Old fashioned salmon patties (salmon cakes) are a breeze to make! The tangy caper sauce with fresh herbs takes them over the top. Serve these baked salmon patties as an appetizer or main course—either way, you’re going to love them!
A few weeks ago, I ended up with a bunch of canned salmon thanks to an Instacart mix-up.
At first, I wondered what on earth I was going to do with it all. Then I remembered this recipe for old fashioned salmon patties that I used to make all the time.
They’re incredibly simple to make, but and they’re just as good for an easy weeknight dinner as they are for a special occasion (New Year’s Eve, anyone?). You can even throw them in a roll use them as salmon burgers!
I love the flavor that capers bring to this dish. They’re salty and tangy, perfect for cutting through the richness of fish. Along with fresh chives and dill, the capers really give these salmon cakes their distinctive flavor.
If you love my baked crab cakes, you’ll definitely want to give this baked salmon patties recipe a try!
- Simple Ingredients – This recipe uses canned salmon and other pantry staples, so it’s easy to throw together without a ton of planning
- Nutritious – Salmon is rich in protein and Omega-3s
- Quick – We always love 30-minute recipe!
To make these baked salmon patties, you’ll need some simple ingredients:
- Canned pink salmon. Canned salmon makes this recipe so easy, but leftover cooked salmon also works. In a pinch, you can also make frozen salmon in the air fryer.
- Dijon Mustard. I like to use a creamy style mustard for these (Maille Dijon is my favorite) but whatever you have in the fridge is fine. You’ll use this in both the salmon patties and in the sauce.
- Green onions. Add a little bit of sharp flavor to the salmon cakes. You can also use shallot or finely minced red onion.
- Panko breadcrumbs. For extra crunch on the outside and the perfect tender texture on the inside. You can also use whole wheat cracker crumbs, crushed saltine crackers, or a gluten-free option, like pork panko.
- Eggs. To hold it all together.
Sauce for baked salmon patties
I love serving this salmon patty recipe with a zippy herb and caper sauce.
Don’t be tempted to skip it. It packs a super flavorful punch! To make it, you’ll need:
- Apple cider vinegar. This has the perfect balance of sweet and tangy flavor. If you have it, tarragon vinegar is also lovely in this recipe!
- Chives. Fresh is best, but you can also use freeze dried chives.
- Dill. Again, I like to use fresh dill but dried dill is also great. You could also use fresh parsley.
- Olive Oil.
If you don’t have herbs to make the sauce, you can also top these salmon patties with hot sauce, sour cream, or tartar sauce.
How do I make salmon patties with canned salmon?
Step 1 – Mix the salmon and seasonings
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, mustard, and green onions. Stir in the breadcrumbs until fully incorporated.
Next, add the salmon and mash gently until everything is incorporated.
Depending on the brand of salmon you buy, you might see some skin or even bones in the can. Don’t worry about them — they’re very soft and will mash easily with your fork. They’re a great source of calcium and you won’t even notice them. Promise.
Step 2 – Chill
Refrigerate the salmon mixture for 30 minutes to help it firm up. This will make it easier to form into patties and will help prevent it from falling apart as it cooks.
Step 3 – Form the salmon patties
Divide the salmon mixture into 4 equal portions. You could also form these into 2 larger salmon burgers!
I like to use a 1/4 cup measuring cup to ensure each patty is the same size, then gently shape each portion into a patty. Dampening your hands will help keep the salmon from sticking to them as you do this!
Step 4 – Bake
Bake for 15-18 minutes at 450°F. The patties are done when the tops of the patties are golden brown and slightly crisp.
Step 5 – Make the Mustard Caper Sauce
Finally, mix up a delicious sauce for salmon patties by combining the vinegar, mustard, oil, chives, dill, and capers in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. It should be bright and tangy.
What about keto salmon patties?
Baked salmon patties are so easy to make keto or low carb! Just swap in your favorite low carb cracker crumbs in place of the panko bread crumbs. Pork panko also works really well.
How do you keep salmon Cakes from falling apart?
Often homemade salmon patties fall apart because they have too much liquid in them. This is why it’s important to drain your salmon if using canned salmon.
Adding breadcrumbs will help absorb moisture.
Another tip from keeping your salmon patties together is to put them in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes so they can chill and the breadcrumbs can absorb more moisture.
Can I fry Them?
Sure! I don’t always feel like turning the oven on either. You can fry these easy salmon patties over medium heat in a little olive oil or avocado oil for 3-4 minutes on each side.
What are capers?
Capers are the unopened flower buds of a Mediterranean plant that’s related to parsley. The buds are usually pickled in brine, giving them a bright, tangy flavor, similar to an olive.
Fresh capers can sometimes be found in specialty markets (and are absolutely delicious) but for this recipe, I use jarred capers that can be found near the olives in almost any grocery store.
What should I serve with Them?
I usually serve these with a leafy green salad, but they’re also great with rice, roasted vegetables, or french fries for a healthy meal.
Can I make these with canned tuna instead?
Yes! Tuna patties are also super delicious.
More delicious ways to eat salmon
- Air Fryer Salmon
- Salmon and Sweet Potato Sheet Pan Dinner
- Easy Lemon-Glazed Salmon
- Miso Salmon Salad
- Gluten-Free Salmon Skewers
- Smoked Salmon Fritatta
- Salmon en Manchamenteles
- Roast Salmon with Romesco Sauce and Pumpkin Grits
- Sriracha Salmon Salad
- Jerk Salmon Rice Bowls
Baked Salmon Patties with Mustard Caper Sauce
For the salmon patties:
- 1 egg plus 1 egg white beaten
- 1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 3 green onions thinly sliced
- ¼ cup panko bread crumbs
- 1 can wild pink salmon, drained 14.74 ounces
For the sauce:
- 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons minced fresh chives
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill
- 1 Tablespoon capers, drained
- Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
- fresh lemon wedges (optional, for serving)
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, mustard, and green onions. Stir in the bread crumbs until fully incorporated. Add the salmon and mash gently.
- Refrigerate the salmon mixture for 30 minutes to help it firm up.
- Preheat your oven to 450°F. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray.
- Divide the salmon mixture into 4 equal portions. Use damp hands to form each portion into a patty.
- Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until the tops of the patties are golden brown and slightly crisp.
- Meanwhile, prepare the sauce: Combine the vinegar, mustard, oil, chives, dill, and capers in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Serve the salmon patties with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and drizzle with sauce.