, sliced on a bias, for garnish


In a medium sauté pan over medium-low heat, heat the sesame oil; add the onion and let it sweat for about 3 minutes to soften (do not allow it to brown). Add the red pepper, garlic, ginger, and cabbage; turn off the heat and transfer the vegetable mixture to a medium bowl. Using the same pan, over medium heat, bring the ketchup, Sriracha, sugar, sake, lime juice, and oyster sauce to a boil, whisking constantly. In a small bowl, dissolve the cornstarch in 2 tablespoons of water. Add this to the pan, whisking constantly until the sauce thickens, about 2 minutes. When the bubbles begin to get larger and the sauce is visibly thick, turn off the heat. Add this sauce to the bowl with the vegetables, then add the crab. Mix well and adjust the seasoning as needed.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Spray a 12-well classic cupcake pan with nonstick cooking spray and line each well with an egg roll wrapper, creating a cup. Divide the crab mixture among the wells, leaving the wrapper open. Bake until the egg roll wrapper is golden brown and crispy at the edges, 20-25 minutes. Let the egg rolls rest in the pan for 5 minutes, then use your hands to lift them from the pan, using the wrappers as handles. Garnish the egg rolls with fresh scallions.

Nutritional Facts


Calories Per Serving189

Folate equivalent (total)67µg17%

Riboflavin (B2)0.2mg10.8%

  1. Bean Sprouts: I try to use mung bean sprouts if I can find them, but in a pinch soybean sprouts will also work. Fresh is best, but you can also find them canned if need be.
  2. Egg Roll Wrappers: If you are having a hard time finding egg roll wrappers, look in the freezer section of an Asian grocery store. Make sure to leave them in the fridge the night before you plan to make this recipe to thaw.
  3. Bamboo Shoots: I found these canned in the vegetable aisle of an Asian mart. You can buy them online or you can always omit them if need be.
  4. Chicken: I used leftover rotisserie chicken that I had in the grocery store. If you need to bake chicken in order to make this recipe (or use leftovers from dinner a night before) that is certainly an option!
  5. Mushrooms: I simply used white mushrooms because they were what I could find at the grocery store. If you are able, Chinese variants of mushrooms, such as Shiitake, would be a great addition.
  6. Green Onions: I try to use the green parts of the green onions, but the white parts of the onion are also delicious
  7. Chinese 5 Spice: Chinese 5 Spice is a mixture of 5 of the most prominent spices in Chinese cooking. Though the ingredients in Chinese 5 Spice sometimes change, it normally includes anise, cloves, cinnamon, fennel, and Szechuan peppercorns.
  8. Oil for Frying: I used vegetable oil, but you can also use sunflower oil. Anything with a low smoking point is a good option.

Whenever I frequent our favorite local Chinese restaurant, crab rangoon is always a must-order appetizer. The contrast between the shatteringly crispy fried exterior and the rich, creamy crab filling is mesmerizing. But as jaw-dropping delicious as crab rangoon are – did you know they are actually super easy to make at home? AND I think you’ll find this crab rangoon recipe tastes even better than takeout! With just some wonton wrappers, crab meat and pantry ingredients, you’re on your way to making the most talked about party menu appetizer!

THE FILLING. I’ve devoured my share of crab rangoon over the years and have discovered not all fillings are created equal. Some are absolutely dreamy, while others are too runny, too bland, or too sweet. In my crab rangoon recipe, I’ve come up with what I think is the perfect balance of irresistibly creamy and flavorful – no bland or runny filling here!

My homemade crab rangoon filling is a simple blend of crab (fresh, imitation or canned), cream cheese, mayonnaise, green onions, and splashes of soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, Asian chili sauce, toasted sesame oil, lemon juice and a few seasonings. The simple, pantry friendly ingredients (you can even use canned crab meat for extra ease) with a few extra ingredients than most, combine to create exponentially delicious results – and all you do is stir them together!

