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salmon cakes on a platter - side view

Easy Salmon Cake Recipe

This Salmon Cake recipe is incredibly easy to make, on the table in under an hour, and served with the most incredible, fresh and creamy lemon pesto sauce! 
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Chill 20 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 837kcal


Creamy Lemon Pesto:


  • Thaw the salmon in the fridge overnight if not already thawed. Heat the grill (or the oven) to 425 degrees and cook the salmon right on the cedar plank for 15 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and cut into 1" chunks.
  • Place the salmon, mayonnaise, panko bread crumbs, egg, salt, pepper, coconut sugar and chili powder in a bowl and mix to combine.
  • Form the mixture into 8-10 balls and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Place the salmon balls in the fridge for 20 minutes to allow them to form up. This will keep them from falling apart when cooking.
  • Heat the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Place the chilled salmon cakes in the skillet and cook for 3-5 minutes, or until golden brown. Use the spatula to lightly press each cake down and flip over.
  • Cook another 3-5 minutes on the other side until golden brown. Remove and serve drizzled with the creamy lemon pesto.

Creamy Lemon Pesto:

  • Combine all the ingredients, except the Parmesan cheese, in a food processor or blender and pulse until a semi-smooth sauce is formed. Add the Parmesan cheese and pulse once or twice to combine.


  1. Preserved lemons can be purchased through the link in the recipe card, but I highly recommend making your own for the future. They are very handy to have around!
  2. If you don't have preserved lemons, you can substitute 1 tbsp. of lemon juice and 1 tsp. of fresh lemon zest.
  3. Use a non-stick or cast iron skillet to cook the salmon cakes to avoid sticking.
  4. Add additional olive oil to the lemon pesto if it is too thick. You can also add additional cream, but it can dilute the flavor. 
  5. You can cook the salmon cakes in butter, olive oil, coconut oil, duck fat, etc. Any cooking fat will do. Check out this article to learn more about the types of cooking fats.


Serving: 2patties | Calories: 837kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 71g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Cholesterol: 170mg | Sodium: 661mg | Potassium: 791mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 2610IU | Vitamin C: 21.2mg | Calcium: 174mg | Iron: 3.7mg