This Moist and Flaky Salmon Burger recipe will give you the best salmon burgers ever. You only need a few ingredients and dinner’s ready in minutes. This simple recipe features salmon filets, slaw mix, hamburger buns, and avocados. Use my easy slaw recipe or spice it up with your favourite toppings (lots of ideas below!).
What You Need:
- Salmon filets. As a west coaster, I prefer a salmon burger recipe with a whole piece of fish vs. a food processor burger mixture made with salmon chunks/canned salmon and breadcrumbs. Any type of salmon portions from the freezer are quick to thaw in a bowl of cool water for easy weeknight family meals, but of course fresh salmon is fantastic, too (Psst. if you love glazed salmon, you must also try my Honey Teriyaki Glazed Salmon and Cajun Honey Butter Salmon recipes). Skinless salmon is great, but harder to find. You can easily remove the skin after cooking (it just pulls right off) if you aren’t a fan.
- Toppings of choice. I like to start with slaw mix. A bag of slaw mix to the rescue. In this recipe, it saves lots of chopping for a lightening-fast burger topper. Simply stir it up with mayo, jalapeno and cumin seeds (or feel free to swap the cumin for some lime juice/lime zest or lemon juice/lemon zest). More topping ideas below.
- Burger buns. Feel free to use whatever you can get your hands on. I love soft potato rolls. You could even use a wrap.
How do you make salmon burgers not fall apart?
These 4 steps are the essential keys to avoiding salmon burgers tearing and falling apart (and they also earn you gorgeous grill marks).
- Preheat the grill. In order to accomplish a sear and prevent sticking, you need to start the grill and leave it closed for ten minutes. Don’t ignore that recipe step.
- Oil the grates with a paper towel dipped lightly in oil and use tongs to rub it on the preheated grates. Heat the grill, heat the oil, then cook the food.
- Pat dry the salmon. Moisture is the enemy to crisping. Also rubbing it with spices acts like flouring something before frying it – it basically gives us an excellent canvas for getting a perfect sear (which means easy removal).
- Leave it the heck alone! Don’t attempt to flip the fish until the skin releases easily from the grates. If you meet resistance, give it longer. When it’s ready to turn, it’ll do so without any resistance. You’ll cook it most of the way through with the skin-side down.
How to keep salmon burgers from drying out:
Nothing is sadder than dry, hard salmon, right? I’ve got the game-changing secrets for the moistest, juiciest fish ever, every single time.
- Pull the salmon from the fridge 30 minutes before cooking it. A room-temperature filet will cook evenly to the centre without overcooking at the edges.
- Use a thermometer (this is mine, cheap and reliable). Take the salmon off the grill when it reaches 125-130ºF (even if that means just a minute on the second side). It will continue cooking by carry-over cooking and you’ll be rewarded with the juiciest, flakiest salmon you’ve ever had.
- Rest the salmon after cooking it (just as you should a steak or any meat). This allows the juices to redistribute for perfect, flaky texture.
Are salmon burgers healthy?
Salmon is a great source of protein, and is packed full of Omega-3 fatty acids. These Omega-3s are great for your heart, and are super health promoting. Along with the salad and avocados (or avocado crema)these salmon burgers are an amazing source of protein and vegetables which are packed full of nutrients. Try using whole wheat or multigrain hamburger buns to add more fibre and grains.
What other toppings can go on salmon burgers?
- Classic burger toppings: Mayo, lettuce, tomatoes, red onions
- Mexican-Inspired toppings: Guacamole, pico de gallo, Mexican-spice rubbed salmon
- Salads: Use your favourite bagged salad to make a more versatile burger
- Grilled Vegetables: Since you may have your grill out for this recipe anyways, throw a few vegetables on the grill such as peppers or zucchinis
- Cheese: Add your favourite cheese
- Sauce it up: Try adding a fresh dill aioli, dijon mustard or tzatziki sauce
Looking for more burger recipes?
Best-Ever Salmon Burgers with Jalapeno Slaw
- 4 salmon filet portions thawed if frozen
- 2 tsp Mexican-style chili powder
- kosher salt
- 1 tbsp avocado oil (or other high-heat cooking oil)
- 2 cups packaged slaw mix
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- ½ – 1 whole jalapeno (depending on heat preference), minced
- ½ tsp cumin seeds toasted
- 1 ripe avocado sliced
- 4 hamburger buns toasted if desired
- Preheat the grill on medium for 10 minutes, or preheat your favourite skillet or pan on medium.
- Meanwhile, pat the salmon dry with paper towels and rub with the chili powder and ½ tsp salt.
- Oil the cooking grates and place salmon skin-side down over direct heat. Close grill and cook for about 3 minutes.
- When salmon lifts easily from the grates, it’s properly seared. Flip salmon and continue cooking until it reaches 125-130ºF internal temperature (1-3 minutes more, depending on fish thickness and your grill). Transfer salmon to a plate and cover it to rest.
- Combine the slaw mix with the mayo, jalapeno, cumin seeds and about ⅓ tsp more salt.
- Slice the buns in half crosswise and add a salmon portion to one side. Top with avocado slices and slaw mixture.
Last Updated on June 13, 2023 by Jennifer Pallian BSc, RD