, ,

Oops, missing the bacon garnish; just imagine it’s there (but wasn’t needed)!

Okay, maybe not actually the ultimate traveling appetizer, but a very good one at least.

Transportable, as in these puppies can go on the road.  Yes, the other puppies are on the road too (or ferry boat as it may be).

To a holiday party!

A Family dinner.

Or even the notorious office Christmas potluck.

Flexible. Not only can they be made earlier in the day or even the night before, they inherently come with a “choose-your-own-flavor adventure” built-in.

Not a fan of blue cheese and avocado (no judging here)?  Mango and curry can step in.

Prefer cilantro to arugula?  Great!  (Just don’t tell my brother Scott).

Don’t feel like whipping up that corn creme, or can’t since you haven’t yet splurged on a Vitamix (who are you anyway?), no worries, a little creme fraîche or yogurt can be gussied up with lemon juice and pepper instead.

Or, for a little more heat, shake in some chipotle chili powder.

For a different dimension, smoked paprika could attend…

… you get the idea.

Elegant. Forget the little smokies or the tasty, but expected, humus dip and wow your guests or hostess with these little jewels instead.

Easy. Whip up the dressing, pat dry the crab, chop a few things and mix it all up. After a little trip on the assembly line, the little glass cups can be put back in their box and refrigerated until ready to use (or take to the potluck, family dinner or party with friends).

And the best part:

No heating required! (Who has room in the oven when there is a turkey in there?… or a holiday ham, prime rib roast… or perhaps there’s no oven at all)!

Seriously though, to be honest, the best part is the crab.

Just saying! Pull out your wallet, it’s the Holidays!!!!

Over the Sound and through the woods…

Are we there yet?!

This ride sure beats the Mayflower!

Is it too early for sugar plum fairies to be dancing in my head?


The Ultimate Traveling Appetizer: Crab Salad Cups

The quintessential holiday appetizer, 1st course or salad, all piled into a tiny, portable glass.

It’s a traveling appetizer that works as well at home as it does on the road.

Seafood – check

Crab – double check

Greens – check

Red garnish – check

Elegant Holiday Spirit – check (not that kind of spirit, but hopefully you have one in hand)

When the meal is heavy, the first course should be light.

When it’s a party meal, there should be something festive, tasty and fun that is healthy, filling and unforgettable.

Tall order?

Small cup.


  • Author: Stacey Bender
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: Zero
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: Approximately (14) fourteen 4 oz cups
  • Category: Appetizers
  • Cuisine: Holiday + Universal



3/4 lb Dungeness crab meat, rinsed, gently squeezed dry and patted with kitchen towel

Lemon Juice, approximately from one full lemon

Fresh ground pepper to taste

1 ear of corn

1/4 cup fresh, full fat, Greek style or local yogurt

12 oz good quality blue cheese (I used Maytag Blue), or more to taste

1 Avocado, peeled, seed removed, diced and doused with lemon juice, sea salt and pepper

23 green onions, chopped

2 TB mixed fresh herbs such as thyme, parsley, savory, basil

1/4 cup very thinly sliced fennel, diced and doused with lemon juice, sea salt and pepper

Seeds from 1/2 pomegranate

Zest of 1/2 orange (approximately 1 TB)


  1. Put the fresh, dry crab in a mixing bowl and let chill until you are ready to assemble.

2. Wrap the corn in plastic wrap and microwave for 1 minute.  Alternatively, steam or boil in water until just crisp tender.  Cut the corn from the cob.

3. Put the corn in your Vitamix or food processor.  Add some pepper and pinch of sea salt along with the yogurt.  Process until the consistency of cream.

4. Put a few spoonfuls of the corn creme, along with 1/2 of the blue cheese in a medium bowl and blend with the back of a spoon.  Add lemon juice and additional blue cheese to taste.

5. Mix in 1/2 the avocado, green onion/herbs, fennel, 1/2 the pomegranate seeds and orange zest.

6.  Season to taste with salt, pepper and lemon juice as needed.

7.  Assemble the cups by first filling each with a spoonful of the corn creme, followed by a little chopped arugula, then the crab mixture.

8.  Sprinkle some of the remaining pomgranite seeds on each.

9.  If serving later, cover each glass cup with plastic wrap and refrigerate until use.

10.  To serve: Unwrap the plastic and top each with a few sprigs arugula, squeeze of lemon and dusting of chopped bacon.


I got the glass cups at Crate & Barrel a few years back.  They came six to a box and were inexpensive plus came with unlimited possibilities.  You could easily swap the glass cups for leaves of endives for serving.  Add more avocado if you like.  When I say “douse it in lemon juice”, I mean, squeeze fresh lemon juice over and sprinkle with salt and fresh pepper.


  • Serving Size: 4 oz

Keywords: Holiday Appetizers, Easy Appetizers, Crab Appetizers, Individual Appetizer Cups,

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