Healthy Salmon Cakes With Homemade Tartar Sauce
Healthy Salmon Cakes are not your mother’s salmon cakes. They have been updated with delicious ingredients like sauteed onions and peppers as well as fresh herbs. Then they are air fried so the outside is crispy and the inside stays luscious and moist! Serve these salmon cakes with homemade tartar sauce that takes minutes to whip up.
I grew up on salmon cakes. So I can honestly say that these Air Fryer Salmon Cakes aren’t your mother’s salmon cakes. I loved my mom’s recipes but these are filled with extra flavor and then air fried for a healthy, crispy outside and tender inside! They are so easy to make and I usually have everything on hand to make them! This is a must-try recipe!
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WHAT ARE SALMON CAKES?
Salmon cakes are the salmon cousin to the crab cake. They are filled with salmon and other yummy ingredients like sauteed onions and pepper and mayonnaise and lemon and more to give them great flavor. And they are held together with bread crumbs and an egg.
These cakes are traditionally pan fried for a crispy outside while the insides stay soft and warm.
I’ve make salmon cakes for decades this way. And they are delicious! But pan frying made them, like most pan fried food, high in calories! They were a big treat in our home!
Now I use an Air Fryer and they are just as delicious as the pan-fried kind but a whole lot healthier. And so less messy to clean up.
TIPS FOR SUCCESSFUL AIR FRYER SALMON CAKES
If you are new to Air Fryer cooking then these tip will help almost any Air Fryer food be more successful.
- always preheat an Air Fryer- most Air Fryers have a built-in preheat time
- use a high heat neutral oil like canola, corn or safflower oil
- put the oil in a mister like a Misto (see it here)
- don’t use aerosol cooking spray because there are harmful agents in the spray that might damage the Air Fryer
- food will continue to cook just like to does in an oven so let it rest for a couple minutes
You can see my AIR FRYER HERE.
CANNED OR FRESH COOKED SALMON
I’ve used both canned and fresh cooked salmon for my salmon cakes. Because I use red salmon the flavor and mouth feel of the salmon is about the same as using fresh cooked Sockeye salmon.
But pink salmon works just as well. Just to note, canned salmon is already cooked.
When I cook fresh salmon and have leftovers I put it in a container and freeze it and keep adding to it until I have enough for salmon cakes.So use either/or or both.
TIPS FOR MAKING THIS RECIPE
I’m using canned salmon for this recipe but if you choose to use fresh cooked then just skip over this first part.
Open and drain the liquid off of the salmon and put it into a large bowl.
You can remove the skin and the bones if you like, but I mash them up with the salmon. In the skin and bones are very things like calcium and omegas. And we all need that.
The bones crush easily. Just mash the salmon up well.
Add all the ingredients in the bowl and mix well.
The salmon mixture will look like this…
I use a 1/2 cup measure to scoop out the salmon and then use my hands to form the mixture into patties. I can get 5 patties from a 14.7 oz can of salmon.
Most importantly, make the tartar sauce. It is such an easy recipe and makes a huge difference in the way the overall salmon cake tastes!
IDEAS FOR SERVING SALMON CAKES
Salmon cakes are so versatile! They can be served with what you would serve with crab cakes. Coleslaw is a classic side to serve with salmon cakes.
Here is a recipes for THE BEST COLESLAW. It is really that good!
Air Fryer salmon cakes can be served on a bun with lettuce, tomato and tartar sauce. YUM!
Add a salmon cake to the top of a salad to make a beautiful presentation and meal!
Salmon cakes can be eater hot or at room temperature.
LET’S MAKE SALMON CAKES
HEALTHY AND DELICIOUS AIR FRYER SALMON CAKES
- 2 tsp cooking oil
- 1/3 cup finely chopped onions
- 1/3 cup finely chopped sweet peppers
- 1 14.75 oz can of salmon, red or pink drained
- 1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 1 TBS parsley or dill, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 3 dashes hot sauce optional
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 2-3 TBS relish or finely chopped pickles
- 1 1/2 TBS very finely minced onions
- 2 TBS lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- SALMON CAKE INSTRUCTIONS
- In a medium-size frying pan heat 2 tsps oil over medium heat.
- Add onions and sweet pepper to the oil and sauté, lowering heat until the onions and peppers are soft and translucent, about 4-5 minutes. Do not brown.
- Remove from the heat and cool.
- In a large bowl add drained salmon and mash the salmon paying attention to the skin and bones. They should be completely mashed and incorporated. You can mash the bones between your thumb and forefinger.
- Add the onion and peppers, breadcrumbs, egg, parsley, mayonnaise, salt, pepper and hot sauce to the bowl and mix well.
- Scoop out 1/2 cup of the salmon mixture and form into a patty. Do the same from remaining salmon. Set aside.
- Preheat the Air Fryer to 390 degrees and set for 8 minutes.
- When the Air Fryer is preheated spray the basket with oil from a mister. Spray the top of the salmon cakes with oil too.
- Spread out the salmon cakes in the basket of the Air Fryer and cook for 8 minutes, turning and spraying the tops with oil halfway through.
- When the salmon cakes are done, remove them from the Air Fryer and plate. Top with a dollop of tartar sauce and sprinkle with finely chopped parsley or dill.
TARTAR SAUCE INSTRUCTIONS
- Combine the mayonnaise, relish, onions and lemon in a medium bowl and mix.
- Serve on top of the salmon cakes or put the tartar sauce in a bowl and let people serve themselves.
This recipes is a big family favorite! I hope you will share it with your family too!
Yvonne, sounds delicious. If you use fresh salmon, do you air fry it alone first, and then smash and add ingredients, and then air fry again??? Thanks!
Hi Tamara, when I cook salmon for dinner and have leftovers I keep the leftovers in a container in the freezer. When I have enough to make salmon cakes I thaw the salmon and make the cakes. There are instructions in the post. I hope you will try these scrumptious Air Fryer salmon cakes. They are really delicious.
My mother used to make salmon cakes! I don’t know why but I’ve never made them. I plan to try your recipe. Could you tell me which air fryer you purchased? I’m considering getting one myself. Like everything else, there are dozens to choose from. Thank you!
I love my Air Fryer. You can see it here:https://rstyle.me/+Omu7ACvZxkg2mVz4UUA62g
Thank you Yvonne for this recipe. I purchased an air fryer and am compiling recipes. My husband and I love salmon. Keep your air fryer recipes coming.
I love my Air Fryer too! Yes, I’ll be sharing these kinds of recipes.
Could you give nutrition info for salmon cakes please?
Hi Cindy, I don’t have that. Sorry!
We loved them! So much lighter than my old recipe
Hearing this makes me so happy!
How would you cook these if you don’t have an air fryer?
I’d pan fry them in a little oil.
Outstanding!!! I’ve been making salmon patties for 50 years, but never used such a delicious recipe! Thank you for sharing this, Yvonne.
Oh, Susan! I’m thrilled you liked them so much. Thanks for sharing your opinion!