This air fryer crab rangoon recipe makes crispy morsels made of wonton wrappers stuffed with a simple filling of cream cheese, crab meat, and scallions. An easy Asian-inspired recipe that’s perfect as a simple appetizer!
Easy Air Fryer Crab Rangoon
I don’t know about you, but I love Chinese food! 👌 And, whether sitting at a restaurant or ordering take-out, I always have to have crab rangoon. I recently wondered if I could recreate these delicious bites at home. Of course, the answer was that I had to give it at least a try. I decided to use my air fryer to make them a little healthier than a restaurant version, and wow, they turned out great!
Air Fryer Crab Rangoons are a healthier alternative to deep-fried rangoons and are just as delicious. They are also great for using leftover crab meat and cream cheese. I love how quick and easy this appetizer is to throw together and how elegant the result is. I hope you’ll give them a try!
What is Crab Rangoon?
Crab rangoon, or crab puffs, is a popular appetizer served in Chinese restaurants throughout the United States. They are made with wonton wrappers folded around a mixture of cooked crab meat, cream cheese, herbs, and other flavoring and then deep-fried to a crispy golden brown. They are delicious as-is, but traditionally, they are dipped in a sweet and sour sauce.
Here’s a list of what you will need to make air fryer crab rangoons. Don’t forget to scroll to the recipe card below for exact measurements.
- Cream Cheese: Whipped cream cheese will work as well. Just note that you may not need to whip it for as long before mixing in the other ingredients.
- Soy sauce
- Toasted sesame oil: This adds a wonderfully deep, nutty flavor to the filling that refined sesame oil will not. So pay attention to the label on the bottle and make sure you grab toasted sesame oil.
- Garlic powder
- Canned lump crab meat: Drained and squeezed. It is crucial to get as much moisture out of the meat as possible; otherwise, the dumplings have a good chance of bursting in the air fryer. Flake the drained crab meat apart before adding it to the filling.
- Wonton wrappers
How to Make Crab Rangoon in the Air Fryer
These crispy appetizers might look fancy, but they are actually quite simple to throw together. Here’s how to do it. Make sure to scroll to the recipe card below for more detailed instructions.
- Beat the cream cheese on high speed until fluffy.
- Mix in the soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, and garlic powder.
- Fold in the crab meat followed by the scallions.
- Preheat the air fryer to 360˚F.
- Fill the wonton wrappers. Add a couple of teaspoons of crab filling to a wonton wrapper. Moisten the edges of the wrapper with the beaten egg, fold the corners toward the center, and seal with your fingers. Repeat with the remainder of the filling.
- Fry. Grease the air fryer basket with cooking spray and place the prepared dumplings in the basket. Cook for 5 minutes.
Tips for Success
Crab rangoon are easier than they look to put together. That being said, they can be a bit finicky. Here are a few tips and tricks to help you achieve the best results possible.
- Squeeze the crab meat. Excess moisture in the filling can cause the dumplings to explode in the air fryer. So make sure to squeeze as much moisture out of the crab meat as possible.
- Keep a moist towel on hand. Moving between filling, egg wash, and wonton wrappers can be a sticky mess. Do yourself a favor and keep a moistened towel close by. Wipe your hands as needed.
- Don’t over stuff the wrappers. When filling the wonton wrappers, do not put more than 1-1 1/2 teaspoons of filling inside. Over-stuffing the wrappers predisposes them to burst in the frying process.
- Be wary of trapped air. Air trapped in the dumplings can cause them to explode in the air fryer. Be sure to press the air out of the dumplings as you seal them.
Air fryer crab rangoons are delicious on their own but they are even better when served with a flavorful dipping sauce or with another appetizer or two. Here are some ideas for you.
- Sweet and sour dipping sauce. Most typically, crab rangoon is served with a bright orange sweet and sour dipping sauce. The sweetness of the sauce compliments these savory snacks beautifully, and the sour does a good job of breaking up the creaminess of the filling.
