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What Is a Salmon Burger?

By Drue Tibbits
Updated May 17, 2024
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A salmon burger is a type of sandwich made from a salmon patty served on a bun or bread. The term also refers to the patty itself when served without a bun. The patty, made of salmon mixed with spices and binder ingredients, can be fried or baked. Lettuce leaves and tomato slices are sometimes served with, or on, the burger. The sandwich, which tastes similar to a fish or crab patty sandwich, is served hot and can be eaten for lunch or dinner.

The salmon patty is made from either whole salmon or canned salmon. Whole salmon must first be cooked before it is flaked and removed from the bones. Canned salmon is already cooked, but the skin and bones should be separated from the salmon and discarded. The patty ingredients are mixed together and formed into a patty shape, which is then cooked in a small amount of hot oil or baked in an oven. Fried salmon patties have a slightly crispier texture than those that are baked.

Eggs are the usual binder ingredient, enabling the flaked salmon to maintain the patty shape throughout cooking. Cornmeal, flour, or crushed crackers are added to the flaked salmon along with spices. Depending on the salmon burger recipe, minced onion, sliced green onions, or chopped bell peppers are also added. The flavors of garlic, parsley, and curry complement the taste of salmon and are often mixed in with the patty ingredients.

There are several different options for the type of bread used to make salmon burgers. The salmon patty can be served on an onion roll, a Kaiser roll, or even a traditional hamburger bun. Some recipes use garlic bread or toasted sourdough bread instead of buns. A salmon burger can be served plain, without toppings, or with traditional hamburger extras, such as lettuce, tomato, and relish. Gourmet salmon burgers may include toppings such as coleslaw, sour cream, or avocado slices.

Salmon burgers are sometimes served with a flavorful sauce accent that is drizzled on the patty or served as a side accompaniment. Tartar sauce and cocktail sauce are traditional sauces for most seafood and work well with the taste of a salmon burger. There are many different recipes for specialized sauces for salmon burgers. The sauces range from sweet to tangy and from mild to hot. Ingredients such as lemon juice, horseradish sauce, or vinegar are often used in combination with salmon.

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