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Salmon Patties (gluten-free, paleo)

These salmon patties (salmon cakes) are incredibly moist, delicious and flavorful – they’re also gluten-free and paleo. I’ve made them with fresh salmon, but you could also use canned salmon for a quick and easy weeknight dinner.

Salmon patties are a deliciously healthy dinner recipe. They're incredibly moist and flavorful and also gluten-free and paleo. I used fresh salmon, but you could use canned salmon as well. #SalmonPatties #HealthyDinnerRecipes #GlutenFreeRecipes #PaleoRecipes #SalmonRecipes

While I love many different types of fish (especially halibut and tuna), salmon is hands down my favorite and the one I eat most frequently. I usually just bake salmon in the oven (easy peasy), but to keep things interesting I’m always dreaming up new and creative ways to enjoy it.

Now, let’s be very clear that salmon patties (also known as salmon cakes) are not new, nor creative, by any means. I mean, I had salmon patties as a kid. But in all honesty, I haven’t had a non-breadcrumb, gluten-free, paleo salmon patty since going gluten-free nearly 6 years ago. And one that tastes this darn amazing. Ever!

Watch this quick video of my Salmon Patties recipe:

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Which Type of Salmon Should You Use for Salmon Patties?

I’ve made this salmon patty recipe with fresh, wild caught salmon – and I feel the flavor enhancement is worth the splurge. But I also totally understand substituting canned salmon if it’s a weeknight and you want a quick, healthy meal to throw together.

When I first made this recipe I used King Salmon – and oh my word. I’d forgotten how indulgent King Salmon is. King Salmon is the highest in Omega-3’s and usually the most expensive salmon you’ll find at the fish monger. It’s thick, moist and buttery smooth texture makes it feel like you’re eating dessert, rather than dinner. It also means your salmon patties are naturally tender and moist inside. A splurge for sure.

Salmon patties are a deliciously healthy dinner recipe. They're incredibly moist and flavorful and also gluten-free and paleo. I used fresh salmon, but you could use canned salmon as well. #SalmonPatties #HealthyDinnerRecipes #GlutenFreeRecipes #PaleoRecipes #SalmonRecipes

Salmon patties are a deliciously healthy dinner recipe. They're incredibly moist and flavorful and also gluten-free and paleo. I used fresh salmon, but you could use canned salmon as well. #SalmonPatties #HealthyDinnerRecipes #GlutenFreeRecipes #PaleoRecipes #SalmonRecipes

But I’d probably recommend using Coho or Sockeye Salmon in this recipe, for a standard home-cooked dinner. It’s a bit cheaper, flavorful, light and flakey. And still packed with tons of healthy Omega-3 benefits.

If you opt for canned salmon, look for wild Alaskan salmon and avoid Atlantic Salmon, which is full of pollutants, antibiotics and other toxins. My favorite brand of canned salmon is Wild Planet and it’s sustainably caught in Alaskan waters.

Salmon patties are a deliciously healthy dinner recipe. They're incredibly moist and flavorful and also gluten-free and paleo. I used fresh salmon, but you could use canned salmon as well. #SalmonPatties #HealthyDinnerRecipes #GlutenFreeRecipes #PaleoRecipes #SalmonRecipes

Salmon patties are a deliciously healthy dinner recipe. They're incredibly moist and flavorful and also gluten-free and paleo. I used fresh salmon, but you could use canned salmon as well. #SalmonPatties #HealthyDinnerRecipes #GlutenFreeRecipes #PaleoRecipes #SalmonRecipes

How to Make Salmon Patties

As I’m sure you’ve gathered, there’s no breadcrumbs in this recipe. I do use a little bit of almond flour, but it doesn’t overpower the salmon flavor the way I feel breadcrumbs do in a traditional salmon patty recipe. If I’m making salmon patties, I surely want it to taste like salmon and not bread.

So you’ll bake up a pound or so of salmon and while that’s baking dice an onion and red bell pepper. You can use any color, I just like the vibrancy of the red bell pepper. Then, sauté both of those in a little olive oil until translucent and tender and let cool.

Salmon patties are a deliciously healthy dinner recipe. They're incredibly moist and flavorful and also gluten-free and paleo. I used fresh salmon, but you could use canned salmon as well. #SalmonPatties #HealthyDinnerRecipes #GlutenFreeRecipes #PaleoRecipes #SalmonRecipes

Once your salmon, onion and bell pepper have cooled, add them to a bowl along with some almond almond flour, mayo, dijon mustard, garlic, an egg, fresh parsley and fresh dill. Use your hands to mix everything together and form little patties. Don’t go big on these as they’ll be harder to flip and will break apart.

Then, heat some olive oil or avocado oil in a saute pan and cook them in batches, for about 4-5 minutes each side or until golden.

I served mine up with a very simple lemon dill mayonnaise (using my homemade mayonnaise recipe as the base). But feel free to serve with your favorite sauce or aioli.

