Spaghetti with crab, cherry tomatoes & basil

Spaghetti with crab, cherry tomatoes & basil

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(36 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 15 mins


Serves 3
Punchy fresh flavours in a good-for-you-dish are often what you need for a midweek boost. This pasta dish has it all

Nutrition and extra info

  • Healthy

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal349
  • fat6g
  • saturates1g
  • carbs52g
  • sugars5g
  • fibre3g
  • protein26g
  • salt1.36g
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  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • pinch chilli flakes
  • 200g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • zest and juice 1 lemon



    Oval in shape with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile…

  • 2 x 170g cans white crab meat, drained


    A crustacean that has its skeleton on the outside protecting a soft, flavoursome flesh. There…

  • 200g spaghetti
  • 1 tsp capers, drained and rinsed
    Capers in bowl



    Capers are the small flower buds of the Capparis shrub that grows in the Mediterranean. As they…

  • handful basil leaves, roughly chopped


  1. In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil. Add the garlic and chilli flakes. Cook until just pale golden, then add the tomatoes. Cook 3 mins more on a high heat until the tomatoes start to break down a little. Add the lemon juice and cook for 1-2 mins. Remove from the heat and stir in the crab to warm through – not too much or it will break up.

  2. Boil the pasta in a large pan of salted water following pack instructions then drain. Mix the pasta in the warm pot with the sauce, lemon zest and capers, and toss the basil through.

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Comments, questions and tips

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TheChicolo's picture
5th May, 2020
Was really tasty and simple to make! Definitely being made again
28th Sep, 2018
Love love love this recipe! I chop and cook the basil stalks at the same time as cooking the garlic and chilli flakes. Also use fresh chilli, extra garlic and if I’ve got any rocket lying around I mix that in at the end. Delicious!!! A firm favourite that’s quick to make, but feels like a real treat to eat!
1st Mar, 2017
Used a leftover bird's eye chilli instead of the chilli flakes. Light and yummy.
19th Feb, 2017
I made this about 30 times now, because both I and my girlfriend have become kind of addicted to this! So here's my advice: use the best ingredients you can get. This dish is typical Italian cuisine and heavily relies on ingredients. Get fresh white crab from Cornwall, M&S ripe cherry tomatoes, a large and properly ripe organic lemon, fresh large leaf basil and preferably Barilla Spaghetti No 5 and this dish will rock your world :)
3rd Jan, 2016
Didn't like it at all - very bland, with a mushy consistency.
4th Sep, 2015
Sorry, but I found this to be a little bland. I made the full amount of sauce for 2 of us and it was just the right amount, not sure that it would be enough for 3. I don't think I'll make this again.
18th Feb, 2015
One word...YAMMEE! As per the other reviews, I omitted the lemon zest, only used one can of crab meat , added some prawns and it turned out delicious. I'll definitely make this again - soooo delicious.
18th Sep, 2014
Delicious! Followed the recipe other than I used prawns instead as I'm not too keen on crab. Perfect for a light and tasty summery lunch.
8th Dec, 2013
Made this tonight for the first time and wasn't disappointed, lovely quick and fresh quick tea! The zesty lemon went really well with the basil and crab.
28th Aug, 2013
Made this tonight with tomatoes, lemon, and basil from our garden. It was absolutely fabulous. I can only think that the reviewer who found it lacking in flavour used less than excellent ingredients, which might have muted flavour, or forgot the red chill flakes. I had not read the comments before making it, but did use only half the specified lemon juice, as it just seemed intuitively to be too much. I did use all the zest, which is a subtly different flavour.


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