Avocado and Crab Wonton Recipe (Crab Rangoons)

One of my favorite Friday night Chinese food orders are dumplings and rangoons. Crab rangoons are Crunchy wonton wrappers filled with some sort of yummy filling and then of course, dipping sauce. You know I like it saucy…

overhead of plated crab rangoons with sweet and sour dipping sauce


 

Crispy Crab Rangoons

I had a few wonton wrappers left after making chile relleno bites, so I whipped up this easy avocado and jumbo lump crab filling and fried them up. Pair that with a sweet and spicy jalapeno or sweet and sour dipping sauce and you’ll be in appetizer heaven. If they weren’t your favorite appetizers, they soon will be.

What are Crab Rangoons?

The first thing to know is that they aren’t authentically Chinese at all, although carry out Chinese joints have made them famous. In fact, these crispy wontons were originally served at Trader Vic’s in San Francisco; a fusion of Polynesian and Burmese flavors and cooking.

dipping a crispy rangoon in red sauce

Many believe that the original crab rangoon recipe made its appearance in Yangon, Burma, which was formerly known as Rangoon, hence the name, but they are only there in spirit, not physical presence.

Now a Crab Rangoon is loosely defined as a “deep fried wonton filled with crab and cream cheese”, although rangoons come in many different varieties, they almost always have a creamy filling. Depending on where you are in the US, they are sometimes called crab puffs, cream cheese wontons, crab wontons or just cheese wontons.

What are Crab Rangoons?

  • Cream cheese– Either full fat or reduced fat works.
  • Avocado- Peeled, pitted and diced. Make sure it is nice and ripe so it seamlessly blends with the cream cheese.
  • Lump crab meat– Lump or jumbo lump blue crab.
  • Worcestershire sauce– The most commonly mispronounced word in culinary language is also what makes this filling more robust and rich. A little goes a long way.
  • Garlic powder & Onion Powder– Both provided a small amount of pizzazz and complement each other, but feel free to use one or the other instead of both.
  • Wonton Wrappers– Not to be confused with egg roll wrappers, which are the bigger ones. You can get fancy and grab a package of circular wrappers too. They are usually located near the vegan or vegetarian items, refrigerated in the produce section or head to an Asian market where you’ll have many options.
  • Egg white– Think of this as the glue that holds the rangoon together.
  • Green onions (scallions)– For garnish, crunch and flavor, but totally optional.
  • Oil for frying– A neutral oil with a high smoke point like vegetable oil, canola oil or peanut oil is best for the least smoking and potential for burning.
bowl of creamy rangoon filling

Can I use imitation crab meat? Yes, if real crab meat is hard to find or too expensive, feel free to use imitation crab meat. Chances are the ones you eat at the restaurant are probably imitation crab. You’ll see them labeled crab sticks, krab sticks, imitation crab meat or seafood sticks and are made from finely chopped white fish. They do not contain real crab. They are artificially colored to be a little peach and formed into the shape of snow or spider crab meat. 

Crab Wonton variations

  • Rangoon can also be stuffed with Spinach Dip for a vegetarian rangoon. This is in excellent way to use up just a cup or so of leftovers.
  • Air Fryer Rangoons– I made this recipe well before Air Fryers came onto the scene, but it is AF friendly. Spray or baste rangoons with oil and then fry for 5-6 minutes at 350°F, being careful not to crowd the basket.
  • Baked Crab Rangoons– Heat the oven to 350°F and bake for 15-18 minutes. Spraying or basting them with oil will help them to crisp up.
  • Make them spicy by adding 1/2 teaspoon of hot sauce or crushed red pepper flakes to the cream cheese mixture.

How to Make Crab Rangoons

Assembly is easy and so is frying, if you use the proper tools.

  1. In a medium mixing bowl, blend together the cream cheese, avocado, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, and onion powder until evenly blended, then very gently fold in the crab meat so it stays in larger lumps. Set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk egg white with 2 tablespoons of water.

How to fold a Crab Rangoon

  1. Use a cutting board or plate as your working space, lay out one wonton wrapper. Place 1 heaping teaspoon of filling in the middle, brush the edges with the egg wash and then fold over into the shape of a triangle. Press out any air bubbles and the edges.
step-by-step of how to make crab rangoons
  1. Use a heavy bottom saucepan or large shallow frying pan for frying. A heavy bottom will help the heat distribute evenly and reduce cold spots. Also use a deep fry thermometer to accurately control the heat. If you have a countertop deep fryer that can also be used. Heat the oil to 350°F.
  2. Gently lower 3-4 rangoons into the hot oil using a fry or metal spoon, being careful to not crowd the pan. Fry for 2-3 minutes, flipping once, or until golden brown.
  3. Remove to a wire rack over a baking sheet lined with a paper towel. Place in a warm oven to drain and stay warm while you complete the rest.
  4. Garnish with sliced green onions and serve with your favorite dipping sauce.
close up of crab rangoons on a small serving plate with sauce

Dipping Sauce for Crab Rangoon

Crab Rangoons are typically served with a sweet and sour sauce, duck sauce or spicy mustard, but I also sometimes make my creamy pineapple dip. Just plain soy sauce, sticky teriyaki sauce or sweet chile sauce is cool too.

hand dipping a rangoon into sauce

How to store Homemade Crab Rangoons

Can you make crab rangoons ahead of time? You sure can! Make all the wontons ahead of time and if you are planning to fry them in the next day or so, just put them in the refrigerator or freezer.

