Monday, March 5, 2012

Salmon cakes


I still have a couple more party recipes to tell you about, but I'm going to save those for another time. For today, I'm going to tell you about a healthier recipe that is more appropriate for an everyday dinner. I ended up making these salmon cakes after buying canned salmon for the first time last week. Although I know that fish is very healthy, and I love the taste of seafood, I don't really cook fish that often. I would like to, but my local grocery store doesn't have great options for fresh fish, especially if you're concerned about sustainability. But recently I have been hearing a lot about canned salmon as a good alternative - it's easy to find wild rather than farmed, and it's a heck of a lot cheaper than fresh. Of course, canned salmon can't replace fresh for all applications, but it's perfect if you are making something like these delicious salmon cakes. I was thrilled with how these came out, and I am definitely going to start buying canned salmon more often from now on!

This recipe was adapted from one that I found on Epicurious. I cut down the amount of mayo and adapted the ingredients a bit based on what I had on hand. The cakes are full of flavor, soft and tender on the inside, with some veggies adding texture. The leftovers were fantastic for lunch the next day, and from the reviews online, it sounds like leftover cakes freeze well too. I love finding dishes like this that are simple, cheap, tasty, and healthy all in one!


Have you ever cooked with canned salmon?

Salmon cakes
Adapted from Epicurious
Makes 10 cakes

There is raw onion in this recipe - the onion that I used was quite mild, so the raw onion didn't bother me. If your onion is more pungent, you might want to saute it first, or soak it in cold water, which should mellow out the taste.

14 oz. canned salmon, drained, skin and large bones removed (don't worry about small bones - they will be soft and you won't notice them while eating the finished cakes)
1/2 cup finely diced onion
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
1/2 cup corn kernels, thawed if frozen
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup low-fat yogurt
1 tbs Dijon mustard
1 tsp chopped sweet pickles
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
Sriracha sauce (or your favorite hot sauce)
1 egg
1 cup panko bread crumbs, preferably whole wheat
1 tbs butter
Canola oil, for cooking cakes

Flake the salmon into a large bowl (try to separate the salmon into chunks rather than breaking it apart too much). Gently stir in onion, celery, and corn. Season mixture to taste with salt and pepper (I didn't need to add any extra salt because the salmon already contained some).

In a small bowl, mix together mayonnaise, yogurt, mustard, pickles, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, and paprika. Add a couple dashes of Sriracha, stir mixture well, and taste. Add more Sriracha if you prefer. Gently mix wet ingredients into the salmon mixture.

Lightly beat the egg and add it to the salmon mixture along with the panko bread crumbs. Gently fold the ingredients together until well mixed. Refrigerate mixture for 1 hour.

Form salmon mixture into 10 patties (about 2.5 inches in diameter). In a large skillet, preferably nonstick or well seasoned cast iron, melt 1/2 tbs butter over medium heat along with a splash of canola oil. When skillet is hot, add 5 salmon cakes. Cook about 3 minutes per side, until well browned and heated through. Transfer cakes to a plate, then melt the remaining 1/2 tbs butter in the skillet with a splash of oil, and cook the remaining 5 cakes.

Cooked cakes can be stored for a couple days in the fridge. Uncooked cakes can be frozen in a single layer on a baking sheet and then transferred to a freezer bag for storage.


  1. I have the same concerns about buying and cooking fish often. I recently found "wild and sustainable" canned tuna, salmon, and sardines at the grocery store. I am going to give your cakes a try!

  2. I'm typically not a big salmon person but these cakes might be a good foray into this ingredient! They look so perfectly crisped!

    1. I found that the canned salmon had a milder, less fishy flavor than fresh salmon, so maybe you'll like it better!

  3. the bones totally freak me out in canned salmon, as does the skin. but for these salmon cakes, i might have to give it another go ;)

    1. I think there are some brands that have boneless skinless salmon...although you'll probably have to pay more for it

  4. If only I didn't have this life-long aversion to fish, the cakes do look really good.

  5. I've never cooked with canned salmon but this makes it look very appealing!

  6. I rarely crave fish anymore but you've definitely triggered a salmon craving with these! They sound so crazy tasty!


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