For more fresh seafood recipes, make sure to check out my Dijon Baked SalmonCitrus Shrimp Ceviche, Roasted Branzino with Citrus Pesto, Zucchini Pasta with Lemon Garlic Shrimp, Baked Halibut with Herbed Mayonnaise Crust and Grilled Albacore with Citrus Ginger Sauce.

Enjoy!

Salmon patties are a deliciously healthy dinner recipe. They're incredibly moist and flavorful and also gluten-free and paleo. I used fresh salmon, but you could use canned salmon as well. #SalmonPatties #HealthyDinnerRecipes #GlutenFreeRecipes #PaleoRecipes #SalmonRecipes

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Salmon Patties (gluten-free, paleo)

These salmon patties (also known as salmon cakes) are incredibly moist and flavorful. They’re also gluten-free and paleo. I used fresh salmon, but you could use canned salmon as well. Read the notes below for more information.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound fresh salmon
  • 1/3 cup olive oil (divided)
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely diced
  • 1-2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 tbsp homemade mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/3 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp fresh dill, finely chopped
  • salt and pepper

Lemon Dill Mayonnaise (optional)

  • 1 cup homemade mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp fresh dill, finely chopped
  • 1/2 lemon, zested and juiced
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees fahrenheit.
  2. Drizzle the salmon with a tablespoon of olive oil and generously season with salt and pepper. Cook for 10-13 minutes, or until just cooked through.
  3. While the salmon is cooking, dice the onion and bell pepper and chop the fresh dill and parsley.
  4. Remove the salmon from the oven and cool in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes.
  5. While the salmon is cooling, add one tablespoon of olive oil to a large pan and sauté the onion and bell pepper for 6-8 minutes, or until soft and translucent. Remove from the heat and let cool.
  6. Use your hands to flake the cooled salmon (removing the skin) into a large mixing bowl. Add the cooled onion and bell pepper along with the dill, parsley, mayonnaise, mustard, garlic, almond flour and eggs. Combine all ingredients with your hands until well mixed.
  7. Form the salmon mixture into small patties with your hands and place them to the side.
  8. Heat several tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan on medium heat and cook the salmon patties for 3-4 minutes on each side. Remove the salmon patties to a paper towel lined plate.
  9. Serve the salmon patties with the lemon dill mayonnaise.

Lemon Dill Mayonnaise

  1. Add all ingredients to a small mixing bowl and stir to combine.

Lisa's Tips

King Salmon has a high oil content and is naturally a more moist fish. You may only need one beaten egg if using King Salmon.

Canned Salmon can be dryer than using fresh salmon. You may want to double the amount of mayonnaise, to 1/4 cup, to keep your salmon patties nice and moist.

I’ve made a large batch of these for meal prep and they’re delicious. They freeze and reheat beautifully.

Nutrition Information

Yield: 10 salmon patties, Serving Size: 2 patties

  • Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories: 420
  • Total Fat: 33.2g
  • Saturated Fat: 4.6g
  • Cholesterol: 134.8mg
  • Sodium: 194mg
  • Carbohydrates: 6.3g
  • Fiber: 2.1g
  • Sugar: 2.5g
  • Protein: 25.6g
All images and text ©Lisa Bryan for Downshiftology

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61 comments on “Salmon Patties (gluten-free, paleo)”

  1. Looks amazing!
    It seems like the 1/3 oil is only use for pan frying/sauteeing rather than in the salmon cake mixture – is that right?
    Also, would chickpea flour work as well you think?

    Thanks!

  2. Being Celiac it is sometimes hard to find really good recipes especially salmon or crab cakes.  We made this recipe tonight with fresh Coho Salmon and it was simply amazing. The patties were so tasty.  I added garlic to the sauce which added a nice favour. Thank you. Debbie

    Rating: 5
  3. How do you freeze and reheat these? My patties turned into a hash this time. Was going out them in freezer ziploc bags but wasn’t sure the best way to reheat? Thaw on counter and zap in microwave? 

    Rating: 5
    • I cook them, let them cool a bit then place on a piece of parchment paper in a storage container. If I’m stacking them, I’ll just place parchment paper in between the layers. To reheat, put them on a plate and microwave. Also, if your patties turned into more of a hash, just add one more egg to bind them and you’ll be good! :)

  4. These came out amazing!However pricey if I want to do them for meal prep. Do you think I could use Tuna in a can and/or Salmon in a can to change it up and lessen the cost? King Salmon is nearly $20 a lb. I also used gf oat flour for my flour with the king salmon. They were super yummy.

    Rating: 5
  5. Loved it! Mine were falling apart but I didn’t care— delicious! I might swap out almond float for oat flour next and see if that will hold them a little better. 