THE FOLDING. The scrumptious filling gets loaded into wontons which you can either seal up in an easy triangle or lock the filling in using my easy pouch technique. The folding and sealing might sound intimidating, but I’ve included step-by step photos and tips and tricks to ensure your success.

THE COOKING. The crab wontons are then fried, air-fried or baked OR you can freeze them for make ahead use. I personally prefer fried crab rangoon for the most crackling, crunchy exterior (it’s all about crunchy vs. creamy) but you can certainly air fry them or bake them as well – but you’ll have to adjust your crunchy expectations.

THE FREEZING. I also love that this crab rangoon recipe can be assembled and frozen for future use because this makes entertaining a breeze. A few minutes before your guest arrive, just fry or bake up the wontons and everyone gets to enjoy tantalizingly hot and crispy crab rangoon.

THE SERVING. Serve the golden crackling crab wontons with my favorite sweet and sour sauce for the ultimate culinary experience and listen to everyone sing your praises!

  • 8 oz. (226 g) crab claws
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup, tomato sauce
  • 1 tablespoon chili sauce
  • 1/2 beaten egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon oyster sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 cup water + 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic, finely chopped
  • Some chopped cilantro, coriander leaves
  1. Rinse the crab claws with cold water and pat dry with paper towels.
  2. Heat up a wok and add the cooking oil. When the oil is heated, add the chopped garlic and ginger and stir-fry until aromatic, then follow by the crab claws. Quickly stir the crab claws a few times before adding the ketchup, chili sauce, oyster sauce, and sugar. Toss the crab claws around with the spatula before adding water. Bring the sauce to boil and then add the beaten egg. Let it cook for about 1 minute or until the egg is set. Stir the egg around, dish out and garnish with chopped cilantro. Serve immediately with steamed white rice.

Finally, there is the matter of a dipping sauce. The sharp bite of the Chinese hot mustard works well with crab rangoon. Sweet and sour sauce is good as well.

  • Use fresh-cooked crab meat if possible. If using canned crab meat, drain and flake first. Also, remember to work with the drained weight of the crab meat when figuring out the amount to use.
  • Most recipes have a slightly higher ratio of cream cheese to crabmeat, but it all comes down to how "cheesy" you like your crab rangoon.
  • Make sure the cream cheese is at room temperature before using.
  • If the filling is leaking out of the wrapper, try sealing the wonton with egg white or a water/cornstarch mixture instead of plain water.
  • Some crab rangoon recipes include Chinese vegetables such as bok choy and water chestnuts. Go sparingly on the extras—less is more. Here's a good crab rangoon recipe to start with.

Crab Rangoon Recipe

Whether you&rsquove had savory or sweet-filled Rangoons it&rsquos the delicious sweet-filled wontons that are the popular takeout item related to the egg rolls. The ones I ate at a Chinese buffet or local Chinese food takeout Restaurant were triangular deep-fried wontons. Apparently today there are 4 ways to fold them the triangle fold (classic), the boat fold (wonton shape), purse fold, and star fold. If you ask me how I would fold a wonton wrapper it would be the traditional fold and maybe combining two ends to make an envelope shape (aka curled wonton shape.) Why? Because the filling stays in. Besides, it&rsquos how I remember the cheese-filled wontons.

Furthermore, you can&rsquot really detect the crab meat in a traditional crab rangoon or soy sauce for that matter. Meaning they use bare minimal imitation crab meat and probably omit the salty soy sauce. Takeout crab rangoons are slightly sweet and mostly creamy with specks of imitation crab meat. So my crab dip filling is literally 3 ingredients but yet so on point.

People have baked crab rangoons and some even toss them through an air fryer, but you got to deep-fry the stuffed wontons to get the air bubbly crispy crust known for ordering out. Soybean oil to be exact. Want to know how to make crab rangoons with pictures? Read more further down and go to my Q&A section for commonly asked questions about these appetizers! Let&rsquos make these crab cheese wontons!

What is Crab Rangoon?

