Gluten Free Vegan “Crab” Dip Recipe

by Carol Kicinski on December 17, 2012

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Holiday party planning is in full swing around here. The halls have been decked, the presents wrapped and now it is time for the partying to begin!

Every year I host a holiday cocktail party. This year I had some challenges when planning the menu. Long ago I figured out the gluten free aspect but this year I have multiple food sensitivities and eating preferences to deal with. I never want someone to come to my home and not be able to find something to eat.

Crab dip has been a traditional fixture at my holiday parties and this year I wanted to figure out a vegan version. I tinkered and tweaked and came up with this recipe. The essential ingredients are Vegenaise, nutritional yeast, kelp powder, Old Bay Seasoning and hearts of palm. Why hearts of palm? The texture! Hearts of palm come apart in a way that sort of reminds me of crab. Weird but true.

Does this dip taste just like my original recipe filled with crab and cream cheese? No. I would never lie to you. Is it delicious and reminiscent of a sea food spread? Yep! My test recipe was devoured by the vegans and non-vegans in my life. They pronounced it a screaming success.

I love this season, I love having people in my home and love being able to feed them – no matter how they need to or choose to eat.

Gluten Free Vegan Crab Dip

Gluten Free Vegan “Crab” Dip Recipe


1 (15 ounce) can of white beans, rinsed and drained
½ cup Vegenaise
¼ cup nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon powdered kelp
4 teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning
Juice and zest (finely grated) of 1 lemon
2 – 3 dashes Tabasco sauce
1 bunch of green onions, trimmed and coarsely chopped
1 (14 ounce) can hearts of palm


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine the beans, Vegenaise, nutritional yeast, kelp, Old Bay, lemon juice and zest, and Tabasco sauce in a food processor and process until smooth. Add the green onions and pulse a couple times. Cut the hearts of palm into 1 inch pieces, add to the mixture and pulse once or twice, do not over process for best texture.

Put the mixture into an oven proof serving dish or ramekin and bake for 30 minutes or until the mixture is heated through.

Serve with gluten free crackers or vegetables.


A gluten free recipe that serves 6 – 8.

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Categories:    Appetizers
  • Maggie

    Oooh! Can’t wait to try this Carol. I totally agree with you on the Hearts of Palm! What a great addition. I wish I could come to one of your holiday parties :)

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thanks Maggie – glad you approve :) Enjoy and you are welcome at my holiday party anytime!

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  • Sherry Fredley

    What a genius idea!! I love the thought of using white beans for this and they are so mild flavored. Making this tonight since I have everything on hand- living in New Orleans means there is always seafood stuff around, like crab boil!!! Can’t wait!
    Sherry at

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thanks Sherry. Enjoy and Happy Holidays!

  • Cassidy @ Cooking Gluten (& Dairy) Free

    That looks delicious! I don’t know what hearts of palm are, but I’m sure I can find it! Thanks :)

    • Carol Kicinski

      Hi Cassidy – Hearts of Palm are sold in the canned vegetable section of the grocery store. Enjoy and Happy Holidays!

  • Joe Strandell

    Looks scrumptious :)

    I love your blog! So many great articles. Happy holidays!

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thank you!

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  • Amy

    Tried this recipe since I was having a party with some vegans coming over – everyone loved it, not just the vegans! Thanks so much!!! Happy Holidays.

    • Carol Kicinski

      My pleasure Amy! Happy Holidays.

  • Simone

    Tried this recipe…just because. I loved it. Unfortunately, I can no longer have tabasco sauce. I substituted the original vegenaise with the barbeque version. It gave it the kick that I needed. Thanks again for the great recipe!

    • Carol Kicinski

      Oh I love the bbq Veganaise! Have you tried the Chipotle flavor? That one has LOTS of kick! Glad you liked the recipe.

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  • beachmama

    This recipe sounds amazing Carol! I have two tins of Old Bay Seasoning and wondered if I should toss it. Do you think artichoke hearts would be a good substitute for hearts of palm?

    BBQ Vegenaise? I had no idea!

    Thanks Carol, can’t wait to go through all of your vegan recipes!

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thank you so much. I think that the artichoke hearts would work just fine. You won’t get the shred but the flavor should be amazing! Enjoy!

  • Bella

    This looks soooo good. You are such an inspiration. I think I might try this with some lentil dip!! Thanks so much!! ~Bella fr/

    • Carol Kicinski

      Yum, I love lentils so lentil dip sounds fabulous!

  • Lyn Ashby

    Chips or veggies with dip are some of the most popular snacks for just about every party or special event. They’re even great when you’re at home by yourself and want to a snack. I love how this one is actually vegan and very healthy at the same time. I can’t wait to try it out.

  • CarolKicinski

    I could not agree with you more! I love veggies or chips and dip any time. Thank you!

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