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Old Fashioned Salmon Patties

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Old Fashioned Salmon Patties are simple to make and are a delicious weeknight dinner for busy families. Even people who don’t like salmon (my oldest son) usually love salmon patties!

If you are a skeptic, I challenge you to try this recipe and see how much your family enjoys it! It will quickly become a family favorite, and you’ll love the recipe’s simplicity.

delicious salmon patties

My family’s food sensitivities require I put a healthy spin on this traditional, old-fashioned salmon patty recipe.

These salmon patties are egg-free, dairy-free, and gluten-free. Instead of eggs, milk, and bread crumbs, I use flax eggs, almond milk, and gluten-free panko bread crumbs.

Salmon patties are nostaglic for me. I remember my Mom frying salmon patties in her cast iron skillet and serving them with black-eyed peas for family dinners.

I have taken my Mom’s Old Fashioned Salmon Patty Recipe and made a healthier version, perfect for families with food sensitivities.

These delicious salmon patties are dairy and gluten-free, making them less inflammatory for those intolerant of gluten or dairy.

old fashioned salmon patties ready to eat!

Salmon patties are packed full of nutrients. Canned salmon is rich in protein, calcium, vitamin D, and omega-3 fats. Omega-3 fats are essential for heart health, and most of us don’t get enough of these healthy fats in our everyday food choices.

If you are curious about the additional health benefits of salmon, I encourage you to read this article from Eat This, Not That.

Why You’ll Love Old Fashioned Salmon Patties

My favorite part about this recipe is it requires zero pre-planning effort or prep work! How often have you arrived at work in the morning to remember you never thawed out or prepared dinner for that evening?

This recipe calls for canned salmon and is ideal for a quick and easy meal with no preparation required.

salmon patties are a delicious dinner or appetizer

Old-fashioned salmon patties require only a handful of ingredients and can be ready in less than 20-25 minutes. They are even delicious when reheated as leftovers.

I always add canned salmon to my grocery list and make sure I have GF bread crumbs on hand. The rest of the ingredients are everyday staples.

How to Serve Salmon Patties

We eat our salmon patties a few different ways. We have found salmon patties to be a great appetizer or the perfect main dish for lunch or dinner. 

I like to serve our salmon patties with a squeeze of lime or lemon juice and sprinkled with fresh cilantro.

homemade french fries ready to eat

My favorite side dishes with salmon patties include homemade french fries, salad, cole slaw, vegetables, or black-eyed peas. You can thank my Mom for that last one! 😉 You can also eat salmon patties on a bun or in a salad.

Usually, my family ends up eating so many salmon patties that we rarely need a side dish to accompany them!

Ingredients You’ll Need

Salmon patties are so simple to make and require just a few ingredients. Most salmon patty recipes use eggs, but I make our salmon patties dairy and gluten-free, which includes removing eggs from the recipe.

I will provide substitute ingredient options so you can customize this recipe to suit your family’s dietary needs.

ingredients for oold fashioned salmon patties

You will need the following ingredients for Old Fashioned Salmon Patties.

  • Canned Salmon – If you haven’t eaten canned salmon before, this is your warning… it doesn’t look very appetizing at first sight. Canned salmon comes ready to eat but will include some bones. They are very tiny bones and are safe to eat. However, you can easily remove the larger bones. You will also drain the salmon before using it in this recipe.
  • Gluten-Free Panko Bread Crumbs- You can use regular or panko bread crumbs. You can also use crushed saltine crackers.
  • Flax Eggs – I use ground flax seed and make “flax eggs” for this recipe by using one tablespoon of ground flax and combining it with three tablespoons of lukewarm water for each “egg.” If you prefer, you can use regular eggs if you don’t have an egg intolerance.
salmon patty mixture ready to be formed into patties
  • Almond Milk – You can choose to use non-dairy or dairy milk.
  • Seasonings and Spices – Sea Salt, Black Pepper, Seasoned Salt, Parsley Flakes, Paprika, and Onion Powder
  • Olive Oil – You can also use Olive, Avocado, or Coconut Oil.
  • Fresh Cilantro (optional)
  • Lime or Lemon (optional)

How to Make Old Fashioned Salmon Patties

Open and drain two cans of canned salmon. Remove any large bones, then fork the salmon and mix well.

Add 1 cup of gluten-free panko bread crumbs. Mix well.

a snapshot of salmon patty ingredients in a bowl

Add ½ a teaspoon of salt, pepper, onion powder, dried parsley, and paprika.

Add one teaspoon of seasoned salt.

Mix all spices into the salmon and breadcrumb mixture before adding the final two ingredients.

salmon patty mixture

Add two flax eggs or regular eggs. *To make a flax egg, combine one tbsp of flax seed with 3 tbsp of lukewarm water. Let stand for 3 minutes before adding to the salmon.

Add ¼ c of almond milk and mix well.

Use your hands to form 12-14 small patties or eight large patties that can be placed into a skillet without falling apart. If your mixture is too moist, add 1-2 tbsp of breadcrumbs and mix until you get the desired consistency. If it is too dry, add 1-2 tbsp of almond milk. (My family prefers smaller salmon patties, so they get crispy when cooked.)

salmon patties formed into patties, ready for the skillet

Warm 3-4 tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet on medium heat. 

I use a piece of parchment paper on a cookie sheet and then transfer the patties into the skillet.