Crab Rangoons are cheese-filled wontons (crab puffs) that are fried to crisp dumplings. This appetizer is folded in different ways throughout American-Chinese Restaurants then deep-fried in hot oil and typically served with a dipping sauce known as duck sauce.

To make these at home you will need wonton wrappers (small square dough sheets sold at the fridge section of most grocery stores), cream cheese, imitation crab meat (leg-style), sugar, and oil for deep frying. Water is another essential element as it works to seal the edges, once filled.

Dipping Sauces?

Cream cheese wontons is an American-Chinese appetizer best suited to Asian Condiments. Here are popular choices:

  • Sweet and Sour Sauce
  • Duck Sauce
  • Sweet Chili Sauce
  • Hot Mustard Sauce
  • Soy Sauce

How to make Duck Sauce:

Duck sauce can be found in the Asian aisle of most grocery stores nowadays. If you cant locate it sweet and chili sauce is similar with a little extra heat. And if you&rsquore stuck at home you can make your own from an apricot jam!

What oil to use for deep-fried Wontons?

Soybean is probably the most commonly used oil throughout Chinese Restaurants (it&rsquos one of the cheapest when you buy in bulk!) Similar oils are canola oil, vegetable oil, and peanut oil. Choose mild oils for deep-frying, like shortening or odorless ones for the best results.

Different ways to fold Wonton Wrappers?

There are 4 ways to fold cream cheese filled wonton wrappers

  • the triangle fold (classic),
  • the boat fold (wonton shape),
  • purse fold
  • star fold.

My favorite way is the first two as they hold the filling well.

How To Seal Wonton Wrappers?

Some moisten the edges of a wonton wrapper with a little egg wash but I find plain water to seal great! However, there is a rule to go by. Only work with a few wonton wrappers at a time. Once you wet the edges they need to be sealed immediately, otherwise, the wrappers will get soggy and by the time you come back to seal them, they don&rsquot stick anymore. (Lesson learned.)

Working with a few wonton wrappers at a time will help seal the edges before the liquid seeps into the dough sheets. If you wait too long the dough softens and then doesn&rsquot want to stick together. So work with 3-4 wrappers at a time and keep the other stack covered to prevent from drying out.

Can I use Puff Pastry?

American puff pastry is too thick for crab rangoons. Asian dough sheets are way thinner allowing the dumpling to puff up so slightly. Specifically, look for &ldquoWonton Wrappers&rdquo when making Crab Rangoons.

Can I use Lump Crab Meat?

Since you only need 2 oz of imitation crab meat for this recipe (2 leg-style crab sticks), I do not encourage you to open a whole can of lump crab meat or buy expensive sea crab. It&rsquos not the stuff used in the American-Chinese fast food Restaurants so it won&rsquot be the same taste either.

How to Freeze Crab Rangoons?

How To Freeze Uncooked Crab Rangoons: Lay onto a single layer over a large tray or baking sheet. Keep from touching. Flash freeze until solid. Transfer to a freezer bag and keep frozen for up to 6 months.


To reheat leftovers: bake in a pre-heated 350°F oven for 7-8 minutes until crisp.

Things you&rsquoll Need:

  • Electric mixer or really good whisk.
  • Spatula
  • Teaspoon for scooping the filling into wrappers.
  • Pot, Wok, or deep Skillet for deep-frying.

What is a Crab Rangoon dip?

The Cheesy Crab Dip is inspired by the well-known takeout appetizer known as Crab Rangoons. Only it&rsquos not deep-fried but baked in a dish and served with chips (or fried wonton chips!) A crab Rangoon dip can include additional ingredients like green onions, sour cream, soy sauce, lump crab meat, and spices.

How to prevent Crab Rangoons from tearing open when frying?

To troubleshoot your Rangoon experience, here are some helpful tips for successful results.

  • Remove air- from wontons when folding to prevent air pockets. Otherwise, they can burst when frying and you&rsquoll end up with brown cheese bits floating in your oil. (Quick tip- remove those bits with a slotted spoon after each batch if necessary.)

