Maryland Crab Lettuce Cups Recipe
Chef: Colby Trenor
Age 9

Maryland Crab Lettuce Cups


Colby TrenorFeeling blue or crabby? This tasty pick-me-up highlights Maryland blue crab meat, which is with other ingredients in a Bibb lettuce cup that can be rolled up for fun eating," says Colby. "Working with my mom, we nixed some ingredients and reduced others. We also reworked proportions and used fresh-frozen foods in place of some items not in season right now, to save money. I then presented two options to three tough critics: my preschool siblings, including a very picky eater. This dish got smiles and clean plates all around, so it's a hands-down winner." Colby serves this treat with Delmarva Chips—baked whole-wheat tortillas dusted with seasonings and sea salt—and an Apple-Tomatillo Green Salsa.

Makes 8 Servings

143 calories 8g fat 11g carbohydrates 8g protein


2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1⁄2 pound Maryland blue crabmeat (lump or backfin)
3 fresh limes, zested and juiced
1 cup frozen corn
1⁄2 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1⁄4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1⁄4 teaspoon cumin
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon grapeseed oil or olive oil
2 fresh oranges, juiced
1 head of Bibb lettuce
1⁄2 cup micro greens or salad greens
1 avocado, pitted, peeled, and cut into thin slices
1⁄2 cup low-fat Jack cheese, shredded


  1. In a large nonstick skillet, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat. Add the crabmeat and zest of 1 lime and cook for 3 minutes, or until crab turns light brown. Remove crab to separate bowl and set aside.
  2. In the same pan, melt remaining tablespoon butter over medium heat, add the corn, red pepper, smoked paprika, cumin, and 1 tablespoon lime juice. Cook until kernels start to turn golden-brown, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
  3. To make citrus dressing, in a small bowl, whisk together oil, remaining lime juice and zest, and all of the orange juice. Add salt and pepper, to taste.
  4. To Assemble: Set out 8 plates and place two Bibb lettuce leaves on each plate, so that each leaf forms a cup shape. To each lettuce cup, add: 1 tablespoon micro greens, 2 tablespoons corn mixture, 2 tablespoons crab meat, and 1 tablespoon Jack cheese. Divide avocado slices among lettuce cups. Drizzle 2 teaspoons citrus dressing over each lettuce cup and serve.

About chef Colby

How long have you been a chef?
Colby: I've been cooking for a long time, I'm not sure how long. I think it started when I began using the blender to make random smoothies and juices, then helping make family breakfasts on the weekends.

Colby's Mother: Colby has always had a knack for interesting foods. When he was only about one, he seemed to think that nothing was complete without hummus! Even when we are eating out, given a choice between a typical kids' meal and an appetizer for the same price, he will usually chooses from the appetizer menu, which offers a lot more variety. Now he leaves little notes in my cookbooks with his suggestions on how to change the recipes.

What is your favorite food?
Colby: Sushi

Do you want to be a chef when you grow up?
Colby: Yes!

MPT-HD Weekday Schedule

6:00 am     Peg + Cat

6:30 am     Arthur

7:00 am     Ready Jet Go!

7:30 am     Wild Kratts

8:00 am     Nature Cat

8:30 am     Curious George

9:00 am     Let's Go Luna!

9:30 am     Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood

10:00 am   Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood

10:30 am   Pinkalicious & Peterrific

11:00 am   Sesame Street

11:30 am   Splash And Bubbles

12:00 pm   Dinosaur Train

12:30 am   Cat in the Hat Knows A Lot About That!