Fresh Salmon Cakes Recipes (Quick and Easy)

Shannon Cairns

September 5, 2023


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If you have never tried fresh Salmon Cakes recipes (aka salmon croquettes), they are super simple to make at home! There’s no need to spend extra money to enjoy them at your local restaurant anymore after trying this easy salmon patties recipe!

hand holding fork taking a bite of salmon cake
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These salmon cakes are crispy on the outside and filled with flaky salmon on the inside. Chances are you will want to double or triple this recipe, as they disappear rather quickly.

You can make this recipe even faster by using leftover salmon from my Oven Baked Salmon Recipe. The fresh dill caper sauce is an over the top must have to dip these delicious salmon cakes in. It’s simply deliciousness in each bite.

Use this easy salmon patty recipe to make your own salmon burgers or simply serve them as is with a side salad! However you decide to enjoy these delicious fish cakes, they are sure to satisfy the taste buds without busting your budget.

overhead shot of salmon cake on serving platter with dill caper sauce and lemon
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Why You’ll Love Fresh Salmon Cakes Recipes

  • Similar to crab cakes, a nice batch of fresh salmon cakes can make a great appetizer or main course for the holiday season, cook out or any occasion!
  • This fresh salmon cakes recipe sounds complicated and fancy, but is actually quite easy to make…even on a busy weeknight.
  • Southern salmon patties are a great way to get the kids to try something new, even if they are not a huge fan of regular salmon fillets. The panko bread crumbs and garlic powder disguise the powerful salmon flavor and make this southern classic a great recipe even for picky eaters!
  • You can add a green vegetable or green salad to the side for a complete meal tonight, and then use the leftovers to serve on hamburger buns for salmon burgers the next night. Two meals in one, yay!

Supplies Needed

  • Large bowl
  • 2 forks 
  • Large skillet
  • Small bowl for dipping sauce
  • Olive oil
ingredients for salmon cake
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Ingredients for Fresh Salmon Cakes

  • cooked salmon: you can use wild alaskan salmon, atlantic salmon, pink salmon, wild-caught salmon or even canned salmon for this recipe. 
  • eggs
  • garlic
  • panko: you can also use crushed up saltine crackers or whatever bread crumbs you have on hand in the pantry.
  • lemon
  • dill
  • capers
ingredients for dill caper sauce
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Homemade Tartar Sauce / Dipping Sauce

  • Greek yogurt or sour cream
  • lemon juice
  • dill

How to Make Salmon Cakes

Step 1: In a large bowl, flake the salmon with two forks.

glass bowl with hand mixing salmon mixture
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Step 2: Next, fold in the eggs, garlic, panko, lemon zest and juice, dill and capers. If the mixture is wet, add more panko a little at a time, until you can shape into patties.

salmon cakes cooking in cast iron skillet
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Step 3: Divide the mixture into four cakes and press the mixture together into a compact round shape. Refrigerate the patties for 10-15 minutes so they hold their shape.

Step 4: Add a little olive oil and heat in a large skillet over medium-low heat. When hot, sear the salmon cakes for 4-5 minutes per side, until golden brown and heated through.

ingredients in glass bowl for dill caper sauce
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Step 5: While the salmon patties are cooking, whisk together the ingredients for the dill caper sauce in a small bowl.

Step 6: Serve your main dish with fresh lemon wedges and your favorite sides. Enjoy!

head on shot of salmon cakes plated with dollop of dill caper sauce
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I promise you won’t be able to get enough of this salmon cake recipe. Hands down, this is the best salmon cakes that I’ve ever made at home!


Can I make salmon cakes using canned salmon?

Yes! You can use the canned version of salmon instead of cooking it from scratch. Your salmon cakes will still have great flavor due to the remaining ingredients and seasonings. This can be a budget friendly option if money is tight. 

How to store Leftover Salmon patties?

Salmon cake recipes are easy to make ahead of time to serve on busy weeknights! You can also keep leftovers stored in an airtight container to serve the next day. For best results, refrigerate for no more than 3-4 days, or freeze in a freezer bag for up to 1 month. 

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Can I make crispy salmon cakes in the air fryer?