Cook the salmon patties for approximately 5 minutes on each side. You will see the salmon patties begin to brown and crisp. If you like your salmon patties crisper, add 2 minutes for each side.

salmon patties in the skillet cooking

Once done, remove from skillet and place on a plate with a paper towel. This will help absorb extra oil and keep the salmon patties crisp before serving.

Serve with a sprinkle of fresh cilantro and a lime wedge. Enjoy these delicious salmon patties as an appetizer or a main dish.

Ingredient Variations and Substitutions

Canned salmon makes this recipe easy and quick. However, you can use fresh salmon if you prefer.

You can substitute the flax egg with regular eggs, Non-dairy milk with dairy, and the gluten-free panko breadcrumbs with regular breadcrumbs or crushed saltine crackers.

salmon patties cooking in the skillet

You can also use your favorite oil for cooking if you don’t have olive oil.

For a quick and healthy tarter sauce, combine two tablespoons of vegan mayo, one tablespoon of dill relish, and a dash of seasoned salt and pepper.

Salmon Patty Recipe Tips

I drain the salmon and remove any large bones from the canned salmon. The small bones will crush into the mix with no issues, and they add Calcium to the recipe.

salmon patties cooking

Your salmon patties must stick together before you cook them. If your mixture is too moist, add 1-2 tbsp of breadcrumbs and mix until you get the desired consistency. If it is too dry, add 1-2 tbsp of almond milk.

I like to cook salmon patties in a skillet on medium to high heat until they are golden brown and extra crispy. However, you can also make salmon patties in an air fryer. We love warming up leftover salmon patties in the air fryer, so they are crispy.

Storing & Freezing Salmon Patties

Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 3 days. You can also make extra salmon patties and freeze them. Simply take the salmon patties out of the freezer and place them in a skillet or air fryer to reheat.

How to Re-Heat Salmon Patties

salmon patties on a plate, ready to serve

Salmon patties can be reheated in the oven, skillet, microwave, or air fryer. We have found the best way to get leftover salmon patties crispy is to place them in the air fryer at 380 degrees for 4-5 minutes. Reheating in the skillet will also make them crispy.

More Recipes You’ll Love

gluten free meatballs recipe finished

If you love this salmon patty recipe, you should try my gluten-free meatballs! These meatballs are healthy, delicious, and perfect for freezing for future dinners.

Old-Fashioned Salmon Patties

Old-Fashioned Salmon Patties are quick and easy to make! This dairy and gluten-free recipe puts a healthy spin on traditional salmon patties and is a great last minute appetizer or simple family dinner.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: dairy free, dinner, egg free, family, gluten free, healthy, lunch, quick, simple
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 6 people, 2 patties each
Calories: 294kcal


  • 1 large bowl
  • 1 Parchment Paper
  • 1 mixing spoon
  • 1 spatula
  • 1 Skillet
  • 1 measuring spoons and cups
  • 1 Plate covered with a Paper Towel


  • 2 cans Canned Salmon
  • 1 cup Gluten-Free Panko Bread Crumbs
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Onion Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Dried Parsley
  • 1/2 tsp Paprika
  • 1 tsp Seasoned Salt
  • 2 Flax Eggs
  • 1/4 cup Almond Milk
  • 4 tbsp Olive Oil for Cooking
  • 1/4 cup Fresh Cilantro (optional)
  • 2 Limes (optional)


  • Drain 2 cans of canned salmon and remove any large bones. Fork the salmon and mix well.
  • Add 1 cup of gluten-free panko bread crumbs to the salmon mixture.
  • Add 1/2 tsp of each spice – salt, pepper, onion powder, dried parsley, and paprika.
  • Add 1 tsp of seasoned salt.
  • Add 2 flax eggs (or regular eggs) to the mixture and stir. *To make a flax egg combine one tablespoon of ground flax with three tablespoons of lukewarm water. Let the flax eggs stand for 3 minutes before adding them to the mixture.
  • Add 1/4 cup of almond milk and mix well.
  • If your mixture is too moist, the patties will fall apart. Add two tablespoons of breadcrumbs and test consistency. If your mixture is too dry, add two tablespoons of almond milk.
  • Form mixture into patties. For thicker patties – form 8 patties. For thinner and crispier patties – make 12-14 patties.
  • Warm 3-4 tablespoons of olive oil (or your favorite oil) in a skillet on medium heat.
  • Cook salmon patties for approximately 5 minutes per side. You will see the salmon patties begin to brown and crisp. For crispier salmon patties, turn up heat slightly and increase cook time by two minutes per side.
  • Once done, remove from skillet and place on a plate covered with a paper towel. This will help absorb extra oil and keep the patties crisp before serving.
  • Garnish with fresh cilantro and lime wedges.
  • This recipe makes six servings, equaling two salmon patties per serving.


  • You can use regular bread crumbs or crushed saltine crackers instead of gluten-free panko bread crumbs.
  • You can use regular eggs instead of flax eggs.
  • You can also use any dairy or non-dairy milk instead of almond milk. 
  • Cilantro and lime are optional.
  • For crispier salmon patties, make 12-14 patties, and cook for approximately 5-7 minutes on medium/high heat. 


Serving: 2g | Calories: 294kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 9mg | Sodium: 897mg | Potassium: 33mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 0.1g | Vitamin A: 263IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 57mg | Iron: 1mg

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One Comment

  1. Samantha Bass says:

    5 stars
    10/10!! I love the substitution options and easy-to-follow directions. This recipe is now a staple in our household! Thank you, Stacey!! XOXO

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