Another helpful tip in making this appetizer is to fry at a medium temperature of 350°F to prevent burned Rangoons.

Can I Bake Crab Rangoons?

Yes! Check out these Crispy Baked Crab Rangoons! Or spray each filled Wonton generously with cooking spray before baking (can brush oil over the tops too.)

How much Wonton Wraps are in a 12 oz Package?

A 12 oz package of wonton wraps holds approximately 48 square dough sheets.


Combine the soy sauce and cornstarch in a small bowl and set aside.

Heat a wok or skillet over high heat and add the oil. When hot, add the garlic and ginger and stir fry for 5-10 seconds (do not let the garlic burn).

Add the cabbage, bean sprouts, carrots, and green onions. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2-3 minutes or until the cabbage starts to wilt.

Remove the vegetables from the pan and set aside.

Add the turkey or beef. Cook, stirring frequently, until no longer pink. Drain off any excess grease.

Add the vegetables back to the wok along with the soy sauce mixture. Cook, stirring frequently, until the sauce thickens. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside to cool.

Meanwhile, heat the oven to 400 degrees F. Grease a baking sheet.

Place one egg roll wrapper on a work surface so a pointed end is facing you. Place 1/4 cup of the filling just below the middle of the wrapper. Fold the pointed end nearest you up over the filling. Fold the side corners in over the top of that. Roll the egg roll tightly and brush the top corner with a little water to seal the edges. Repeat with remaining wrappers and filling.

Place the egg rolls seam-side down on the prepared baking sheet. Spritz the egg rolls with olive oil or non-stick cooking spray. Place in the oven and bake at 400 degrees F for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.

Remove from the baking sheet and serve hot with your favorite dipping sauce.

Not at all! You can make this without food coloring. One of the advantage of making homemade anything is that you don’t have to include the junk ingredients that the store-bought stuff often uses. The red food coloring is purely for aesthetics and tastes exactly the same without it. If you prefer the red color but don’t want to use chemicals in your food there are natural food coloring options and I provide a link to one option in the recipe card below.


  • For the Sweet & Sour Dipping Sauce
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 2 teaspoons red chile flakes (more or less to taste)
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1/2 cup fresh pineapple chunks or canned chunks, drained
  • For the Crab Rangoon
  • 8 ounces softened cream cheese
  • 6 ounces picked crab meat (or surimi, cut into 1/2-inch pieces)
  • 6 scallions, whites only, finely sliced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 pack square wonton wrappers (preferably yellow), about 40-50 pieces
  • 2 quarts peanut oil
  • Kosher salt

Combine vinegar, brown sugar, ketchup, chili flakes, and water in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, whisking to combine until sugar is dissolved. Combine remaining tablespoon water and corn starch in a small bowl and whisk with a fork to form a slurry. Whisk into sauce and bring to a boil. Allow to cool while you form the crab rangoon.

Combine cream cheese, crab, and scallions in a medium bowl and fold with a spatula or your hands until combined. Lay one wonton wrapper out on a cutting board (keep the rest under plastic wrap or a damp towel) and place a small amount of filling in the center (about 1 1/2 teaspoons). Moisten the edges with a wet fingertip, the seal by either folding it in have in a triangular shape, or by pushing the four edges in towards the center to create a four-pointed star. Be careful not to allow any air to remain inside as you seal them. Transfer to a large plate, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and repeat until all of the filling is used.

To finish the sauce, add pineapple chunks and puree with an immersion blender or by transferring to a standing blender.

Heat oil in a wok or Dutch oven to 375°F as registered on an instant read thermometer. Carefully add 10 to 12 crab rangoons to the oil. Cook, adjust flame to maintain temperature and agitating and flipping them constantly with a wire mesh spider until crisp and golden brown, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined bowl to drain, season with salt, and serve immediately with sweet and sour sauce.

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