These quick and easy Salmon Burgers are a great, healthier alternative to traditional beef burgers. Made with Greek yogurt, lemon juice, green onions, and fresh parsley, these tasty fish burgers are perfect for pairing with your favorite BBQ side dishes.
Now that we’re (finally) getting closer to summertime, I’m starting to experiment with new burger recipes at home. From vegetarian masterpieces like this Ranch Chickpea Burger to unique fusion burgers like my Pizza Turkey Burger, it’s no secret that I like to have fun when coming up with new types of healthy burger recipes.
I have always been partial to burgers with fish like salmon and tilapia because they’re super lean, nutrient-dense, and absolutely delicious. It’s also a fantastic way to use leftover cooked fish if you ever have some laying around in the fridge! In fact, that’s exactly how I came up with this recipe for Easy Salmon Burgers.
This salmon burger recipe is made with flavorful ingredients like lemon juice, fresh parsley, spices, and Greek yogurt to keep the burgers extra juicy and moist. The resulting dish is crispy on the outside, yet tender on the inside and bursting with more flavor than you would expect.
If you’re looking for a fun way to use up your leftovers or want to incorporate more fish into your diet, you’ve got to try this recipe!
What You’ll Need
Here’s a quick rundown of the ingredients you will need to make these easy salmon burgers.
- Salmon: You’re going to need fresh salmon with the bones and skin removed. Make sure to use raw uncooked salmon fillets for this dish.
- Greek yogurt: In addition to adding tons of protein and probiotics, Greek yogurt helps to keep the burger mixture together and keeps them moist on the inside. You could swap in mayonnaise or eggs for the yogurt if you prefer.
- Lemons: I like to incorporate both the juice and zest of a lemon to brighten up the dish with the perfect amount of acidity.
- Green onions: This ingredient is great for adding a crunch and a nice sharp freshness to keep the burgers bright and tasty.
- Parsley: Fresh herbs like parsley add tons of fresh flavor to the burgers. You can also swap it out for chives, fresh dill, or cilantro if desired.
- Spices: You will need a basic combination of salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and sweet or smoked paprika. You could also swap in a teaspoon or two of Dijon mustard.
- Breadcrumbs: This burger can be made with or without panko breadcrumbs. Coating the exterior of the burger with breadcrumbs gives the burgers a really nice crunch but for a gluten-free salmon burger, leave them out.
Recipe Notes and Tips
Want to make the best salmon burgers you’ve ever tried? Here are some of my top tips to help you do just that:
- Hand vs food processor. I’ve tried preparing this recipe using both methods and here’s my verdict. While chopping the fish into chunks by hand makes for delightfully airy patties, it also takes a lot of time and effort. On the other hand, too much time in the processor and you’ll end up with salmon mush. So, I prefer pulsing it in quick stages instead to get a chunky mixture and retain the ideal texture.
- Toast your buns. Toasting the hamburger buns might seem insignificant, but trust me when I say that it really enhances the overall flavor of the burgers. Simply rub them with a little butter or extra virgin olive oil and toast them on the grill or in the oven.
- Sauce it up. Burgers and sauce go together like peanut butter and jelly, so grab your favorite store-bought condiment or whip up your own like this Creamy Chipotle Sauce or Tzatziki. Store bought dill sauce is also delicious. Slather a spoonful onto your burger and enjoy!
- Add breadcrumbs. For a lighter and more airy burger texture, add some Panko breadcrumbs or gluten-free breadcrumbs to the mix.
Best Salmon Burger Topping Ideas
Now it’s time for the all-important question—what goes with salmon burgers? To be honest, there’s no right or wrong answer here. There are tons of burger topping ideas that would all work great, depending on what you have and what you like.
Here are some of the best burger topping ideas to try out:
- Sliced avocado
- Pico de gallo
- Romaine lettuce
- Dill pickle slices
- Pickled red onions
- Diced jalapenos
- Ranch or ketchup
How to Store Salmon Burgers
These burgers are so easy to make ahead and store that I always try to double up the recipe and then freeze the uncooked patties for later. To store salmon burgers, wrap them individually in plastic wrap and store them in the freezer in an airtight container for up to 3 months.
Pro tip: To ensure the burgers don't stick together, place them on a baking sheet with parchment paper. Let the outside freeze for 3-4 hours.
When you’re ready to enjoy them, let them thaw overnight in the fridge before cooking. They are delicious in these salmon and rice bowls if you want to serve them a different way.
Storing leftovers? Store your salmon burgers in the fridge in an airtight container or storage bag for up to 2-3 days.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about this easy salmon burger recipe:
Salmon cooks fairly quickly, so you’ll only need to cook it for around 4-5 minutes on each side. The best way to tell if your burger is done is by inserting a thermometer in the middle of the patty. If it’s at least 145°F, then you’re done. Another easy way to tell is if the meat has turned to a light opaque pink and can easily be flaked with a fork.
You can serve these easy salmon burgers with any dish you would normally serve with burgers. Some of my top picks include green salad, roasted potatoes wedges, pasta salad, potato salad, and grilled vegetables. Feel free to choose your favorites!
Salmon can begin to smell overly fishy if it’s no longer fresh, so always check the label before using it. However, the oxidation of fatty acids could also be to blame and doesn’t mean the salmon is bad.
An easy way to reduce the fishy smell and flavor in this case is to brine your fish in an acidic liquid like vinegar or buttermilk for 20 minutes before cooking with it.
This recipe works bets with fresh salmon fillets since they have a different texture than precooked canned salmon. With that said, you can make these with canned salmon, the result will just be slightly different the burgers won't have as much texture.
Easy Salmon Burgers
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1.5 lbs wild salmon (boneless and skinless, or any fresh salmon)
2 tbsp nonfat plain Greek yogurt
1 tbsp lemon juice (+ 1 tsp lemon zest)
2 green onions, diced
2 tbsp parsley, diced (or cilantro)
2 tsp paprika (smoked or sweet)
3/4 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp black pepper
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Add about 1/4 of the salmon to a food processor with the yogurt and lemon juice. Pulse until the mixture forms into a thick paste. This will hold the salmon patties together. Add the remaining salmon and pulse just a couple of times so the salmon is in smaller pieces, about 1/4 inch thick, but not fully processed. You want the salmon to have some texture and larger pieces.
Remove from the food processor and gently stir in the onions, parsley, paprika, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper. Once combined, divide the mixture into four patties about 1 inch thick, pressing them together with your hands. Optional: For a crunchy burger, press each burger into Panko breadcrumbs to create a crunchy exterior. You will need 1/3-1/2 cup total for 4 burgers.
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.
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