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The Best Seafood Salad Recipe (Publix Copycat)

If you are an imitation crab lover like me then you must know about My Favorite Dreamy Seafood Salad Recipe! Try this pretty perfect copycat of Publix’s popular Deluxe Seafood salad recipe. This recipe is number one in my arsenal of yummy salad recipes.

seafood salad, crab salad, seafood salad sandwich, publix deluxe seafood salad recipe, subway seafood sensation recipe

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I have been in love with the Publix Deluxe Seafood Salad for years. I now live in California and there is no way to get my hands on a pre-made seafood salad that comes even close to Publix.

The thing about Publix recipe is it includes mini shrimp in the ingredients. You do not need to add them to this recipe unless you want to.

In fact the Which Wich Crab Salad sandwich and Subway’s Seafood Sensation Sandwich both did not include shrimp in their recipes and they were just as good.

Notice I used the word “were”? Sadly neither one of those sandwiches exist anymore. They removed them from their menus, ugh! Which is why I created my own so I can get my crab fix!

I be sure to try the Subway recipe version too!

With this recipe, I tried to combine these three recipes to get that perfect blend of mayo and seasonings.

Here is my version of this favorite recipe:

Seafood Salad Recipe


  • 1- 1.5 lb imitation crab, flake style
  • 6 oz can of tiny shrimp optional
  • 2-3 green onions finely chopped
  • 2 celery stalks diced
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise I use Hellmann’s
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • ⅛ tsp dried dill or to taste
  • salt & pepper to taste


  • Remove imitation crab from the package and separate the flakes.
  • In a large mixing bowl, chop and shred the crab.
  • Add all in ingredients and mix well.
  • Refrigerate you to 2-3 hours or overnight to blend flavors.
  • Serve with crackers for a snack, on deli rolls for a crab salad sandwich or mixed in with pasta for a great pasta salad dish!

MAKE AHEAD: Place leftovers in an airtight container and keep it in the refrigerator for 4-5 days.

FREEZER: Place leftovers in an airtight container and keep it in the freezer for up to 3 months.

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Seafood Salad Recipe

The perfect Publix copycat seafood salad or sandwich shop seafood salad recipe! Reader favorite recipe!
Servings: 6
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Calories: 291


  • 1- 1.5 lb imitation crab, flake style
  • 6 oz can of tiny shrimp, optional
  • 2-3 green onions, finely chopped
  • 2 celery stalks , diced
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise, I use Hellmann’s
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • tsp dried dill, or to taste
  • salt & pepper , to taste


  • Remove imitation crab from the package and separate the flakes.
  • In a large mixing bowl, chop and shred the crab.
  • Add all in ingredients and mix well.
  • Refrigerate you to 2-3 hours or overnight to blend flavors.
  • Serve with crackers for a snack or deli rolls for a crab salad sandwich.


Adjust the mayo as needed. You can use less. You can also add a teaspoon of lime juice for added zing. You can also add pasta shells for a great summer salad.


Serving: 1cup | Calories: 291kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.02g | Cholesterol: 66mg | Sodium: 1287mg | Potassium: 61mg | Sugar: 7g | Calcium: 30mg | Iron: 0.2mg

The nutrition info provided is only an estimate. See my nutrition disclaimer for more info on how the data is collected for recipes.

CUISINE :American
publix neptune salad:seafood salad:subway seafood salad:which wich krab salad
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crab salad, neptune salad


  1. I love Publix seafood salad and just bought some within the last week. It did also have red onion, red and green bell pepper which have it a wonderful flavor. These are not in the above recipe.

    1. Hi D, Last time I was in FL visiting family in Tampa, I bought some and it had red & green bell peppers as well. Very strange, I picked most of them out. I am not sure why they would add them. Not for me.

  2. Publix gets their crab salad from Dons food distributor,. I think it is. I believe it’s Don’s Deluxe seafood salad.

    1. No probably not.. although I do freeze my seafood enchiladas and they come out great when reheated.

  3. I can’t believe how good this recipe came out! It really tastes like Publix version, thank you so much

    P.s. I added macaroni to this (it’s a great variation for a party!)

  4. I’m not certain how old this post is but am curious if you use a specific brand if imitation crab flakes? Thanks for your time!

    1. Hi Lisa,
      I’ve tried a few different kinds. My favorite brand is Aquamar. I haven’t been able to find it in my local stores here in CA. I am currently using Crab Classic Flake Style. They usually have the larger 1.5 lb packages of imitation crab. Louis Kemp is ok too. To me, it doesn’t have as much flavoring as the two brands I mentioned first. I hope this helps! Thanks for reading!

  5. Christina Dassau says:

    Thank you for this. My son works at Publix, so he’s gotten me hooked on and now they don’t really send it to the store at all. They used to make it themselves, but now because of the way things are, they quit. So this will tide me over. Looks great, I’m gonna try it soon.