Can I freeze crab rangoons? Crab rangoon are very freezer friendly. You can freeze them before frying or after frying for up to 4 months. Throw them right into the hot oil frozen, but watch for splatters, as any frozen condensation will sauce a bit of a sputter. It might also take 1-2 minutes longer to brown.

serving plate of crunchy cream cheese rangoons with crab

Crab Wonton FAQs

Why is it called crab rangoon?

 The name “Rangoon” in “Crab Rangoon” is a reference to the city of Yangon, indicating a possible association with Burmese or Southeast Asian flavors. Since these are filled with crab, they are crab rangoons.

What is the difference between a crab wonton and a crab rangoon?

The two are often used interchangeably, but do have subtle differences. Crab wontons are generally folded into a triangle shape like a purse or a pouch, while rangoons were in a little pouch, twisted at the top, however American-Chinese cuisine has changed this now most wontons are actually called rangoons on menus.

Does crab rangoon taste fishy?

If you used good, fresh crab meat, they should not taste fishy.

More delicious seafood appetizers:

serving platter of smoked salmon bites

Smoked Salmon Cracker Recipe

Smoked Salmon Crackers are easy no-cook appetizers layered with pesto laced cream cheese, cucumber slices, fresh dill and capers.
See The Recipe!
cheesy crab rangoon dip

Crab Rangoon Dip

This Crab Rangoon Dip is creamy, cheesy and packs all the flavor of the classic crab rangoon. It's quick & easy to make and takes only 30 minutes to make!
See The Recipe!
angled shot of hot crab dip

Maryland Crab Dip

Hot Crab Dip with cream cheese is a is a Maryland classic! Blended with cheese, lump crab meat and old bay, this crab dip served hot is the best party appetizer recipe!
See The Recipe!
angled shot of shrimp rangoon on plate

Shrimp Rangoon

Succulent shrimp mixed with cream cheese and wrapped in a crispy wonton wrapper, Shrimp Rangoon is sure to be your new favorite appetizer.
See The Recipe!
close up of crab rangoon with sauce
plate of crab rangoons with sauce

Homemade Crab Rangoon Recipe

4.78 from 9 votes
Crispy wontons stuffed with a cream cheese, avocado and lump crab meat filling. Fry, air fry or bake and serve with your favorite dipping sauce.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 40

Ingredients

Instructions

  • In a medium mixing bowl, blend together the cream cheese, avocado, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, and onion powder until evenly blended, then very gently fold in the crab meat so it stays in larger lumps. Set aside.
  • In a small bowl, whisk the egg white with 2 tablespoons of water.
  • Place 1 heaping teaspoon of the filling in the middle of a wonton wrapper. Brush the edges with the egg wash and then fold over into the shape of a triangle. Press out any air bubbles and pinch together the edges.
  • In a heavy bottom saucepan or frying pan, heat the oil to 350°F.
  • Gently lower 3-4 rangoons into the hot oil using a fry or metal spoon, being careful to not crowd the pan. Fry for 2-3 minutes, flipping once, or until golden brown.
  • Remove to a wire rack over a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Place in a warm oven to drain and stay warm while you complete the rest.
  • Garnish with sliced green onions and serve with your favorite dipping sauce.
  • If you've tried this recipe, come back and let us know how they were in the comments or ratings.

Notes

Dipping sauces: 
Crab Rangoons are typically served with a sweet and sour sauce, duck sauce or spicy mustard, but I also sometimes make my spicy and cool pineapple sauce. Just plain soy sauce, sticky teriyaki sauce or sweet chile sauce is cool too.
Variations:
  • Rangoon can also be stuffed with Spinach Dip for a vegetarian rangoon. This is in excellent way to use up just a cup or so of leftovers.
  • Air Fryer Rangoons- I made this recipe well before Air Fryers came onto the scene, but it is AF friendly. Spray or baste rangoons with oil and then fry for 5-6 minutes at 350°F, being careful not to crowd the basket.
  • Baked Crab Rangoons– Heat the oven to 350°F and bake for 15-18 minutes. Spraying or basting them with oil will help them to crisp up.
  • Make them spicy by adding 1/2 teaspoon of hot sauce or crushed red pepper flakes to the cream cheese mixture.

Nutrition

Calories: 81 kcal, Carbohydrates: 1 g, Protein: 1 g, Fat: 8 g, Saturated Fat: 2 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5 g, Trans Fat: 1 g, Cholesterol: 7 mg, Sodium: 46 mg, Potassium: 41 mg, Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 1 g, Vitamin A: 84 IU, Vitamin C: 1 mg, Calcium: 8 mg, Iron: 1 mg
Author: Jessica Formicola
Calories: 81
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Keyword: crab rangoons
Did you make this recipe?I’d love to see your recipes – snap a picture and mention @savoryexperiments or tag #savoryexperiments!
crab rangoon recipe for pinterest
Jessica Formicola in her ktichen

About the Author

Jessica Formicola

Jessica the mom, wife and chef behind Savory Experiments. You might see her on the Emmy- nominated TV show Plate It! or on bookshelves as a cookbook author. Jessica is a Le Cordon Bleu certified recipe developer and regularly contributed to Parade, Better Homes & Gardens, The Daily Meal and more!

Read More About Jessica

4.78 from 9 votes (4 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating




Questions and Reviews

  1. 5 stars
    Avocado and crabs… this combo has become one of my favorite since not a long time ago when I tried it at my friend’s house. These rangoos look top notch!

  2. 5 stars
    I love crab rangoons! This was my first time making them at home and it was WAY easier than I anticipated! Love these and will definitely be making them again!