Absolutely, you can make fresh salmon cakes in an air fryer! Not only is this method quick and easy, but it also yields deliciously crispy salmon cakes with less oil than traditional frying methods, making it a healthier option.

How to make fresh salmon cakes in an air fryer

Air frying is an excellent way to enjoy fresh salmon cakes that are crispy on the outside and moist on the inside, all with the convenience and health benefits of using less oil. You can air fry your salmon cakes at around 375 degrees and cook for 10-12 minutes. Here is a really helpful recipe on making salmon cakes in the air fryer. So yes, the next time you’re in the mood for salmon cakes, feel free to give your air fryer a chance to shine!

Can I Bake Salmon Cakes Instead of Frying Them in a Skillet?

Absolutely, you can definitely bake salmon cakes as a healthier alternative to frying them in a skillet. Baking allows you to cook the salmon cakes more evenly without the need for added fats or oils, making them a lighter but still delicious option. This method is also less labor-intensive and frees up your stovetop for preparing other dishes.

How to Bake Salmon Cakes

Baking your salmon cakes offers a wonderful, healthy alternative to skillet frying, providing you with the same flavorful experience without the extra grease. You can bake salmon cakes for about 20-25 minutes at 400 degrees. Here is a really helpful recipe for baked salmon cakes. Go ahead and give your skillet a break the next time you’re in the mood for salmon cakes!

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Fresh salmon cakes offer a delightful culinary experience that marries health benefits with exquisite taste. They are not only a great source of high-quality protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and essential vitamins, but they also provide an easy and versatile dish that can suit almost any occasion. 

Whether you’re throwing together a quick weeknight dinner, planning an elegant dinner party, or simply seeking a new recipe to shake up your seafood routine, salmon cakes are an excellent choice. 

More easy weeknight seafood dinner ideas:

With this easy fresh salmon cakes recipe you will have the knowledge you need to throw together this delicious recipe in a snap!

The best part? This salmon cake recipe can be prepared and cooked in under 30 minutes, making them an accessible option for cooks of all levels.

Why settle for less when you can have the best? Reel in some fresh salmon and give this recipe a try—you won’t be disappointed!

Yield: 4

Salmon Cakes Recipe

Salmon Cakes Recipe
If you have never made Salmon Cakes, they are super simple to create at home! There’s no need to enjoy them at your local restaurant anymore after you make them.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes


  • 1 pound cooked salmon
  • (remaining from roasted salmon)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1⁄2 cup panko, plus more as needed
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 2 tablespoons minced dill
  • 2 tablespoons, capers drained
  • (optional)
  • 1-2 tablespoon olive oil, for
  • cooking
  • Sauce
  • 1⁄2 cup plain Greek yogurt or sour
  • cream
  • 1⁄2 - 1 lemon, juiced
  • 2 tablespoons minced dill
  • 1 tablespoon capers, drained
  • (optional)


    In a large bowl, flake the salmon with two forks. Fold in the eggs, garlic, panko, lemonzest, the juice from half the lemon, dill, and capers. If the mixture is very wet,
    add more panko, a little at time, until you can shape it into patties.
    Divide the mixture into four cakes and press together. If you like extra-crisp patties, dredge both sides in more panko to coat. Refrigerate the patties for 10-15 minutes.
    Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When hot, sear the salmon cakes for 4-5 minutes per side, until golden brown and warmed through.
    While they cook, whisk together the sauce ingredients in a bowl.


Serve with a side of rice or veggies.
Use leftover salmon from Sun/Mon meal.

Make DAIRY FREE: Use DF Yogurt for
breadcrumbs or homemade

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 448Total Fat: 27gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 19gCholesterol: 175mgSodium: 512mgCarbohydrates: 16gFiber: 2gSugar: 4gProtein: 34g

Did you make this recipe?

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hi! I'm shannon

I’m a wife, mom of three, doctor, and blogger! In 2018, I decided to turn my mom blog, into a personal finance blog so others could follow along on our journey to pay off over HALF a MILLION dollars in student loan and practice start up debt. I hope you enjoy following along, and maybe even find some inspiration along the way.