    Rating: 5
  6. Thanks so much for this recipe! Made it tonight, both husband & I loved it. We’re getting a little bored w/ plain salmon & this was a pleasant & yummy change of pace. The cakes are flavorful on their own & decadent w/ the rich mayo sauce. Will definitely be making again.

    Just wondering, when you freeze (or refrigerate?) extras, do you pan fry them first and then freeze them? and thaw & pan fry again to reheat? or do you freeze them w/o cooking first?

    • Wonderful! Glad you both enjoyed the recipe. And I cook them completely, then freeze. So all I have to do is warm them up quickly to enjoy. But I’m sure you could freeze them as uncooked patties, thaw, and cook as well. :)

  7. I made this the other week. I was looking for something portable to take to work for lunch and this was amazing. Tasted great and easy to prepare. Will definitely make again!

    Rating: 5
  8. This recipe looks great! I want to try it with canned salmon as we already eat fresh salmon a couple of times a week. How many cans would be required? Thank you :)

  9. I froze some but what is the best way to reheat? Did you just place 2 frozen patties in the microwave or did you reheat in the oven, if so, what temp for how long? did you let them thaw first?

  10. Could one use gf oat flour or mixed gf pancake flour instead of almond flour? I always have these flours on hand, but not so much almond. And, what do you think if I switched out the bell peppers for celery or scallions? I am not a huge bell pepper fan.

    Looks scrumptious. Would like to make for Mother’s day bbq. :)

  11. Made these yesterday with my daughter.  Served them with poached eggs and tender stem broccoli. It was funny watching my son and husband argue about having the last patty!  My son asked to me this morning when will we have it again.  I used the tinned salmon as I had those on hand, will definitely make them with fresh salmon.  I can’t stand shop bought fish cakes and it is usually full of potatoes. So these, much appreciated and enjoyed.

    Rating: 5
  12. Looks great, thanks for sharing. If I were to bake these instead of frying, would you recommend cooking the salmon then the cakes, or everything all at once?

  13. Oh these look so good! (I wish I could eat from the sea) I will definitely share these with my husband so he can make them for dinner. Poor guy loves seafood, but I cannot make it for him

    Rating: 5
  14. That king salmon fillet looks beautiful! But for a weeknight dinner I’ll take your advice and go for the more basic wild salmon. Though I would definitely make that mayonnaise sauce. Yum! These would be great to pull out of the freezer for quick lunches.

    Rating: 5
  15. That lemon dill mayo sounds heavenly! And that texture of the salmon patties… WOW! Perfect!

    Rating: 5
  16. This has now been added to my menu plan for the week!  Fresh (or organic) salmon are ubiquitous here in Stockholm — mostly from Norway. :- ) I normally use breadcrumbs when I make these patties, though. I cannot wait to try them with your recipe!  

    Rating: 5
  17. Great video! I’ve only made salmon patties from canned salmon (like my Mom used to make). These look so much fresher and healthier.

    Rating: 5
  18. Hi,

    I read one of the comments that you sometimes freeze them and reheat. Did you freeze them after you cook them or before?

    Thanks!!

  19. I’ve already made it several times. It became a staple recipe in our house. My husband loves it!Thank you very much!

    Rating: 5
  20. Excellent. We love fish and salmon particularly, this was the BEST!Leftovers from a whole salmon cooked Scandinavian style for Christmas, and this was a “leftover” meal that hit it out of the park! Used a large muffin pan with spray oil and put spoonfuls into each well, didn’t smash or pat them down at all-really great texture and held together. I did use lemon zest in the mix and juice on top when serving. 

    Rating: 5
  21. oh my goodness…I just made these and they are amazing! Thank you so much. I am on Whole30 and this is such a pleasant change of pace. I even made them with canned salmon, so can’t wait to try with fresh. I couldn’t use the dijon because of the wine in it so put in a squirt of yellow mustard and they still were amazing. I’m sure even better with dijon. 5 stars!

  22. These salmon patties look fantastic. Great gluten free recipe!

  23. They sound superb, I love fish cakes and often use different types of fish, mackerel being my absolute favourite.

  24. My family love salmon! We usually buy salmon patties from the store! Sure, your recipe tastes better and healthier than store bought patties.

  25. Yes, this is definitely a nostalgic childhood dish for me! Love your recipe.

  26. oh, I love how you used almond flour in it!

  27. I have never used avocado oil before, does it have a high smoke content? I always wondered.

  28. Could I shorten the recipe with correct measurements? I don’t think I will need 10 patties, and I certainly do not want to waste anything!
    Thank you.

    Also, love the blog. Delicious recipes and wonderful content!

    • Thanks so much Caroline! Yes, you could easily cut the recipe in half. Or, you could make the whole recipe and freeze the leftover salmon patties. That’s what I did last week and just reheated two for lunch – they were delicious! :)

  29. These look delicious. Thanks for the video. I enjoy learning by watching!