- Other Asian dipping sauces. Try dipping these little appetizer bites in soy sauce, sweet chili sauce, sesame ginger sauce, or even honey sriracha.
- Other finger foods. Serve crab rangoon at your next gathering along with other tasty appetizers. Stick with the Asian theme and try steamed edamame or my Asian Beef Skewers. Alternatively, try your hand at these Pretzel Bites, Cajun Shrimp and Guacamole Tortilla Bites, Crab Stuffed Mushrooms Recipe, or my Buffalo Meatballs in Puff Pastry Cups.
How to Store and Reheat Extras
- Crab rangoon are best straight out of the air fryer. If you have leftovers, however, allow them to cool completely before sealing them in an airtight container and storing them in the refrigerator.
- To reheat, preheat the air fryer to 375˚F, arrange the Rangoon in a single layer in the air fryer basket, and fry them for 3 to 4 minutes. You can also set the dumplings on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and reheat them in the oven at 350˚F for 10 minutes or until heated through.
Can I Freeze Crab Rangoon?
- You can. Allow the crab rangoon to cool completely before sealing them in an airtight container. You can store them in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- When it comes time to serve them, allow the rangoons to thaw in the refrigerator before reheating just as you would from refrigerated, either in the oven or the air fryer.
- You can also reheat crab rangoon directly from frozen just as you would from refrigerated. Just give them a little more reheating time. They will need 5 minutes in the air fryer at 375˚F or 15 minutes in the oven at 350˚F.
More Asian Inspired Recipes
In the mood for Asian cuisine? Me too! Here are a few more simple, super delicious, Asian inspired recipes for you to try.
- Pad See Ew (Thai Stir Fried Noodles)
- Thai Chicken Lettuce Wraps
- Chinese Chicken and Broccoli
- Asian Glazed Air Fryer Chicken Thighs
- Crock Pot Sweet and Sour Asian Meatballs
- Asian Chicken Noodle Soup
Air Fryer Crab Rangoon
- 6 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 6 ounces canned lump crab meat, drained and squeezed (it is crucial to get as much moisture out of the meat as possible) and flaked apart
- 5 scallions, finely sliced (green and white parts)
- 12 wonton wrappers
- 1 large egg, beaten to break up the yolk
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the cream cheese until fluffy and smooth.
- Add the soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, and garlic powder and beat to combine.
- Using a rubber spatula, fold the drained and flaked crab meat into the cream cheese mixture.
- Fold in the scallions.
- Preheat the air fryer to 360˚F.
- Measure 2 teaspoons of crab filling, roll it into a ball, and place it in the center of a wonton wrapper.
- Using your fingers, moisten the edges of the wrapper with a bit of the beaten egg and fold the corners up to meet at the top of the dumpling.
- Press the edges together to seal, doing your best to press any air out of the dumpling as you go.
- Repeat with the rest of the filling and wonton wrappers.
- Grease the air fryer basket with cooking spray and place the prepared dumplings in the basket.
- Cook for 5 minutes. If the crab rangoons aren't golden brown at the end of the cooking time, cook for an additional 1 to 2 minutes.
- Remove from the air fryer basket and serve.
- Cream Cheese: I have used full-fat cream cheese and Neufchatel cheese, and both worked out great. The best advice is to have the cream cheese at room temperature and mix it until fluffy and smooth.
- Crab Meat. Make sure to squeeze as much moisture from the crab meat as possible.
- Moving between filling, egg wash, and wonton wrappers can get messy; keep a moistened towel close by and wipe your hands as needed.
- Filling: Do not put more than a couple of teaspoons of filling inside the wonton wrappers. Overstuffing the wrappers can cause them to burst during the cooking process.
- Air trapped in the dumplings can also cause them to pop in the air fryer. Be sure to press the air out of the dumplings as you seal them.
Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.