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Old Bay Salmon Cakes

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Old Bay Salmon Cakes feature diced chunks of fresh salmon and the bold bite of Old Bay Seasoning, pan-fried to golden perfection. This easy recipe is on the table in about 20 minutes! Top with creamy avocado and serve on their own or make delicious salmon sandwiches.

THIS POST AND STEP-BY-STEP PHOTOS WERE UPDATED MARCH 14, 2019
picture of Old Bay Salmon Cakes, stacked on top of each other

I refused to eat salmon until I was about 30 years old. I have no clue what turned me off about it, but nothing and no one was going to change my mind. When I finally did try it I was immediately hooked, and I have several Salmon Recipes on the blog.

I’ve seen delicious-looking salmon cakes on Facebook but using canned salmon. There’s nothing about canned salmon that looks appetizing, so I used fresh salmon to create Old Bay Salmon Cakes

WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS
  • It’s a great twist on the “same old salmon”, and it’s on the table in 20 minutes
  • They’re perfect on their own, topped with avocado salsa, or as a sandwich
  • Old Bay Seasoning adds a fabulous punch of flavor
finished Old Bay Salmon Cakes on platter, one topped with avocado salsa
INGREDIENT TIPS FOR OLD BAY SALMON CAKES

I use salmon fillets and usually use Atlantic salmon. You can substitute wild-caught or sockeye salmon if you prefer.

I use Avocado Oil Mayonnaise, because I love the flavor. You can substitute real, light or fat-free mayonnaise. Do not use imitation mayo, as it completely changes the flavor.

Mustard adds a little bite, and I use either Spicy Brown Mustard or Dijon Mustard

Celery and red onion add crunch and mild flavor. Fresh dill, salt, fresh-cracked black pepper, and fresh-squeezed lemon juice round out the seasonings.

Panko Bread Crumbs act as the binder to hold the Old Bay Salmon Cakes together.

What about eggs? The choice is yours! It doesn’t affect the taste, but it does affect the texture.

  • NO EGG: lighter texture, very delicate, can fall apart easily. Form the mixture into balls; press together firmly; then flatten into patties
  • EGG WHITE OR WHOLE EGG: more dense texture, holds together better. Form the mixture into patties immediately

I like it both ways, but prefer the texture of no egg.

ABOUT OLD BAY SEASONING

It’s a glorious mix of spices that you will instantly love, and nearly every seafood restaurant in Maryland has it somewhere on the menu.

Old Bay Seasoning was originally named “Delicious Brand Shrimp and Crab Seasoning”. No real surprise, the name didn’t stick. The Old Bay name was inspired by a steamship line that traveled the Chesapeake between Maryland and Virginia.

Is Old Bay Seasoning just for seafood? Absolutely not! It’s also a fabulous seasoning for chicken and vegetables. Try it on your French fries, instead of salt!

STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS FOR OLD BAY SALMON CAKES

Dice the salmon into 1/4″ chunks. I do not recommend a food processor, as it will turn the salmon into mush. Add all ingredients into a bowl

process pics - cut salmon on left; all ingredients in bowl on right

Fold ingredients together. Don’t over-mix, or the cakes will get dense. Scoop mixture with a 1/4 measuring cup; release into hands, and form patties. If you do not use an egg, make sure to squeeze mixture well, to help cakes hold their shape

process pictures: mixture combined in bowl on right; mixture formed into patties on right
COOKING METHOD/TIME AND SERVING OPTIONS

COOKING METHOD

I prefer to pan-fry Old Bay Salmon Cakes because you get that beautiful golden color. I use just enough Avocado Oil for about a 1/4″ depth of a large skillet. 

They are delicious grilled as well

COOKING TIME

Once you add Old Bay Salmon Cakes to the skillet, leave them alone! If you try to flip them too soon they will stick to the skillet.

Do not overcook, or the salmon will become dry.

Cook for 3 minutes on one side, then flip and cook for 1 1/2 minutes on the second side. Remove, and drain on paper towels. You want the crisp exterior with a tender inside.

SERVING OPTIONS

I make an easy avocado salsa, which provides a wonderful creamy contrast to the bite of the cakes.

I normally eat 4 Old Bay Salmon Cakes as a light lunch. You could also make these into sandwiches, or make the patties smaller and serve them as appetizers.

picture of finished Old Bay Salmon Cakes, stacked on top of each other
MORE SEAFOOD RECIPES
MORE RECIPES WITH OLD BAY SEASONING
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Old Bay Salmon Cakes - Karyl's Kulinary Krusade

Old Bay Salmon Cakes

Yield: 8 patties
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Total Time: 18 minutes

Old Bay Salmon Cakes feature diced chunks of fresh salmon and the bold bite of Old Bay Seasoning, pan-fried to golden perfection. This easy recipe is on the table in about 20 minutes! Top with creamy avocado and serve on their own or make delicious salmon sandwiches.

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces salmon fillets, skinless
  • 1/4 cup celery, finely diced
  • 1/4 cup red onion, finely diced
  • 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon spicy brown mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 Tablespoon fresh dill, minced
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 large egg or egg white (OPTIONAL)
  • avocado oil or canola oil, for frying

AVOCADO SALSA

  • 1 avocado, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 1/4 cup red onion, diced
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1 Tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • juice of 1/2 lime

Instructions

  1. AVOCADO SALSA: Combine all ingredients, and smash with a fork. Set aside in fridge
  2. In a medium bowl, add mayonnaise, mustard, Old Bay, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. (IF YOU ARE USING EGG, ADD IT TO THIS MIXTURE). Combine and set aside
  3. Dice salmon into small pieces, about 1/4", and transfer to large bowl. Add dill, celery, red onion, and Panko bread crumbs. Add mayonnaise mixture and fold together 
  4. Using a 1/4 cup measure, scoop mixture and release into hands. Form into patties, pressing together firmly so they hold well. 
  5. In a large skillet (I use a 10" skillet), add enough oil for a depth of about 1/4", and heat over medium-high.  Carefully add patties, laying them away from you to prevent splatter. 
  6. Cook patties on first side for 3 minutes. Patties are ready to flip when you can see the bottom edges turn golden brown. Flip, and cook for 1 1/2 minutes. Transfer to paper towels and drain well
  7. Serve topped with avocado salsa

Notes

I use salmon fillets and usually use Atlantic salmon. You can substitute wild-caught or sockeye salmon if you prefer.

Do not use a food processor to chop the salmon, as it will turn the salmon into mush.

Use avocado oil or real mayonnaise. Do not use imitation mayo, as it completely changes the flavor

Egg is optional, and affects only the density and texture of the patties:

  • NO EGG: lighter texture, delicate, can fall apart easily. 
  • EGG WHITE OR WHOLE EGG: more dense texture, holds together better

If you do not use egg, make sure to squeeze the patties together tightly, to help the cakes hold their shape.

Cooking Method:

  • I prefer to pan-fry Old Bay Salmon Cakes because you get that beautiful golden color.
  • They are delicious grilled as well

Cooking Time:

  • Once you add the cakes to the skillet, leave them alone! If you try to flip them too soon they will stick to the skillet. 
  • Cook for 3 minutes on one side, then flip and cook for 1 1/2 minutes on the second side. R
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 184Saturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 26mgSodium: 566mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 2gSugar: 1gProtein: 10g
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