by Olena

Healthy Salmon Burgers

Olena Osipov
5 from 7 votes

Juicy Salmon Burgers with simple ingredients and pan fried until golden. Serve on a bun, with mango slaw or freeze for later. Your kids will lick the plates!

Salmon Burgers

Salmon Burger Recipe

We usually buy salmon burgers at Costco. I love that they are made with wild salmon but don’t love the canola oil on the ingredients list. And I can tell they are really fried in oil. But I rely on them as “an emergency” food.

The best part about homemade burgers is that you have control over the ingredients. Because burgers are not an unhealthy dinner at all. In fact, quite the opposite. I replace breadcrumbs with one secret ingredient that will surprise you but you probably have it on hand. It makes salmon burgers juicy, meaty and affordable. 🙂

Ingredients You Will Need

Now. One secret ingredient replaces breadcrumbs to make this salmon burger recipe gluten free and meat go further. We all can agree that salmon is expensive.

  • Red lentils. They are same orange color and you can barely taste lentils, I promise. Your kids will not notice but will lick the plates. Not to mention extra fiber and nutrients they add to a burger.
  • Salmon: I recommend to buy wild salmon. I know it’s not cheap. See, that’s why red lentils come to the rescue. I used sockeye salmon. Use any wild species like pink (the cheapest one), coho, spring etc. Avoid farmed Atlantic salmon. Yes, if you see “Atlantic” on the package, it is farmed.
  • Egg, onion, garlic and simple spices.

salmon burger on a plate served over coleslaw

How to Make Salmon Burgers

  • Cook red lentils after they reach boiling point for 10 minutes. They tend not to hold their shape which is perfect to act as “a glue” for our meat. You
  • Grind salmon fillet, onion and garlic in a food processor. You do not want fish to become a complete mush. Process until small chunks.
  • Combine all ingredients in a bowl and form patties. Pack 1/2 cup measuring cup with salmon mixture, using your hands form into a patty. Salmon burgers are delicate so handle them gently. I like to form a patty and place it on a skillet right away.
  • Cook burgers. Make sure your skillet and oil in it are well pre-heated. Place salmon patty carefully on a skillet and cook for 4 minutes per side. Burgers are ready when you press on the middle of a patty and it feels firm.

how to make salmon burgers step by stephow to make salmon burgerssalmon burgers and slaw

Tips for Best Salmon Burgers

  • If you don’t have a food processor, you can chop salmon finely. And mince garlic and onion.
  • I kept the skin on but you can remove it from a fillet with a sharp knife. You will not feel or taste it in burgers much though.
  • I’m pretty sure you could grill salmon burgers if you handle them gently, clean and oil grill well or use grilling silicone mat.
  • I have not tried to replace lentils with another ingredient. You might try adding about 1 cup of breadcrumbs.

How to Serve, Freeze and Reheat Burgers

To serve, place warm salmon patty on a bun or lettuce leaves and top with mango slaw. Or serve “naked”. Other fun and tasty topping ideas would be salsa guacamole, healthy ranch dressing or healthy bbq sauce.

You can freeze burgers raw or cooked. To freeze burgers cooked or uncooked, place patties on a baking sheet, freeze completely and then transfer to a resealable bag. Salmon burgers are delicate.

To cook any patties from frozen, add them to a skillet with a splash of water and cover. Cook raw burgers as per recipe adding a few minutes per side and pre-cooked burgers a few minutes less. Remove the lid and let them brown. When cooking salmon burgers – it is mostly a judgement call. If the center is firm when pressed on it – burgers are ready.

More Healthy Burger Recipes

Salmon Burgers on white plate

salmon burger

Salmon Burgers

Juicy Salmon Burgers with simple ingredients and pan fried until golden. Serve on a bun, with mango slaw or freeze for later. Your kids will lick the plates!
5 from 7 votes
Print Save Rate
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American Ukrainian
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 10 patties
Calories: 198kcal
Author: Olena Osipov


  • 1/2 cup red lentils uncooked
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 lbs salmon fillet cubed
  • 1 medium onion cubed
  • 2 large garlic cloves
  • 1 egg large
  • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 3 tbsp parsley finely chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper ground
  • 2 tbsp coconut or avocado oil
  • 10 whole wheat burger buns and/or lettuce leaves
  • Mango slaw


