My friends Tandy Shaffer and Matt Elwell first introduced me to crab rangoons when I was in 7th grade on a Student Council field trip to Crown Center in Kansas City. (Notice I said “junior high” not “middle school.” That will date me for sure….the times of Rave hairspray, lip smackers and floral headbands.) I had never heard of them before, but they instantly became a favorite — and at the time I didn’t think I liked cream cheese!

These crispy, fried shells filled with a creamy, savory center are my favorite thing about going to our local Chinese restaurant. (I know these are probably not actually from China, as when our family lived outside of Shanghai in 2007, I didn’t see one crab rangoon…not one.) But whether they were first created in a small family restaurant on Guanqian Street in Suzhou, China, or in a Taco-Bell-turned Chinese restaurant right here in the good ole US of A, they are still a special treat for our family.

What’s great about Crab Rangoon is how easy they are to make. With just a few simple ingredients, and a few minutes, you can be eating these hot, crunchy and creamy favorites.

Check out the video and see how simple it is to make Crab Rangoon:

Step-by-step Recipe with Pictures:

Crab Rangoon


1 pkg of cream cheese (8 oz), softened

pinch of salt

1/2 t garlic powder

1 TB powdered sugar

2 oz imitation crab, chopped

pkg of wonton wrappers


1.  Combine cream cheese, salt, garlic powder and sugar until smooth.

2. Stir in chopped crab and set aside.

03. Place about a teaspoon of the filling in the middle of a wonton wrapper.

14. Dot the middle of all four edges with water. (Water will serve as the glue that helps the crab rangoon stick together.)

25. Fold it in half and pinch together.

36. Now grab one of the open sides and push it up to the middle and pinch.

47. Grab the other side and repeat. Push that side up to the middle and pinch.


8. Place in a deep fryer or a pan filled with oil at 350 degrees for 3-5 minutes or until golden brown. Make sure to flip them halfway through. Some of my little guys were top-heavy and didn’t want to flip. I just did my best and they browned mostly all over.

9. Let draw on paper towel. They will be very hot coming out of the fryer, so wait a minute or so to serve.

You can make these ahead of time and freeze.
Place them on a baking dish individually and pop them in the freezer until hardened. (This step ensures that they don’t clump together when you freeze them.) Then put them in a ziptop bag to store them in the freezer.  When you are ready to eat one, pull them out of the freezer and put them in a 350 degree oven for about 5 minutes or until heated through.

Sweet and Sour Dipping Sauce:


3/4 c sugar

2 TB cornstarch

2/3 cup water

1/3 cup vinegar

1/4 cup soy sauce

2 TB ketchup


  1. Add sugar and cornstarch in a medium sauce pan and stir with a whisk till combined.
  2. Add water, vinegar, soy sauce and ketchup and continue whisking till combined.
  3. Turn on the burner to medium heat and continue stirring throughout.
  4. Watch as the sauce starts to boil, turn glossy and thickens. When it reaches desired thickness, remove from heat and pour in a bowl to cool.

This dipping sauce is versatile and can be poured over chicken nuggets and rice for a quick sweet and sour chicken recipe.

See a complete tutorial on our YouTube channel:
Bon Appetit,