Salmon Cakes

This image courtesy of Shutterstock

Since we use a lot of salmon in the wine country, there always seem to be a few small pieces left over. I developed this recipe to take advantage of those tidbits. I often serve these cakes on a bed of savory salad greens and garnish them with a dollop of aioli or one of the other homemade mayonnaises. You’ll note that I call for the salmon to be both diced and finely chopped. This gives some texture to the finished cake.

NotesRecommended Wine

These meaty, succulent salmon cakes would be wonderful with a soft red or rose wine or a buttery Chardonnay.

Serves8 as an appetizer

Cooking MethodPan-frying


OccasionBuffet, Casual Dinner Party, Cocktail Party, Formal Dinner Party

Recipe CourseAppetizer, Main Course

Dietary ConsiderationLactose-free, Peanut Free, Soy Free, Tree Nut Free


Taste and TextureCrisp, Herby, Rich, Salty, Savory, Sweet, Tangy, Tart, Umami


  • 8 ounces fresh salmon filet, skinned and boned
  • 2 ounces fresh uncooked shrimp
  • 1 large egg white, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons finely diced red or yellow bell pepper, or a combination
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped green onion, both white and green parts
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
  • ½ teaspoon seeded and minced jalapeno chile
  • 2 teaspoons mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons rinsed and chopped capers
  • 1/3 cup panko or other coarse dry bread crumbs, plus additional for dredging
  • Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Olive oil for sautéing


  1. Divide the salmon in half. Cut half the salmon into ¼-inch dice and very finely chop the other half Cut the shrimp into ¼-inch dice. In a medium bowl, combine the diced salmon, chopped salmon, shrimp, egg white, bell pepper, green onion, lemon zest, chile, mayonnaise, capers, and the 1/3 cup bread crumbs. It should just hold together and at the same time not be too dense and heavy. Add more bread crumbs or mayonnaise if needed. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Divide the mixture and pat to form into 8 cakes no thicker than 1 inch. (The salmon cakes may be prepared in advance to this point. Store, uncovered, in the refrigerator for up to 4 hours.) Season more bread crumbs with salt and pepper and dredge the salmon cakes. In a large sauté pan, pour in olive oil to a depth of 1/8 inch. Heat the oil and sauté the cakes until golden brown, about 3 minutes per side.


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