  • In a small pot, add lentils and water, cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook for 10 minutes. Set aside.
  • In the meanwhile, add salmon to a food processor and pulse a few times until it has finely chopped texture. Do not over process into fine mush. Transfer to a large bowl.
  • Add onion and garlic to a food processor; process until pureed, stopping and scraping the sides of the bowl. Transfer to a bowl with salmon along with cooked lentils, egg, Dijon mustard, parsley, salt and pepper. Then mix well using your hands.
  • Preheat large non-stick skillet on medium heat and swirl about 1 tbsp of oil to coat. Pack 1/2 cup measuring cup with salmon mixture, using your hands form into a patty and place carefully on a skillet. Add as many patties as skillet can fit and cook for 4 minutes or until white edges appear. Carefully flip and cook for another 4 minutes. Repeat with remaining mixture, cooking in batches and adding more oil.
  • In the meanwhile, prepare Mango Slaw.
  • To serve, place warm salmon patty on a bun or lettuce leaves (my choice) and top with a slaw.

Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 5 days or freeze leftovers for up to 3 months.

    Freeze: Lay patties on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, freeze completely and transfer to a large Ziploc bag. Cook from frozen following recipe's instructions + 5 minutes.



      • I used sockeye salmon. Use any wild species like pink (the cheapest one), coho, spring etc. Avoid farmed (Atlantic) salmon.
      • I'm pretty sure you could grill salmon burgers if you handle them gently, clean and oil grill well or use a grilling silicone mat.


      Serving: 1patty (no bun) | Calories: 198kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 66mg | Sodium: 315mg | Potassium: 563mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 156IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 25mg | Iron: 2mg
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      olena osipov in the studio

      Hello and welcome to iFOODreal.

      My name is Olena Osipov. I'm a mom to 2 boys, a wife to Alex and we reside on magical Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada. This is our healthy family recipes blog. Originally from Ukraine, I grew up on real food. As an adult, I struggled with diets for years because none worked long-term. Now for over 10 years, I cook easy healthy meals for my family. I can help you with “What’s for dinner?” too.

      16 comments on “Healthy Salmon Burgers

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      1. 5 stars
        I made this with canned salmon so did not need a food processor as it shredded easily. Used panko breadcrumbs and browned the onions and garlic since the cooking time was less due to canned salmon being cooked already. Followed the recipe, and wow! It’s delicious. Made the mango coleslaw to top it off. The spices are spot on. Don’t be tempted to add mayo or oil to the mango coleslaw. I cheated and used a coleslaw mix, added cilantro and just a bit of salt and rice vinegar. Turned out great! I will definitely make this again soon. Thanks Olena!

      2. Why do you leave the skin on your salmon for the burgers? I normally don’t eat the skin when I have it in a filet. Is this a thing to leave it on? Thanks.

        1. You can take it off with a fillet knife. I leave it on because it is barely noticeable, saves time, adds nutrients and my boys love salmon skin. But you can easily remove it in 5 minutes. 🙂

      3. 5 stars
        I wanted to grill the burgers and tried the grill sheet as suggested. I also have a cast iron griddle on my grill so I put half on each. The cast iron griddle worked best. The grill shee cooked and left the grill marks but took twice as long. The Mango Slaw was a great accominement dish. Wow.. Great burgers. Somehow I got crossed on the recipe and only used 1 pound of salmon instead of 2 and it still came out great.

        1. Yes, grill mats increase cooking time but make sure food doesn’t stick or falls apart. Glad this recipe worked so well for you, even with less salmon.

      4. 5 stars
        This salmon burger recipe is the best I have ever tried! I would never think to use lentils! Thank you!

      5. I’ve been looking for a good salmon burger recipe. This looks great! But I can’t eat lentils, I just don’t digest them well. Can I just leave them out? Or do they help bind the burger? Thanks!

      6. 5 stars
        These were very good and tasty. We used canned salmon and had to add crackers to it to hold together since we put in processor. Did not need eggs, moist enough. Cole slaw was very good too. Next time we will not put in processor at all.

      7. 5 stars
        salmon burgers wth the salad is beautifully delicious n very tasty,,id eat them again too.

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