Salmon Burgers

I went to Manhattan for an appointment today on a day off, and stopped by the market on the way home to get some apples and pears. I needed a fuss free dinner idea that didn’t involve having to get any meat which I didn’t want to take on the train home. No problem, it’s the perfect time to make salmon cakes!

So, I also picked up a 5 ounce can of wild caught pink salmon that is skinless and boneless, a lemon and some fresh parsley. I also got some Idaho potatoes.

You can of course, serve salmon burgers as a burger, with a bun slathered in mayo and topped with lettuce, a slice of tomato and sliced onion. However, I really like to eat these with mashed potatoes on the side.

If you feel like making mashed potatoes might be too much work, or that it’s too heavy, you can always just boil some potatoes. Peel one or two Yukon gold potatoes, cut into chunks and simmer in salted water about 10 minutes until tender. Toss in butter and chopped parsley.

For the vegetable, sometimes I’ll boil some broccoli or sauté some greens to serve alongside. A nice shortcut is to trim some green beans and toss them into the pot of simmering potatoes when there is about 5 – 7 minutes of cooking time left. The green beans cook right along with the potatoes and when tender you just drain the whole pot, toss with butter and season with a little salt and pepper, and you have your starch and veg in one shot.

I like to top the salmon burgers with a simple tartar sauce made with mayo and sweet pickle relish. If you want, you can plan ahead and boil an extra potato cut into chunks, then reserve and let cool. When cool, you can toss the cooked potato in extra tartar sauce, place in a covered bowl in the fridge, and you have a small potato salad ready for dinner the next day. When you’re cooking for yourself, you really appreciate it the next day when you’ve done a little thinking ahead.

The salmon burger mixture is made with an egg, some bread crumbs, chopped parsley, minced garlic, lemon juice and salt and pepper. The minced garlic is a very important component in flavoring the burger.

One egg makes a moist mixture of one 5 ounce can of salmon, which can be a little dry, but if you use a very large egg the mixture might become too wet. Whisk up the egg in a small bowl separately before you add it to the mixture if you’re not sure, using just enough of the beaten egg to bind the mixture and then discarding the rest of the egg.

This recipe makes two burgers about an inch thick, which is one serving for me when served with potatoes. If you only eat one of the burgers, you can keep the second cooked burger on a plate and wrapped in plastic wrap in the fridge for one day. Just heat it up for 5 to 10 minutes in a 350 degree Fahrenheit oven or toaster oven.

Salmon Burger

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 30 minutes
  • Servings: 1

1/4 cup mayonnaise

2 Tbsp sweet pickle relish

2 tsp lemon juice

1 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley

1 clove garlic, minced

1/8 tsp salt

Several grinds of black pepper

3 Tbsp plain breadcrumbs

1 egg, slightly beaten

One 5 oz. can pink salmon, boneless and skinless

3 Tbsp safflower or vegetable oil


In a small bowl mix together the mayonnaise and pickle relish. Set aside.

In another bowl mix together the lemon juice, parsley, garlic, salt, black pepper, bread crumbs and egg. Stir in the drained and flaked salmon.

Salmon burger mixture

Form into two burgers, each about an inch thick.

Heat oil over medium heat in a large non-stick skillet. Add the burgers and cook about 5 minutes on each side, until golden brown and heated through.

Serve on a burger bun with lettuce, tomato and onion, or with potatoes whether mashed or boiled. Don’t forget a side salad or cooked vegetable like green beans or broccoli.

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