Salmon Cakes

posted in: Recipes, Seafood | 12


They say that good, fresh fish should be served simple, with little preparation. I guess they haven’t tried these yet. It’s like the perfectly seasoned seared salmon fillet in one light, fluffy, flaky cake. The picture doesn’t do it much justice, I’ll admit, so you’ll just have to take my word for it.

Even though these pan-fried little cakes probably could have done a decent job at masking canned or frozen salmon, we used good, fresh fish for the Clown Gospel Brunch. It was that much better. With the basic ingredients there’s always some give or take, and since I’ve never measured, they’re only estimates. The part I most enjoyed about the end result was having a range of chunkiness in the fish, from soft walnut-sized, flaky chunks to a smooth, pureed, fried fish mousse. Yum.

Salmon Cakes
(makes about 8-10 cakes)

1 1/2 lb fresh salmon, partially food-processed or mashed so that there are still chunks
1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs
2/3 cup mayonnaise
1 bunch scallions, chopped
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp soy sauce
½ tsp black pepper
Juice of one lemon
1 Tb fresh parsley or dill (optional)
Olive oil to coat the bottom of a pan
Optional serving sauce: mayonnaise mixed with Tabasco sauce and a bit of ketchup

Cut salmon into large chunks and pulse in a food processor for about 1 minute or to desired chunkiness. (If your processor is anything like the one I used, you’ll have a lot of fish chunks on the top and pureed fish on the bottom. This is fine.) Break up the larger pieces a bit with a wooden spoon (or your hands). In a large bowl, mix all the other ingredients first. Stir in fish and completely mix. Heat up oil in a large saucepan. Place a loose handful or large spoonful of fish mixture onto grill at a time (no need to firmly pack balls in your hands). Cook until nicely browned on one side and flip. Brown other side, and remove from pan. Place on top of a dollop of sauce and serve with a wedge of lemon.

Cost Calculator:
(for about 8-10 servings)

1 1/2 lb fresh salmon (varies greatly, but averaged we’ll say): $20
1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs: $0.35
2/3 cup mayonnaise: $0.50
1 bunch scallions: $0.69
1 lemon: $0.33
1 Tb fresh parsley: $0.15
Salt, pepper, 1 tsp soy sauce, olive oil: $0.25

Total: $22.27

Health Factor:

Four brownie points: for a snack that satisfies your crispy fried tooth, this one has plenty of merits. Fresh fish, greens and lemon spell vitamins galore (not to mention flavor), and with a light olive oil fry base you’ll never miss the butter. It’s not the healthiest way to eat salmon, already one of the fattier fishes, with all the mayonnaise, but it may be one of the tastiest.

12 Responses

  1. Deborah Dowd

    Okay, salmon cakes are a reason I didn’t eat salmon until a few years ago. My mom used to make salmon cakes from canned salmon and I hated those little soft round bones that were in the salmon. I think using fresh (I love salmon now!) would make these worth a try- they look really delicious!

  2. Yvo

    That sounds fantastic.

  3. lisa

    These were EXCELLENT. The mayo-ketchup-tabasco sauce was really good too. Definitely going into the recipe file, thank you.

    Signed, another New Yorker who doesn’t eat out, although it’s a lot easier in the North Bronx where there aren’t really any good places to eat in the first place.

  4. Miriam

    I made them tonight and they were fabulous. Thanks. The recipe is making the rounds on the food thread at and I’m not the only person raving.

  5. Renee

    Loved the Salmon Cakes…only one problem. Some of them fell apart. Is that because I made the mixture one hour before (held out the scallions till ready to cut and use so they didnt get that “soapy” taste) and chilled it. Any suggestions?

  6. Nadia

    I usually make my salmon cakes with the canned variety, but the food coop has that great fresh wild salmon lately, and it’s not that expensive, so I might just try this recipe, it looks good!

  7. CY

    Just curious…is the salmon raw or cooked in the initial step?

  8. Steve

    These look great and I will try them but I am also wondering …the salmon….is it raw when u start? If so ….if ya brown just the outside…is it intended to be raw in the middle when u eat it?


  9. Lisa

    I’d like to know if the salmon is raw or cooked, too. My recipe uses canned salmon and only needs to be cooked until brown and crispy (8-10 minutes). My guess would be that the fish wouldn’t be sufficiently cooked if it started out raw.

  10. Cottage cheese recipes

    Cottage cheese recipes…

    […]Salmon Cakes » Not Eating Out in New York[…]…

  11. Jenny laus

    Les pneus neige sont obligatoire en Suisse.
    Dés que l’hiver pointe son nez, changez vos pneus

Leave a Reply