  6. I used to work at Subway when in College, their seafood salad back then we used bit of Old Bay seasoning!

    Glad to see I was no the only Publix Seafood Salad aficionado. Here in Orlando it has the small shrimp too.

  7. Nikki Krakauer “JustTabandMe” says:

    I’ve been making this for over 20 years now, and I use fresh shrimp and fake Krab in equal amounts, with a *lot* less mayonnaise & sour cream mix. The recipe is *always* requested, so I print up large labels with the recipe and stick to 3”x5” cards and place near the dish. They’re usually all gone by event’s end.

    1. Glad you like it, Nikki, Personally, I usually leave the shrimp out. And yes you can use a lot less mayo. My husband hates mayo so I go with less. It’s in the recipe to use less if needed too. Thanks for reading.

  8. cllaporte says:

    I don’t taste onions in our local many Publix here in north Fl, however roasted red peppers are definitely in the mix.

  9. I also live in Florida and LOVE Publix seafood salad. I was told years ago ( I think by an employee) that the secret ingredient was a small amount of sweet pickle juice mixed in with the mayo. So if I make my own, I do that. It adds a bit of sweet plus the light taste of something extra….

      1. After seeing your post, I HAD TO have some Publix Seafood Salad on crackers for an after dinner snack. Next time I crave it, I will use your recipe to make my own. Thank so much….

        1. This is the best way to eat publix crab salad – over crackers!

    1. Patricia Bennett says:

      We use dukes mayonnaise and a little pickle relish or pickle juice green onions and your other ingredients and it’s the closest to the taste of the Publix version

  10. do you think they may use a “salad dressing” like Miracle Whip or the like??? Dukes mayo ?

    1. No, I do not think my Publix uses Miracle Whip. You can use whatever mayo you like to make the recipe your own.

    2. Nikki Krakauer “JustTabandMe” says:

      Do *not* use Miracle Whip.

  11. Thank you Kim! I have been trying to decipher the Publix seafood salad secret to the mayo…my favorite part of it. not too tangy and not too much. Sour cream and Mayo!!! of course! This copycat was pretty perfect.

  12. Looks so yummy. I always use cucumber when I make it. Try it. It’s fantastic!

  13. This is excellent. I used Just Mayo by Hampton Creek and greek yogurt. Perfect for an appetizer or eat it with a fork. Yum! Thank you!

  14. CARLOS SALAZAR says:

    Thanks for a simple and yet delicious recipe I can tell just from the picture (and ingredients) that it is what I was looking for dinner tonight!

  15. Instead of Hellmans Mayo try Hellmans Balsamic Mayo

    Love the recipe

    1. Sounds great Ed! I will try it, I love Balsamic anything!

  16. Shannon Gibson says:

    I’ve been looking for a recipe to make. Going to try this one today.
    Never made it before, have always bought from grocery store but can no longer find any that I like. Will let you know how it turns out. Never thought of making it as a sandwitch. We’ll see. ;)

    1. Nikki Krakauer “JustTabandMe” says:

      I love it on a salad sometimes and also, try serving it on a croissant ?! Heavenly!!!

  17. I like this recipe. Publix does taste different (I grew up and still live in Florida). It is very good. There are so many variations that taste good but I feel to get it closest to the big “P” is less is more. When you taste publix seafood salad you taste the sweetness of the seafood (imitation or not). So don’t over season. Just keep it simple.

  18. Made this and made it again! And plan on making over and over lol! The weather is getting so hot and I’ve been searching for something besides pasta salads, chicken salad, etc. and this was a wonderful alternative! I have a multi generation family to feed from 80 year old mom down to 2 year old grandson. And I am happy to say all were happy. Mom wants me to fix this once a week and she’s my most picky eater! Just wanted to say thanks so much for the recipe! You made my family happy and that’s a really wonderful thing!

    1. Oh you are so welcome Dani, you are so sweet! Tell your mom I am glad she likes it. Have a great weekend!

  19. Thank you so much for this delicious recipe! My family absolutely loves it. I did use 2 pounds of crabmeat and included the canned shrimp. Two thumbs up!

    1. So glad you tried it and your family approved! Yay! Thanks for stopping by.

  20. I love a good seafood salad, especially now that the weather is turning so much nicer. Thanks for sharing at Merry Monday! The party goes live again tonight, we hope to see you there!

  21. This looks absolutely delicious! Thanks so much for sharing it at Tasty Tuesday where you’ve been featured and pinned! Please come back this week!

  22. This sounds so refreshing, but rich at the same time! I can’t wait to try it! :)

  23. This looks delicious! Love the combo of the shrimp and crab….so yummy!

4.38 from 233 votes (233 ratings without comment)

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